The Godfather: The Game Review

Written by rob on March 29, 2006 – 8:26 am -

The Godfather: The Game was released on March 21, 2006 by EA Games. It represents years of hard work by a talented team of developers, and boasts to be a nonlinear, wide-open game putting you in the shoes of a new member to the Corleone family.

The main story of the game runs a close parallel to the first movie. You begin with a tutorial mission, but you are quickly hurled into action as you are a bystander during Luca Brasi’s assassination. From there, you begin to understand the unrest of the city, as you are pitted against the earliest rival family. From this point, the missions come pretty much directly from the movie. The only thing is that your character, this “new guy” to the family, winds up doing a lot of the behind-the-scenes things. For example, when Don Vito Corleone is shot, you have to tail his ambulance as a fellow gangster shoots out of the window of your car to take enemy cars out of the way. After being ambushed on a bridge, you then have to interrogate a high ranking member of the Tattaglia family for information as to who may have shot the Don. From there, you assume driver control of the ambulance and then have to rush to the hospital. It is a great mix of all the things you will be doing in this game in an early mission, and really gets things rolling.

Unfortunately, that is one of the better missions in the game. Subsequent missions are fun, but the story-telling is very weak. For example, when you must plant the gun behind the toilet for Michael Corleone to use in hitting Sollozzo and McClusky, the game doesn’t even tell you why you are doing it. The opening cutscene for the mission features a memorable quote from the movie, but doesn’t actually give you any direction. You wind up simply following the blue dot on the mini-map, a’la of GTA. So, if you haven’t seen the first movie, this game is going to seem like a bunch of random quests that have almost no direction or connection. I’m surprised EA didn’t take a more cinematic approach to their games, and make the missions seem more like an interactive version of the movie rather than a game with some clips from the movie thrown in. There are also quite a few frustrating levels that will undoubtedly take a few tries to complete. Also make sure to save often between missions so that you don’t lose progress when you fall victim to some of the games few but major glitches (e.g. if you are very close to an exploding car, but you aren’t kill by the blast, your guy gets stuck on the ground and can’t get up. It requires a restart of the game, essentially sending you back to your last save.)

Veering away from the main story line is easy, however, and is why this game is even enjoyable at all. The largest “side quest” you will be doing is trying to gain control of New York City. The mini-map displays businesses as either dollar signs or little triangle-looking things that are color coded based on who controls them. Taking control of businesses is extremely fun. The first business you must take over is not controlled by anyone, so you don’t have to worry about rival gang fire. You press the Triangle button near the shop owner (indicated by the puppet-master icon above their head) to attempt to extort them. Some people simply go along with the Corleone’s, but some require some “convincing”. You can convice people in many ways. When they don’t want to do what you ask, a bar appears under their name, with a blue bar showing how intimidated they are of you and then a green line showing where they will join your side. However, on the far end of the bar is a red area. If you hit that, they will no longer value life enough and won’t give you anything. The key to making the most money from a deal is getting as close to the red as you can without actually hitting it. The convincing itself usually entails breaking things in the store with your fists or a bat, grabbing the owner by the shirt and knocking them against the wall, simply beating up the owner, or holding a gun to them. Sometimes just doing one of these things is enough, in the case of the first business you have to convert. From there, however, it gets more difficult. Some people need to be beat within an inch of their life to go your way. Once they are convinced, you press Triangle again and their business will begin paying protection to the Corleone’s. Every time a week passes in the game, a summary will be displayed of all the businesses, and you will take your cut of the profit the family receives (about 30%). Taking over all the businesses in a district gives the Corleones control of that territory. The ultimate goal is to take control of all five districts.

