Thursday, January 05, 2006

The BBC Owes Me

Here's what I need.  I need the Beeb to start full-scale podacasting most, if not all, of their shows.  BBC Radio was running a test-run, podcasting certain shows, over the past few months, but that experiment has now ended.  Besides, the programs they were podcasting weren't the greatest.  Chris Evans is a twat, that much is certain.

I love listening to BBC Radio, especially their History programs.  In specific, there was this programme about alternate history (name escapes me), where they'd gather a number of experts and pose questions such as "what if the Roman Empire never fell?" or "what if the D-Day Invasion had failed?".  I tell you, there's not much better than listening to BBC Radio while you do the dishes or dust.  Not that I dust, but I imagine listening to BBC Radio would make that task much more pleasant.

In addition to the great History programmes, there's also an entire radio channel full of great Drama and Science Fiction programmes.  The problem is, most of these programmes are longer-form, but broken up into 1/2 hour or hour-long segments.  Which means when I hit the website to get my listen on, and find something that sounds like just the ticket... it's usually part 7 of 12 or somesuch.


So, I have the choice of either finding something else (and it seems like I am never doing dishes on the days when new programmes begin), or I can try to pick up the plot of Perelandra on the fly while listening to episode 8 of 18.  It's a no-win situation.

There is some fascimile of "Listen-On-Demand" available, but either it only archives the past week's shows, or I suck at navigating the BBC Radio website (or both).

See, podcasting would correct all of my difficulties.  I could download any of the programmes I want, and listen to them at my leisure!  Whatever happened to living in the future!

Now, I'm not sure what responsibilities the British Broadcasting Corporation has towards me. While technically not a British citizen, I am a citizen in good standing of a Commonwealth nation.  Therefore, I believe a podcasting initiative should be instituted with all due haste.  For god's sake, they've got Doctor Who radio dramas!

Right, that's that taken care of.  Next up: This American Life.  Might be a bit trickier, as I'm not in the least bit American, and I understand the program needs the iTunes money it charges for episodes in order to subsist.  However, there must be something that can be done for me, if no one else.

Oh, and the Ricky Gervais archives at XFM (outside of their last run) are "listen-only".  The f**k?  I want to stick them on my mp3 player for the drive to work!!  I tried to figure out some way of downloading the listen links as mp3s, but I couldn't find a way to do it that didn't involve recording them in real-time.  Which I might be reduced to doing soon.

Sheesh, technology is nothing if not a burden.

(Republic of Replicants gives love to BBCRadio 7 here)


Blogger kelvingreen said...

Have you tried getting the Gervais stuff via The Guardian? They're hosting them too here, although Gervais is everywhere these days, so it might be completely different.

Keep an eye on the BBC stuff; I know the Beeb are keen tot expand into online broadcasting, and their service in that sector improves in quality all the time. There was a time, not long ago, when it would be RealPlayer streams, and now they let you download some bits, so it should improve with time.

7:17 PM  
Blogger Jhunt said...

Yeah, 'm all up to date on his new Podcasted stuff. The XFM shows are older... some even from before he was "Ricky Gervais, comedy superstar". I don't know really why I enjoy them so much... it seems like a good portion of the shows is Gervais giggling like an absolute maniac.

I have faith that the BBC will eventually develop a more flexible model of audio downloading, and now when it does happen I can take full credit!

7:26 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dunno if you'll see this, but I'm pretty sure all of This American Life's shows are available free on demand as RealAudio streams.

You can't download the show, but you can listen whenever you want.

9:58 PM  
Blogger Jhunt said...

Yeah, I made great use of the RealAudio access in the past. However, at present, the computer is not in an area where I could reasonably hear it while doing the dishes.

And therein lies the rub.


9:51 AM  
Blogger Republic of Replicants said...

I'd like to suggest my tactic for listening to BBC 7's 7th Dimension. It requires the use of Replay Radio or some other form of live audio recording.

If you have Replay Radio, simply set it to record the show like normal (it's in their list of shows). However, you need to set it to start one minute early and end about seven minutes after to ensure that you catch the whole show.

As for the the real audio archives, start a quick record on Replay Radio, setting it for 45 minutes. Start the show up. Let it record for the full 45 minutes (if you set it too short, it'll chop off the last five minutes or so).

I generally record the episodes like this and port them over to my psp for listening to them later.

Thanks for the plug, btw!

8:14 PM  
Blogger Jhunt said...

Hey, anybody who's into BBC radio as me deserves a plug!

I'll give Replay Radio a try... hopefully they have a free trial period or something.

8:10 AM  

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