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Pete Zaitcev

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[22 Aug 2004|12:35pm]
I visited a friend yesterday who has an older iPod with actual buttons, as opposed to buttons simulated by touch sensors as on my own iPod. After a thorough examination of the ancient artifact, there is no question in my mind that buttons were superior. I would tolerate extra thickness happily if buttons meant it.

The main reason is that if I am listening to iPod while it lays on the table, I still have to keep it locked, because an inadvertent touch causes all sorts of mischief. The longer the track, the more irritating it becomes to rewind by accident. Another annoying aspect of it is that I am unable to control iPod without looking at it, unless I am holding it in my hand already. It is nearly impossible to acquire an unlocked buttonless iPod by touch and position it in your palm for control without spurious commands.

This story blows hole in the legendary image of Apple caring about design and customer satisfaction. I am pretty sure they switched to the buttonless model to reduce cost without reducing the price to the detriment of this customer. To be sure, they also made it thinner, which probably won a few reviews in magazines and praise from places like Gizmodo.

One thing about the new iPod which is subjectively better for me is the rounded top edge. It is a small consolation though, because it cannot offset the enormous functional deficiency Apple designed into my iPod.

Probably I need to ebay myself an old iPod, battery and all. 2GB would be plenty, really. My current version was the last generation before USB, so I'm tied to the cursed Firewire anyway.
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