After the tutorial mission in the game, I feel victim to a rival family trap. These are two parallel roads that lead to an enemy warehouse, and both roads are barricaded off by enemy cars. Driving into it is essentially a trap, but I somehow managed to escape alive by running over most of the enemies. Little did I know, I built up the Vendetta meter – that is, the meter that controls your relationship with rival families. I got it up high enough to start a mob war… in the first hour of the game! The game instructed me that to end it I needed to either bribe an FBI agent or bomb one of the enemy family’s businesses. I chose the former, as I had no bombs. Finding the agent was difficult, as he was in the basement of a church, but paying him off was easy. I had won the war.

This brings me to a point in the game that I don’t really enjoy: the way it handles money. Money is such a minor aspect, believe it or not. Taking over businesses, to me, is more about the fun of “convincing” than getting the money. Bribing the FBI agent was about $30,000. I only had $18,000 at that early point in the game. However, it only deducted about $1,000 from my funds. The Corleone family itself paid for the rest. Most times you pay off warehouse owners or FBI agents doesn’t come from your funds. The only real thing you buy with your own money is guns and clothes. Safe houses are really expensive and you can’t afford them until later. However, I just don’t think the game puts much of an emphasis on money. If you don’t care about weapons or what your guy looks like, you don’t even need money. Paying off cops isn’t even necessary. I never had them come after me except in one mission. It is these inconsistencies that really take away from the realism of the game.

The above lack of encouragement for money and police bribes, coupled with the weak story telling of the game, take what could have been great and make it merely “good”. The Godfather is a fun game, without a doubt. The taking over of businesses is a very great experience, and there is a certain satisfaction you get from throwing an enemy gangster out a window on the second floor! The mob wars, however, seem too easy to win, and if you drive fast enough the family you are at war with can’t even harm you with their gun fire (just drive past their part of town as fast as possible). But the real blow to the game is the story… it just seems like a random collection of bits from the movie, and few missions give you satisfaction after completion. The game is fun, but doesn’t have that extra layer required to truly stick in your mind. I only rented it, and can say that I’m happy I didn’t buy it.

OVERALL: 7 / 10


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Top Ten Movies

Written by rob on March 21, 2006 – 10:01 am -

The following is a very rough draft. I’m still reviewing a couple of movies that may possibly make it to this list, and the order is still very temporary. As far as trilogies (or sagas, in the case of Star Wars), I listed my favorite one, much like my Top Ten Video Games, in parentheses. In these cases, I highly enjoyed the entire series (or felt that the series as a whole represented masterful film-making, while any one alone wasn’t particularly special), but just listed my favorite one. In other trilogies where I just loved one movie out of them, I will just list that movie without any parentheses, like in the case of Godfather.

  1. V For Vendetta
  2. Adaptation
  3. Pan’s Labyrinth
  4. The Matrix (Reloaded)
  5. Butterfly Effect
  6. 21 Grams
  7. Mulholland Drive
  8. Lord of the Rings (Return of the King)
  9. Godfather: Part I
  10. Swordfish

EDIT 08-26-07: I made some more modifications, adding a few new movies and also removing some. I really want to only focus on movies that I feel really matter in the grand scheme of things: where the movie transcended the screen and tugged at my very existence.


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Top Ten TV Shows

Written by rob on March 17, 2006 – 4:25 pm -

The following are my Top Ten TV shows. I briefly explained from of the lesser known ones, and took the descriptions of the popular ones from IMDB.

