Hi, I'm an iPod, and I'm a Zune

by M. David Peterson

Update: With all of these updates, if you would like to view the original post without the need to find it first, please do. That said, please keep in mind the fact that 1) It's a parody. 2) A parody is intentionally written to mock. 3) There are some decent follow-ups that you may want to take into consideration beyond this (for example, what follows). I believe it would be worth your time to come back to them if/when time allows. 4) Thanks for keeping these three things in mind. :)

So two more things,

1) I've followed-up this post with a listing of what I feel to be the better, more creative attempts to mock my mockery. In short, if you are going to spend the time to write a comment that disagrees with the premise behind something I might post, at least do so creatively, or with solid factual reasons to back up your feelings (or both.)

2) To the second point,

Hey M Dave. Enjoyed the post. Not a Zune fan, but appreciate the interface as it looks good. I haven't spent a lot of time with it nor will I buy one, but at least I've got good reasons beyond the nonsense I've read in some of the replies above. People, good tech is good tech and the fact that some device isn't more popular OR the one you chose doesn't make it crap. My personal reasons for not buying one is:

1. Doesn't currently support podcasts. I'm a podcaster so this is a feature I want. Chances are this will be fixed in either the firmware or with the next gen.

2. Microsoft's payment to Universal music. While this shouldn't be a showstopper as it doesn't come out of my pocket directly (the price didn't go up as a result of this), it really ticks me off and is a bad precedent.

3.Doesn't work with a Mac. And yes I know that the iPod also didn't work with Windows PCs when it first came out. If I was a Windows user, I wouldn't have bought an iPod back then either.

Thanks for the update on Erica Sadun. I reviewed her iMovie books on Amazon and at MyMac.com and gave them thumbs up for because of how great they were. Here's hoping that she'll do a new one for iLife 07 (whenever the hell Apple decides to release it)


The above comes from a recent follow-up from Guy. These all seem like legitimate concerns to me. Maybe they do to you as well? Not sure, but having this information brought to the top of the post seemed like a good thing to do to ensure you had an ever more solid base of information to make any future purchasing decisions on.

Thanks for the follow-up, Guy! Oh, and regarding Erica: *COMPLETELY* agree! Erica is a one-in-a-billion talent. We geeks are lucky to have her as one of our own. :D

108 Comments

Jeremy
2007-02-26 10:47:35
Chance of a Girl with iPod walking by: 50%
Chance of a Girl Zune walking by: 0.2%
Dean
2007-02-26 10:58:16
I thought I was subscribed to xml.com - what is this crap? Note the use of the past tense in the first sentence.
M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 11:01:23
Ahhh... touché (and I believe that, in fact, this is correct usage of the term ;-))


Thanks for the laugh, Jeremy! :D

M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 11:02:34
@Dean,


Even we XML.commers enjoy to laugh now again. You should try it sometime. It's *fun*.


Bye.

cooper
2007-02-26 11:04:22
It's not illegal. In fact, it's encouraged... You know, that whole "social viral sharing -> marketing" thing and all.


Unless you buy music from the Microsoft store, then sharing is verboten. Now if you steal music, you can share it in a slightly less stealing fashion!

M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 11:10:07
@cooper,


>> Unless you buy music from the Microsoft store, then sharing is verboten.


Ummm... Unless I am completely off track, isn't the "flurry of concern" (see: http://www.lessig.org/blog/archives/003535.shtml ) in reference to the Zune 3days/3plays being applied to non-MSFT purchased, non-DRM'd content? As far as I am aware, I can share any content I have on my device.


Someboday care to clarify?

M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 11:29:41
@Dean,


One other thing: If you read through the first portion of the post, you will notice a link to another blog entry in which I explain further the connection with the "Scroll... Click...", which goes into greater detail as to how this relates to linear and circular lists, and their relation to usability. Of course, lists represent data, and XML is a way of representing both linear and heirarchial lists of data.


In short, if you're going to take offense to a post, maybe you should be sure to read the post to ensure that your complaint, in fact, is relavent.


Of course, it's not your responsibility to click through all of the links to find the relavency, but none-the-less, if we are bound and gagged to speak of only those things that have direct and obvious relavency in regards to XML and *only XML*, we would have run out of things to talk about here on *XML*.com around the year 2000.

Jeremy
2007-02-26 11:55:42
@M. David


I'm just giving you a hard time about the percentages. I'm very happy that there will hopefully be competition in the space. I think it will spur new innovation all around.

