In iTunes, I use a Smart Playlist to keep track of and to order my podcasts.
I like to order them by assigning to them a rating each morning before I head out on my daily travels. There are a few podcasts to which I assign 5 stars that take priority over everything – current news – then there are things in which I am very interested so they get 4 stars and then 3 and fewer stars are given to nice-to-hear shows.
I’ve lately taken to using the “Sort Artist” column to sub-sort the podcasts. By putting in the date (i.e. 20090924) it keeps them in order of receipt from oldest to newest. The end result is that I don’t end up listening to all my same-named podcasts clustered together but rather hear them interspersed among each other in the order in which they were published.
My expectation is that, on my iPod, the sort order will be the same as it is in iTunes. Not so anymore. Nowadays, the order somewhat follows the primary sort (I sort on “Rating” and everything else follows). On the iPod, rather than sorting from most to fewest stars, it currently sorts the opposite way and the sort within the stars follows absolutely no rhyme or reason – not alphabetically either by “Sort Artist” or by “Name”.
In fact, I took some time yesterday to experiment and it does not sort on ANY of the hidden sort fields or any visible fields for that matter.
I tried the suggestion of right-clicking on the playlist and clicking “Copy to Play Order” but this has absolutely no effect. I further tried editing the Smart Playlist and unchecking the “Live Updating” checkbox. This only resulted in NONE of my podcasts showing up in the iPod playlist, even though all looked fine in iTunes.
I understand that this is a major glitch in iTunes and have read many posts of folks complaining about this, so I suppose I’ll sit pretty while waiting for Apple to get around to fixing it. This post is mostly for folks who are experiencing the same issue to stumble across to see what I’ve tried and to know that their issue is shared.