Podcasts are the hot new thing on the internet, so I grabbed chicagocast.com.
Will I do anything with it? I dunno. Maybe I’ll sell it. Maybe I’ll do a weekly or monthly chicago podcast.
Some ideas for the Chicago podcast:
√Ø Interview people
√Ø Provide a chicago tour
√Ø Recap Chicago’s top stories from the week/month.
√Ø This day in Chicago history
Any other ideas on what could be on chicagocast.com?
this is a dumb question, but what exactly are podcasts? are they just mp3 files (or whatever the file format is for apple) that people download and listen to your spiel?
Ha. you will look back on this and laugh. It will be like asking what a VCR is. In order to understand podcasts, it will help to understand what RSS is. ============ RSS It allows you to check multiple websites all at once from one program. Let’s take an example. Take a look at Tom Sherman’s website at: http://underscorebleach.net/content/jotsheet/ (tom won rookie of the year for TMS chicago) It’s a standard blog. You got all these posts with headlines and a body. Standard stuff. If you subscribe to his RSS feed, you can use a RSS aggregator program to check when his site is updated. This RSS aggregator will give you all the headlines in one program (this aggregator program looks a lot like an email program… you’ll see a bunch of subject headers, click on a subject, and you can read the body). Now let’s say you check 10 or so websites now and then. Instead of going to 10 different sites, you can use a RSS aggregator program to check them all at once! All the new posts will appear in one window in your program. It’s kinda confusing, but IT’S REALLY nice. Feel free to drop by my desk and i’ll show you want I mean. It’s really revolutionizing how people get their information. And all the major news sites now offer rss feeds. So you can get your news, and other information in one spot. There are a couple good RSS aggregators out there for the mac: NetNewsWire http://ranchero.com/netnewswire/ Shrook http://www.fondantfancies.com/apps/shrook/ I recommend Shrook. But NetNewsWire is just as good. How do you find RSS feeds? Most sites will have a little RSS button on them. Tom’s RSS feed is at: http://underscorebleach.net/content/jotsheet/index.xml You just put that URL into your aggregator and it will check for updates. My feed is at: https://www.spudart.org/blogs/index.xml Next comment I will touch on podcasting…
============ Podcasting Speaking of RSS, there’s a related item that is kinda simliar. Podcasting. You get a podcasting aggregator program, and it will automatically download mp3s of people’s “radio shows.” It’s all legal. There’s no illegal downloading here. Podcasts are essentially like people’s radio shows. They record their show as a mp3 file, and then stick it up on their site for people to download to their computer (or iPod). The cool thing is that this program automatically checks for new podcasts and downloads them. It’s like having a radio show updated on your computer/iPod. You can subscribe to several podcasts via a RSS feed. But you will need another program (not Shrook or NetNewsWire) to get these podcasts. I use playpod. There aren’t many good podcasts out there yet, because this is the HOT new thing now. But there are a couple directories. http://www.ipodder.org/ http://www.podcastalley.com/ One good podcast is the NASA one: http://science.nasa.gov/podcast.xml Put that URL into Playpod, and it will check for new mp3 podcast files.
On someone’s blog, I left specific instructions on how to do the podcasting thing. Here they are: GET THE PROGRAM step 1: download Playpod step 2: install playpod step 3: open playpod step 4: change the download settings: Playpod > Preferences. Do whatever works for you. Select location for your mp3s, etc. FIND A PODCAST step 5: find a podcast step 6: here’s an example: http://www.sciencefriday.com/audio/ FIND THE FEED ON THE SITE step 7: find the XML feed on this website. It’s usually that little orange box. step 8: click on the XML feed link. step 9: a page will come up with all this goggbly code step 10: ignore the code. look at the address bar. that’s what you want. step 11: copy the url. In this case, it’s http://www.sciencefriday.com/audio/scifriaudio.xml PUT THE FEED INTO PLAYPOD step 12: open playpod step 13: go to: File > New Feed… step 14: paste in that url, http://www.sciencefriday.com/audio/scifriaudio.xml into the form step 15: click ok step 16: now you are subscribed to a podcast step 17: enjoy