Friday, March 30, 2007

A New SharePod

I've had loads of questions about Sharepod - am I still working on it, how does it work on Vista, can it handle images/videos etc etc.

For quite a while now I have avoided doing large scale work on SharePod - just fixing it when iTunes changes its file format or someone finds a bug. One reason for this is I started writing it about 3 years ago now and had got a bit bored of it.

The other reason is 90% of the codebase is Visual Basic 6 which is an old language these days and not something I want to keep working with! Originally VB6 was used because at the time most computers did not have the .NET framework installed and it went against my idea of no installation and just one .exe file. (not that that worked out too well in practice..!)

A couple of weeks ago, after a bunch of emails about the difficulty of installing SharePod on Vista and talking to some friends about their projects, I got all motivated again :)

I am currently completely rewriting SharePod! (in C# .NET!)
This has a bunch of advantages - enabling me to include new features you've have been asking for and fixing most (all?) installation issues. A total rewrite seems a bit daunting, but all the work which has gone into SharePod over the past 3 years should hopefully make it easier than it seems!

The major new features I am planning are currently:
- Edit song tags on the iPod
- More song details (dates, play counts...)
- Support for iPod Shuffles (lots of you have been asking for this one!)
- Album art
- Video support

I am planning to break SharePod into two parts - the SharePod application itself (which will be completely free as always!), and a SharePod class library.
The class library will allow other developers/companies to integrate SharePod functionality into their own applications with minimal effort. I would like this to be available as shareware with a royalty-free licence.


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