Sub-Eclipsed

Previous Trivia Answer: Chattanooga.

Today’s Trivia Question: What city in the United States has the greatest number of breweries?

Other than the Google Maps API, I’ve also been messing with Subversion (software used to automatically version and manage content, such as source code or web page objects) and Eclipse (an integrated development environment – basically, software used to help write software, though it can do a lot more). Today, I found a really useful document from IBM discussing, step-by-step, how to use Subversion inside of Eclipse.

Now, if they could just release a Mac Intel production release of Eclipse…

Kath got me some presents for our anniversary, including some very cool shirts (the girl has great taste, what can I say?) and a present that showed up yesterday: a 1 GB iPod Shuffle. (I didn’t get her anything – I am totally lame. I’ve been so busy lately that, while I didn’t forget about the anniversary, I just didn’t dedicate any time to working up a surprise present for her.) This is a reasonably good review of the Shuffle, one that I agree with.

I really have mixed feelings about the Shuffle. On positive side, it is lightweight, has no moving parts, is extremely small, can also be used to store non-music data files, inexpensive (I won’t feel terrible if I break/lose it), has great sound quality, and is very simple to operate. On the negative side, I’m slipping more and more into the Apple DRM nightmare, which ultimately will lead to a more confusing and controlled audio future. I already have hundreds of AAC files which, while they are not DRMed, force me to use a particuar advanced audio compression algorithm that is far from my first choice (AAC over, say, OGG). That is because, by default, the Shuffle, like all iPods, is restricted to playing only a limited number of audio file formats, including MP3, AAC, Apple’s own DRMed AAC, and some lossless formats).

Oh, well. There’s only so much I can do about that. However, something else does bug me about the iPod: that I have to use iTunes to get songs onto or off of it. I think that moving songs onto or off of the Shuffle should be as easy as just copying them from my computer’s hard drive to the Shuffle without any extra software. Thankfully, there does appear to be an answer for that. I’m thinking I’m giving the iPod Shuffle Database application a try. It allows you to copy your iPod-compatible audio files to the Shuffle without using iTunes and run a quick program to update the database used by the Shuffle to keep up with its songs.

Then again, I may wait for a while, just to see how annoying using iTunes is to move songs. Maybe I’m just making a mountain out of a molehill.

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