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Re: [podcasters] Re: Stupid question about enclosure length

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  • Harold Johnson
    I wanted to add: Wouldn t it have been more appropriate to name this tag size ? I m still learning its use but so far I gather that the length tag is used to
    Message 1 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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      I wanted to add:

      Wouldn't it have been more appropriate to name this tag "size"? I'm
      still learning its use but so far I gather that the length tag is used
      to describe the total of bytes, which tells me nothing about how long
      the file really is. Perhaps length would have been more effectively
      applied to the duration of the file (in time). Is there already a tag
      to describe the duration of the file?

      Harold

      On Sat, 1 Jan 2005 22:30:10 -0800, Harold Johnson
      <harold.johnson@...> wrote:
      > Right down to the last little byte? Does this mean I'm going to have
      > to go back and change all those enclosure tags? Arrgh...
      >
      > Does anyone here know the intended purpose of the length tag (besides
      > the obvious: describing the size of the enclosure)? Dave Winer (or
      > anyone who knows), is it used to display the size on
      > audio.weblogs.com? Do the iPodder clients or other aggregators use it
      > to display the size? What is the main, intended use for this item, or
      > any future purposes you're anticipating? I'm simply curious to know
      > why I have to fill in this data with every enclosure. It's not that
      > big a deal, I'm just naturally curious. Thank goodness I seem to have
      > nine lives...
      >
      > Harold J. Johnson
      > http://SomethingthatHappened.com
      >
      >
      > On Sat, 01 Jan 2005 21:58:14 -0800, Kevin H. Devin
      > <kevin.devin@...> wrote:
      > > The way I read the spec, the number should be depicted in bytes, not a
      > > rounding of them.
      > >
      > > -KHD
      > >
      > >
      > >
      > > Harold Johnson wrote:
      > > > Well, I hope I've been doing this right. I check to see the size of
      > > > my file in MB and go to the first tenth (i.e., 1.4MB) and add 5 zeroes
      > > > (i.e., length="1.400000"). This is correct, right?
      > > >
      > > > Harold
      > > >
      > > > On Sat, 01 Jan 2005 08:49:38 -0800, Jeff Barr <jeff@...> wrote:
      > > >
      > > >> The field is supposed to denote the size (in bytes) of the file
      > > >> referenced as the enclosure:
      > > >>
      > > >> http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss#ltenclosuregtSubelementOfLtitemgt
      > > >>
      > > >> I have seen that some feeds are putting the length of the URL (rather
      > > >> than the length of
      > > >> what it points to) in this field, and that's wrong!
      > > >>
      > > >> Jeff;
      > > >>
      > > >> plunderfish wrote:
      > > >>
      > > >> >
      > > >> > You know, I've been wondering that myself. Thanks for asking...
      > > >> >
      > > >> > --- In podcasters@yahoogroups.com, luc@s... wrote:
      > > >> > >
      > > >> > > Hello,
      > > >> > >
      > > >> > > I know this is a stupid question.
      > > >> > >
      > > >> > > What is exactly the length value in the enclosure tag, and what do
      > > you
      > > >> > > use to mesure it ?
      > > >> > >
      > > >> > > Thanks in advance
      > > >> > >
      > > >> > > Luc
      > > >> >
      > > >> >
      > > >> >
      > > >> >
      > > >> >
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      >
    • ecomputerd
      I am not aware of an attribute that describes the enclosures duration in time. This would be specific only to those enclosure types that are non-interactive
      Message 2 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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        I am not aware of an attribute that describes the enclosures
        duration in time. This would be specific only to those enclosure
        types that are non-interactive playable media. Enclosures are more
        generic than just podcasts or even "playable media".

        As far as the name is concerned, both "length" and "size" are used
        technically to describe the number of bytes in a file (in various
        APIs on various operating systems). The semantic connotation
        differences are probably only relevant if there were a different
        enclosure attribute to describe the duration.

