From YouTube to Your iPod

You’ve found an irresistible video on YouTube that you just have to show to your friends, so you want to download it to your Apple iPod. You search in vain for theDownload to iPod button that should be there on the YouTube page but isn’t. YouTube doesn’t make it easy; you’re going to have to do it yourself.

Before getting started, let’s understand the problem, which has two basic aspects. First, YouTube doesn’t want you to download its videos—and it says so in its help files. Downloading the files isn’t illegal, but since YouTube’s business model is based on page views, the company has been known to modify its tagging and to use other methods to prevent downloads. If one of the techniques discussed here suddenly stops working, you’ll know why. Either look for an update or search out another solution.

Second, YouTube converts all videos into Flash format with an FLV extension, which until recently was not a format many encoding programs would accept. So even if you successfully download the file, you’ll need a program that can input the file for encoding. Then, of course, you have to convert the file into an iPod-compatible format. — next: Do It With Windows

About Jan Ozer

I help companies train new technical hires in streaming media-related positions; I also help companies optimize their codec selections and encoding stacks, and evaluate new encoders and codecs.

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