Podcast Producer Variables

The first of a new series of articles on using and extending the functionality of Apple’s Podcast Producer has just been published (see Podcast Producer: Anatomy of a Workflow). One of the things that you might find useful when working with Workflows in Podcast Producer are the properties that are defined automatically when a podcast is submitted for processing. These runtime properties are used to specify information such as the source file name and job name. You need these within the action specification to select the input file, Podcast title, description and other parameters to process the content. The combination of standard properties, and job specific properties, are combined together into a file called properties.plist that becomes part of the Workflow specification that is submitted for processing. Because global properties can change or be modified, by copying the specification into the properties.plist file during assembly, the system can ensure that the configuration at the time of submission of the podcast is used. This helps to prevent problems if the job gets queued and the configuration changes between submission and processing. The dynamic properties submitted as part of the job will differ depending on the submission type, but the main properties generated are shown in the table below.

Property Description
Base Directory The base directory for the Podcast submission. The directory is automatically created within the shared filesystem when a new job is submitted to Podcast Producer. A new universally unique ID (UUID) is created and used as the directory name. All of the resources for the submission are then placed into that directory. This information is required so that actions canaccess the raw contents.
Content File Basename The basename (filename without extension) of the source content.
Content File Extensions The extension of the source content.
Content File Name The full filename (basename and extension) of the source content.
Date_YYYY-MM-DD The date of submission for the podcast. The property demonstrates the format of the date (year, month, day).
Global Resource Path The path to the global resource for this instance of Podcast Producer. The directory holds all of the global resources (such as organization specific videos, preambles, and introductions) that can be used during processing.
Podcast Producer URL The URL of the Podcast Producer server. This is used when communicating information back to the Podcast Producer instance.
Recording Started At The date/time when the Podcast was started. This information is represented as the number of seconds since the epoch.
Recording Stopped At The date/time when the Podcast was stopped. This information is represented as the number of seconds since the epoch.
Server UUID The UUID of the server to which the podcast was submitted.
Shared Filesystem The base directory that holds all Podcast information. This directory is set within the General Settings portion of the Podcast Producer section of Server Admin.
Title The title of the podcast, as set by the user when the job was submitted using Podcast Capture.
User Full Name The full name of the user that submitted the job. When a job is submitted by Podcast Capture, the user must login to the Podcast Capture application. It is these credentials that are used to identify the user.
User Home Directory The home directory configured for the user.
User ID The user ID of the user that submitted the podcast.
User Short Name The shortname (login) of the user that submitted the podcast.
Workflow Bundle Path The path to the Workflow Bundle that was selected when the job was submitted. This will be one of the Workflows configured in the system and selected at the point of submission from within Podcast Capture.
Workflow Resource Path The path to the Resources directory for the Workflow selected when the job was submitted.
Xgrid Job Name The Xgrid job name. By default, the job name is a combination of the job title, the user?s full name, and the name of the Workflow that was selected. You can control this within the individual workflow, but often the standard configuration is enough for you to be able to identify the job as it progresses through the Xgrid processing stage.

These dynamic properties are vital to the execution of an individual action as they provide the unique properties required to process an individual podcast processing request.