M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 12:01:12
@Jeremy,


>> I'm just giving you a hard time about the percentages.


Oh, it was taken all in fun, for sure. In all honestly, I tried to come up with a snappy come-back in return, and I couldn't think of anything that was even close to yours, so [M:D > 'HatTip' > Jeremy] ;)


>> I'm very happy that there will hopefully be competition in the space.


Completely agree! Apple certainly isn't going to sit still, and there are certainly some features of the iPod series (e.g. let's face it, the new nano is pretty sweet!) that MSFT has yet to even come close to.


But as you point out,


>> I think it will spur new innovation all around.


Yup! As I think most anyone will agree, competition brings on innovation, so this is all good, without a doubt!


Thanks for the follow-up!

piers
2007-02-26 12:44:16
I'm surprised digital cameras have yet to adopt the "social viral" approach - every family get together we have is accompanied by a flurry of "I'll email you the photos" - wouldn't it be easier to "share" a picture as you are taking it? Maybe this feature already exists, and my camera is just out of date, tho ;)
M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 13:01:37
@piers,


Where ya been???!!!


Well, none-the-less, it's good to have ya back! :D


>> I'm surprised digital cameras have yet to adopt the "social viral" approach - every family get together we have is accompanied by a flurry of "I'll email you the photos" - <<


That reminds me: I have like 200 pics from our Family Reunion in December that I've never got posted and/or emailed!


>> wouldn't it be easier to "share" a picture as you are taking it?


YES!!!


>> Maybe this feature already exists, and my camera is just out of date, tho ;)


I don't know of any that do, but you're point is spot on! I need to do some research, but I do know that the Zune provides the ability to plug directly into your TV, and since *most* cameras support USB -- which is how you plug your Zune into your PC, though I doubt much that's an enlightening statement to anyone ;) -- then I would think that there would be someway to go from camera to Zune and then from Zune2Zune.


Any of you Zune hackers (something in which I am striving to be -- someday ;) out there happen to know how to get something like this to work?

piers
2007-02-26 13:20:20
Absolutely brilliant! I think there is a sweet spot inherent in "viral" technology, where it is neither too monolithic (iPod hasn't needed to innovate much beyond the spin control), or spread too thin (cameras don't share because there are 4-5 major manufacturers, so a large audience is harder to find)... whereas two is a magic number as far as healthy competition goes. Nikon couldn't push the technology because most people own sony's or canon's they got for free with their last oil-change or whatever.


Too bad you can't daisy chain USBs on handheld devices, so you could construct the ultimate phone-audio-photographic-pda-etc-etc experience, like LEGO ;)

Brianary
2007-02-26 13:23:19
Why would I want to minimize my battery life for wireless I can't use to download podcasts, or even share music for most labels?


I don't want a brown player. I'm not interested in DRM crap that prevents me from using a UMS driver to sync my player with RoboCopy. My 1Gb, 40-hours-on-a-AA-battery iRiver iFP-799 works just fine, thanks.


Zune. Meh.

M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 13:44:47
@piers,


>> whereas two is a magic number as far as healthy competition goes. Nikon couldn't push the technology because most people own sony's or canon's they got for free with their last oil-change or whatever. <<


:D Completely agree!


>> Too bad you can't daisy chain USBs on handheld devices, so you could construct the ultimate phone-audio-photographic-pda-etc-etc experience, like LEGO ;) <<


No doubt! Though I would *hope* we are getting to the stage where wireless could take over the need. I would have thought that Bluetooth would have played quite a bit more of a factor into this equation, by now, given its low power consumption. Then again, the data exchange rate isn't all that great, so maybe that's why?


If I were to guess, I would thing that the 4G technologies that are looming on the horizon which provider greater speed (2megabits/s, I believe?) with the longer range coupled with more efficient, longer lasting batteries might end up becoming more of the factor, and with the shorter range, higher speed WiFi such as that contained in the Zune, I would venture to state that Bluetooth will stay in the tiny-form factor space, while 4G and WiFi fill in the rest.


Thoughts?


M. David Peterson
2007-02-26 13:50:36
@Brianary,


>> Why would I want to minimize my battery life for wireless I can't use to download podcasts,


Not sure... Obviously that would be a decision for you to make.


> or even share music for most labels?


Not sure I understand what you mean? Are you refering to the Zune store's selection of titles?


>> I don't want a brown player.


Okay. How about Black or White? (I've even heard rumors that someone petitioned for a Pink Zune and was awarded one due to his approach, though I have very few details much past this.)


