What I want

I want to be able to set up “subscriptions” that will automatically download new audio content and que it on my iPod. I want my iPod to have playlists that will mirror these subscriptions, automatically noting the items I’ve listened to so I don’t hear them again and purging and/or archiving the files i have listened to.

Most of the pieces are in place.

1. The playcount attribute in a smartplaylist will allow me to set things up to only listen to a piece once. I’m not sure though if I have to resync for things to drop off the playlist.

2. iTunes automation should make it possible to script addition of files and creation of new smart playlists.

3. MP3 blog aggregators should simplify content capture. Unfortunately most of the stuff I want probably isn’t in MP3 format ( ie NPR ), nor is it presented in an RSS feed (though strangely searching for RSS on NPRs site brings up terms and conditions pages that mention their RSS feeds).

Solving these problems could be a fun “learn python” project for me, but the audio conversion piece is going to be kludgy, which turns me off. I’ll have to try to script Streambox VCR (which hopefully has command line options) to pull down the streaming feed and then automate (if possible) Streambox ripper to convert it. Since both of these are unsupported and hard to find software, its not exactly something I could hope to find wide adoption.

Maybe someone else has solved these problems for me. Time to start looking.

Update: It’s 2006, doesn’t this post seem quaint now?

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