The iPod Shuffle: A Paean

[May 2024 Update: Apparently you can't get a used original-version iPod Shuffle from Amazon any more. Picture stays, but link removed. Nineteen years later, my car music player is an old iPod Touch, connected to the audio system via USB. I grew disenchanted with song-shuffling, so it's currently set to play "albums" instead, in order according to my own arcane ranking system.]

This wonderful little device was a Father's Day present from the Salad kids. I've only recently outgrown thinking of "Apple Computer" as synonymous with "overpriced proprietary crap". But this beast, while (mostly) proprietary, is not out of line pricewise with other flash players, and is not crap. Sound is fine to my ancient ears.

I plunked down for a $15 tape cassete adaptor at Best Buy, and that makes it sound great in my car too. (There's a little clickety-clack noise from the casette mechanism itself, which is too bad, but what the heck, that's why we have a volume control: drown it out.) I haven't listened to the radio in my car for over a week now.

It holds about 17.7 hours of music each time I fill it up at the laptop. (I previously, and fortuitously, used iTunes just as a CD ripper/music player there, so I had already accumulated about 4 Gig of music.)

And when I plugged it in to the USB port on the laptop, it Just Worked. I love it when things Just Work. (Well, I kind of like it when things don't Just Work, too, because I enjoy futzing with it. Assuming that futzing is effective. Assuming it's not: Just Doesn't Work.)

And I am totally married to shuffling (you don't have to shuffle, but I've not done anything else); there's something sweet about a Jimmy Webb ballad being followed immediately by "Won't Get Fooled Again" by The Who. I don't think I'd ever find a radio station that does that; and of course, now I don't have to.

Bless those little urchins. They don't have to get me anything for Father's Day ever again.

Last Modified 2024-05-15 6:43 AM EDT