When is a CSV not a CSV? When you’re downloading it in Safari

Here’s another post that’s basically a cry for help. I did find this forum thread on the topic, but not a solution.

The problem: when I download a CSV file in Safari, for some inexplicable reason, Safari appends a .xls (Microsoft Excel) extension to the filename.

Never mind that I don’t use Excel… I use Apple’s own spreadsheet software, Numbers, from the iWork suite. Never mind that I don’t even have Excel installed on my Mac. Why, why on Earth, would Safari append a .xls extension on a CSV file? It’s not an Excel file; it’s a CSV. Different format. Sure, Excel can open it. But, you know what? Numbers doesn’t open it properly when it has that stupid extension on it.

Take the exact same file, remove the .xls extension (leaving the .csv extension), and Numbers opens it just fine. Leave it the way Safari has it, and it’s a mess.

This is not the only annoyance I have with Safari’s handling of downloads. I also hate how it automatically expands “safe” files, placing the original .zip or .dmg file in the Trash. I don’t want to delete those files! But if I turn this option off, it also doesn’t open the files I want it to open automatically, like Amazon MP3 downloads.

But hands down, this CSV bug — yes, that’s right, I called it a bug — is my biggest source of frustration. Sure, it’s easy enough to remove the extension. But it shouldn’t be there in the first place!

Uhh… wow.

You may be familiar with mashups, but this has to take the cake. It’s a mashup from three music instruction videos.


And just so I don’t seem like a bandwidth hog, the original page in context is here. (Even though I’m being less of a bandwidth hog by linking straight to the video because I’m not forcing you to download three long QuickTime movies simultaneously! But don’t get me wrong; all three are worth watching… as long as you have broadband.)

Very cool idea. Gets a little stale (and not as well-executed) by the end, but still impressive. And of course, Beaver Felton is the guy who sold me my Music Man StingRay 5. (True, I bought it from his shop, not him personally, but I did have direct contact with him personally both by email and on the phone. Not that that makes me cool or anything.)