Your logic board has probably went out. This is the board that controls all of the things the ipod does like the back light and volume and stuff like that. The logic board is around $50 and should be replaced by a professional.
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Plug your Ipod into your computer. Hold down both the Menu Button (on/off button) and the center button( just below the screen) for 15-30 seconds. You should see the Apple sign after that time. Mine died and was revived this way.
The first thing to try is an ipod reset. Here are the instructions from apple on how to do this: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT1320
If the battery is truly dead, they are pretty easy to replace. Same with the hard drive. Batteries go for about $8 including shipping on ebay, and in most cases come with instructions on replacing. One word of caution, when you pry the 2 halves of your ipod apart, there is a small ribbon cable on the top side. Try not to damage that :D
Plug your iPod into a wall charger, let it lie for a couple of hours. When these batteries become completely flat, it won't easily charge through computer usb, so try the wall charger, see if it works.
Your battery is fu.k.d up. This thing ships with half a charge and your supposed to fully charge it before first using it. Even though every genius out there will say that these batteries don't retain memory charge. They are wrong. You have set your battery memory to say full when it is only 1/4 fully charged. Take the thing back to the store and exchange it for a new one if your within your 30 day window. Take the thing back to the Apple store and exchange it out for a shiny new one if your within your 1 year window. You don't need a receipt at the Apple store, cause they can just look on the back of the ipod and type in the serial #. That tells them if the ipod was sold within the year or not. Apple won't exchange the thing out if you dropped it hard or exposed the thing to liquids.