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First ‘podcast’ on blog@USF

Here is my first ‘podcast’ on blog @ USF, an experiment in publishing a digital audio file of myself speaking for a few minutes. In addition to the embedded hyperlink in the first word of the last sentence, I am going to use WordPress to create an ‘enclosure’ so podcast news aggregator programs such as FeedDemon and Ipodder can subscribe to the RSS newsfeed for this weblog and automatically download the mp3 file pointed to in the enclosure. The mp3 file is actually on the Liberated Syndication media hosting server, where I uploaded it using their free “sandbox” account demo. Hence, I am not using USF’s bandwidth to distribute the mp3 file.

Again, this is a mere test of the technology using my USF blog’s WordPress weblog software for creating an ‘enclosure’ in this weblog’s RSS newsfeed. Nothing of consequence is said in the < 2 minute podcast referenced above.

If anyone wishes more information about how to create their own podcast, I will be happy to assist. Podcasting is something new, it’s only about one year old. Future postings under this the category “Podcast” on this Liberal Studies Blog will contain more info. Meanwhile those interested can explore the embedded hyperlinks include herein above.

Useful links about podcasting:

http://www.podcast.net/
http://www.podcastingnews.com/

5 comments to First ‘podcast’ on blog@USF

  • You can use your blog.usf.edu/myweb.usf.edu account to store the MP3′s for your podcasts. We don’t monitor bandwidth right now, just storage usage (you have 200MB). We’ll deal with bandwidth usage if/when it becomes a problem.

    The problem is that there (currently) isn’t a friendly interface for uploading content. You can use SFTP, but that requires additional software (and is a little klunky) or the upload function that is built into WordPress, but that’s pretty weak as well.

    I’m going to look at some of the WP plugins that are available to address the problem, but right now those are the only two systems available. I’m also looking at adding a plugin which will add the necessary fields in the RSS feed for the podcasts to work with the iTunes Podcast Directory.

  • Eric, thanks for the comment.

    It wasn’t clear to me that the upload interface to my USF account allowed the mp3 extension, since I didn’t see it explicitly mentioned among the file types supported. Also, of course, I didn’t want to set a precedent for distributing multimedia files via blog @ USF without explicit permission.

    I believe the RSS enclosure I created on this posting should work OK. I’ll test it with Ipodder at home later tonight. However, it would be rather difficult to explain to neophyte podcasters how to do it — although I’ll try to do so in the future (somewhere I have a web link that explained it to me).

    The threshold of technical knowledge needed to publish a podcast is presently a little more than minimal, but with a some friendly mutual aid many USF faculty and students may soon have opportunity to become pioneers in academic podcasting.

    All my postings which contain podcast links with ‘enclosures’ are planned to be categorized under the ‘Podcast’ category. Will this not cause the RSS newsfeed for that category to consist exclusively of podcast postings? Hence, will it not be a podcast newsfeed suitable for inclusion in directories of podcasts and for subscription by FeedDemon and Ipodder, etc.?

    – Herbert Bryant Jr.

  • This evening, a short while ago, I tried subscribing to this weblog’s RSS newsfeed with Ipodder and found that Ipodder was able to detect and download the mp3 file referenced in the enclosure of this posting.

    Also, http://www.newsgator.com shows the enclosure for this posting and flags it as a “podcast”. (Note: I subscribe my own blog’s newsfeed using newsgator.com’s free service.)

    However, USF’s WordPress installation at blog @ USF seems no longer to be able to create a customized RSS newsfeed based on the category subset of the weblog. This once worked properly, but now it does not. The RSS link doesn’t show up, nor to the other links in the lower righthand side “Meta” area of my blog home page.

    – Herbert Bryant Jr.

  • The RSS2 feed for your ‘podcast’ category is http://hbryant2.blog.usf.edu/category/podcast/feed
    The RSS feed that is created by WordPress will work fine for PodCasting software, but if you want your feed to be included in the iTunes PodCasting Directory, you have to have some special tags in the RSS. iTunes can still access your podcasts, but you can’t be listed in their directory without the extra tags.

    WordPress handles the creation of the enclosure tag, all you need to provide is the full URL for the MP3. Creating the sound-file and having something to say that people want to listen to are the hard parts.

  • Dear Herb,

    Thank you for listening to my Podcast and leaving your comments! I checked out your “test” MP3 and it sounds fine. I tried subscribing to your Podcast through iTunes and it played absolutely fine–let’s assume that the subscription to future MP3s will go off without a hitch. Thanks for all of the suggestions to other Podcasts; my current scope of interests is pretty narrow. But, I have subscribed to EvilGenius.org’s feed as per your suggestion.
    My setup is so absurdly bare-bones. I use a $24.99 pair of Plantronics headphones w/ mic. It isn’t even USB…! I use Audacity to record and edit my Podcasts; I play music in the background through WinAmp 2.0. Simple as that…
    I checked out ITConversations.com and was overwhelmed by the amount of information. The topics seem incredibly interesting, but I want to try to keep my Podcasts light (I am not too socially conscious).
    Anyway, thank you once again for the comments and I look forward to your Podcast when you get everything up and running!

    ~ Jackie Lai

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