>> I'm not interested in DRM crap that prevents me from using a UMS driver to sync my player with RoboCopy.


I happen to agree with you on this point, without a doubt.


>> My 1Gb, 40-hours-on-a-AA-battery iRiver iFP-799 works just fine, thanks.


iRiver's are nice. I can't say I blame you. I have a 1GB Zen that I like quite a bit, though it doesn't get *anywhere* near that kind of batter life, and it doesn't take AA's, which I must admit, can be somewhat of a downside when you run out of juice and want to get up and going quicker than recharge allows.


Thanks for the taking the time to comment, Brianary!

Mrs. Zune
2007-02-26 19:37:33
Hi, I'm Mrs. Zune, I would like to talk with somebody other than Mr. Zune and Mr. Vista. I feel trapped in this relationship. I don't really feel compatible with anyone else. Mr. Ipod just seems to get younger and hipper at every turn while Mr. Zune seems more like a good reliable door stop.
Ugh
2007-02-26 19:55:24
What is the Microsoft Fanboyism? Sick! How much is Monkey Boy Balmer paying you to pretend the Zune is usable?
asawre32
2007-02-26 19:55:54
Forget Zune I rather get IRiver
Peng Shao
2007-02-26 19:59:20
Hey guy, you are possibly one of the worst writers ever, what happened, childrens books of Nazi death camps focusing on puppy killing division aint making it, u gotta ruin what respect for the zune i already have? o well, i mean, u can use it as a weapon when someone charges at u though right, u can seriously hurt someone with that thing.
Ben
2007-02-26 20:00:07
Girl Zune? Your whole skit falls apart because this character doesn't technically exist (nobody has a Zune because it sucks). Also, this "sharing" is bull when you consider the limitations involved.
haha
2007-02-26 20:03:24
you have an AOL blog...
Owen
2007-02-26 20:05:29
you should probably not write commercials.
Tim
2007-02-26 20:08:06
Because everyone has a Zune, that makes wifi real usefull. And if you just bought the song, then it should be easy to find in your 'recently added' playlist. Even if it wern't, it should be easy to find, that 'Scroll... Click...(x20)' ya, I bet the Zune UI makes finding songs a snap. Oh and sharing music while isolated to each others own devices is way more romantic and intimate that if you shared the same headphones. (Havent you seen those Trojan commericals?)
Ben
2007-02-26 20:10:33
I would much rather a nice slender nano walk up to me than a shall we say "big boned" Zune. I am sorry, the whole Zune experiment just reminds me of what would happen if nerds actually made a girl.


The iPod taps into a completely different realm of consumerism that Microsoft will NEVER be able to access. DRM, squirting, etc is transcended by the connection that people feel to their iPods. I for one wouldn't trade a first generation iPod for a new Zune.


Plus one thing that I don't understand about non clickwheel devices... if you have 5000 songs, the number of times you have to push the buttons to get to the stuff you want goes up exponentially. The whole reason the click wheel is there is because sliding your thumb over the wheel is much more natural and easy to reach one's desired track.


I am not saying that the iPod will remain on top of the heap forever, I am just saying that the Zune provides not even a glimmer of competition.

Mr. Zune
2007-02-26 20:11:55
Mrs. Zune who are you calling a doorstop? I'm gonna beat the shit out of you! Click. Scan. Click. Scroll. Click. Click.
richard
2007-02-26 20:13:02
What does the Zune say when there are no other Zunes around to share? Something tells me it'll be saying it quite a bit, because nobody HAS a Zune, because as Ben so eloquently puts it, the Zune sucks.


Not just because it physically, functionally sucks (big time), but also because it has no image, no identity.... I've never even SEEN a Zune, let alone ANY sort of marketing that would suggest it's the sort of thing I might want to buy.


To paraphrase Steve Jobs, Microsoft has absolutely no taste and repeatedly makes third-rate products.

Richard
2007-02-26 20:17:24
Oh, and if you share songs over your Zune to be "intimate" with someone, then something is seriously wrong :-D Seriously, tell any girl within a hundred miles that you "want to share some music between our Zunes", she'll run for the hills or just laugh at you. And she'd be justified in doing so.


iPod is style. Zune is clumsy, frantic oneupmanship, merely Microsoft's jealousy that a competitor has completely dominated a market and they haven't. The Zune will flop, guaranteed.

