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iPod-ing (or Yuppie-Yuppie-Joy-Joy!)

I've been informed that I'm getting an iPod 40 for my birthday. Happy Happy! kproche got a fairly nice employee discount through IBM. Gotta love those cross-company agreements.

Of course, there's the matter of supporting hardware and software, along with a few decisions that need to be made.

I use both Mac and Windows. I think I want to set the iPod up on Windows first to (yich) format the drive as FAT32. I trust HFS+ more, but FAT32 will allow me to use the iPod for data storage on both platforms without buying extra software to read a HFS+ drive on my Windows machines.

I've already picked up FireWire cards for the machines that don't already have it (or USB 2.0). Also got an extra FireWire/USB2 data cable.

I'm planning to pick up a SiK imp for car use. We've got a good cassette adapter. Add a Belkin Car Holder and we're set. I haven't seen an all-in-one (holder, cassette adapter, power supply) anywhere.

I like nice cases. I particularly like vaja cases. I would really love an iVod case, but they're not available for the new 4G iPod yet. Neither are any of the cheap silicone rubber cases. Matias iPod Armor fits the new iPods, and gets rave reviews, but isn't cheap and isn't as luxurious as the vaja offerings.

And then there's software. I've got several machines I use to store and play music, and the upload-only sync in iTunes won't do for me. While it's possible to get music off the iPod just by making the hidden folders visible,  there are tools that also get into the iPod database, read metadata and help manage it.

I could get PodUtil and use it on both Mac and Windows, but if I'm going to have to register two versions, I might as well look for the best choices

For the Windows machine, I'm pretty sure about Anapod Explorer. Everything I've seen says that it's the most full-featured tool available on Windows.

For the Mac, it looks like PodWorks or iPodRip Both get good reviews, and it's hard to tell which one better integrates with iTunes.

Maybe with all these gadgets I'll finally get my music collection under control.

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