Attention to Detail

Sunday 2008-09-14

As I explained earlier, I think it is really important to go beyond the specs. It’s really important to put care and attention in your product. The new version of iTunes has a great (little) example of what I mean. I use Itunes to play music through both the computer speakers and a stereo in the livingroom, connected to an Airport Express.

In iTunes 7, when I added the Airport Express to the set of outputs while playing a song, the music stopped, and after a while resumed playing through all the selected outputs. I never minded the short silence, and was amazed at how Apple got all the outputs to play perfectly in sync.

In iTunes 8 things changed a tiny bit. When I select the Airport Express, the music keeps on playing on my computer, and after a few seconds the music also starts playing from the speakers in the living room. An still, the music is in sync.

It’s these little things, the amazing attention to detail, that give Apple products a tremendous “perceived value”.

That, and the Genius button ofcourse. :-)

Happy Birthday!

Wednesday 2007-10-24

I know you’ve been playing with your ultra-cool iPhones, but did you realize that it only is 6 years ago that Apple showed is the first iPod? It’s amazing how fast technology advances nowadays. Today I read that 128GB flashdrives are not far away, so how about an 128GB iPhone, or even a MacBook with a solid state disk? We’ve got a nice future ahead…

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Use iTunes with *ANY* mp3 player

Thursday 2007-02-01

Many years ago, I bought an iBead Jens of Sweden MP-100. At the time I was a Windows/Linux user and everything was fine. Now that I’m a Mac user, syncing tracks to my trusty USB mp3 player is a bit harder. I had to copy tracks by hand, and when two tracks had the same title the copy would fail. THis was all very irritating. I am saving for an iPod nano, but until I get one I’m stuck with the USB copy tricks.

But not anymore, 5 minutes ago I discovered SyncTunes, a free Mac OSX application which can sync iTunes playlists to any drive as long as it’s available on your desktop. This means that any drive that mounts as a removable drive (USB memory sticks, PDA’s, Sony PSP’s…) can be used to sync the playlist to. The only catch is that you have to make the playlist fit onto the drive (in size). This can be easily done by creating a smart playlist in iTunes which is limited in size.

I tested syncing some of my playlists (through a size-limiting playlist) and it works like a charm. Size limiting playlists are also the thing to use if you do have an iPod, and want some control on how many space is used by pop music, and how many space is used by rock. I’m a happy camper now, and in no hurry to buy an iPod (but that 8GB red nano sure looks tempting).

Opening iTunes to other players

Thursday 2007-01-25

Today I found an article about Norway suing Apple because music bought in the iTunes store could not be played on a non-iPod music player. If Apple looses this legal attack, it would result in an even stranger digital rights management situation than we already have. Read the rest of this entry »

Tangerine BPM Analyzer

Sunday 2006-10-22

Today I discovered Tangerine, a BPM (Beats Per Minute) analyzer for use with iTunes on a mac. I downloaded it, and it works as advertised. It scans your iTunes music library, and analyzes the BPM (and intensity of the pattern) of each track. It does this in the background, and on my Mac mini Core duo I can continue wih my normal programs while Tangerine analyzes the tracks. The BPM values get saved to your iTunes library, so they will also show up in iTunes if you have the BPM column visible there. The “Intensity” will not be visible in your normal iTunes lists.

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