How to Download your LAUNCHcast Ratings

Since I wrote about the demise of LAUNCHcast, many people have written panicked comments about losing LAUNCHcast and all their ratings.

While I can’t help with LAUNCHcast, I can assure you that all the ratings will be preserved on Yahoo! Music. Better yet, I now have a way for you to download all your ratings.

Now I don’t know if downloading these ratings are actually useful because I don’t know of any service where you can import them, but at least you’ll have them in case such a service does become available.

Anyway, have at it. I hope you find it useful.

And thanks for all the kind words left in the comments about how you loved LAUNCHcast. Me too.


If you appreciate this tool, or enjoyed LAUNCHcast, please consider donating to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. My wife is running a marathon to raise money!

28 Comments

  1. Wasn’t there also a way to port the ratings to Yahoo Music and then from there to Rhapsody via some kind of automated means? If we knew your paypal I am sure that quite a lot of us would have *paid* you to make your ratings downloader work. I am sure that there are many like me that are truly grateful for this. Going forward, what I was thinking was that it would be neat to put the ratings into the ID3 tags (if I had that right) in the mp3s on our hard drives themselves, and then code up foobar so it will play the songs according to rating/frequency. In this way, the ratings would be embedded with the mp3 and could go to other players construed to look for this tag and we’d never again have the problem of proprietary systems owning our ratings. I think a *lot* of work on this structure has already been done, but people keep dropping the ball because they are not making money for writing the code.

  2. Just wanted to send a note thanking you, Todd, and anyone else who was involved in the development of LAUNCHcast. Though technical problems kept me from listening very often in the last year or two, I have loved the service and been positively gleeful about some of the music I have heard through LC. Thank you so much for bringing something wonderful and unique to the world.

  3. I also wanted to send a personal note of thanks to you, Todd, and everyone else who was involved in making LAUNCHcast the incredible product that it was. Maybe you could pass this on to them as well? I’m really going to miss my personal station – I can’t even begin to tell you how much. It’s been my constant companion, day in and day out, for the last 6 years? 8 years? I’m not sure, actually. I’ve lost track, now. On all the days I wanted to escape the world, and all the days I wanted to embrace, it was there for me.

    You guys revolutionized internet radio, and the world still hasn’t caught up. LC still blows away Pandora, LastFM, Slacker, and the rest. They’re still pursuing the lazy and/or more narrowly-focused music listeners. Those who prefer the single “like it /don’t like it” rating system. And those who are satisfied with creating a station initially based on a single artist or song. I have to believe though that those listeners are exactly the people that really wouldn’t want to pay for a personal radio station in the first place. I really think that the majority of people however, have much broader and deeper musical opinions than that. And the broader and deeper their musical knowledge and tastes, the more willing they’ll be to pay a higher price for personal radio, and to go out and buy CDs and MP3s of the new music they hear on their station. So, until the rest of the broadcast & music world realizes what you knew 10 years ago to be true, it will be a long, slow battle toward profitability for personal radio.

    As a programmer myself, I often wondered how you did it. The AI underneath your app is mind-boggling; the accuracy, scary. But until a few weeks ago, I had no idea who you were. I was just one of the many, silent, happy, anonymous listeners who quietly enjoyed that wonderful little feature that came free with my DSL subscription. That is, until a few weeks ago when I found out LC was being decommissioned. And suddenly I’m in a panic; I’m all over the boards. How can I save my data? How can they just drop us? Oh, crap! What am I going to do now? Jeff Boulter and Todd Beaupre, huh? Gee, I owe them a thank you!

    I’m reminded of Anders Hejlsberg. Jeff, you probably know who he is, but non-developers may not. When he was working for Borland, he architected a wonderful little development environment called Delphi. Problem was, it was never marketed correctly. They targeted the product to developers who were currently using VB, when really they should have been targeting the C++ market, and it never really took off. So a few years later, when Anders joined Microsoft and architected an extremely similar product called “.NET”, it took the development world by storm, and the rest is programming history. I really think the same sort of thing is happening now with LC. Jeff & Todd – you created an incredible application. Once the corporate marketers figure out who their target audience really is, I’m sure your baby will be back online, in one form or another.