  1. The 4400 – The story of 4400 seemingly random earthlings that were abducted by ‘aliens’ (who really turn out to just be humans from the future) in the last 80 years. All of the sudden, they reappear but possess extraordinary abilities. Some are more useful than others, but all are part of a bigger plan to save the future Earth from destruction.
  2. Firefly – Malcolm Reynolds is captain of the Firefly-class ship called Serenity, that houses an unlikely group of outcasts and fugitives. This series takes a unique perspective on the future human-inhabited galaxy: a combination of old-west lawlessness in the ‘outer rim planets’, with the futuristic technology of the ‘core planets’. The crew of Serenity will do anything to gather enough money to eat, and they get into a lot of trouble along the way.
  3. Kindred: The Embraced – Julian Luna, vampire Prince of a modern city, lets the love of a human get in his way of administering The Masquerade between vampire clans. Whether the Brujah are smashing skulls, or the Toreador are passionately plotting their ascent to fame, vampires tend to cause trouble in the city. It is the Prince’s job to set everything right. Based on the Vampire: The Masquerade tabletop RPG, this series combined masterful story-telling with dynamic characters… and it has vampires! What more could you want?
  4. Prisonbreak – From IMDB: “Lincoln Burrows is on death row for the murder of the vice president’s brother. He insists he’s innocent and only his brother Michael Scofield believes him. An engineer who helped design the prison where Lincoln is being held Michael takes drastic measures to help his brother. He gets himself arrested and sent to the same prison so that with his knowledge of the building the two of them can escape together. However while inside Michael discovers a massive conspiracy that is determined to see Lincoln’s sentence carried out. Breaking out will be more difficult than he thought, but he’s still going to try.”
  5. The Sopranos – From IMDB: “An innovative look at the life of fictional Mafia Capo Tony Soprano, this serial is presented largely first person, but additional perspective is conveyed by the intimate conversations Tony has with his psychotherapist. We see Tony at work, at home, and in therapy. Moments of black comedy intersperse this aggressive, adult drama, with adult language, and extreme violence.”
  6. 24 – From IMDB: “Season 5: 18 Months have passed since Jack Bauer stole away across the train tracks after faking his own death. He’s now living a quiet life in Bakersfield California, with a new love interest and her teenage son. But when a terrorist sniper’s bullet kills one of his dearest friends, Jack Bauer cocks his gun and heads back to Los Angeles, and another day of work as America’s most dangerous counter-terrorist agent.”
  7. CSI New York – All of the CSI shows feature a group of talented forensic scientists solving crimes with the latest technology and very complex problem-solving. Attention to detail is everything in the forensic business. Out of all three shows, which I all enjoy, CSI New York provides the best inter-character relationships and stories.
  8. Lost – From IMDB: “A horrific plane crash leaves 48 passengers alive, and stranded on a remote island in the South Pacific. The survivors include doctor Jack, now freed prisoner Kate, one hit wonder rock star Charlie, Iraqi military vet Sayid, and a mysterious man named Locke. For a while their goal is simple survival, but they soon realize that it was far more than mere chance that brought them together, and each of them has a purpose that will help them unlock the island’s secrets.”
  9. Battlestar Galactica (2004) – From Wikipedia: “Battlestar Galactica follows on from the 2003 mini-series to chronicle the journey of the last surviving humans from the Twelve Colonies of Man after their annihilation by the Cylons. The survivors are led by President Laura Roslin and Admiral William Adama (previously a Commander) in a ragtag fleet of ships with the Battlestar Galactica, a massive warship, at its lead. Pursued by the Cylons who are intent on wiping out the remnants of the human race, the survivors travel across the galaxy looking for the fabled and long-lost Thirteenth colony — Earth.”
  10. The OC – From IMDB: “Ensemble drama revolving around the young adult community of the Orange County area. A street-smart teen (Ryan Atwood) winds up in the high-class society of Newport Beach, sparking something of an edgier take on the Melrose Place-esque premise.”

These are in order, as opposed to the video game list. Simply put, The 4400 is the best show ever to be on television. What started out as one of the coolest miniseries’s ever ended with a perplexing bang. I found myself immersed in woe until I heard that it was being turned into a series. The first season of the series was just as good as the miniseries, but much deeper, as it further explored the unknown superpowers of the 4400 returnees. It is without a doubt the greatest form of entertainment ever to grace a television’s screen.


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Official Playstation Details… Finally!