Stu Dent
2007-02-26 20:29:36
You are such a retard. You must be the only person who likes the Zune. How much did microsoft pay you to write this? Microsoft hit it so big that no one is even buying the damn thing. Enjoy your shit brown piece of shit.
non_zero
2007-02-26 20:33:13
That kinda implies that it's hard to find music on an iPod in the beginning. Actually, the ease of the clickwheel is why I prefer it over the competition.
David
2007-02-26 20:34:26
Hmm... kind of left out the part where it takes five minutes to share the music with a new person. That is, if you can find someone with a Zune. I've heard they exist, but I haven't actually seen on. Funny though! Enjoyed it, but had to lash out in typical mac fanboy fashion. Would the Zune be played by a morbidly obese guy (Balmer?) who falls asleep at the end of the commercial?
Sam
2007-02-26 20:34:28
My Ipod has over 5000 songs in over 300 albums and I can find any song in less than 5-6 seconds. I'm not sure where you're going with all that interface crap. It just sounds like you were reaching for material when really all you have is a slightly bigger screen and a 99.9% useless wireless sharing option.
me
2007-02-26 20:35:21
The only argument you could come up with is to support M$FT's lame song sharing feature that almost no one is going to use anyway? Pathetic.
sarvinc
2007-02-26 20:36:04
@M. David


It looks like you're pretty happy with the Zune. In the end, that's all that matters, right?


From reading the article, it does look like you're not aware that you are prohibited from sharing certain songs (see link below). Even worse, there's no way to identify what songs are sharable and which aren't. It's for someone else to come up with a comedy skit based on that.


One can only wonder what Microsoft, and music executives were thinking when they ruined the music sharing feature. I would've thought the Recording Industry would've done anything possible to get out from under Apple's thumb. Being able to share an unlimited amount, of legally purchased music, for an unlimited amount of time would've killed. Instead, everything gets locked down, and if you're lucky you have three days or three plays.

sarvinc
2007-02-26 20:38:58
Oops, forgot the link:


http://www.engadget.com/2007/01/19/universal-and-sony-prohibit-zune-sharing-for-certain-artists/

Davor
2007-02-26 20:43:40
You have no life, grow up.
sean
2007-02-26 20:44:59
This is perhaps the lamest parody ever.
richard weed
2007-02-26 20:47:22
3 days later the song disappears off the girl zune and she gets mad and goes over to the ipods house to play tetris on him all night long.
RevFry
2007-02-26 20:48:14
Tool
Vermicious
2007-02-26 20:48:19
that was lame dude. I hate that fanboy shit
Dingis
2007-02-26 20:51:30
Man, that sucked. The Zune sucks, and they will always suck.

2007-02-26 20:52:36
Aah, dumb! Can't share all the tracks you buy, and you don't know til after you buy it. So much for that 'killer' feature!
AVERAGE USER
2007-02-26 20:53:57
FUCK YOU record companies. The cassette was copyable, transferabble without protection and you didnt go broke. you make more money than ever before, and still you are afraid of the digital age. You old fucks, grow up and join the real world. Stop pissing off your customers and you just might get this right.
joe
2007-02-26 20:58:46
dude thanks for making me laugh!really though i thought you were serious back there....zune is better than the iPod?thats some funny stuff!and who owns a zune? you're the only person i guess!oh and that girl zune from your imagination....hahaha=D


neato
2007-02-26 21:02:09
i'm pretty sure it would go more like this:


ipod: Hi Zune!
boy zune: Hi iPod!
girl zune: (walking up to boy zune) Fuck... we're ugly...

Eric
2007-02-26 21:04:25
This is awful. Too bad the sharing thing would be cool if Zune was popular, but it's just a wasted technology because no one has them. Zune store is rubbish compared to iTunes too *cringe*


Better screen, OK interface...but they haven't hit on anything big.


2007-02-26 21:06:19
this is stupid
Andrew
2007-02-26 21:09:14
Oh dear god that was terrible. You made baby Jesus cry.
yeah
2007-02-26 21:10:07
aaaaaaaaaahahahahahahahahahahaha this gayest thing ive ever read.
wha?
2007-02-26 21:12:52
welcome to the 10 minute commercial... WTF was that? All it needed was the nerd laugh at the end with the subtitles "not based on actual events; the nerd will never get laid"

2007-02-26 21:16:59
The Zune runs afoul of the license for every single Creative Commons licensed track it "shares" by crippling the file with DRM, and yet it is agnostic to copyrighted photos, interesting.


I find your repeated references to viruses ironic considering Apple's and MS's respective track records for viruses on their platforms.