Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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Where are All the Wi-Fi Remotes?

StevenBerlinJohnson.com has a very interesting post up entitled The iPod Is The Remote (Or Should Be). In it he asks why Apple didn’t design the new iPod to function as a wireless remote for the Airport express. “Because what I need now in my iPod is not more storage space, or Mini-style color designs — what I need is wi-fi. I want my iPod to double as an audio remote control when I’m sitting in my living room. I want to be able to call up any song on any computer in home network, and direct it to any set of speakers, right from the iPod scrollwheel,” he explains in the post. I’ve been wondering this for a while, not for the iPod necessarily, but for digital music in general. There is a serious need for a remote control that allows you to see the music you’re choosing. This is something that is almost completely missing from the MP3 player market as well. Outside the iRiver, I can’t think of any hard drive MP3 players that have a remote with an LCD screen that allows you to actually look at your file library. I wanted to hook a computer up to my stereo and have it act as a permanent jukebox, however, the thought of having to use a mouse and keyboard everytime I wanted to play an album sounded painful. It seems like someone must be able to develop software that would allow a Wi-Fi PDA to control your digital music library from another room. Shouldn’t they?

July 19, 2004