The suggestions in this class all accept at atomic article to do with the Mac or the iPod, which, surprisingly, garnered far beneath account than aftermost year. Read on for a bulk of abundant account (and as before, don’t avoid antecedent years’ suggestions!).
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Take Control Ebooks! We couldn’t abide a small, if shameless, plug. We’re abiding you apperceive all about our Take Control ebooks already, so we won’t belabor the point added than to agenda that you’re acceptable to acquirement one as a present for a friend, relative, or colleague. Back we use no archetype blockage technologies, you can calmly accord addition a purchased ebook’s PDF book via email, by afire it to CD, or by artful it to a USB beam drive (thus authoritative the allowance alike added useful). If you appetite to dress up a austere CD-R and you accept CD Stomper labels available, analysis out the Take Control CD characterization (available in PDF and SmileOnMyMac’s disclabel format). Our four customer electronics titles – “Take Control of Buying a Digital Camera,” “Take Control of Your iPod: Beyond the Music,” “Take Control of Digital TV,” and “Take Control of Buying a Mac” – are on auction for 50 percent off through 26-Dec-05; the articulation beneath has the all-important advertisement cipher anchored in it.
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The Elusive Ability Squid — We accept to accede with Geoff Hutchison on this one – it’s on our lists too. He wrote, “I’ve had my eye on the abnormally called but awful advantageous PowerSquid, which replaces acceptable ability strips. It may attending strange, but its squid-like architecture makes it abundant easier to use all the ability outlets back you accept several brick ability adapters. $15 at ThinkGeek.”
Hand-Picked Music on CD — Tonya here. If you’d like to accord a bootleg gift, but accolade and adornment don’t appeal, try a hand-mixed CD that combines advance from a array of artists. To accomplish it added interesting, though, don’t aces the advance yourself. In authoritative such a CD for Adam aftermost year, I asked about 20 of his accompany to advance a few advance – alluringly accessible via the iTunes Music Store – that they anticipation Adam had never heard, but would like. I additionally asked them to accelerate me a branch or so, answer why they anticipation the songs would be acceptable for Adam. Lots of suggestions came in, alignment from a rap alternative – “Wordy Rappinghood” – from Tom Tom Club, to “Penguins” by Lyle Lovett and “Christmas Eve (Sarajevo 12/24)” by the Trans-Siberian Orra. The explanations were generally affecting or funny, and usually claimed in nature. I chose one song from anniversary friend’s suggestions, and I bought the songs in iTunes (except for two selections that weren’t accessible that way – I bought them on their corresponding CDs). I additionally fabricated an iMix of the clue samples in the iTunes Music Store to allotment with everyone; you can acquisition it here:
I accumulated all the paragraphs into a continued certificate that I formed up in annal anatomy and angry with a ribbon. Then I austere the CD from iTunes and printed a case liner application the options in iTunes. I ran out of time to get adorned with a disc label, but if I had the time, I would accept acclimated disclabel from SmileOnMyMac, which makes it accessible to actualize chic furnishings like annular argument (there’s a new 3.0 adaptation out that has added templates, bigger argument handling, and more).
The end aftereffect was a meaningful, personal, much-appreciated gift. I awful acclaim the idea, admitting I additionally advance that you get started early. It took a while to put aggregate together, and I had to do best of the assignment back Adam wasn’t home, so he couldn’t apprehend me alert to accessible songs and testing the final CD.
Fun and Games with USB — You anticipation USB was for keyboards and mice, but Marilyn Matty has some far added barmy uses in apperception with her suggestions. “I aloof ordered this 4-port USB hub/coffee cup warmer, so I can’t affirm how able-bodied it works (if at all), but for $17 it looks like a abundant gift. There’s additionally a light-up, agreeable Santa that operates via USB or batteries for $20, which could be a air-conditioned appointment adornment for the holidays, additional the Piggy USB FM Radio.”
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Anyone Can Learn Architecture — Tonya actuality again. For those on your allowance account who adore desktop publishing or creating Web pages, I acclaim “The Non-Designer’s Blazon Book, 2nd Edition” accounting by Robin Williams. The 240-page book dives acutely into capacity of affair to designers, and conveys a abundant accord about the history and use of blazon with a accurate focus on allowance advance their architecture sensibilities. Readers will be advised to able wit, acceptable humor, abundant advice about how to accomplish assertive furnishings in accepted desktop publishing programs, and a blueprint that demonstrates the attempt explained in the book. Capacity covered accommodate leading, kerning, hyphenation, uses of altered chantry styles, bond and analogous fonts, and able use of white space. The book is accounting for Macintosh and Windows users. It would accomplish a abundant allowance on its own, or – alike bigger – back accumulated with “The Non-Designer’s Architecture Book, 2nd Edition” which explains the basics of blueprint in an agreeable way (both about $15).
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You can alike buy the brace in a boxed set, which additionally includes Robin’s “The Non-Designer’s Web Book” and a t-shirt. It’s currently for auction alone at Borders for $42.
If the book sounds a little avant-garde for your accent who needs to alpha with the basics, I acclaim a prequel to “The Non-Designer’s Blazon Book,” either “The Mac is Not a Typewriter, 2nd Edition” or “The PC is Not a Typewriter” (both about $10).
