Posted by: Richard Schwier | August 31, 2008

iPod Touch-weird problem and even weirder resolution

Like many of you, I’m impressed with my iPod Touch and how it has changed my approach to the computing and social parts of my life. In fact, I’ve come to depend on it, which can be dangerous, as I learned last week.

I’ve downloaded tons of applications from the iTunes Store; well, okay, not tons, but quite a number anyway. For most of them, it wouldn’t really matter if something happened to them. My life wouldn’t change. But I’m using a ToDo List that is patterned after David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” that I do depend on. Importantly, it doesn’t backup to my desktop yet, although synchronization is promised in a future release.

Well, last week I upgraded the system software on the Touch to 2.0.2, and to my surprise and dismay, it broke all of the applications I had purchased from the iTunes Store. The resident programs were fine, but the purchased ones were all pooched. Yes, that included my To Do list with all of my data. Yikes.

After reloading the apps, nothing; after restoring the Touch to its factory settings and reloading everything, nothing; after writing to Apple support and waiting for an answer, nothing.

I was about to give up, when I thought I’d go ahead and download a new app from the iTunes Store. Why not? I’m a glutton for punishment. I picked a free app, and once again to my surprise, it worked! Okay, that’s surprising, but I could make up some explanations. But here’s the clincher: it also repaired all of my broken apps. All of a sudden everything worked again. I don’t know why and part of me doesn’t care, but I’m guessing some of my geekier acquaintances can figure it out. I’m just glad to have my apps back, and I’m looking for ways to back up that To Do list while I wait for the updated version to be released.


Responses

  1. Hey Rick,

    You should try out Remember the Milk: http://www.rememberthemilk.com
    You can add Firefox add-ins to make it integrate with your Gmail, Google Calendar, etc. There’s a iPod Touch optimized page, but I’m not sure how it would work with offline use…

  2. Rick,

    This is one of the reasons that I switched to a paper version for my
    GTD system. My little three-ring binder never crashes.

  3. Rick, I’m glad it worked! I’m curious. What types of applications are you using? Are there any favorites you think would be useful for teaching and learning? I just received funding for a mobile learning project and originally intended to get iPod Touch’s to an entire class of students. Now that I’ve had my device for a few months, I’m just not feeling the love. I’m not attached to it at all, and it irritates me that it has to connect to a computer. What if the students don’t have computers? If you had a class where everyone had an iTouch, what applications would you favor? Thanks!

  4. I know what you mean about not feeling the love for your iTouch, Jen. I still do, but my little love affair with it is on shaky footing. I’m not using it for anything particularly earth-shattering. I like the MobileMe approach so that my calendars, bookmarks and address books are all in sync, and I haven’t had the problems that some others have reported with that service.

    I love to be organized — in fact, it has been a desperation move because I was having a harder and harder time keeping up with the wide variety of things that seem to come at me. So, I use David Allen’s strategies (Getting Things Done), which I like a lot, and I use an iTouch app called WhatTasks to manage my lists. Works well, but it doesn’t sync with my desktop yet, so I’m not depending on it the way I’d like. That’s the one that freaked me out when all of my apps stopped working — the rest of them were dispensible. Maybe losing my to do lists permanently would have been a good thing too!

    I’ve also got a number of information feeds that I like for investments, news and sports scores. And I use A WordPress app, Twitterific and a sweet little kitchen conversion app called “Little Chef” because I like to cook.

    Then there are the games… my most recent faves are BreakTouch and Sudoku — but I find I grow tired of any particular game pretty quickly and move onto the next ones without giving it much thought.

    So, I’m afraid I’m not really using the iTouch as an educational tool yet. Maybe that will come, but for now it is more of a productivity and entertainment tool for me. I must admit that I’m able to watch more TED speeches now, and I consume more podcasts than music. But my favourite mp3 use of the device continues to be audio books. I don’t need an iTouch for that, of course.

  5. Heather, you and my wife should join a support group together. Or lead one!🙂

  6. Thanks for the tip, Dan. I’ll definitely have a look at “Remember the Milk”. Love the name. By the way, your message got caught in my spam filter, so I apologize for not acknowledging you earlier.


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