Trackback from iTunes

Today I looked at my list of contacts in AIM and knew Jerry Kindall was the l33t applescript developer of the bunch. I showed him my previous post, went off to grab a burrito for lunch only to find a working script in my inbox upon return. I just tried it out and it’s working as I speak, with output identical to the winamp pings. The full instructions and applescript are included:

“Here’s an AppleScript that does more or less the same thing as your WinAmp technique. The difference is iTunes can’t automatically run a script when a track changes, so we have to poll iTunes every few seconds.

You’ll need to drop the script onto Script Editor and change the trackback URL, which is near the top of the script. To make the script simpler, I put the &excerpt= part at the very end of the URL, so I just have to append the URL-encoded song info.

The script runs as a standalone application with a menu bar and dock icon. If you’d rather it be invisible, drop the script applet on Drop Script Backgrounder after you’ve saved it.

The script uses the UNIX curl command to send the ping, so it requires Mac OS X. I could have used URL Access Scripting, which would have made it compatible with older Mac OSs, but URL Access Scripting just hangs around using up memory even though you’re only calling it every few minutes.”

– Jerry Kindall

Download: iTunes Trackback.sit version 0.1 (23kb)

Jerry says he’ll probably update it with a nice URL interface (you have to edit the script by hand now).

Applescript has zillions of possibilities. You could setup another trackback category for your online status, and only display the last trackback, then have iChat update your status via trackback when you log off, log on, or are away.

Imagine going one step further, with a Bluetooth-equipped phone and Clicker installed. The act of walking up to your desk and sitting down could trigger status posts to your blog via trackback.

I was going to title my winamp post “trackback coming soon to your toothbrush” as a joke, but it’s scary how close it is to being a possibility.

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