gPodder ID tags and Cover Art

I’ve been using gPodder to manage podcasts on my Fuze. It’s a really nice Python program (for Linux and Nokia tablets, but has run on Mac and Windows) and comes closest to doing what I want as anything I’ve tried. There were a few things that didn’t work optimally on my Fuze. The first was that the Album tag isn’t set on Podcasts. This isn’t a bug, but more of a quirk of how the Fuze organizes podcasts–maybe you could call it a bug, or maybe we should blame the podcasters for not getting their tags right. The Fuze groups podcasts by album tag, not artist or title. gPodder won’t mess with the ID tags in files by default, but there’s an option to set them. Unfortunately, this option only sets the Title and Artist tags, so the Fuze lumps all the podcasts in the “unknown” group. As any self-respecting geek would, I looked at the source and modified it to set the album tag to the title tag if the album tag is blank.  This change will be included in version 0.13.1.

Next was album art. I suppose most people don’t care if there’s a picture next to their podcast, but I like them. Album art is pretty poorly supported for non-iPods in everything I’ve used. The documentation for gPodder didn’t say anything about this, so I looked through the source and found an option for Rockbox cover art.  At the time, I didn’t know what Rockbox was, but since have learned it’s open source firmware for MP3 players.  I love the idea of being able to change the code running my Fuze, but alas, Rockbox doesn’t support it.  I digress.  The important thing is that the Rockbox option will copy the podcast album art (that gPodder already downloads) to the folder on the Fuze where it stores the podcast files.  It calls the file cover.bmp and converts it to BMP format.   The only options are to enable this and the maximum image size.  The Fuze needs a file called folder.jpg in JPEG format.  So I added some options for generic MP3 players that let you specify the file name, format and image size of cover art.   This change has been checked in to the code repository, and will probably be in version 0.14.