Written by rob on March 15, 2006 – 4:06 pm -

Today, Sony executive Ken Kutaragi provided a business brief in Tokyo. Coined as the “father” of Playstation, Kutaragi was rightfully given the job of officially crushing PS3 and PSP rumors. While the interview with CEO Howard Stringer early last week gave official details of a Playstation 3 delay, it was not formal or even expressly stated. Today is the day for that, and much other Playstation news.

First and foremost was the confirmation of delay. Mr. Kutaragi apologized for Sony’s delay, stating what rumors had already been saying: a Fall 06 release due to Blu-Ray complications. He stated that the complications will result in a better HDMI (high definition output) support on launch day. He also specified the release date: within the first 10 days of November 2006. But, here’s the kicker… this is the worldwide launch. That means that Japan, the US, and Europe will all enjoy the PS3 within days of each other, all in early November. This is very good news, indeed, since I suspected the US date would be as late as Q1 2007.

Secondly, and where Sony always comes through, is that of backwards compatibility. Microsoft’s XBOX 360 only supports a few of the original XBOX titles, with some notable hits missing from the list. Also, it uses emulation to achieve this, meaning a small hit in performance. While the 360′s extreme power compared to the original makes this performance hit unnoticeable in old games, it is there nonetheless. Anyway, the PS3, as suspected, will be 100% backwards compatible with PS2 and PS1 games. This is a very attractive option to new gamers, as they will have Playstation’s ridiculously huge archive of games, including new ones, for just one investment. Also notable is the fact that when old games are played, they will be at high definition. XBOX 360′s emulation works much in the same way, but just supports less games.

On the topic of price, no official one was released at this time. What was announced, however, is that of price drops in current gen technology. The PS2 will not have its price dropped, as Sony predicts 10 million more units to be sold this year. However, which will be good news to all, is that the PSP basic package will be reduced from $249.99, to a much more appealing $199.99. This will hopefully, Sony predicts, influence more people to its new and ever-growing system.

Furthermore in terms of the PSP, Sony announced a new “E-Distribution System”, where you can essentially download playable content on your PSP. The first games to be released under this service are going to be original PS1 games. The fact that I will be able to play Final Fantasy IX on a long car ride is just too attractive to pass up: I cannot wait. I’m just hoping that Final Fantasy is indeed among the games offered. Finally, it was announced that an upgrade to the PSP’s browser later this year will fully support Macromedia Flash 6.0. That means playing Internet-enabled Flash games on the PSP… including the ones on this site!

The PS3 will also launch with a new online system. It will feature “matchmaking, messaging, rankings, friends lists, voice/video chat, in-game shopping, and game downloads to the hard drive. Best of all, the service will be free (as of right now, it isn’t clear on whether there will also be a paid tier of service similar to Xbox Live Gold). The service will also allow for publishers to connect their own game servers.” This basically means that you will be able to do anything you can do on XBOX Live!, only for free. Sounds good to me.

Among the release were also a few subtle statements that should not be ignored. For example, Kutaragi mentioned that the PS3 will act as a wireless access point for the PSP. While that is all he said, it can be inferred that it will also be an access point for other wireless devices. There was also mention of a 60GB hard drive with Linux pre-installed. However, the various sources I am reading disagree on this point. 1UP.com’s article states that “PS3 will include a 60GB hard drive (which is upgradeable) with Linux preinstalled.” However, GamingHorizon says, “Additionally, Sony has announced that the company’s next-generation console will “require” the 60GB, upgradeable hard drive; the HD will also support Linux. However, Kutaragi hasn’t confirmed that the PS3 will ship with a hard drive pre-installed (in fact, previous comments indicate otherwise – so either the console will ship with an HD or will require an immediate extra purchase in order to be played).” Considering the press release was in Japanese, things have undoubtedly been lost in translation. I venture to think the PS3 will include the hard drive. Otherwise, why would Kutaragi tell developers to assume a gamer has the HDD, or that the HDD is required? Only time will be able to confirm this.

