In any case, it finally packed it in a month or so ago. This left me with a dilemma. I could, of course, have simply held out for an iPod Video, which was all the rage at the time on the rumor sites - even if not video, it was pretty clear something was happening in the iPod space. But that would have meant violating my dollar-a-day rule.
The rule is simple - toys must amortize out to no more than a dollar a day. Exceptions to this are actual full computers and cars - both because actual work gets done on them. But things like iPods, GameBoys (if I had one which I don't), PDA upgrades I don't need but buy anyway - that kind of thing. I have to use the thing for long enough that it works out to a dollar a day before I'm allowed to buy another one.
I'd already sort of violated that by buying an iPod Nano. My rationalization was that the iPod 4G was pretty much ensconced in the car at this point, and the nano was my walking-around iPod. Yeah, I know, it's thin. But the iPod still worked, so I wasn't replacing it...thin, thin, thin. Still, rationalization is a talent!
The upshot was that I had (and still have) a couple of months left before my 4G reaches 'rule amortization' date. So I can't replace it. Having it repaired out of warranty would probably cost the same as buying a new 30G (I checked). Third-party repairs would run not much less at all, since it's probably drive-related, and the drives...aren't cheap.
The issue is that copying music (or anything) onto the iPod causes it to freeze up randomly somewhere in the process. Once it does, you have to reboot it and disconnect it. Doing so usually doesn't do anything other than force you to reconnect it - but every fifteen to twenty times you do this, the iPod corrupts itself, requiring you to wipe it to zero and start over. You get the 'folder and url' boot screen, or the 'folder and exclamation mark' boot screen, meaning 'I'm lobotomized.' Only using 'restore iPod to factory settings' will help, which kills everything you've copied so far. Given that I keep around 20G of music on the thing, and this happens reliably within the first thousand songs, that's not too good.
Once it crashes, it loses all the songs that were being synced in that session. If you're manually syncing, that means 'every song you just dragged' not 'every song since you plugged it in' which is good - it means you can plug it in and start dragging groups of 5-15 songs over, in the hopes of slowly moving your library. But then, there's that gotcha - every fifteen, maybe twenty crashes, it takes everything on the iPod and nukes it. And believe me, you always find those five songs you just have to have.
Finally I realized something - it was crashing more frequently as I went along.
So I put an icepack under the aluminum back of the iPod (with some paper between them to prevent condensing moisture). Then I let it sit for about 2 minutes to cool, crossed my fingers and ran a full sync.
It just finished dumping 2,567 songs. Not a hitch.
w00t. Just to be safe, I renamed its little white spastic self 'Gir'.
Posted by jbz at October 25, 2005 1:14 AM