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Things We need for mp3 players and podcasts.

I finally got around to reinstalling the Creative mp3 management program for my Creative Zen Touch player. It actually works better than I remembered it.

I’ve avoided touching itunes (except when helping my brother load mp3s). But here are two features I really need:

  1. Setting quotas and pruning options for content on the device
  2. Keeping a log of all the podcast files I’ve transferred at any given time to my device. (I frequently listen to something once and then delete the file, then forget what I’ve listened to).
  3. (On my mp3 player) there needs to be a way to exclude certain audio files from Random/Shuffle play. (I’ll be listening to a series of pop songs, then my mp3 player will play some techie podcast about Python or SAP solutions; it really spoils the mood).

In my limited look at itunes, itunes seems structured around the idea of scarcity; i.e, you couldn’t possibly afford to buy enough mp3s to fill an entire audio player! How do mp3 management/syncing programs deal with the fact that PC probably has 100x the amount of mp3s that my portable players have room for?

Solution to #2: Create a directory on your harddrive called “Best of Podcasts”. Do not put it inside your mp3 search path. When this directory comes to about 4 gigs, burn a DVD for archiving. There, that’s simple.

Another solution (sort of): the device display should indicate whether the mp3 has previously been played.

Yet another solution: Podcast producers should label their podcasts better. “Episode 001”, etc. I suspect that podcasters nowadays are much savvier about metadata than they used to be.

(Btw, I’m not particularly fond of the Creative Zen Touch mp3 player, something popular in 2004 or so. It ain’t bad. But I look forward to the time I will need to explore the latest generation of media players.

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