The word podcast is used to refer to a non-musical audio or video broadcast that is distributed over the Internet. What differentiates a podcast from regular streaming audio or video is that podcasts can be delivered automatically through RSS (remember week 4?)
Podcasts take many forms, from short 1-10 minutes commentaries (like the ones used in the original Learning 2.0 program) to much longer in person interviews or panel group discussions. There’s a podcast out there for just about every interest area and the best part about this technology is that you don’t need an iPod or a MP3 player to use it. Since podcasts use the MP3 file format, a popular compressed format for audio files, you really just need a PC (or portal device) with headphones or a speaker.
There are podcasts of radio shows, sports casts, lectures, television or Internet shows and on and on. iTunes, the free downloadable application created by Apple is the directory finding service most associated with podcasts, but if you don’t have iTunes installed there are still plenty of options.
For this discovery exercise you are asked to take a look at some popular podcast directory tools. Do some exploring on your own and locate a podcast that is of interest to you. Once found, you can easily pull the RSS feed into your Bloglines account as well, so that when new casts become available you’ll be automatically notified of their existence.
- To find out more about podcasts start with Wikipedia article on Podcasts
- iTunes Podcast information – from what is a podcast to how to find and use them on iTunes
- There are many, many podcast directories and finding tools out there. Here are just three of the more popular ones that, unlike iTunes, don't require a software download:
o MyYahoo audio
What? You want to learn how to be a podcaster too? (Optional Resources for those who want to learn create podcasts)
- Odeo’s Studio – online recording studio.
- Beginner's guide to Podcasts & Creating Podcasts
- How to podcast tutorial
1. Take a look at one or two of the podcast directories listed and see if you can find a podcast that interests you. See if you can find some interesting library related podcasts here like book review podcasts or library news.
2. Add the RSS feed for a podcast to your Bloglines account.
3. Create a blog post about your discovery process. Did you find anything useful here? How could podcasts be used in the library?
Continue on to Week 9 , Thing 22