In conclusion, this business brief is an excellent answerer of the many questions arising about the PS3. Now we pretty much know everything except whether or not it will carry a HD, and the price. Details on this will most likely become available in May, with the E3 convention. Also in May, Sony will distribute the “final” development kits to game companies. This should at least answer whether or not a hard drive is included. Sony may have missed their Spring 2006 release, but it looks as though the Playstation 3 will deliver on all fronts.

EDIT (03-18-06): It now seems that the general consensus among news sites is that the PS3 will indeed ship with the 60GB drive. This is very good news for Playstation fans. But here is the cooler thing: it will come pre-installed with Linux. If Sony pulls this off right, it could be the first real exposure home users get to Linux. So, if they do it right it may be a huge step forward for open source eventually taking control of the desktop environment.


Posted in Gaming | 2 Comments »

Flash Games Added to Forum

Written by rob on March 13, 2006 – 7:59 pm -

By using the Arcade Mod in combination with the forum (phpbb), I was able to accomplish my goal: to allow tracking of high scores. Unfortunately, it is a lot more difficult than I had originally imagined. Installing the mod was easy, and using it is even easier. However, just using any Flash game doesn’t work. You have to get a game built specifically for the mod, or else the score post feature won’t work. Considering that was the only reason I did this, why would I settle for it not working? I dug around the knowledge base of their site, and it seems you can modify any Flash game to work. Unfortunately, this process takes some time, and is pretty complex. You have to actually “decompile” the SWF file of the game you wish to modify, then add your own button, complete with the code to submit the score. It’s a lot more difficult than I would have liked, but it isn’t bad. Over the next few days I am going to be converting the games already featured on the site to Arcade Mod-friendly format. From this point forward, I’m not going to update eatyourexam.com/games, but instead focus on the Games section of the Forum. So, if you don’t have an account yet and you play the games, now would be the time to register!

Also notable is the fact that for each and every theme on the forum, I have to modify some files to get the games working. That is why it is using the default silver theme right now. I just got Solaris and subBlack working, but they don’t look as good as the default, since that is what the images are meant for. Depending on if I feel like adding more themes, I may make it so there is a larger selection to choose from. But… I’m not going to get carried away. We’ll see what happens.


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“Eye-Popping” Video

Written by rob on March 12, 2006 – 11:22 pm -

I saw this video on YouTube and just had to link to it. It is freakish, to say the least. If this is actually a real video, I feel sorry for the guy in it. You will undoubtedly want to watch this over and over again, because it is just so disgusting and so unbelievable. Click here to see it (hosted locally).


Posted in General Stuff | 3 Comments »

iPod Touchscreen Pictures are Fake!

Written by rob on March 12, 2006 – 10:56 pm -

A lot of people seem to think the recent ‘new’ iPod Video (with touchscreen) pictures on the internet are real. Yes, it is true… Apple did file for a patent for touchscreen media devices, but that is about the only fact surrounding this issue. There are a lot of variants in the pictures, from a horizontal widescreen with 3.5″ screen to one that looks pretty much exactly like the current model except the entire unit is a screen (and the click wheel is just a graphic on the touchscreen). The latter is the most obvious fake, but here is the truth: not one of them is real. MacRumors has a gallery of all of the mock-ups as of now, and not a single one is confirmed true.

The creators of many of these images have admitted their con, and some have actually given examples of how they made the fakes. One made a video showing his process, complete with music. He essentially took a digital photo of a current iPod Video on its side and enlarged the screen horizontally, then threw a test pattern on the screen. Another took a screen capture of his computer’s desktop, showing him modifying the image in Photoshop.

I personally find all this Photoshop hysteria amusing. The greatest part is how serious some rumor sites take this. There are many people that were fooled by this, and it just further proves the saying: “Believe nothing of what you hear, and only half of what you see.” In today’s world of talented Photoshop users, you probably shouldn’t believe anything of what you see on the Internet. In conclusion, the pictures are all fake. Just hold your breath until April 1 when Apple will officially announce their new iPod. But considering the announcement is going to be on April Fool’s Day, I would even regard that with a healthy sense of skepticism.


