What is a podcast?
The word "podcast" comes from joining Portable On Demand (pod, like iPod) and "cast" from broadcast. Get it? Podcast!
A podcast is an audio (or maybe video) file that is distributed over the internet using syndication feeds (like RSS) and can be played on portable media players (eg. MP3s) or simply on your computer.
Podcasting means that listeners can "time shift" their favourite programs by listening when it suits them. What makes podcasts different is the ability to "subscribe" to a feed, and when a new episode become available it can be automatically downloaded to the user's computer or player. You can then choose to listen to an episode when you want. Or delete the file if you don't!
You can also download programs without subscribing and listen to them on your computer.
The task this week builds upon your knowledge about feeds (that was in week 5 "Installing a feed reader, remember?)
Find a podcast that interests you using Google, or a directory such as Podcast.net or PodcastAlley.com, or from the links in the Resources section below.
Subscribe to it in your feed reader and listen to an audio file or two.
Updated 9 Jan 2008: The site IndiePodder.org, previously mentioned, doesn't seem to be available anymore, but PodShow.com and PodcastAlley.com appear to be owned by the same company.
- PodcastAlley.com - podcasting resource and directory of podcasts
- PodShow.com - access to music, videos, and episodes
- Aunty ABC - podcasts of shows from the national broadcaster
- "What's new in Podcasting" Sirsidynix Institute online seminar from June 2007