Tokyo Damage Report

IMPROVING THE IPOD: MY SUGGESTIONS

 

 
The new pods are like 160GB. WTF? Even I think that’s excessive. Why don’t they just put ILLEGALLY DOWNLOAD MORE SHIT THAN YOU CAN EVER LISTEN TO on the package cover? Talk about aiding-and-abetting! If you could afford to legally purchase the 40,000 songs the new pods hold, I assume you’d be too rich to NEED an ipod. At that point it would be more cost-effective to hire a mariachi band to follow you wherever you went.
 
Instead of more memory, they need more buttons. That whole ‘one button for everything’ interface might have sounded good in the drawing room but basically it means a) you have to press that button a god-awful number of times to accomplish anything, and b) you have to actually LOOK at the pod to see how many more times you need to press Mr. One Button to get to the screen you want to get to. Speaking for the community of users who like to rock out with complete strangers’ long-johns wrapped around our heads like turbans, I can attest to the futility of this interface. So here is some suggestions to improve the user experience:
 
1) it needs a toggle switch for when you’re listening to just-downloaded , never-heard-before tunes in bed. As you listen to new tunes, flip the switch to one of three positions: 1) keep 2) delete, and 3) so bad it’s worth keeping to blow your friends’ minds. When you plug your shit into itunes, any album marked DELETE will be deleted from your hard disk. Any album marked ‘so bad it’s good’ will have a little icon of Danzig displayed next to it.
 
1a) even the stuff you keep, you should be able to give it a 1-to-5 star rating in the dark or while you’re riding your bike. Or when too drunk to use the little wheel. Or that thing about the long-johns of strangers which I am starting to regret divulging. I think they should have a separate toggle switch for ratings. Toggles are rad because even without looking, you can confirm your ranking by feeling with your thumb the position of the switch.
 
2) a button you press when you hear a part of a song you’d like to sample for that rap song you’re producing. The button records the exact minute-and-second mark of the song for future reference. This information is ALSO displayed as a new column in the Itunes database : the ‘FRESH BREAKS’ column. Right next to the Beware Of Danzig column.
 
3) a feature that detects quiet pauses in songs, and inserts the “quacking duck error message” sample from the old Macintosh II computers into those pauses.
 
4) alternatively, a feature that puts a saxophone solo over random songs. When you install the feature you can specify how likely the solo is to occur (i.e. 10% chance per song, 1% chance, etc.) However, you can NOT tell Itunes how long the solo lasts. This is determined each time by rolling a ‘virtual 20-sided die’ where low numbers like 1 or 2 mean a 3 second sax solo, but results of 19 or 20 mean the ENTIRE SONG is soloed over. Ditto for the mix level of the solo. Will it be subliminally quiet? Or oppressively loud? The suspense is half the fun!
 
4a) same as 4 but conch-shell solo.
 
1)      an application that automatically deletes ALL intro tracks from black- or death-metal albums.
 
2)      Itunes needs to stop being a dick about file paths. If I move a folder or change the title of a folder, don’t be all up in my face about “Can’t find the file.” And even if I find the file, then Mr. Genius-Bar says ‘OK that was fun but guess what dude I can’t find the next song in THE SAME FOLDER duuuurrrrrrrr.’ Hey, lazybones: if you can’t find the file, Fuckin’ search all file-names in THE NEXT FOLDER UP in the file path until you find the file, AND THEN FUCKIN’ UPDATE THE FILE PATH, NOT JUST FOR THAT SONG BUT FOR ALL THE OTHER SONGS IN THAT FOLDER. That shit should be automatic as fuck.
 
3)      An ‘edit’ button that you push when a boring/arty/guitar solo/etc. part of the song comes on, and you push it again when the song starts to get good. The next time you listen to the song, the crappy part of the song is gone! And the before-and-after sections of the song are seamlessly crossfaded together using the ‘gapless playback’ technology. I was going to say that this button would be especially handy when listening to Fake Neurosis bands like ISIS or OLD MAN GLOOM, with their tedious ‘atmospheric’ bits, but then I remembered that you should not listen to those bands in the first place.
 
7a) same as 7, but instead of editing out the parts you marked with the edit button, it puts the saxophone solo over those parts at full volume.
 
8 ) an update of the Podcast feature that automatically inserts an mp3 of Terri Gross saying “This is Fresh Air with Terri Gross” before every death metal song.
 
