Last October I accidentally threw away my iPod Shuffle. This may sound like an interesting story, but more than anything it was dumb. Just dumb. Sure, it was just one of the old style Shuffles, the kind that was as big as a pack of gum which seemed really small for about fifteen minutes there, and I had already replaced it once after all the buttons had stopped working, but that little bastard still set me back $150 at the time.
Last week my new iPod Shuffle arrived, the latest version of the latest kind that has a built-in clip and comes with Apple’s new-style headphones and is about the size of a postage stamp if postage stamps were a quarter of an inch thick and cost $79. Honestly, this thing is small. I almost swallowed it just taking it out of the box.
Anywho, I love the new Shuffle. At first I had planned on getting a nano, seeing as how the cheapest model would be the same price that I paid for my original Shuffle. After I realized that for my purposes I would need an armband or some crazy carrying shit like that, and discovering that such nonsense would run me an extra $30 or so, the Shuffle and its handy clip started looking much more attractive. I don’t need much from an mp3 player… I just need something that makes noise in my ears while I’m at the gym. Until I can afford a personal trainer, an iPod it is.
Hence the Shuffle, which is of a size that is so ridiculously small that it makes you wonder why your headphones need to plug into anything anymore, or even need to have cords for that matter. I still don’t have a proper full-size iPod, partly because I have no real use for one in my regular life, and partly because I keep putting off the purchase, in the interest of getting the next latest-and-greatest edition from Apple. I’ve been waiting for the multi-touch iPod ever since the iPhone was announced, and I know now that it’s only a matter of time.
It’s amazing when you realize that the click wheel, which was quite possibly the most innovative UI development of the oughts, has already been rendered completely irrelevant by the very company that invented it in the first place.
In other news, a week from today I take off for my second shot at SXSW. My first time was a blast and I got to spend it with my fellow UI-geek friend (and occasional lover) Jake Ingman, along with Sally and a number of other great friends we made down there in Austin. Jake and I have known of each other’s existences since 2001, but we didn’t hook up until SXSW last year. We rekindled our relationship through the 37signals personal ads (this joke was funnier before they started running their Job and Gig Boards) on a thread about Jim Brandenburg, and we spent our downtime at “South By” sharing the same bed. Or staying up all night blogging and uploading photos to Flickr. What can I say, we were both hopeless romantics at the time.
Jake and I are both jammin’ down to SXSW again this year, only this time around we’ve got two beds between us. Kate assured me, however, that she would be totally okay if we decided to share again. I guess we’ll just have to see what Anne says about the whole deal. Seriously though, some things just get out of control down in Texas.