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It's Tricky: Scott Kelby's Coolest iPod Tips & Tricks

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Best-selling author Scott Kelby shares a few of his best tips for getting the most out of your iPod.
This chapter is from the book

Using a Run-D.M.C. song as the name of a chapter on iPod tips and tricks gets me some props. Some street cred, because no matter how young and cool some of my readers might be, they can’t dis Run-D.M.C. because they helped put rap on the map, and rappers of all ages still give them respect. (Notice how I used the terms “props,” “street cred,” and “dis” in the opening? I did that as a shout-out to my homies and peeps. See, there I go again, using that hip street talk all the kids are using these days.) Look, here’s the deal: When you’re a middle-aged white guy, all you remember are the slang terms used when you were growing up. Then you start listening to stations like Mix 100.7 and Oldies 104, and you never hear new street slang again. So the old street slang still sounds “new” to you. So, when you’re in a situation where you’re desperate to sound cool again (as I clearly am here), you instantly revert to words you remember were once cool. Like “props” and “dis.” You might even throw in an occasional “chillin’,” or if you’re really old, you might actually call someone a “jive turkey” (believe it or not, there was a time when people under the age of 18 would use that term [with a straight face], and other people would think they were cool). So now I just sit around listening to old Salt-N-Pepa songs and repeating every cliché ever uttered on early editions of Yo! MTV Raps. Well, gotta go—my posse’s hookin’ up with another suck’a crew. (Forgive me.)

Getting Important Info about Your iPod

If you want all the background info about what’s going on inside your iPod, the best place to get that is from within iTunes itself. Just connect your iPod to your computer, and then in iTunes click on your iPod in the Devices list on the left side of the iTunes window. This brings up the iPod Preferences window with loads of info about your iPod. In fact, there’s so much info, it has to be separated into different tabs that appear across the top of the window. The first section that appears is the Summary tab, which shows the basic info for your iPod (your iPod’s serial number, the total capacity of your iPod, etc.), and below that is a section where you can update your iPod software, or restore the original factory settings if you need to erase everything and completely start from scratch. Below that is a set of options for your currently connected iPod, and at the bottom is a graph that shows how much of your iPod storage space is used up, and the color bars show what they’re taken up with. The tabs across the top of the Preferences window vary depending on which iPod you have connected, but you can think of them as preference settings for your particular iPod. For example, to set your preferences for which playlists are downloaded into your iPod, click on the Music tab. To decide which podcasts are downloaded into your iPod, click on the Podcasts tab. Do you see where this is going? Good, because one more “To decide which...” and I was going to have an aneurysm.

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