Episode 93: Podcatchers


  • The French are doing something right, with open source. (h-online.com)

The Main Topic: Podcatchers



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Hosts:: James, Rob, Scott, Harrison

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Credits: Podcast Entry and exit music provided by Mark Blasco (podcastthemes.com). The podcast’s bumpers were provided by Oscar.

20 Replies to “Episode 93: Podcatchers”

  1. Sid32

    Hey, there were some comments early on in the show about gnome 3/gnome shell needing a lot of horse power. I run gnome 3.2, love it, and find it uses less resources then gnome 2 and my pc runs quieter as well.

    Also, don’t forget Google Reader can be used for podcasts as well as other feeds and for those that still run an old fashion ipod, Floola has a built in podcast support as well as being a full ipod manager that sits on your ipod.

  2. Scott

    Great points Sid. I’ve used Floola in the past, and use Google Reader every day; just didn’t think about them when putting this list together. Thanks for mentioning them.

    • Sid32

      No prob. Also, I think some of your users might find TunesViewer handy as well. http://tunesviewer.sourceforge.net/

      It allows you to search for podcasts from itunes library and then get the generic RSS feed to use in other pod-catchers. If you ever have to use iTunesU or run across a podcast and all they give is the itunes link you’ll know how handy something like TuneViewer is…

  3. IronHelixx

    Great episode.

    In regard to the discussion about Mint vs Ubuntu in the podcast – People like Linux Mint, largely, because it is a polished form of Ubuntu, not despite it’s base of Ubuntu

    Ubuntu’s rise has propelled Mint’s popularity, IMHO – I think they are pretty tied together. You get all that is good about Ubuntu plus the extra polish

    I agree that Unity has driven some users away from Ubuntu, but only in the same way that Gnome Shell has driven people away from Gnome 3.x in general

    Mint has hit a nice balance though with MGSE and I enjoy it, although I am not sure I am switching to it just yet as my main desktop. (Currently using Xubuntu 11.10)

    Also, I do not think a lot of regular Ubuntu users go to Distro Watch for Ubuntu release info these days – they just go to Ubuntu.com. I, personally, never go there for Ubuntu stuff – but I do drop in occasionally to distro “Window Shop”. 🙂

    • Steven


      The first guy complained about Gnome 3 problems and had an issue with MATE. MATE is even newer than Gnome Shell and worked until an update borked it. It’s not the main desktop and an update borked it. An update. Because that’s never happened with any other release, no matter how stable. He even said it looked like a good release.

      The second guy admitted he was having problems with NVidia drivers because he refused to install the proprietary drivers. Problems with the default NVidia drivers is a problem with almost every Linux distro. Further, it looked like the “bugginess” he was dealing with was related to both his laziness with drivers and the fact that he was probably running it in VirtualBox without the proper configuration. Running Gnome 3 in VirtualBox has required changes in settings for both Ubuntu and Linux Mint 12.

      The third guy admitted he never liked the Mint menu and complained about the lack of available apps in the software center. Really? And I think we can attribute the slow boot time to the fact that LM12 is loading Gnome Shell AND MATE at bootup. Did he attempt to install another DE on Ubuntu 11.10 and then time the bootup? No. He disregarded outside factors. He didn’t do this on purpose. It simply never occurred to him to think that this might be an issue. The reviewers shortsightedness does mean that LM12 is not “solid.”

      Only one person encountered any bugs and that’s easily explained by not properly configuring the OS to the hardware and possibly running LM12 on virtualbox. One reviewer showed an obvious and admitted bias against Linux Mint. So, not “solid”? Maybe you should vet your sources better next time.

  4. Jason

    The main thing that I don’t like about gnome 3 is alt+tab only switches between applications and not the instances of those applications. So you have to use alt+tab and then the arrow keys with your other hand to alt+tab around.

    I really am not too picky about a desktop but alt+tab is one thing I need.

    • MaTachi

      You can use Alt + Tilde (the key above tab) to change window of an application. For an example if you have multiple Firefox windows open, it will switch between them.

  5. Bob K.

    Tell me how can I “easily” change the size of my icons in the Gnome 3 Application menu, not the Mint panel?. Not touching an config file?. Tell me!. I’m sticking with KDE and openSUSE. KDE way more usable and mature than Gnome 3.

