iPod Mash

I’ve had this post sitting in draft mode for 6 months. In that time there’s been a seasonal shift in Melbourne; it snowed last night at my brother’s house in Mt Egerton. The air is crispy fresh and today my mood seems to be getting in line – time to blow away some cobwebs.

Back in Dec. 2007 . . .
It’s stinking hot in Melbourne at the moment, forcing me and my white underbelly into our caverness 1940′s suburban house. This forced retreat shouldn’t really bother me, I’m no stranger to indoor activity – my success as Yarrawonga junior carpet bowls champion ’87 is a testament to that, but for some reason it has me pacing the chocolate swirl carpet and peeking through cracks in the venetians.

I should be putting this time to good use; I’m way behind on my thesis and I have a design project that has managed to become a lifetime commitment. These things need attention, but instead I find myself blogging (I think this is the real secret behind the popularity of blogs, they are an amazing tool for procrastination).

The topic of today’s post; the iPod Mash.

iPod Mash in use

With my previous post I left the iPod Super project hanging, but things haven’t really been as dormant as this absence would suggest. In fact if you check out my entry in this [ed. last] years Mac Mod Challenge you will see that the project has come to a partial conclusion in the form of the iPod Mash (shown above). The iPod Mash combines a 4th generation iPod, a 3.5” hard drive, and a 1975 AKAI tape deck to produce an MP3 mixing console. Tape transport controls are modified to operate an internally mounted iPod, level meters show internal and AUX/dock inputs, and volume knobs adjust the audio mix.

As a dedicated reader (hello friend) you’ll know this story began with Rory’s broken iPod. That little fella (the iPod not Rory) has lead me on quite a journey: iPodLinux, iSOP, iPod Super, but I think this will be it’s final resting place. For a brief overview of the iPod Mash project you should visit the Mac Mod Challenge page, for the excruciatingly detailed specifics, read on.

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iPod Super

I have a couple of iPods in my desk draw, remainders from the iPod Social Outreach Program. One of them is working, the other has a dead hard drive. Both of them belong to friends and I’d like to return them with a little extra something, actually a big extra something – a very large hard drive.

iPod Super by Collin Allen
iPod Super by Collin Allen (picture copyright Collin Allen)

There are probably many reasons why you may not want a 3.5″ desktop hard drive connected to your iPod, but as soon as I saw Collin Allen’s iPod Super I knew that sooner or latter I’d have to try this for myself.
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Another new home

Welcome to my new blog, everything should be exactly the same as the old blog except for the new URL www.openobject.org/objectsinflux

Yes, I’ve gone and got myself a domain name (resisted the Cook Islands extension, went with a friendly .org). www.openobject.org will be my new base; currently it hosts this blog and the iPod Social Outreach Program.

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iPod Social Outreach Program

Amendment III: And now the website’s moved to www.openobject.org/isop

Amendment II: The iPod Social Outreach Program now has it’s own website, for more information go to www.iSOP.blog-city.com

Amendment I: I’ve decided to accept iPods with broken screens. Bring in your iPod, whatever the condition, and I’ll let you know which bits still work and which bits are cactus.

Since resurrecting Rory’s iPod I’ve had a lot of people mentioning that they also have faulty iPods. It started me thinking, there must be hundreds (probably hundreds of thousands) of iPods out there sitting dormant because their owners aren’t sure how to fix them and getting someone to take a look can be prohibitively expensive. These iPods are caught in a kind of limbo, too expensive to fix and too expensive to throw away. Like much of todays failed consumer technology they will probably hang around being useless until they’re technically redundant, their initial purchase cost has become a distant memory, and their owners are ready to move-on and leave them behind.

I’d like to help some of these iPods come out of their comas, so I’ve decided to run an iPod Social Outreach Program. This program will operate from Oct. 14th to Nov. 28th, 2006 as part of an exhibition curated by Nadine Christensen at Uplands gallery (that’s in Melbourne, Australia).
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I’m a winner!

For a brief period in ’86 ‘winner’ was the trés-cool insult at my high school. I was never trés-cool so that little narrative ran tangental to my adolescent struggle for survival, but today I am an actual winner. Results have just been announced for the 2006 Great Mac Mod Challenge and the B&O MP3 player has taken out the Mod of the Year award!

Explanation marks, you can probably tell I’m well pleased, and the B&O player is once again operational. There were some transitional issues with the new (old) motherboard but I’ll post on these latter, for now I’m off to enjoy my 15 minutes. Much thanks and appreciation to the MacMod team and all the contestants.

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