New iPod Photo Ideas

This is cross posted from my Learning & Innovation blog site … I was just curious to see if any of you had comments:

So Apple came out with the long rumored iPod Photo yesterday … I, like all the other Mac folks out here were reading about the features well before it was announced and you know, until I really saw it and started to look at its specifications and features, I thought “whatever.” Then, when I saw how Apple actually pulled it off, kept the form factor close to the same and how it really works I started to think about how powerful an academic (and business) tool this thing can be.

I do a lot of traveling and I am always giving presentations … sometimes my trips take my across the country, but at the same time a lot of them are on campus, are day trips around the state, or other “down and back” endeavors. For the long distance, multi-day trips I would never consider leaving my 12″ PowerBook at home — it’s just too much a part of the whole travel experience (digital photos, email, music, web, DVD, etc). But, with this new iPod Photo, I can see instances where that’s all I have to take with me to do my presentations. I use Keynote as my presentation software — simply because it is so much better than PowerPoint … I need to look at it more, but I could see myself pulling jpegs of all my key slides for my presentations and simply run them via the iPod Photo … my pictures, my music, & my presentations all running from this little device that fits in my pocket. If you can do “On-the-Go” photo “playlists” then I could quickly assemble presentations from a whole slew of key slides I use. Cool.

I also read you can sync slideshows to audio … I have been playing with the whole podcasting thing for a couple of weeks now … I’ve even gotten it figured out how to route voice, music, iChat, and really anything else into an iPod for recording … my colleague, Bart Pursel and I are going to start a (maybe) weekly podcast this week or next, so stay tuned for that. Anyway, back to the idea … if I can exert some influence via my role in the Apple Digital Campus, I am going to push for a simple authoring tool to allow everyday people to create podcasts that can be synced with images — think digital photos, presentation slides, maps, or anything else that is graphical in nature. These little iPod Podcast Presentations could be wrapped up and served via a RSS enclosure so they could be delivered to your audience as often as you want — all automatically in portable way. I’ve done research with HP about doing these types of things with the Pocket PC, but the results were less than perfect — the devices just couldn’t hold their own and had too many features to be easy to use.

It would be great to have all my students using an iPod Photo — like the Duke project on steroids — so I could build short interactive iPod Podcast Presentations to cover all sorts of supplemental material. Let alone the commercial applications — Museum tours, city tours, University tours, just in time training applications — imagine if you are a network system support person and can’t remember how to repair a bad switch and you could pull up, on the spot, and interactive guide on the iPod Photo! Lots of cool applications there!

All in all, I am more impressed with the device than I thought I would be — almost surely because I like just about anything Apple does, but this one has some real potential outside of its intended purpose. When you combine this with the One-Click Assessment concept I’ve blogged about before, the iPod is shaping up to be a hidden jewel for technology integration in the classroom … I still agree with Steve Jobs that a portable video device isn’t what people want, but I bet if they came out with one I would (a) buy one, and (b) think ways to use it beyond watching illegally downloaded movies from Bit Torrent — not that I do that. And yes, I did buy one yesterday — all 60 GB of it. When it gets here, I’ll be taking it apart to see how it can be used to have a larger impact.

4 thoughts on “New iPod Photo Ideas

  1. Awesome, only 500 or 600 dollars. Let me go grab that random 600 dollars I have lying around for a rainy day.

    I think it’s a great tool and a great idea, but aren’t these things supposed to be getting cheaper? I can buy a computer for 600 dollars.

  2. I’d still rather own a pocketPC/palm/thingy…

    As Tom says, the iPod photo is a cheap $600. Wow, with that money I could buy this
    AND this
    Sure, I wouldn’t have my music and workstation in one unit, but they are so small that I would not mind carrying two around for what I feel is a better deal.
    If the price of the iPod photo drops, a lot, I’ll take it more seriously. But until then, it is a waste of money. I’d rathe rbuy a server.

  3. I don’t get it. My palm does all these things mentioned. The only difference is that Apple took the same ideas collaborated with HP and made it a bit smaller. How come no one is ranting and raving about the palm and how apples concepts aren’t really all that new? I watch DVD’s on my palm, listen to MP3’s, got tons of pictures and have word, excel, email and much more. Sure apples ipod is cute but palm is original and where it all began. I love you PALM!!!

  4. Cool stuff! I was planning on buying the 40 GB iPod for music but I think I will wait because these seems like a better deal and hopefully the price will go down soon. I wonder if apple will come out with a little printer that can be attached.
    The new iPod will make it easier for people to travel because they will have everything they need in the palm of their hand instead of carrying their whole briefcase. I know palm pilots have alot of the same features but I think the iPods are still cooler!

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