YouTube channel RSS feeds

For mostly unknown reasons I want to delete my Google account at some point in the future. The Google services that I am regularly using are Search, Maps, and - increasingly - YouTube. The latter is the only service that really benefits from an account that remembers subscriptions, lists and the history of watched videos.

What I will continue to use are RSS readers. And it turns out that you can (still) subscribe to YouTube channels via their RSS feeds. Reddit is your friend and provides the answers:

The URL for a channel's RSS feed is

https://www.youtube.com/feeds/videos.xml?channel_id= + channel_id

where the channel ID can be found in the html source of the channel page or may even be part of the channel URL. In any case, I now subscribe to my YouTube channels via boring, old RSS feeds.

Update 2020-10-15: My very good friend Zeitschlag tells me that for those channels that do not have set a custom URL, it's enough to just use the channel URL.

For example, Fat Freddy's Drop - the world's very best band btw. - has the channel URL https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsLGIbOjsV8TFTco9cL6HHA. Those random characters at the end is the channel ID. When I add this URL to my FreshRSS instance, it finds the RSS feed no problem.

In the case of the hip, young, cool YouTubers like Armen Hammer at https://www.youtube.com/c/ArmenHammerTV, the channel URL doesn't include this ID but a custom name/slug/identifier. Here, you'll have to go the tedious way as described above.

The Tracks Of My Tears

I love cover songs. I love bands that take a good song and make it better. Bands like Cake, Reel Big Fish, Guano Apes, and Rainer von Vielen. Joe Cocker made a whole career of it.

That's why Napster was the best!. Napster had everything, every cover and live version anyone had ever published. Napster would have had this super, mega, uber amazing live version of Hard To Handle by the Black Crows, if Napster had survived until 2005.

(Spotify doesn't.)

Napster would have had this super fun rock version of the Temptations Get Read by Wishbone Ash.

(Spotify doesn't.)


I'm always trying to find cover versions of songs. Many times, there are amazing versions out there. And then there's Smokey Robinson's Tracks of My Tears. This song has many, many cover versions available on Spotify. Everyone in music apparently took a shot at it at one time. And they all failed. There's not a single cover version that makes the song better. And please don't go looking for the Bryan Adams recording of it. You're welcome.

It seems to me that in this rare case, the originial is the best there is, and noone can improve upon it.

I challenge everyone to show me that I'm wrong.

(Seriously. I recently started playing in a rock cover band, and I want my first proposal for a new song to be a real good one. A hard-rock version of Tracks Of My Tears would be amazing. I'll add the horn section myself.)

Update Sep 10th, 2020: There is actually a pretty decent cover version, recorded by Boyzone. It does not change the song in any way, but the production is superb, and the horn parts are really well done!

3 episodes in one day

Recently, Nick and I published 3 episodes of Several Ways To Live in a single day. How did we do that, do you ask? Easy:

  1. Record several times over the span of many weeks
  2. Edit and upload 3 episodes
  3. Let Nick do his thing
  4. Nick does his thing and adds shownotes to all 3 episodes in one evening
  5. Publish all 3 episodes at the same time

Here you go. :)

A simple new theme

A few weeks ago I updated the Nikola that powers this site to version 8. At the same time, I started looking into how I could get rid of all external dependencies, e.g. JavaScript and fonts.

The first step now is to switch to the very basic base-jinja theme. So far, I've only changed the main color to the familiar red, added a .video-container CSS class that helps making embedded YouTube videos responsive, and removed all JavaScript from the theme templates.

There are still embedded videos and tweets that load external files. But I'm okay with that for now.

Sometime in the future I'll have to make the site a bit prettier. I really liked the old styling. But for now, this has to do.

Linktipp: Zeitplanung und Heimarbeit

Es ist kein Geheimnis, dass ich großer Fan davon bin, meine Arbeit außerhalb des Firmenbüros zu erledigen. Meist passiert dies in meinem Heimbüro, äh, zuhause. Letzte Woche war ich aber zum Beispiel auch ganz woanders, im tiefsten Niedersachsen, in einem dunklen Keller ohne Mobilfunkempfang, und das hat ebenfalls sehr gut für mich funktioniert.

Der Nathan macht neuerdings einen Podcast, in dem er davon erzählt, wie er lernt, 100% von zuhause aus zu arbeiten. Das hat nämlich durchaus seine Tücken. In den nächsten Tagen bin ich mit ihm verabredet, um mal ganz kurz über das verteilte Arbeiten von unterwegs zu reden. Meine Erfahrungen der letzten Woche drehen sich hauptsächlich um den ergonomischen Arbeitsplatz und veränderte Routinen.

Auslöser für diesen kurzen Eintrag war aber Leahs neuer Artikel "Zeitplanung und Heimarbeit", den ich euch wärmstens empfehlen möchte. Insbesondere bei ihrer Beobachtung zu den maximal möglichen, konzentrierten Arbeitsstunden pro Tag bin ich voll und ganz bei ihr.