        Confusing? Yes, unless you read the specification:

        http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss#ltenclosuregtSubelementOfLtitem
        gt

        "It has three required attributes. url says where the enclosure is
        located, length says how big it is in bytes, and type says what its
        type is, a standard MIME type."
      • Amy Gahran
        ... LOL, I ve gotta say it, that language fromt he standard is a CLASSIC example of why so many technogeeky things are confusing. Only a geek would immediately
        Message 3 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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          On Sun, 02 Jan 2005 15:36:39 -0000, ecomputerd <ecomputerd@...> wrote:
          > Confusing? Yes, unless you read the specification:
          >
          > http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss#ltenclosuregtSubelementOfLtitem
          > gt
          >
          > "It has three required attributes. url says where the enclosure is
          > located, length says how big it is in bytes, and type says what its
          > type is, a standard MIME type."


          LOL, I've gotta say it, that language fromt he standard is a CLASSIC
          example of why so many technogeeky things are confusing. Only a geek
          would immediately assume that "length" = "file size."

          Go to any dictionary (you know, those alphabetical listings of
          ordinary words that ordinary people use). There, you'll see
          definitions like these:

          - The state, quality, or fact of being long.
          - The measurement of the extent of something along its greatest
          dimension: the length of the boat.
          - A measure used as a unit to estimate distances: won the race by a length.
          - Extent or distance from beginning to end: the length of a novel; the
          length of a journey.
          - The amount of time between specified moments; the duration: the
          length of a meeting.

          I don't mind so much that geeks write in their own language,
          especially when creating standards. But why, oh why, can't they go
          back and clarify those terms in the key documents once it's become
          apparent that people are getting confused, rather than just expecting
          people to figure it out willy-nilly?

          That just smacks of techno-snobbery to me. Only the initiated who can
          speak the sacred tongue may enter and explore the mysteries.....

          </rant>

          - Amy Gahran, your not-so-humble incorrigible word geek


          --

          Amy Gahran

          Editor, CONTENTIOUS:
          - http://blog.contentious.com

          Writer, Editor, Trainer, and Info-Provocateur:
          - http://gahran.com
        • Julian Yahoo 1
          ... From: Amy Gahran ... I had that when I started - looked at the xml for a Daily Source Code and thought what the heck is 42875345 . The clue was in the
          Message 4 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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            ----- Original Message -----
            From: Amy Gahran

            >LOL, I've gotta say it, that language fromt he standard is a CLASSIC
            >example of why so many technogeeky things are confusing. Only a geek
            >would immediately assume that "length" = "file size."

            I had that when I started - looked at the xml for a Daily Source Code and
            thought "what the heck is 42875345". The clue was in the 40.9Mb that was in
            the download list.

            Question: does it actually have to be 42875345 or would 42000000 do, since
            most pod-people will be more interested in a) the size being around 40Mb, b)
            the 34:39 that gives the real length.

            Is the exact size a useful or bureaucratic thing?

            Julian

            Web: www.thepicturepost.co.uk
            Blog: www.herecomespod.org.uk/blog/
            Podcast/RSS: http://www.bestchurches.org.uk/rss/offthebeatentrack.xml
          • Harold Johnson
            ... Without the _exact_ byte size, the podcast will be rejected by most iPodder clients. Nah, I m just messing around. I have no idea what will happen if we
            Message 5 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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              On Mon, 3 Jan 2005 02:12:27 -0000, Julian Yahoo 1 <julianduk@...> wrote:

              > Question: does it actually have to be 42875345 or would 42000000 do, since
              > most pod-people will be more interested in a) the size being around 40Mb,
              > b)
              > the 34:39 that gives the real length.
              >
              > Is the exact size a useful or bureaucratic thing?

              Without the _exact_ byte size, the podcast will be rejected by most
              iPodder clients. Nah, I'm just messing around. I have no idea what
              will happen if we don't use the exact size, and I'm kind of concerned
              about it, too. It's the little details that keep me up at night...(I
              should have been a programmer.)

