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iPod: The Missing Manual, 8th Edition by J.D. Biersdorfer

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Like the arrival of the Sony Walkman, which revolutionized the personal listening experience, Apple’s introduction of the iPod in the fall of 2001 caught the world’s ear. “With iPod, listening to music will never be the same again,” intoned Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. But even outside the Hyperbolic Chamber, the iPod was different enough to get attention. People noticed it, and more importantly, they bought it.

If you’re reading this book, odds are you’re one of those folks. Or maybe you’ve just upgraded to a new iPod—Nano, Touch, Classic, or Shuffle—and want to learn about all the new features. In any case, welcome aboard!

With today’s iPods, you can watch Hollywood feature films and TV shows, play popular video games, display gorgeous full-color photos, and look up personal phone numbers. If you have an iPod Touch, you can also surf the Web, buy music wirelessly, and spend hours exploring the wonders of YouTube with no bulky computer necessary. You can quickly find out how to do all of that within these pages—and also learn everything you need to know about iTunes, the iPod’s desktop software companion.

Three iPods can play video now: the latest Nanos, the Classic, and especially the smooth, sleek iPod Touch in all its widescreen glory. The latest Nanos can even record their own audio and video. And all models still crank out the music—including the tiny clip-on iPod Shuffle, the loudest lapel pin on the market. But no matter which iPod you have, it’s time to load it up with music and other stuff that’s important to you. Even the smallest model can hold hundreds of songs and play the Soundtrack of Your Life in any order you like.

Steve Jobs was right about the iPod. Things just haven’t been the same since.

How to Use This Book

The tiny pamphlet that Apple includes in each iPod package is enough to get your iPod up and running, charged, and ready to download music.

But if you want to know more about how the iPod works, all the great things it can do, and where to find its secret features, the official pamphlet is skimpy in the extreme. And the iTunes help files that you have to read on your computer screen aren’t much better: You can’t mark your place or underline anything, there aren’t any pictures or jokes, and you can’t read them in the bathroom without fear of electrocution. This book lets you do all that, gives you more iPod info than the wee brochure, and it has nice color pictures.


Throughout this book, and throughout the Missing Manual series, you’ll find sentences like this one: “Open the View→Column Browser→On Top” menu. That’s shorthand for a longer series of instructions that go something like this: “Go to the menu bar in iTunes, click the View menu, select the Column Browser submenu, and then slide over to the On Top entry.” Our shorthand system helps keep things more snappy than those long, drawn-out instructions.

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The Very Basics

To use this book, and indeed to use a computer, you need to know a few basics. This book assumes that you’re familiar with a few terms and concepts:

  • Clicking. To click means to point the arrow cursor at something on the screen and then to press and release the clicker button on the mouse (or laptop trackpad). To double-click, of course, means to click twice in rapid succession, again without moving the cursor at all. To drag means to move the cursor while pressing the button.

    When you’re told to Ctrl+click something on a PC, or ⌘-click something on the Mac, you click while pressing the Ctrl or ⌘ key (both of which are near the Space bar).

  • Menus. The menus are the words at the top of your screen or window: File, Edit, and so on. Click one to make a list of commands appear, as though they’re written on a window shade you’ve just pulled down.

  • Keyboard shortcuts. Jumping up to menus in iTunes takes time. That’s why you’ll find keyboard quickies that perform the same menu functions sprinkled throughout the book—Windows shortcuts first, followed by Mac shortcuts in parentheses, like this: “To quickly summon the Preferences box press Ctrl+comma (⌘-comma).”

If you’ve mastered this much information, you have all the technical background you need to enjoy iPod: The Missing Manual.

About MissingManuals.com

At our Web site, click the “Missing CD” link to reveal a neat, organized, chapter-by-chapter list of the shareware and freeware mentioned in this book. The Web site also offers corrections and updates to the book (to see them, click the book’s title, then click Errata). You’re invited to submit such corrections and updates yourself. To keep this book as up to date and accurate as possible, each time we print more copies, we’ll make any confirmed corrections you’ve suggested.

We’ll also note such changes on the Web site. And we’ll keep the book current as Apple releases more iPods and software updates. While you’re online, you can register this book at www.oreilly.com. Registering means we can send you updates about the book, and you’ll be eligible for special offers like discounts on future editions of iPod: The Missing Manual.

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