We have updated the Podlove Simple Chapters specification (bumped to version 1.2) updating the syntax for time markers to follow the Normal Play Time (NPT) spec as it is defined by Real Time Streaming Protocol (RTSP) specification (RFC2326).
This does not change much for existing PSC files or implementations as the former specification defined a subset of NPT and is therefore 100% backwards compatible. However, if you are implmenting a PSC parser you should probably make sure time markers can be specified using NPT notation and to accept version “1.2″ in PSC files.
We have also converted the specifications to MultiMarkdown format and put it up on Github so you can easily set up pull requests to fix bugs, make the specification clearer or to enhance it in any other way.
We have just released version 2.0 of the Podlove Web Player and we think it’s great news as it brings quite a few new features on the table.
We have also brushed up the look and feel of the player and we think it looks much better right now. The default appearance is with all extra panes collapsed in a rounded rectangle style. The chapter list can be expanded on demand as the summary and a new chapter/time navigation pane that also features a simple sharing feature to get a link to the current playback position and to bring up Twitters post interface.
Here is an example on how it looks and works:
New controls allow users to expand and collapse all additional views in the player. This technique keeps the general player interface clean and easy to understand while the power users get what they want too. Parameters allow to set the default state for these views.
There is even more in this release apart from these most visible features and updates to the player engine should result in more robustness and browser compatibility overall. Check out the Changelog for the details.
Many thanks to Gerrit van Aaken and Simon Waldherr who were behind this release and also thanks to everybody who contributed with ideas and bug reports.
We are going to include the new player in the Podlove Publisher soon so if you are using that plugin, just wait for the next release and you will get the benefits of an already integrated player.
We will create a series of screencasts explaining the design and operation of the Podlove Podcast Publisher. During the alpha phase, these will be in german, but there will be something in english once we enter the beta phase sometime later this year.
Here is episode one, explaining installation and setup of the plugin.
Here is the second screencast explaining posting of episodes and the use of the template system.
Gerrit has just posted version 1.2 of the Podlove Web Player, our Mediaelement.js-based web player that is optimized for podcast episode playback. Right now, the player is still only available as a plugin for WordPress, but will be made independent from WordPress in the near future. You can download and install the plugin via the WordPress plugin directory.
The new release features some nice and important novelties. The player has improved compatibility with browsers and makes playback of individual chapters easier for users. It also comes with an optional extended player interface that features podcast title, sub-title and summaries and presents a cover image to the user. This will hopefully develop into an embeddable player in the future.
The player also has support to be automatically enabled for existing “enclosure” custom fields that is used by WordPress (and other podcast plugins). It also presents Opus audio files to browsers that support it. So if you want to beef up your old podcast with a brand new player this might be the easiest path so far.
The beta version of the Podlove Podcast Publisher is coming soon. When it is released, you will see full support for the new features of the Podlove Web Player, making podcasting with WordPress even easier.
Following the final discussion on last weeks second Podlove Developer Meeting in Berlin, Germany, we have posted version 1.1 of the Podlove Deep Link specification that Podcasts can use to communicate to Podcast Clients that they are ready to accept direct addressing of time points and time ranges for immediate playback of certain areas in a given podcast media file using a web-based player.
We have changed the spec to adopt the syntax proposed in the new Media Fragments URI 1.0 (basic) draft as it perfectly fits our goals and we don’t want to invent the wheel twice. This puts this specification much more in line with upcoming web standards and should further the adoption by podcast clients.
The latest version of the Podlove Web Player supports this new addressing scheme and an upcoming version of the Podlove Publisher will add the proper link in all feeds.
It’s reality today that podcast publish multiple feeds to support various media encodings or distribution methods but there is a lack of machine readable ways to grasp that information and present it to podcast users to check for alternatives.
So we published Podlove Alternate Feeds which is actually just a recomendation of how to use the standard link element from the Atom Syndication Format within a podcast feed.
But sometimes is the little things that make a difference.
It is been a long-standing wish of the podcasting community to provide some means to easily link back to content on the web that consumers engage in on their playback devices. But a lack of standardization meant there was no defined way how to bring together podcast clients and podcast websites in that way.
That’s why we have put together the Podlove Deep Linking specification that explains how to easily extend your podcast feed to direct podcast clients back to the website and allow to automatically cue audio or video material to a certain point in time depending on the users selection.
If you incorporate that link information in your podcast feed, Podlove Deep Linking-enabled podcast clients can take advantage of that information to link back to your website allowing users to link to certain time ranges of your media content.
The first podcast client supporting deep linking is Instacast 2.0.
Bitlove is one our associated projects that has just been released online as an alpha version. Bitlove is a web-based service that converts any standard podcast feed to a BitTorrent feed with no extra work for the podcaster apart from adding the feed once to the system.
Everything else is done by Bitlove: files are being torrentified, seeded and tracked by Bitlove. Bitlove publishes a copy of the feed with links to the original files replaced with links to the torrent files to enable subscription with BT-capable clients like Miro or uTorrent.
Bitlove is a free service based on free software written in Erlang by Astro.
We have decided that it’s probably better to publish all the stuff here in english so that we can address a larger audience while promoting new tools and standards. We apologize for the inconveniences.