You can use git-annex as a podcatcher, to download podcast contents.
No additional software is required, but your git-annex must be built
with the Feeds feature (run
git annex version to check).
All you need to do is put something like this in a cron job:
cd somerepo && git annex importfeed http://url/to/podcast http://other/podcast/url
This downloads the urls, and parses them as RSS, Atom, or RDF feeds.
All enclosures are downloaded and added to the repository, the same as if you
had manually run
git annex addurl on each of them.
git-annex will avoid downloading a file from a feed if its url has already
been stored in the repository before. So once a file is downloaded,
you can move it around, delete it,
git annex drop its content, etc,
and it will not be downloaded again by repeated runs of
git annex importfeed. Just how a podcatcher should behave.
To control the filenames used for items downloaded from a feed,
there's a --template option. The default is
Other available template variables:
feedauthor, itemauthor, itemsummary, itemdescription, itemrights, itemid, itempubdate, author, title.
To catch up on a feed without downloading its contents,
git annex importfeed --relaxed, and delete the symlinks it creates.
Next time you run
git annex addurl it will only fetch any new items.
To add a feed without downloading its contents right now,
git annex importfeed --fast. Then you can use
git annex get as
usual to download the content of an item.
storing the podcast list in git
You can check the list of podcast urls into git right next to the files it downloads. Just make a file named feeds and add one podcast url per line.
Then you can run git-annex on all the feeds:
xargs git-annex importfeed < feeds
recreating lost episodes
If for some reason git-annex refuses to download files you are certain are in the podcast, it is quite possible it is because they have already been downloaded. In any case, you can use
--force to redownload them:
git-annex importfeed --force http://example.com/feed
A nice benefit of using git-annex as a podcatcher is that you can
git annex importfeed on the same url in different clones
of a repository, and
git annex sync will sync it all up.
You can also have a designated machine which always fetches all podcstas to local disk and stores them. That way, you can archive podcasts with time-delayed deletion of upstream content. You can also work around slow downloads upstream by podcatching to a server with ample bandwidth or work around a slow local Internet connection by podcatching to your home server and transferring to your laptop on demand.
If your git-annex is also built with quvi support, you can also use
git annex importfeed on youtube playlists. It will automatically download
the videos linked to by the playlist.
As well as storing the urls for items imported from a feed, git-annex can store additional metadata, like the author, and itemdescription. This can then be looked up later, used in metadata driven views, etc.
To make all available metadata from the feed be stored:
git config annex.genmetadata true