Tuesday, February 14, 2006

iPods offer way more than just music

I stopped by the University bookstore last Friday and they had a previously opened 60GB video iPod for 20% off. So, I couldn't pass up a deal like that. Yesterday, I spent quite a bit of time getting to know my new iPod. It was recognized by my Windows workstation as soon as I plugged it in and I could see the iPod's drive from "My Computer" but it did not show up in my latest version of iTunes. A call to Apple tech support resolved the issue. Apparently, in Windows 2000 and Windows XP, there is sometimes a problem with iTunes recognizing an iPod that has mapped itself to a drive letter adjacent to a mapped network drive. The Apple technician had me remap the iPod to another drive letter and soon had me downloading files without a problem.

Then I set about downloading the Rome travel guides I had found on the web. I have a PDA so I was used to simply creating a folder on the PDA's hard drive and dragging files into it. However, even though I could access the iPod's hard drive in the same way and create a folder and drag a file into it, I could not access the file from the available menu folders using the iPod's built-in interface. Another call to tech support confirmed that, although the iPod allows you to copy files to its drive using this method, the files cannot be browsed by the iPod once they are copied to it. I learned that I really need to unzip the files onto my hard drive, then import them into iTunes and use it to transfer them to my iPod. Apparently, sometimes having knowledge of similar devices is not necessarily helpful.

I also learned that the hold button controls the use of the smartwheel. At first I couldn't figure out why I couldn't navigate the menu but the hold button was in the locked position. Just a few minor technicalities!

After downloading the guides to Rome, I discovered that these guides were audio only. As I have thousands of pictures that I took when I visited Italy last spring, I called to see if there was a way I could take an existing audio guide and add images to it.
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