The holiday season is here and iPods are flying off the store shelfs. We all know that they are probably the best and most popular music player, but they are also capable of so much more. One of my favorite features is podcasting support. While using an iPod is not necessary to listen to a podcast, iTunes and the iPod sure make it easy.
What is a podcast?
The best way to discribe a podcast, is like a radio show that you download from the internet. While that is not necessarily the exact definition, I think that it is the most logical explanation. Here is how the Wikipedia defines podcasting;
A podcast is a multimedia file distributed over the Internet using syndication feeds, for playback on mobile devices and personal computers. Like ‘radio’, it can mean both the content and the method of delivery; the latter may also be termed podcasting. The host or author of a podcast is often called a podcaster.
Though podcasters’ web sites may also offer direct download or streaming of their content, a podcast is distinguished from other digital audio formats by its ability to be downloaded automatically using software capable of reading feed formats such as RSS or Atom.
You can easily subscribe to a podcast in iTunes, and it will make sure that you get all new episodes. You can even set it up so you really never have to do anything, iTunes will download the latest shows, and remove the ones that you have already listened to.
So why should you listen to podcasts?
Podcasts provide a great deal of specific information to a niche audience. You will never hear an entire radio show devoted to the Mac, but you can with podcasts. And that is really why they are so great. They are also generally non commercial so the information tends to be less restricted. You could almost say it is like a verbal, or video blog.
The best way to learn about podcasts is to try some out for yourself. I recommend using the iTunes podcast directory to get started. Search for a topic you are interested in and subscribe. By the way, they are all free! Here is a list of Geeky Mac’s favorite podcasts, check them out.
The Mac Geek Gab Podcast
This podcast features two long-time TMO staffers — Dave Hamilton and John F. Braun — talking about all things Mac. Dave is, of course, TMO’s President, and John F. Braun is TMO’s featured columnist for Monday’s Mac Gadget. Being technologists (i.e. nerds!), Dave and John often have chats about technical topics, and also have a knack for translating most of that suff into language understandable by humans. Now you can listen in weekly and learn from the pros!
A podcast about all things Macintosh. For Mac geeks, by Mac geeks.
Mac OS Ken
With PowerBook in lap and tongue in cheek, Ken Ray brings 12 years of radio experience and 6 years of tech-news work to the Mac world. If you’ve heard him before you know what to expect… news, interviews, commentary, and humor. If you haven’t heard him, welcome to a slightly skewed look at all things Apple and Apple related.
This Week in Tech (TWIT)
Your first podcast of the week is the last word in tech. Join Leo Laporte, Patrick Norton, John C. Dvorak, and other tech luminaries in a roundtable discussion of the latest trends in high tech. Winner of “People’s Choice Podcast” and “Best Technology Podcast” in the 2005 People’s Choice Podcast Awards. Released every Sunday at midnight Pacific.
This Week in Media (TWIM)
Each week Alex Lindsay and other experts in content creation and the media get together to discuss the week’s developments. If you want to know why movies cost so much, why HD-DVD is having trouble getting off the ground, or how the special effects were created for the latest Hollywood Blockbuster this is the show for you. Usually released weekly.
Inside the Black Box
Join Alex Lindsay and the Pixel Corps crew as they give you an inside view of visual effects production techniques and tools.
Get the latest Mac news and views from the top journalists covering Apple today. This roundtable discussion is audio only, and complements the video only MacBreak. Another great show from the Pixel Corps and the TWiT.tv network.
Digital Production BuZZ
Each week Creative Planet’s Digital Production BuZZ will be working to keep you in touch with trends and technologies, people and practices that you need to know to keep up to date with digital production, postproduction and evolving distribution opportunities.