I see they’ve dropped the price of the basic iPod Shuffle to $49. That’s the only iPod I have. It’s a remarkable device, with enough songs and enough juice to get you over the Pacific and back. You just have to remember to auto-fill and recharge before you go. The ergonomics are minimal and kind of perfect. Now, everybody knows that the best gift for anyone is one you make yourself. It seems to me that a pre-loaded Shuffle qualifies, at a reasonable price-point.

A couple of years ago, I gave shuffles to a nephew and two nieces. I thought of pre-loading them, but they wouldn’t be able to refresh them from their own computers without blanking the music, so what would be the point?

At $49, it makes sense. It presupposes you’ve got a computer with a few dozen hours of music on it; many of us have. You go and buy a handful of shuffles for your friends and loved ones, and for each one, you pick out 16 hours of songs you think they might like, and let ’er rip.

If they don’t like your taste in music, they’ve got a little iPod they can put their own on. If they do, that’s a very personal gift.


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From: SS (Feb 24 2008, at 08:19)

This is an excelent idea but I bet that it is illegal in most countries. The music industry is hopping to make music sharing illegal.


From: No one of consequence (Feb 24 2008, at 08:23)

Er...wouldn't that be violation of copyright? Piracy by sneakernet, etc....


From: Patrick Mueller (Feb 24 2008, at 09:02)

The shuffle is the only (working) pod I own as well, but I use it only for podcasts. Which it doesn't really do a very good job at. Strike that - it's really just iTunes that does a poor job of maintaining podcasts on a shuffle.


From: Nat (Feb 24 2008, at 15:06)

Your nieces and nephews are likely to be familiar with several software options (Podworks and Senuti to name two) for extraction of iPod library tracks, after which they can be easily re-imported into iTunes.


From: Doug K (Feb 25 2008, at 15:53)

the Zen Stone is $30, fine sound, and doesn't need iTunes so it's simple to move the music around.

I agree however these things are about perfect for travelling, more like science fiction than seems reasonable. My Stone stays plugged into the large sealed headphones, because otherwise I'm afraid I'd lose it..


From: Garage Storage Los Angeles (Feb 29 2008, at 01:41)

The price drop of the shuffle is great. I had one given to me as a gift (have to admit I was hoping it was a big one) when I discovered it was better than the big one I had that broke. I fit every single Bad Religion song ever recorded on it and loved the simplicity of it while riding my bike across town. Tho it did get knocked off by a passenger one time (my friends behind me watched it spin off and explode on the 101 FWY) Since then I have gotten a big one, but do love the idea of a 50 buck mixtape. Who says 80's romance has to die after all.


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