Posted in Tech | 2 Comments »

Two New Flash Games + Outlook

Written by rob on March 10, 2006 – 7:34 pm -

I added two new flash games today. By request, I added Sonic the Hedgehog, an impressive flash recreation of the original masterpiece by SEGA. Also, I added a game that was featured in Computer Gaming World’s Top 101 Free PC games. I saw it first in the magazine, but they now have the list on their site. The one game that stood out to me is called Nanaca Crash. It is a Japanese game, and done completely in Flash. It reminds me of a few other flash games, where you essentially launch something into the air and you go further and further based on if you hit specific things along the way. Well, in this case you are a Japanese schoolgirl and you smash into a poor guy with your bike. He goes flying, and along the way can land on random pedestrians that either stop him in his tracks or smash him hard enough to keep the flight going. The game is more luck than anything. My current high score is 1529.56m which I think is pretty good. My previous high before that was 300m, but that one I just hit a couple of good specials.

Anyway, I added a post in the General Discussion of the Forum for ‘topic requests’. As the site expands, I hope to add more and more useful articles. The best way to find out what is useful is for people to request things that they would like to know a little bit more about. I know the iPod Video Conversion was a big hit, and am hoping to make similar articles. It seems there are many mysteries in the tech world that really shouldn’t be there. One of the things I currently have in mind is an article on spyware: what it is, how you can become infected, and more importantly how to stop it from infecting you. Using a Windows PC with Internet Explorer is dangerous these days with spyware circulating the ‘net, and the build-up of the said spyware can really slow down a previously fast computer. I am also planning an exposè on Linux, the world’s favorite open source operating system. Until then, request whatever you want to learn more about. I know, or can learn, a lot of tech-related stuff, but sometimes it is hard for me to come up with good topics on my own…

Furthermore, beyond just adding useful articles, I plan on expanding the actual site. I’m not going to give away anything (because I don’t know if I can actually pull some of this stuff off), but let’s just say I am trying to build a central hub that you will be able to get to to not only access parts of this site, but Google and other parts of the internet. Again, I may be too ambitious for my own good, and am not actually promising anything. But I’m going to put my Perl/CGI skills to the test.

Also coming this month (hopefully) are my other Top Ten lists: the TV shows and movies. It is a lot harder than I thought, since I can barely think of ten movies that I liked, let alone my ten favorites. And there are some that I watched when I was too young, so I may have to rewatch a lot of movies.


Posted in General Stuff | 5 Comments »

The DaVinci Cheat Code

Written by rob on March 9, 2006 – 4:46 pm -

I read this article last Friday and was extremely amused by it. I figured I would post a link here for everyone else’s entertainment. It is surprisingly pretty long, but every second of it is very funny. For example, the following is a quote that shows the ‘tongue-in-cheek’ mentality of the article:

“The Catholic Church!” he exclaimed. “There are truths that the church doesn’t want anyone to know. That’s why there was an Xbox 360 shortage.”

“You lost me.”

We ducked back into the garage. “The 360 supply shortages are caused by delays in the manufacture of RAM chips from a German corporation, appropriately named Infineon Technologies. Through holding companies, the Vatican owns 67% of Infineon stock. They’ll stop at nothing to keep that console off the market. But the cover-up’s been going on for centuries.”

Now you have an idea of how ridiculous the ‘story’ is. The whole article in its entirety is more funny than any one part, so I recommend you have a read. So, without further ado, I present Fargo’s The DaVinci Cheat Code.


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Howto: Maximize your iPod Battery Life

Written by rob on March 8, 2006 – 9:39 pm -

Charging your iPod is a rather simple process. Just plug it in the wall or into your computer. But is it really as easy as everyone thinks? The answer is No, or at least not if you want to keep your battery in good health. Plugging the iPod in to charge it is just the means to charge. Much care must be taken when charging the iPod’s battery to make sure you don’t overcharge it.