  6. Farhad

    Dear friends,

    In the latest show I think that James (if I am not mistaken) hit on something immensely important – the issue of corporate vs community. The big mistake of Shuttleworth and Canonical was not to make Unity, or to design it the way it is, it was to *consistently* ignore the community. The flipped the windows control buttons, the promised Wayland, the began marketing their Ubuntu One store and selling only-for-pay software, they harassed Banshee over GNOME and, last but not least, they designed Unity to be, in Shuttleworth’s own words, more like smartphones, Windows, and OSX. Shuttleworth publicly declared at an UDS that Canonical interface specialists were best qualified to decide what is or what is not a good desktop. And yes, that is their right. But we – the community – are under no obligation to put up with this kind of arrogant corporate control. We did not dump Ubuntu, Shuttleworth and Canonical dumped *us*. We just responded by feeling in great numbers to a form of Ubuntu which was truly for the community and by the community: Xubuntu, Kubuntu, Lubuntu or Mint or even Debian or another distro. That is called “voting with your feet”.
    Corporations – all of them – are primarily accountable to their owners/shareholders. Their over-riding priority is transferring money from our pockets to their pockets. That is a fact. We, as a community, have totally different goals. For some, it’s to “have fun”. For others, it’s “free as in freedom”. And for others is technological excellence. Whatever. And if a corporation finds it profitable to participate in our community – great! But once is starts to ignore us and impose their decisions on us, we vote with our feet. That is what happened in this case, and what will happen if any other corporation (Red Hat, listen here!) commits the same mistakes as Shuttleworth and Canonical did.
    This being said, I don’t think that Mint is more widespread that Ubuntu *yet*. I do think that Canonical and Ubuntu are going down the tubes, but their userbase is so big that it will take time.
    My 2cts and kind regards to all,

  7. Farhad

    My next comment will, please forgive me, be a very critical one. I was dismayed to her all three of you speaking about “Internet piracy” when discussing SOPA. Why are you guys mindlessly parroting the corporate “newspeak” promoted by the MPAA/RIAA to *frame* the debate and stifle any intelligent discussion? Let me quote the GNU project here:
    Publishers often refer to copying they don’t approve of as “piracy.” In this way, they imply that it is ethically equivalent to attacking ships on the high seas, kidnapping and murdering the people on them. Based on such propaganda, they have procured laws in most of the world to forbid copying in most (or sometimes all) circumstances. (They are still pressuring to make these prohibitions more complete.) If you don’t believe that copying not approved by the publisher is just like kidnapping and murder, you might prefer not to use the word “piracy” to describe it. Neutral terms such as “unauthorized copying” (or “prohibited copying” for the situation where it is illegal) are available for use instead. Some of us might even prefer to use a positive term such as “sharing information with your neighbor.”
    Now, maybe all three of you feel like illegally sharing is morally wrong, and that is your right. But please refrain from using “loaded” expressions which offend and alienate a not trivial part of our community. James mentioned the European “Pirate Parties”. Being myself member of such a party I find it baffling to hear all of you praise us for our defense of a free Internet, only to declared in the next sentence “piracy is definitely a problem”. Whose side are you one? The industry or our community?!

    Personally, I believe that anything which prevents me from sharing with my friends is deeply immoral and a form of censorship. It is also technologically hopelessly outdated and will eventually collapse. Sure, the MPAA/RIAA is still singing its (DRMed) “swan’s song” – but you guys should not better than sing along.

    • Steven

      Farhad, I like the point you’re making here. I also feel like piracy , in and of itself, isn’t a problem. It’s a symptom of a problem. A great number of people who currently illegally download music, movies, or games do so because the MPAA/RIAA us an outdated business model that is designed to force consumers to purchase more product than they want or to pay more than the product is worth.

      If the MPAA/RIAA actually tried a new business model that showed the industry cared about the consumer, piracy would probably decrease. A large number of “internet pirates” feel no remorse “stealing” content from an industry that has shown zero remorse doing the same from consumers.

      We can only hope that the MPAA/RIAA is replaced by a new, better industry sooner, rather than later. In the meantime, people in positions of influence, such as the mintCast team, would do better to discourage blind support of corrupt corporations rather than disparaging “pirates” who refuse to support such corruption.