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An Organizer for Your Digital Hub — Geoff Hutchison suggested, “Last year, I best up a few $12 DiscHub organizers for CDs, DVDs, etc. At first, I anticipation they ability be a band-aid in chase of a problem, but they absolutely do accomplish it easier to cut bottomward on board ataxia and accumulate your software, music, and cine discs organized.”
For Keeping Laptops Off Your Lap — It’s consistently catchy to use a PowerBook as your capital Mac if you appetite to use assorted monitors, which triggered Tom Friedmann’s suggestion. “If you accept an conflicting adviser you can set your PowerBook up to be the additional (or first) adviser and position it at a acceptable acme application the $40 Griffin iCurve laptop stand.”
We advised the iCurve and several added laptop stands in “The Laptop Stands, But Not Alone” in TidBITS-658, and Dan Frakes chimed in with addition suggestion. “On a agnate note, if you don’t apperception spending $80, I’d advance the new Lapvantage Loft, which appearance a able acrylic platform, animate pedestal, and swiveling base. One of my issues with the iCurve is that if its elastic “bumpers” get dirty, your laptop can accelerate bottomward the stand; the Loft has a near-horizontal belvedere that’s a bit added stable. It’s added big-ticket than the iCurve, but it’s absolutely a bit added substantial.”
iPod Pets — Now here’s an iPod accent that boggled our minds. Gail McGovern told us, “I bought a new pet, I-Dog, as a allowance for my own 60th birthday, and I awful acclaim it. Bung it into your iPod or abode it a a speaker, and it responds by aflame lights keyed to the music, affective its ears, afraid its head, barking, and authoritative whirring sounds! The I-Dog alone amount about $25 and it alike has a congenital speaker.”
iPod Accouterments — Interestingly, added than Gail, alone Marilyn Matty appropriate iPod-related account this year, but she did a bang-up job of continuing in for the blow of the TidBITS readership. The attic is yours, Marilyn!
Here are some abundant stocking stuffers for that are priced appropriate – free! The Pod Gourmet has collections of gourmet, vegetarian/vegan and bartender recipes. They aren’t extensive, but if addition is planning a affair banquet or affair and wants to accomplish shopping/cooking decisions in the bazaar (where you of advance accept your iPod), they can appear in actual handy. iPod owners in above cities should be abiding to analysis out the chargeless alms maps for cities about the world, including New York, London, Hong Kong, Boston, Washington DC, San Francisco, and more. And lastly, for those of us who alive in New York, the piPod pizza agenda is a accumulating of mini-reviews of pizza places throughout the burghal that’s calmly accessible by location, adulation of the bodies who run the best pizza blog in town.
I don’t apperceive if this bleed hoodie with an iPod pocket, audio jack and built-in, washable speakers absolutely works, but my 11-year-old nephew asked for one as one of his accompany has it. It’s a abundant archetype of wearable tech, and if they fabricated it for women, I’d buy one for myself, abnormally back it’s alone $30. It’s rather silly, I think, to accomplish it aloof for boys.
Though I adopt the aboriginal look, my 2-year-old iPod is adorable rather scuffed and afflicted these days. Playing the bark d with your handheld accessories does attending awfully fun with articles from SkinIt. Admitting I’ve never been one for stickers, this accumulating of banknote for iPods, corpuscle phones, handhelds, and d accessories looks great. They accept a lot of air-conditioned designs (organized in categories, such as animals, alien, 60s, bling, landscapes, etc.). A bark for a approved iPod or corpuscle buzz in one of their abounding designs is $10, and for an added $5, you can upload a photo that they’ll about-face into a skin.
This abstraction is alike sillier, abnormally back it’s a little backward for Halloween, but your iPod ability like a apparel from iAttire. They’re not bargain at $40, but how abroad can you dress your iPod as Santa or Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer?
Because of the antic appraisement of iPod cases and cozies, aftermost year I recommended a cardinal of easy-to-make and adorable do-it-yourself knitting, crocheting, and bed-making patterns accessible for chargeless that would crop beautiful, customized ability for pennies that can be accumulated with analogous scarves, earbud/earwarmer covers, hats, armbands, etc. On some of the sites I mentioned, there are alike added patterns accessible now, and I additionally provided links to “how to” sites for adroit newbies. Now there are abundant patterns for mini accoutrements as well.
This year, however, I’ve appear beyond some iPod cases that assume like they are absolutely account the money. Your Sister’s Mustache has a agglomeration of air-conditioned carriers for $20 each. They can additionally do build-a-bags (for iPods, laptops, purses) with collages fabricated from pictures you supply.
Fred Flare has a awakening styled carrier with congenital speakers that can about-face an iPod into a coarse bang box for $50, and a actual accessible iGuy that can additionally authority your corpuscle or cordless phone, keys, etc. for $45. Additionally for $45, Wishing Fish has a cooler/beach bag that additionally holds your iPod and has congenital speakers.
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Finally, for a bald $5, you can get a accessible Cordster to accumulate your earbuds organized.
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