2008-01-22

Spread the Sync

This is not a MacBook Air post. Trust me, you'd know if it was. That said, one of the complaints I've read about the MacBook Air is that the 80GB harddrive is too small. One reason folks think it is too small is that today's iTunes libraries would suck up at least half of that. You know what? They're right...if that's your main machine and keeper of your iTunes library.

Me, I wouldn't consider a MacBook Air a primary machine, but this isn't a MacBook Air post :) The meat of this is that the MacBook Air and every other secondary machine could make due with an 80GB drive just fine if iTunes had a new feature. Well, not a new feature, a feature that's been around since 2001. The feature I'm talking about is the ability to sync a subset of your iTunes library to a device, usually an iPod. I want my MacBook to act like an iPod to my main iTunes library. I want to use Smart Playlists to keep it popping with fresh content. I want my ratings, last played times, and playcounts to sync back to my main library. I want new content that shows up in iTunes on the MacBook to sync back to my main library.

With this feature, I can take 20GB of content on the go, and still have full access to all of my content using shared libraries when I'm back on my home network. The MacBook can wireless sync and I don't even have to know it happened. It would be great!

5 comments:

Jason said...

I'd say for myself I don't even need that much space, or syncing at all.

If I were using this at home, I would simply share my library on the main machine, just as I do with my library today. No spaced used on my laptop, and I have full control of my entire library.

If I'm going on the road...well, that's why I own an ipod.

Do these people bring along a PBX when they travel, because their cell phone only has one line?

Thaddeus said...

I think you've discovered the perfect solution here. It fits EXTREMELY well within Apple's iTunes device model (simply put your copy of iTunes on a laptop into "device" mode, rather than "local library").

It seems contradictory of me to say I want syncing, given my disapproval of it on the AppleTV, but I've never complained about it with my iPod. I think this is very similar to that usage - on the road, understood subset of my library, not simply a duplicate or mangling of my library.

You managed to get the Macbook Air produced... call those magic contacts in Apple on this one too. I'm anxiously waiting for this...

paul said...

This is *exactly* what I want, too. I have a MacBook with an 80GB drive, and it takes me a significant amount of time to populate it with the media I want before I go on the road. I'd happily buy and software that let me do this automatically, although I'd be even happier if it was built into iTunes. I'm almost surprised that Apple didn't do this when the Air was released.

Andrew said...

I found this thread while searching for a solution to this EXACT problem. I'm constantly buying music on my laptop, then manually moving the files over to the "master" library at home.

Once I got the AppleTV and iPhone "devices" set-up, and saw how seamlessly purchases and synching go back and forth, i'm wishing that my secondary libraries could just be "devices" too...

Jack said...

Any luck finding software that does this?