Friday, August 11, 2006

Mr. DJ, can I make a request?

To Apple:

I, just like a couple of hundred thousand individuals, am an avid fan of your ipod line of products. Bringing around my music has never been so easy: just pop in the CD to be ripped, and in a click or two, the AAC files are ready to be brought to work, the car, out of town, etc.

However, recently I decided to switch to an opensource lifestyle. I threw out Windows (the only version I have being the bug-infested Millenium Edition), and to my horror realized that iTunes was not available under Linux!

My first suggestion: please port iTunes to Linux. You don't have to open the source code to the public (because I understand some people just want it that way), but if you do, people will gladly help you out. After all, didn't the Mac OS start as a port of Unix?

Second: please give OGG support to the ipod firmware. I re-ripped my entire CD collection into OGG, since mp3 (or AAC) are proprietary formats (and they're rather large compared to OGG files of the same quality).

Did I throw out my ipod because there wasn't iTunes for Linux, or that it can't play a free file format? Heavens, no! But I did hack into it.

Enter Rockbox.

Rockbox is an opensource jukebox software that allows the playing of OGG and mp3. Being opensource, it needed its own firmware to run, hence the need to tinker around with normally-invisible files, such as the bootloader and the Apple firmware.

I am thankful that the ipod has an override Disk Mode that stops any erroneous programming in its tracks. Without it, my ipod would be junk metal and plastic by now.

What does Rockbox make the ipod do that the ipod normally can't? It can customize the "while playing" screen (WPS), use fonts for the WPS, play games (like ports of Nokia's Snake, Doom (yes, there is!), Tetris, Bejeweled, etc), display funk visuals like fire, a mandelbrot, etc.

The installation is no walk in the park, but the results are amazing. I'm keeping it.

This determined OSS monkey will not be stopped.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey dooood, Im a recent ubuntu user for the last totally in love. My next bitch is going to be macosx. hehehe.

Ok: to the point....

I bought a 5g coz i wanted to move my multimedia cpu cycles off my data-core.

soothing my mysql and apache servers is what gives me good dreams not wearing kilts and toting circular orange sunglasses...(lol lugradio joke.)

anyway....i as soon as i had it open and playing im like ooooo nice ...does it do ogg? WHAT!!! no crap. oh wait didnt my mate mention something about linux on your pod?

.....hey yeah. he did.
but i found that insane, so i looked at rockbox.

goo goo...gah gah words cant explain it.

love your presentation