If you own an iPod nano it’s a pretty good idea to keep it in a case. Unless, of course, you want it to look like you took a piece of steel wool to the display. For the first month or so after it was announced nano cases were impossible to find, but now there’s a veritable plethora of nano cases coming to market.
Speck Products makes a bunch of cool cases for the iPod nano that are worthy of your hard-earned bucks. My current favorites are the ToughSkin, Cloud ToughSkin and the Grass FunSkin (US$35 each).
The ToughSkin is a ruggedized case that can survive high impact, the Cloud is a white fluffy case that looks like the Michelin Man and the Grass is like wrapping your nano in a miniature putting green. Each comes with a removable belt clip, which I remove because it’s redundant and a crystal-clear screen cover that is essential.
Like any good case Speck’s skins leave enough open space for the docking cable, headphone jack and hold switch. One minor nit I have with the ToughSkin is that the dock connector opening is not quite big enough to accommodate the PocketDock Combo from SendStation
A reader sent me this excellent email from Alex Reynolds on Sony’s surreptitiously installing rootkits on unsuspecting PCs when a user plays one of their CDs:
To be clear, these are not CDs. These discs do not conform with the CD format and releases omit the CD logo on the packaging.
Here’s information about the Copy Control format that EMI and Sony uses, which includes Sony’s trojan horse. Copy Control discs carry their own Mac OS 9 player, apparently; iTunes cannot be used to play the disc’s music. No mention is made of an OS X or Linux player.
If you want to warn your users to help avoid trashing Windows
machines and incurring support demands, here is a list of releases using Copy Control.
Needless to say you should probably avoid buying any of the above CDs if you care about your privacy, and you should probably boycott SonyBGM and EMI entirely if you give a damn. -Ed
Is your PowerBook battery not quite lasting the advertised 4.5 hours? Well no one’s does, but you should be be able to get at least 3 hours and 45 minutes according to Apple. If you’re getting something less, your battery is probably getting a little old and has lost some of its capacity.
Branden Keller’s excellent freeware tool Capacity Meter 1.1.1 is truly a must-have utility for all PowerBook users.
Capacity Meter displays and tracks information about your PowerBooks battery, including capacity, amperage, current, and voltage. Using this information and your machine’s specifications, Capacity Meter will let you know the current status of your battery and track degradation over time.
Capacity Meter 1.1.1 is Tiger compatible and free, so check your battery today.
The Apple developer note for the new PowerBook announced on 19 October 2005 (1440 by 960 pixels) appears to contain conflicting information about its battery capacity: on page 11 it says: “the computer has a 6-cell battery pack that uses lithium ion cells and provides 50 watt-hours at 12.8 V (nominal) for up to 6 hours.” But on page 12 it claims a “50 watt-hours battery with up to 5.5 hours operation.”
So where does the new PowerBook get the extra hour, or hour-and-a-half, of extra run time over the previous model’s quoted “4.5 hours operation?” The previous model PowerBook also ships with a “50 watt-hours” battery, so it must either be advanced power management ASICs on the logic board or creative marketing.
Read the rest of the story on my ZDNet Blog: The Apple Core.