If you have been following the saga of the 30GB video iPod that I recently found on an United Airlines aircraft, then you'd know that I tried to turn the Web into a giant lost and found. I'm not sure how many people joined the quest (by pointing to my initial blog) to reunite the lost iPod with its owner, but it was a lot. Ultimately however, while I want to thank all of those in the blogopshere that joined the quest for their generous contribution to the effort, it wasn't the Web that ultimately produced the happy ending. Well, it was, but indirectly.
After noticing the name "Dover-Sherborn" (two sister towns in Massachusetts) on the soccer jersey of one of the kids in a picture on the iPod, I notified the Dover-Sherborn Press (the local paper) of my quest and how I was using the Web in hopes of getting the iPod back to the owner. The newspaper saw value in the story (probably for the Web angle) and decided to run a piece on it. Wrote Raphael Konan:
For two weeks, North Shore resident David Berlind has been leading a virtual search party, which is only now - with this article - entering the material world. On the morning of Oct. 10, Berlind flew out of Logan Airport on a United Airlines jet. On the flight he found an iPod.....Berlind reasoned that the best chance of getting the iPod back to its owner was if he took control of the process himself. Unfortunately, there was not any information on the iPod that directly identified the owner. Berlind then turned to a familiar resource: the Internet.
That's when the iPod's rightful owner contacted me and identified some of the content on the iPod that only he would know about. There's a bit of irony to this story though. The iPod's owner works for an internet search company. But, in the end, it was a low tech newspaper that him his prized iPod back.