    I know you don’t create an app like LC without a lot of blood, sweat, tears AND creative thought. So, hats off to you! I’m sorry it took me 10 years to say it, but THANK YOU! And best of luck in your careers!

    p.s. Don’t forget that while CBS or Yahoo! may own the code, they don’t own what’s in your head. Hope to see you and the next evolution of LC around sometime, somewhere. I’ll be waiting. ;-)

  4. Thanks alot of making this ratings download program. Count me among those who loved LAUNCHcast and for whom this service was a both a revelation and a phenomenal engine for music discovery and listening pleasure. Those of you involved in making this service should be rightly proud. You were the pioneers.

  5. Thanks for this tool. At least, I can have a record of all my ratings. I can’t believe this service has been stopped. I had always been telling my friends and family that was one of the greatest invention the Internet brought. I would actually have gladly paid for the service, but for some reasons, paid subscriptions were not available in Europe.

    Anyway, I really feel like we are moving backward now. I will surely miss LC. If anyone starts a competing service, let us know.

    PS : if there is a petition to bring this back, let me know as well.

    Thanks a thousand times.

  6. Thank you for this. The few kilobytes of data on three .csv files seems so insignificant in comparison to the hours of enjoyment listening to these tracks gave to me. I might have to move to Canada now.

  7. Thanks a lot! I was really worried because I spent almost six years molding my LaunchCast station in wat it was until now. It’s really a shame that Yahoo discontinued this service, without thinking about thousands of users that enjoyed their personal stations for years!

  8. I’m still able to listen to My Station, I feel a little bit guilty not to share it with you when I read al these sad comments, but I’m also scared that if I share the link that it will be cut off too. I don’t know how long it will last, and maybe it is because of my location (The Netherlands)? I just had to share it with you, should I share the link here?

  9. I’ve waited so long to be able to download this data. Thank you so much!!! I used launchcast religiously for nearly 5 years at work and was heartbroken when the customized stations were turned off. You are the man!!!! There so much great music that I discovered because of Launchcast- thanks for giving it all back to me in this data!!!!

  10. Thank you so much! Yahoo is allowing us to access the ratings, but it only displays them as stars. I always did my ratings out of 100, and the software tool you created downloaded the information the way I created it– out of 100, not out of 5 stars. Thank you!

  11. Thanks from me too. It took me about 20 goes, but I eventually got 8000 of my 9500 song ratings downloaded. Genius move to sort them according to rank because by 7800 it was just the zero rated songs that I didn’t want to hear again, so I won’t bother trying to retrieve the rest.

    I’ll try & scrobble these onto last.fm now. It’s not as good but needs must.

    BTW at first I thought you were a launchcast hater because I read your app as launch-castrate!

  12. Jeff,

    Thanks for the tool and for the previous years with LC.

    Can you suggest any app or other service that can do similar to LC – whereby higher rated songs are played more often? I was kind of hoping something would have come through by now.

  13. Thanks Jeff for the quick reply. Yes, Pandora is a nice try. You program artists or songs you like, and it derives a channel from that. I preferred LC in the way it heavily played your favorites, some of your 50-70s, and occasionally something new.

    I wasn’t as clear as I meant to be at 4:30am. :) I meant to ask if there was an app that you could run that could serve your on-harddrive MP3s in a fashion similar to how LC had. Now that I have my downloaded lists of ratings, I am going to focus on compiling my own library.

    Know of any MP3 player that could be leveraged to play like LC? Or maybe a plugin for Winamp?

  14. Hey, just tried this (was looking for this kind of app before the CBS takeover – somehow missed it last year) and sadly, it doesn’t work for me now. Just an empty spreadsheet for all 3 categories. Thoughts?

  15. Jeff:

    I am running into the same problem as Will with your spreadsheet app. I get a small spreadsheet with only the header line. Makes me wish I had found the time to try it sooner. Can you please look into it?

    I add my voice to the mourners of LaunchCast, and my praise to you for helping create something that changed my life, and to this day has no equal.

    As proof of my sincerity, here are my ratings stats:

    27309 songs
    2773 albums
    3672 artists

    I would say RIP, but this is one case where I would welcome a zombie.

    Thank you,
    Jeffrey D. Blankenship

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>