News

Radio Downloader 0.8

I'm pleased to announce the release of Radio Downloader 0.8. The main feature added with this release is that BBC Radio programmes are directly downloaded as MP3 instead of Real Audio. This requires far less CPU power, and is able to download BBC Local and Nations Radio programmes again.

The direct MP3 download does not currently support re-encoding the downloaded MP3 files to other bitrates and frequencies, so I have added a setting in the BBC Provider options to disable the direct download option for users who require this.

This release also brings a small number of other bug fixes and enhancements, which you can find in the changelog.

BBC Real Audio Streams

Just a quick update about Radio Downloader - the BBC have made a blog posting about their plans to phase out the Real Audio streams that they generate for their radio programmes (which Radio Downloader uses to download and convert).

As I noted previously, they have already done this for local (and nations) radio, and have said that they will phase them out for national radio by the 30th of March 2010.

However, my implementation of an alternative method of downloading is progressing well, and I hope to start testing a new version of Radio Downloader containing this in the next couple of weeks.

Radio Downloader and BBC Local Radio

There currently seems to be a problem with Radio Downloader downloading episodes of BBC Local Radio programmes. This appears to be caused by the BBC not generating the Real Audio stream that Radio Downloader downloads and converts any more. I don't know if this is temporary, or a permanent change.

I'll be looking at alternative ways to access this content, but this may take some time to implement so I can't give a timescale at present.

Radio Downloader 0.6

Today I have released a new version of Radio Downloader. This resolves an issue with available episodes for a limited number of BBC programmes not being found, as well as fixing the most commonly reported error encountered when downloading programmes.

This release also adds the ability to use sub-folders in the downloaded programme file name template, and a number of other fixes and enhancements, which you can find in the changelog.

Please Note: There is a data loss bug in older versions of Radio Downloader, which causes the program database to become corrupted when updating between versions. This is fixed in version 0.6, but reverting to an older release of Radio Downloader (which is normally something that I would advise against) will cause your database to become permanently corrupted!

8-Bit Software Magazine Online Conversion

I'd like to introduce a new project - the 8-Bit Software Magazine Online Conversion.

8-Bit Software was a public domain software library and floppy disk based magazine for the owners of BBC computers, which was published between 1990 and 1998, and contains a wealth of information about BBC computers.

The magazine disk images are available elsewhere online, but to read the disk images, a BBC emulator (or BBC) is required. This makes them difficult to access easily, and searching for obscure BBC information contained in the magazines doesn't usually turn up any information from search engines.

I've currently only converted a single issue: (the fairly arbitarily chosen) Issue 64, but as the conversion is fully automated, I should be able to add more issues as time and enthusiasm permit.

So, check it out, and also feel free to let me know if you find any bugs, or if you've got any comments.

Radio Downloader 0.5.10

I've just released a small update to Radio Downloader. This release fixes the problem with selecting new multi-episode programmes that I mentioned previously.

This release is the first to benefit from the recent changes to the installer - just download and run the installer, and the old version will be uninstalled automatically.

Radio Downloader Problem

Currently, trying to select a new multi-episode BBC Radio programme in Radio Downloader causes an error. This has been caused by the BBC tinkering with the structure of their programme pages again.

I believe that I've found the solution, and I'm just in the process of validating it. I hope to release an update to Radio Downloader with the fix in the next few days.

Radio Downloader 0.5.8

I'm pleased to announce the release of Radio Downloader 0.5.8. This fixes the problems with browsing for BBC Radio programmes, and adds the ability to specify the MP3 encoding options for BBC Radio programmes. It also includes quite a number of other bugfixes and enhancements which you can find in the changelog.

This release also removes the automatic update feature, as it was unfortunately proving too time consuming and difficult to support. However, Radio Downloader will still notify you of new versions, and you can be kept up to date with the new Radio Downloader news feed. To make the process of installing updated versions easier, I've streamlined the installer and laid the groundwork for future releases to be installed without having to uninstall the old version first.

Radio Downloader Problems

Currently, trying to select a new multi-episode BBC Radio programme in Radio Downloader causes an error message to be displayed. This is caused by a change that the BBC made recently, which has broken Radio Downloader slightly.

I'm in the process of testing a new version of Radio Downloader at the moment, which fixes this problem (amongst other things), and should be released in the next few days.

Radio Downloader 0.5.6

Today I have released a new version of Radio Downloader, fixing the problems with browsing for BBC Radio programmes by genre and format.

This release also adds the feature of ID3 tagging downloaded BBC Radio episodes and improves the accessibility of the application from the keyboard. See the changelog for full details of what has changed in this release.

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