              Harold
            • Douglas E. Welch
              ... I would venture a guess that the size is what is used to calculate the % complete display when downloading the file. D -- For a variety of reasons,
              Message 6 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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                > Without the _exact_ byte size, the podcast will be rejected by most
                > iPodder clients. Nah, I'm just messing around. I have no idea what
                > will happen if we don't use the exact size, and I'm kind of concerned
                > about it, too. It's the little details that keep me up at night...(I
                > should have been a programmer.)

                I would venture a guess that the size is what is used to calculate the %
                complete display when downloading the file.

                D

                --
                "For a variety of reasons, improvements in the garden have been on hold for
                much too long. My motivation has been lacking to attack major improvements
                and even the day-to-day maintenance has suffered."

                From A Gardener's Notebook: Back in the soil again, July 23, 2000
                Read it all at: <http://www.welchwrite.com/agn/gn000723.asp>
              • ecomputerd
                ... Well, this geek (me) would recognize the ambiguity, then resolve it by reading the specification. ... expecting ... I m not sure what better key
                Message 7 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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                  <RANT>

                  > Only a geek would immediately assume that "length" = "file size."

                  Well, this geek (me) would recognize the ambiguity, then resolve it
                  by reading the specification.

                  >But why, oh why, can't they go
                  >back and clarify those terms in the key documents once it's become
                  >apparent that people are getting confused, rather than just
                  expecting
                  >people to figure it out willy-nilly?


                  I'm not sure what better "key document" there is aside from the
                  specification. And I'm not sure what needs to be clarified
                  about: "length says how big it is in bytes".

                  Why, oh why, must non-geeks lament about the apparent techno-
                  snobbery when all that is required is to READ THE SPECIFICATION!

                  Enter "rss specification" in google, click the first listed
                  item "RSS Specification 2.0" then click to the element items, then
                  click "more" under enclosures. Then read: "length says how big it is
                  in bytes."

                  Sometimes reading is very helpful in understanding meaning, as
                  opposed to simply guessing about the sacred tongue.

                  > That just smacks of techno-snobbery to me. Only the initiated who
                  can
                  > speak the sacred tongue may enter and explore the mysteries.....

                  The only initiative I see that is necessary is the initiative to
                  read the specification.
                  </RANT>

                  If there is something confusing about the specification, then please
                  try to describe it, ask for clarification, or attempt clarification
                  and ask for agreement. Sometime rants just provoke other rants.
                • ecomputerd
                  ... the % ... In some aggregators (well, mine anyway), the length is used to determine if the enclosure is downloaded completely. I ve written more detail
                  Message 8 of 16 , Jan 2, 2005
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                    > I would venture a guess that the size is what is used to calculate
                    the %
                    > complete display when downloading the file.
                    >
                    > D

                    In some aggregators (well, mine anyway), the length is used to
                    determine if the enclosure is downloaded completely. I've written
                    more detail about 5 posts ago:

                    http://groups.yahoo.com/group/podcasters/message/1002
                  • Pete Prodoehl
                    ... Using curl I ask my server some info about a URI: curl -I http://rasterweb.net/raster/audio/rwaudio20041218.mp3 It tells me this: HTTP/1.1 200 OK Date:
                    Message 9 of 16 , Jan 3, 2005
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                      Harold Johnson wrote:
                      > I wanted to add:
                      >
                      > Wouldn't it have been more appropriate to name this tag "size"?

                      Using curl I ask my server some info about a URI:

                      curl -I http://rasterweb.net/raster/audio/rwaudio20041218.mp3

                      It tells me this:

                      HTTP/1.1 200 OK
                      Date: Mon, 03 Jan 2005 15:38:14 GMT
                      Server: Apache/1.3.31 (Unix)
                      Last-Modified: Sat, 18 Dec 2004 09:14:17 GMT
                      ETag: "6db820-8518c-41c3f4e9"
                      Accept-Ranges: bytes
                      Content-Length: 545164
                      Content-Type: audio/mpeg

                      See the 'Content-Length' that's where 'length' comes from, and why it
                      isn't called 'size' in the RSS spec. Yes, it is a bit confusing since we
                      are dealing with something that has a 'length' to it, in this case audio
                      recordings...

                      Pete
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