The new iMac was announced today. Underwhelming is my initial reaction. Isn’t this a desktop laptop? In fact, isn’t this one of the tablet pc’s that have failed to take off? And whats with the nasty row of sockets at the back of the machine? That won’t look too tidy on a desk. But of course, order the wireless keyboard, mouse and bluetooth adaptor for £70 (got to love those optional extra’s) to get that wirefree look. Doh!

The design is also the least radical of the latest Apple products. In fact it looks fairly…tame. Still want an Apple laptop though. Maybe next year!

Aiport Express

Apple have announced the Aiport Express which looks to be the ideal solution for easily adding wireless to your home. Coupled with the new version of iTunes you can stream music to any speakers. A good example can be seen here. This is really tempting. What would seal the deal would be a laptop and then I could be sitting in the garden surfing to my hearts content.

But then reality kicks in – the weather isn’t good enough to justify the outlay as I would get a day a week if I’m lucky in the great outdoors. I’ll stick to my guns and upgrade the desktop later in the year. My current pc is 3 & 1/2 years old. In fact this is my oldest pc so far without an upgrade. With Half-Llife 2 & Doom 3 later this year, it has to be done.

iTunes Update

Well, Apple have sold 1 million tracks in the 3 days since the windows version of iTunes was released. Very impressive, but hopefully they will fix a couple of issues with the software. The biggie for me is that iTunes dumps every file mp3 file into one folder on the iPod meaning it skips tracks when trying to seek a file. Other software spreads the tracks through 20 folders to avoid this problem. Apart from this is all works pretty well.

However the increasing amount of mp3’s means I need a new hard disk. 45 gig just isn’t enough anymore, and thats without backup! So I’ve ordered a 120 gig Seagate which will hopefully get here for the weekend. Then its just a case of starting from scratch with Windows. Lovely. An hour to install, probably 2 hours downloading from Windows update. Then I can start to install some software. All legal off course 😉

iTunes Impressions

Well, it works and it hasn’t crashed….yet. As with QuickTime on Windows, window refresh seems slower but it’s acceptable. Imported music library fine, works with MP3’s as well as AAC and allows ripping and burning of tracks. Make sure you have plenty ram though as iTunes uses a fair bit – Windows users should be used to this though.

iTunes for Windows comes with support for the Apple Music Store, but not for any country other than USA – Europe should hopefully be able to buy from the store in the New Year. You can still get previews of the tracks though – very nice.

A new update for the iPod is also out. This allows iTunes to work with the pod and also puts a couple of enhancements on the pod – a new game, Music Quiz selects a random track and 5 options for the title – you need to select the title – simple but nice as its based on your own library. Backlight improved (altered), battery graphics changed and also support for picture storage and also audio note taking (as long as you buy the new hardware add-ons to go with it).

The iPod synching with iTunes works really well – much better than Musicmatch (start, control panel, add remove software, uninstall) and I’m looking forward to using the smart playlists and music rating.

All in all a good start and finally for Windows users a chance to use the software that best matches the iPod. Try this site for some tips on setting up some smart playlists.


When I bought an Ipod the first thing that struck me was the packaging. It was superb – the best I’d seen for any of my many gadgets. It makes no difference to the usefulness of the product but made me take value in the product. If you haven’t got an Ipod then you won’t know what I mean – unless you look at the piccies here.

If you really want to experience an Ipod for little or no cash (but a bit of effort) you could do worse than try this.