→ Instacast’s Automatic Download Management

The developer of Instacst1 explains why he made changes to the management of downloaded files in Instacast:

To recap, Instacast 2 had a myriad of settings to control automatic download and automatic deletion of content. This let to a number of issue. First, Instacast 2 had problems always enforcing all settings as a lot of them were in conflict with each other. This let to situations where you thought Instacast should automatically download the content of a particular episode, but didn’t and vice versa. Same with automatic deletion, it could happen that you fell asleep and suddenly Instacast had deleted the content and you had to re-download it all over again.

and how he addressed it:

I came up with the concept of moving the content management into settings and have access to manual management right from there. This has the advantage of not needing to go into every single episode to delete the content, plus people are not confused anymore what “Delete Episode” means. Then I removed all auto-deletion features and replaced them with only one rule: “Delete the content, when you have to”…, because you run out of space. Instacast then would start deleting content of old episodes first as long as they haven’t been marked as favorite.

Personally, I really like the changes2, but I can understand why there will be other tweaks coming:

I will make some changes in Instacast 3.1. I will add two options that have to be enabled manually. You will be able to configure automatic deletion of content after an episode finished playing or as soon as the episode gets marked as played. Both of these options can be overwritten in subscription specific settings. I will also make some adjustments to the indicators Instacast is giving in the hope to remove the confusion. And finally I will grey out episodes in the “Offline Storage” settings that had already been played.

To me, this sounds like making a good solution even better. Of course, I wonder if it will be enough to placate the people who want it “back the way it was.”


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  2. I do admit they took a little getting used to, but the whole system works much better once you understand it.