Tuesday, September 24, 2013 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Naming Overcast

Marco Arment:

I brainstormed many potential names in a giant text file over a couple of weeks, enlisting help from friends, Invent-a-Word, Wordoid, and lists of English prefixes and prepositions. Even if I knew a name was bad or unusable immediately, I still wrote it down in case it could later inspire a usable variation.

I like the name. I’ll be interested to see the app.

In iOS 7, the Music app no longer plays podcasts, and I’m still not that fond of the Podcasts app. So I will be giving third-party podcast apps another try. Unfortunately, since some of the episodes are only stored on my Mac, it’s not as easy to (fully) switch between them as with Twitter clients and weather apps.

The other issue is that I like to use iTunes to maintain a local archive, offloading played episodes to another hard drive. I don’t see a good way to sync the played status with other apps.


Just a note, if you don't have the podcasts app installed, the music app will indeed play podcasts - at least this was the case on iOS 6, I haven't tried on iOS 7

@Vipul That is no longer the case with iOS 7.

Instacast has a Mac app and sync works great since the switch away from iCloud:


It looks like both the Instacast and Downcast Mac apps name the MP3 files using hashes. Downcast, however, has an Export feature that will let me save the file using the title of the episode.

Yeah, I don't like the naming with hashes. It seems like you only need one extra step to get a real path. Not sure why they did it that way. (I mean I get why they did it from code, but they seemed to assume people don't access the data in other ways)

After a bit of a rocky start this summer Downcast has fixed all its syncing problems and I really love it. I do wish they had a feature where you could store more podcasts on your Mac and just sync selected ones though. Much like the old school iTunes interface. If they add that I'd have to call it a perfect program.

@Clark I’m not sure I like Downcast’s syncing model. They caution you not to have it open on multiple devices at once (because it uses iCloud document syncing, not Core Data), and even with just one-open-at-a-time it sometimes didn’t sync my played status. Since both the Mac and the iPhone are downloading episodes separately, I feel like I have to manage everything twice. I prefer the old iTunes model of storing everything on the Mac and syncing the most recent unplayed.

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