The iPod (all versions, except maybe the Shuffle) use a Lithium Ion battery. All that needs to mean to you is “some kind of rechargeable battery”, but it is actually a rather fascinating technology. Lithium Ion batteries are in many consumer electronics, such as some digital cameras, cell phones, and MP3 players like iPods. They are used mainly because of their light weight compared to other battery standards. Many laptop computers also use Lithiums, though they have larger ones than normal electronics. Regardless, they are also sort of sensitive. Anyone can charge it and be relatively safe, but charging it in a way to keep your battery going for many years is the tricky part. That is what I hope to demystify.

The first thing you want to keep in mind is overcharging. That is, you don’t want to charge the battery too much. Lithium Ions are designed in a way where they can actually be harmed by being charged too much. So, for example, charging a battery over night is a bad idea. Once or twice won’t hurt anything, but don’t make it a regular practice. Moreover, the batteries like to be worked a little bit. Think of it as a battery that likes to exercise. If you plug in your fully-charged iPod while listening to music, it will not be utilitizing the battery at all, which will slowly but surely harm the life of the battery. Instead, you should keep it unplugged as much as possible. By letting your battery be used on a daily basis is a lot better than just keeping it plugged in all the time. Fully using up the battery on a daily basis is not the ideal situation, but it should not harm it as badly as overcharge or not exercising the battery at all.

On the note of fully using up the battery, fully discharging the battery is recommended approximately once a month. So, ideally, if you use up about half your battery each day, and then charge it fully every night (taking care not to overcharge) you will never completely dissipate the energy. A full discharge is, however, a good thing in moderation. It “cleans the system”, so to speak, getting rid of any electrical abnormalities. Naturally, your battery will be fully depleted some days with a lot of use. It is not a big deal if it is fully depleted more than once a month, but try to keep it to a minimum.

Another major concern is temperature. Keeping your iPod (and its battery) in your hot car is a really, really bad idea… perhaps worse than overcharging. The ideal temperature for Lithium Ion batteries is about 60° F, but can operate safely anywhere between -4 and 95° F. So, realistically speaking, you should be fine unless you leave it in a trunk of a car in the middle of July or if you put it in the oven.

Also, if you plan on not using your iPod for an extended period of time, such as going on a month-long vacation or something like that, you should fully charge it before you go, and as soon as you come home. Lithium batteries, as mentioned above, like/need to be used, so letting them sit for extended periods of time can harm them.

One final note is that of the battery indicator. Apple’s site has an article that describes the fact that the battery indicator in pretty much every iPod is inaccurate. In fact, they are inaccurate in almost all devices, as it is impossible to measure it perfectly. So, don’t worry when your iPod seems to be running out of battery according to the indicator. Just listen to it as long as you want. If it does in fact run out, then you can charge it then. Otherwise, charge it when you are finished. Charging while you are listening should only be done after the battery is substantially depleted already.

I keep my iPod in the dock nearly all the time, but keep the dock connector that actually connects the dock to the wall unplugged most of the time. I don’t usually charge it until the indicator shows only a sliver remaining. When I do charge, I only do so for four hours (or until it is fully charged), not overnight.

When you get the hang of it, it isn’t really that difficult. However, care should be taken if you don’t want to be shelling out $65.95 every six months. For the record, my original 15GB iPod got around 6 hours of battery life after one year of use. Considering it didn’t get much more than 6 hours when I first bought it, I think this method words pretty good. My new Video gets some ridiculous amount of music play time. I’ve never actually timed it, but it’s at least ten hours. If you have an iPod, try to follow the above instructions. You will be glad you did when your iPod can playfor years to come.


Posted in Howto's, Tech | 2 Comments »