1) it took more effort than I had expected to get Linux to work with the I-pod but it is now working like a charm, with no I-tunes to bug me.
2) with older generation I-pods, you don't really have to do much of anything - just plug and play, and your linux music apps will synch with the I-pod automatically (slick-o-jet). you don't even need gtkpod, you can use Amorak or Rhythmbox.
3) if you want to do this yourself with a newer i-pod though, check this link for how to do it with a 5th generation i-pod Nano. Apple, damn their beady little eyes, keeps trying to make it harder for open source software to use i-pods and this link explains what you have to do to make it work.
4) And yet, the i-pod is so much more than the MP3 players I've used in the past (and I've used about 4 or 5 of them) that it blows my mind. A very nice piece of technology.
5) Apple keeps doing this! They make great tech, then pee all over it with their DRM, then sell it for huge bucks.
6) Then we buy it.