Safari RSS: a Cop on my Computer

OK, full disclosure: I use Safari for almost all of my surfing, as well as my RSS.

It’s good, fast, and aesthetically pleasing – an important aspect of a discerning computer user’s experience.

Since the latest update (I’m using Safari 2.0 build 412.2), I’ve only run across one site that does not work properly with Safari. And I know that developers of that site are seriously clueless – a Javascript on the page requires IE funkiness to work. OK, I can handle that. Not Apple’s fault.

But there is something that is Apple’s fault. And I’m particularly ticked off about it because it’s a design decision that Apple must have made to brown-nose studio and music company execs: Safari won’t download movies or MP3 files anymore.

It used to be very simple … be on a page, see a movie or hear a sound you like, click File -> Save As, and you’ve got it. No more.

Well, this is a problem. Not because I can’t steal music and movies anymore – I never used it for that anyways. But I happen to blog for The Linguist, a language-learning start-up in Vancouver, Canada. And we put out a newsletter with I Make News. The newsletter is done by someone else, and the easiest way for me to get the files and submit them to our podcast directory (which is listed on iTunes, by the way) is to just suck them off the newsletter, upload them to our site, and that’s that.

Or, that should be that. Safari won’t let me suck the podcasts down. A File – Save as on an audio file results in a 4 Kb ‘audio’ file on my desktop. Double-clicking that file opens up iTunes, and precious little besides. Certainly not the podcast I’m hoping to capture.

Well, Firefox to the rescue. Firefox isn’t a cop on my own computer, wagging its finger at me every time I do something that it thinks is a problem. But I shouldn’t have to open up a new browser to do something fairly standard, fairly obvious.

This is disappointing.

But the biggest disappointment is that Apple is a company founded on enabling people to do cool stuff with technology. Disabling the existing functionality to save files is a step backward, and a rejection of that heritage.


4 CommentsLeave a comment

  • You’re right, and thanks for the tip. I’ve used it a lot for images, but have never (mental blind spot) done it for sound or movie files.

    But now click on one of those files (to open it in your browser) and try Save As …

    Why the different behavior?

  • I think what you mean is you have to pay for the PRO version of Quicktime to save the files. I went to the website you referred to and had no problem listening to the MP3 although you need QT PRO to save the file.