New Project: UnOfficial.fm iTunes Feed Generator

The Waiting Room Podcast at Official.fm

One of my consistently favorite podcasts of the last few years has been The Waiting Room, a new music show out of Cardiff, Wales. The show is broadcast on a number of internet radio stations, but I generally listen to it as a podcast, so that I can timeshift and listen when I have time not when it is being broadcast.

They’ve been hosted for some time now on Official.fm, a site which allows users to post tracks and playlists, make them downloadable, make them embeddable, and the like.

Official.fm

Official.fm does produce an RSS feed of a given user’s tracks (there’s a little grey RSS icon at the lower left corner of a user’s page), but the structure of that feed doesn’t work for podcast clients, including itunes.

A while back I made a Yahoo! Pipe that would translate the appropriate official.fm feed into something that Downcast (my podcatcher of choice) would be able to handle, but it annoyed me that this still wasn’t usable in iTunes. (iTunes requires that the enclosure file end in an appropriate extension like .mp3, which means the /download style links Official.fm produces cannot be used in an iTunes feed).

So this weekend I hacked up the UnOfficial.fm iTunes Feed Generator (github page). It takes an official.fm username (and some other metadata used by iTunes) and creates an iTunes appropriate RSS feed.

As a sample and test feed, here’s an iTunes compliant feed for The Waiting Room:

http://johneckman.com/uo/feed.xml

You can take this url, and in iTunes got to Advanced->Subscribe to Podcast. Paste in the feed url, and voila – TWR is back in your iTunes.

The feed gets updated every 24 hours (heck, they only post shows weekly!) via a cron job that recreates the feed.xml file.

If you’re geekily inclined, you can grab the script from github and configure it as you see fit for other official.fm artists.

(Official.fm does apparently have an API, but I didn’t see any simple way to get the path to the actual mp3 file via the API, even when it is marked downloadable).

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6 Comments. Leave a comment or send a Trackback.
  1. #1 • Jay said on February 17 2012:
     

    I dont understand nothing. How can i get the official.fm rss link for itunes? thanks.

  2. #2 • John said on February 17 2012:
     

    Jay – sorry, it is a bit complex.

    If you want the feed for The Waiting Room, it can be found at:

    http://johneckman.com/uo/feed.xml

    You can put that link into iTunes to get The Waiting Room podcast.

    If you want the feed for a different official.fm artist, you’ll need to download the project from github and install it somewhere, which requires some knowledge not easy to convey in a comment. (Or you’ll need to convince a friendly geek to do it for you).

  3. #3 • David said on February 18 2012:
     

    Thanks for sorting this out, have missed having TWR in iTunes

  4. #4 • John said on May 6 2012:
     

    Update – Official.fm have redesigned, so if you’re looking for the feeds you will need to use:

    http://johneckman.com/uo2/itunes_feed.xml (if you use iTunes)

    or

    http://johneckman.com/uo2/feed.xml (if you don’t)

    The existing feeds will certainly stop working at some point – I don’t know when.

    (The code in the github project has been updated as well)

  5. #5 • Marc Johnce said on January 28 2013:
     

    Very well done!!!

    Regarding the mp3 files… Just add
    /file.mp3 to the url of each track at official.fm
    and you won’t need the file redirect trick.

  6. #6 • Clovis said on February 26 2013:
     

    Hello John!!
    How about making your project a plugin for wordpress where to create a new post, I include the link (eg http://official.fm/tracks/o4ql) and the app does the translation I have the link. Mp3 and let wordpress is responsible for part of the RSS / Feed and al succeeded in making a subscription in iTunes?
    I believe that it will become very popular, since this Official.fm rapidly gaining ground.
    Hugs from Brazil!