9) compilations shouldn’t be in a whole separate category. They should be displayed with the other albums, as if the compilation title was the artist name.

10) possibly the raddest thing would be a little microphone where you can record yourself singing along with a song when you’re totally shitfaced. Singing along, or air-guitaring along, or just screaming "OH SHIT  TONY IOMMI IS THE BEST FREAKING GUITARIST EVERRRR, HERE COMES THE RIFF, HERE COMES THE RIFF, AAAAAHH!!" or drunkenly sobbing along to Sugar Pie Honey Bunch, or just incoherently screaming "WEST SIIIIDE!!" every 5 seconds and it’s not even a rap album. It converts your speech to mp3 and keeps it synchronized with the same part of the song. Then you wake up hung-over and forget all about it. Later when you are at a friend’s party and they let you DJ with your pod, after 3 minutes, all this totally embarassing shit comes out the speakers and you’re humiliated to hear yourself  yodeling the solo from Iron Man.  Raddd!

 10a) alternatively, the ‘Yell Over The Music’ application could ALSO have a combination pitch-shifter/compressor so that you can totally ruin otherwise good songs like a mix-tape DJ, by yelling "DJ WHITE OWL! EXXXXXCLUSIVE! " all over your Yo-Yo Ma and Merle Haggard tunes. Or your Billie Holiday or Beat Happening or whatever, that would be pretty rad. "BOO-YAA! WE DA BEST!  SHOUT-OUT TO PIGGY! BROOKLYN MOTHERFUCKER!"

 What buttons, applications, or new functions would YOU like to have on your pods? Discuss!

 

8 comments Tags: ,

8 Comments so far

  1. Mr. D September 22nd, 2009 5:26 pm

    Word man, word

    Especially the fuckup with the tune paths is so unnerving… fucking hate it. But could we agree on having a fifty/fifty chance that not a sax solo but a hobo freestyle rap could occure in the song? That would be so nice

    greetz from germany

  2. Jani September 22nd, 2009 7:49 pm

    I always wanted them to turn the old iPod wheel into a rad turntable, so you could, in theory, scratch one out with your favorite Grand Master Flash song!

  3. Riley September 22nd, 2009 8:49 pm

    for sure on number 9. I always change the artists names to the compilation name, but of course then I have no idea whos doing what.

    BULLSHIT!

  4. Riley September 22nd, 2009 8:57 pm

    P.S.

    I would like to see an automatic chop/screw program. What with all the beat-mapping technology going on these days I’m sure this is entirely possible.

  5. François September 23rd, 2009 4:18 am

    First they should put back a black background on iTunes. All this white kills my frigging eyes.
    Yeah, it should like like your website.
    Talking about it, they should put an application that links all your Tokyo guide to Maps.

    For music, they should actually do something like link it to the artists website to get their touring dates and place, or have the artists feed it this way, so you would know instantly if you could go and see this band that totally rocked your ears seconds before.

    I saw some tunes have the lyrics put in, so I’m sure somebody somewhere is making a Karaoke app with link to your TV or else…

  6. YankeeSpike September 24th, 2009 12:46 pm

    i dun have an ipods but i just want to say that i love your blog, its the best. please never stop it!!

    Spike

  7. szaszha September 26th, 2009 3:47 pm

    i think you should take these ideas and create a new mp3 player/music organization program to disrupt apple’s cruel hegemony.

    itunes blows so much i still use windows media player. and windows media player sucks fifty thousand cocks per second. i only use itunes to play a couple of .pls internet radio streams, because itunes doesnt suck as bad as winamp.

    ipods also suck because they actually cannot be used unless in concert with itunes. how about you let me use the goddamn thing how i want, with what software i want, since i paid hundreds of the dollars i earn dressing up as a woman and giving handjobs in dark alleys for it?

    fuck you steve jobs! and fuck your cheap ass chinese made pop culture piece of shit mp3 player and the goddamn software interface and obnoxious advertisements it rode in on!
    take that to the goddamn bank!

  8. langong October 2nd, 2009 11:26 am

    tdr : would like to see your finger-painting picture of that redefined Ipod of yours. I still use Gen4 20GB ipod, the one that got nothing to show or impress your pals but still contains all the ridiculous apple trademark recommendations likes if your Ipod shows crying face you have to folk out likes zillion buck to fix it. whenever my Ipod shows its crying face I just bitch-slapped it a couple times on the back of its head then it’s happy again.

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