Journals for Interaction Design

Interaction with 2nd generation iPod nano
October 17, 2007, 7:40 am
Filed under: Interaction

Journal #2

The iPod marked by Apple Inc has been the leading product in the market of portable digital audio player for couple years; however, I was looking forward to seeing the advent of red iPod in the past few years. Finally, due to market demand and Product Red initiative, it launched in October, 2006. For each red iPod nano sold in the United States, Apple donates US$10 to the red campaign to fight AIDS in Africa.[1]hat urged me to buy one at once.



The major reason to buy an iPod nano is that I can listen to the music everywhere and anytime, and it absolutely helps me kill the time when I am bored. Besides, there is some extra functions increase iPod’s additional value. Which functions I use mostly?

●Playing music.
The iPod nano is a mid-range iPod, which combines features of both the iPod shuffle and iPod classic. A 4GB iPod can contain 1,000 songs, and this capacity is appropriate for me because I have a lot fond albums, but 30GB is too large for me and it seems like a portable hard device instead of an audio player. The keypad of iPod nano is designed as a wheel, and users can select the features by slipping the click wheel and then pressing it to operate the function. My favorite feature is “shuffle”, which plays my songs randomly; however,
when I listen to a fond song and want to stop the shuffle function in order to go through the whole album, I have to press one time to go back to main menu, and then press the central button four times to find that album. If I could stop the shuffle function with one click, it will help me a lot. The 3r generation iPod nano solves this problem. Users can stop the shuffle function by clicking the central button. That encourages me to get a new one, but the fatty shape discourages me to do that.

Besides listening to music, I also play the games when waiting. There are four build-in games: brick, music quiz, parachute and solitaire. I totally have no idea how to solitaire so I give it up. The easiest game is music quiz. There will show multiple choices for the current playing song. In the same way, users can slip the wheel to select the right answer and press the central button. Thus no matter which direction my thumb is on the click wheel,
it won’t bother me to click the right answer because the button is at the middle.

Mobile secretary.

–Multiple time zone clocks.

Because I don’t wear a watch, I have to check time via my cell phone. However, when I take a plane, I cannot turn on my cell phone and I’ll lose my time! Fortunately, there is a multiple time zone clock function in the iPod nano. I can set up the time in Seattle, New York and Taiwan. I feel comfortable during the process of setting: click middle button twice to get the time, or click three times to set it up!

-Check schedule.

Also, the calendar is under extra function: extra->calendar. I can know the date on the next month by pressing the right side of the wheel, and check the date by slipping the white wheel.

●Sleep timer. Extra->clock->time->sleep timer->setting
This is also my favorite function. I like to listen to iPod nano when I sleep, so it’s important that iPod can turn off itself automatically after I fall asleep. Nonetheless, this function hides below the clock setting function so I hardly find this sleep timer function when I want to access it again. It is better that this function is independent under extra feature, thus I could easily set up the turn-off time when I want to reach this function.

During the whole process of achieving my goals, mostly I feel comfortable of using that without difficulty, and I also experienced using a hi-tech and delicate product. The design of the click wheel and central button simplify the shape and interface, letting the iPod nano is easy to use. In addition, “the surface of the click wheel is slightly textured, and the central button is slightly concave, allowing greater tactile feedback for out-of-sight operation.”[1] In my opinion, the design with user-centric concept abridges the gulf of execution as well as gulf the evaluation, because my use experience of iPod nano tallies with Norman’s statement. “The gulf of evaluation is small when the system provides information about its state in a form that is easy to get, is easy to interpret, and matches the way the person thinks of the system” (Norman 1988: p. 51). However, the click wheel is not always smooth and the battery’s lifespan is not long enough, they are two flaws of 2nd generation nano. Is 3rd generation iPod nano better than 2nd one? We will see!


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<!–[if !supportFootnotes]–>[1]<!–[endif]–> Lev Grossman (200509-12). Stevie’s Little Wonder. Time. Retrieved on 200610-03.


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