I just fetched a Raspian disk image via bitorrent. It is a .zip instead of the .gz I would have chosen myself.
If you have a .zip and you don’t want to do a temporary uncompress of it to get the .img to use with dd, you can use “unzip -q -c foo.zip” to get the contents of the zip file sprayed onto stdout. Then you can pipe it into dd.
The -c argument of Linux unzip is only documented in the man page. And they neglect to mention that unless you use the -q option also, it will mix filename and other useless info into the stdout, making your disk image useless.
So “unzip -q -c foo.zip | dd bs=4M of=/dev/sdb” for the win. (Unless your boot disk was /dev/sdb, in which case… umm, sorry.)