Party (Mode) On

At most parties I’ve been to in the last several years, the music source was one or more iPods. For this reason, a Party Mode would be of some use. Locking your iPod while it is being used for playback prevents other people from playing DJ, which might make sense if you’ve carefully constructed a playlist, but if you are open to letting others choose music from your library there should be a middle ground.

  1. iPod Settings: Party Mode off

    iPod Settings: Party Mode off

  2. Party Mode Settings: off

    Party Mode Settings: off

  3. Party Mode Settings: on

    Party Mode Settings: on

    1. Wi-Fi toggle for battery conservation.
    2. Though not depicted, Brightness controls might also make sense.
    3. There is a good argument for allowing action-specific sound toggling. My thinking is that for the time the iPod is in Party Mode, it’s just a music player. You don’t want spam landing in your inbox to interrupt a jam.
    4. Enable a Passcode if you want to retain iron-fisted control.
    5. Restrictions would allow you to hide any individual app other than Music and Settings. For example, you might want to block those with personal information such as Contacts and Mail while the iPod is sitting unattended.

In my experience, iPhones users don’t offer up their devices for party music, which is understandable given that you might need your phone to take calls from guests, etc. Were a Party Mode offered on the iPhone, options to silence the ringer and send calls directly to voicemail would be useful.

Footsteps in the Park

Assuming you have BPM numbers input for your music (iTunes BPM input tool), it would be cool if the Nike+ in-shoe sensor could use your footfalls to set a tempo around which to select music on your iPod. Go running, listen to Coltrane’s “Giant Steps”, and feel the burn! A leisurely stroll would pull up something like Sonny Clark’s “Cool Struttin'”.

This is all the more reason that tracks downloaded from the iTunes Music Store should have BPM metadata embedded; once input by those responsible for initially tagging the music, individual users don’t have to worry about it, be they runners or DJs.

Input CD tracks’ BPM can be submitted using Advanced -> Submit CD Track Names. I believe the CDDB does save and subsequently provide this data to those who look up the same album in the future.

The title of this post is a reference to a great Isley Brothers tune, “Footsteps in the Dark”, which was sampled by Ice Cube for “It Was A Good Day”

I was not aware of it until I saw the link at MacRumors, but has more detailed information drawn from Apple patent filings for just such an idea.

Quite a favorable ratio

“At the big DataVision Computer Video store in Midtown Manhattan, personal digital audio players were one of the holiday season’s best sellers, said John A. Griffin, the store’s sales manager, and iPods were clearly the players of choice.”

“‘For every one of the other players we sold people bought 70 to 80 iPods,’ Mr. Griffin said one day recently as shoppers ogled a store display of more than 50 different models of players ranging in size from cigarette lighters to small jewelry boxes.”

-New York Times: “Lots of Players, Little Harmony”

Assuming they sold at least a few of the other players, that is a lot of iPods.