Until the iPhone and the iPod Touch arrived on the scene, iPods were controlled by a wheel or control ring on the front of the player. The Classic, the Nano, and the Shuffle still work that way, but if you have an iPod Touch, you don't need a steering wheel to get around the iPod—you just tap the icons and menus directly on the screen to navigate around the device.
There are four moves you'll use most often when navigating the Touch screen:
Tap. Just take the tip of your finger and directly touch the icon, song title, or control you see on the screen. The iPod Touch is not a crusty old calculator, so you don't have to push very hard. A gentle press will do.
Drag. Keep your fingertip pressed down on the screen and slide it around to scroll around to different parts of the screen. You can do things like move volume sliders on music tracks or scoot over to different parts of a photo by dragging.
Flick. Lightly and quickly whip your finger up or down a vertical list of songs on the iPod Touch screen, and watch them whiz by in the direction you flicked. The faster you flick that finger, the faster the text on screen scrolls by. You can also flick side-to-side in Cover Flow view (Chapter 3) or in a photo album to see images parade triumphantly across your screen.
Slide. A slide is sort of like a drag, but you mainly do it when you're presented with a special button on screen, like unlocking the iPod Touch's main screen when you first turn it on.
The iPod Touch relies on the human touch—skin-on-glass contact—to work. If you have really long fingernails, a Band-Aid on the tip of your finger, or happen to be wearing gloves, you're going to have problems working the iPod Touch. You also can't use a pencil eraser or pen tip, either.