  8. paulm

    I was interested in your Mint/Ubuntu discussion. I agree with you guys. I moved to Mint for two reasons. First the community sprite that Ubuntu first had, has been deteriorating to a commercial distro with Mr S. saying ‘you will take what we give you or move on,” also don’t like Unity. Second I also don’t like One system to fit all hardware with out choice. Clem in my opinion is giving great choice with Mint 12, having Gnome 3, Mint-Gnome 3 and best of all MATE. Wow!
    I am a desktop user and use Mint Debian because I can configure it to do all my work with the least amount of effort, its also supper good!
    Greetings from Malta EU

  9. Evgeny Kuznetsov

    Podcatchers review was interesting to listen to, but don’t you think that podcatchers have generally lost their use on desktop? I think I still have GPodder installed on one of my machines, but I can’t remember running it ever after I got my first Android phone.

    The whole point of podcasts is that you listen to them when you have time, which usually happens while you are on the way somewhere, or sitting in a queue somewhere, or waiting for something, not when you’re at your PC. Podcatchers used to come in handy when portable players weren’t able to download things themselves, but nearly every phone today is, so why bother?

    Nice listening, anyway. Keep up the good work.

    • merelyjim

      For the most part, I agree, but there are a lot* of work-places that mandate your phone or mp3-player be as dumb as possible [no camera, and don’t even think about connecting it to a machine via USB or to the network!]. So you tank-up on music or podcasts before going in, or due without.

      * military, defense contractors, banks – basically anywhere there’s a data-stream that could be sold for a nice profit.

  10. Eric

    Great podcast guys. I’m a fairly new listener to your podcast but now have you in my subscription list in Google Listen (which is what I use to get podcasts to my Android device). Listen has its quirks but it’s a Google Labs project so it’s expected.

    Great job gentlemen!

  11. Joseph

    Great show, guys. I don’t know about the argument of popularity in distros (It doesn’t really matter to me which is most popular), but I have to say that I am a little disappointed with Mint 12, personally. I used Mint 11 as an easy Windows replacement for my friends and relatives. It made it easy to show them that they could use Linux, but now this task is a little harder. I don’t want to spend too much time explaining these things to people who aren’t computer-savvy. I will also vote for more android info: I think it is great for us Linux addicts who enjoy good smart phones. I use podkicker (https://market.android.com/details?id=ait.podka&hl=en) on Android to subscribe to podcasts like yours: its minimal and free. I don’t download on the desktop anymore. For photography I believe that Tony Whitmore from the Ubuntu UK podcast is a professional photographer. And don’t forget the excellent video tutorials from http://blog.meetthegimp.org/!!! Start with the early videos to get your head thinking like the GIMP: remember that Photoshop also has a huge learning curve. Keep up the good work

  12. Michael

    I really enjoy your podcast. Please keep it up. I had been using Google Listen for podcasts but didn’t really like it and have been wanting to find a replacement. Tried Dogcatcher per Scott’s recommendation from the podcast. Love it; bought it; now it is what I use and I’ve stopped listening to any podcasts on my desktop since Dogcatcher is so much more convenient now and I can easily pick up where I leave off where ever I am with my phone when I have the time.

    Don’t know that I want a lot more Android stuff on the podcast though. I’m listening to the podcast to hear about Ubuntu/LinuxMint (mainly interested in debian based distros) applicable stuff. I’m looking to learn more about Linux and hear reviews about various software.

    I’m an Ubuntu 11.10 Unity user and generally like it. After I learned the various keyboard shortcuts I enjoy the interface much more. I find the more proficient I become using the shortcuts the more satisfied I am with the interface. I configured the Launcher with CompizConfig Setting Manager to keep the Launcher hidden until I push and hold the windows key even though I use a 24″ monitor and I push the number of the app I want to switch to because I prefer that to it taking up screen space and I Like to minimize my use of mouse to keep my hands on the keyboard. It seems faster and more consistent for me.

    Oh, I took a look at the Humble Introversion Bundle mentioned and bought it too! Loved the reference to the WarGames movie. Bought the Humble Introversion Bundle from my Android Xoom Tablet though so don’t know if Linux got credit for my $25 purchase.


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