Tag: audio (page 1 of 2)

Radio EDUtalk session: talking podcasting, badges, and tools for productivity with John Johnston

On Wednesday night I was interviewed by John Johnston for Radio EDUtalk. I’ve had the pleasure of knowing John for what seems like an online lifetime β€” he was part of that early cadre of edtech bloggers 10+ years ago.

As you can see from the header image on the site, Radio EDUtalk was set up back when my hair was a little less grey! It’s a service for educators featuring regular interviews as well as captured conference sessions for those not able to attend. Educators are also free to upload their own audio.

I’ve been involved with Radio EDUtalk on a few occasions over the years. This particular session was a free-range discussion about what I’m up to at the moment. So during the hour, John and I discuss:

  • The resurgence of podcasting as a medium
  • Some of my experiences at Mozilla
  • How I see the current Open Badges landscape
  • The ‘digital literacy divide’
  • Blockchains, smart contracts, and the future of work

It was great talking to John, and I hope you get some value out of listening in to our conversation. The audio should be embedded below but, if not, click here to listen!

HOWTO: Create a podcast

Background

A couple of months ago, Dai Barnes and I decided to start podcasting again. We’d previously been regular hosts of EdTechRoundUp and wanted to get back into the routine. We decided to meet each weekend with a loose agenda, talk for between 45 minutes and an hour, edit the recording, and put it out each Tuesday. We’re calling this Today In Digital Education (TIDE).

Quick note: technology
A podcast is an audio file plus an RSS feed. Just sticking an MP3 on a web server doesn’t make it a podcast – there has to be an enclosure generated that allows users to have each episode delivered to them.

Recording the audio

Perhaps the easiest way to record a conversation is to use Skype and a plugin that records both sides of the audio. I’ve actually detailed this process before, and haven’t deviated much from it, so check out this post.

Quick note: naming
You should double-check that there’s no-one else using the name you came up with. We had to change the title of our podcast slightly as there was already a student-run podcast out of the University of Alabama! It’s also a good idea to grab as many URLs for the podcast as possible. This means you can switch platforms but keep the URL consistent.

Publishing your audio

In the first instance we decided to try Tumblr to make the podcast available to listeners. I wanted something that was super-straightforward, and Dai was keen to show to his colleagues that it isn’t just filled with dodgy stuff. As it happens, although this made it easy to listen to recordings via Tumblr itself, it wasn’t such a great idea for creating a compatible RSS feed.

Thankfully, the wonderful SoundCloud has a beta program called SoundCloud for Podcasters which we were quickly accepted into. This gives you an RSS feed people can use to subscribe to. It’s worth pointing out that people can also subscribe to you via the SoundCloud app itself.

We’ve retained the Tumblr blog as SoundCloud doesn’t seem to allow hyperlinks in the show description.

Quick note: costs
It’s pretty inevitable you’re going to spend some money creating your podcast. It can be done for free, but it’s more difficult than using awesome tools that make the job easier. Other than both owning Macs (which are great for multimedia!), here’s the things we’ve paid for:

Sorting out your RSS feed

It’s a good idea to take the RSS feed generated by whatever platform you use and pipe it through FeedBurner. There’s lots of options here, but ensure you pay attention to the Optimize tab and the BrowserFriendly, SmartCast, and SmartFeed settings. Note that you’ll need an image for your logo that’s larger than 1400px x 1400px to be compatible with iTunes.

Piping the RSS feed through FeedBurner means that if you change to a different platform (with a different RSS feed) this won’t affect your listeners. In the same way that you can have a URL that redirects to Tumblr, WordPress, or whatever, so your FeedBurner-powered feed is a front end for whatever RSS feed you point it towards.

Quick note: learning from others
One of the best ways to know what works with podcasts – in terms of content, structure, and how to describe yours, is to listen to some good ones. Here are three of my favourites (not including BBC Radio 4 radio shows released as podcasts):

Submitting your podcast to directories

If you’ve got an iPhone or iPod Touch then you’d be forgiven for thinking that everyone uses iTunes to subscribe to podcasts. But, of course, they don’t. Currently, the best places to submit your podcast are:

  1. iTunes (looks complex, but FeedBurner should have you covered)
  2. Stitcher SmartRadio
  3. Miro
  4. iPodder
  5. Blubrry
  6. DoubleTwist
  7. Libsyn

You only have to do this once for each service. There’s also a list here.

Conclusion

Setting up a podcast can seem quite technical but, follow the above advice and that which you search for, and you’ll be OK. Be comforted in the knowledge that once the flow is all set up correctly, all you’ll have to do is record your podcast, edit it, upload it, and write something about it each time. Everything else will happen automatically!

Have you got any remaining questions? I’ll try my best to answer them if doing so is of benefit to other readers, too! Ask away in the comments below. πŸ™‚

Image CC BY-NC-SA Oliver Hartmann

Faking Cultural Literacy

Update: CBC were quick in posting the audio and further details to their site. Check it out!

Faking Cultural Literacy - NYTimes.com

Today I was a panellist on the CBC Radio One show The Current. The topic was a recent New York Times article entitled Faking Cultural Literacy:

It’s never been so easy to pretend to know so much without actually knowing anything. We pick topical, relevant bits from Facebook, Twitter or emailed news alerts, and then regurgitate them. Instead of watching β€œMad Men” or the Super Bowl or the Oscars or a presidential debate, you can simply scroll through someone else’s live-tweeting of it, or read the recaps the next day. Our cultural canon is becoming determined by whatever gets the most clicks.

The host was Anna Maria Tremonti and my eloquent co-panelists were Alexandra Samuel (Vision Critical) and Theresa Moritz (University of Toronto).

You should see an embedded player below for the 22 minutes of audio – but, if not, please do click through.

Purpos/ed, the #neverendingthesis and productivity [Ed Tech Crew podcast 165]

Ed Tech Crew

In the spirit of owning my own data and keeping everyone up-to-date with when stuff is published elsewhere, this is a heads-up that Andy Stewart, co-kickstarter of Purpos/ed and I were interviewed by the Ed Tech Crew recently. We covered everything from Purpos/ed itself to my doctoral thesis and productivity.

Give it a listen! (Running time: 1 hour 25 mins. Size: 61.9 MB)

I’ve got a backup copy saved locally and have uploaded another to the Internet Archive for safekeeping (in case the link above goes down).

 

#uppingyourpresentation

Anyone should be able to present on anything of which they’ve got a basic grasp.

That’s the theory.

A group of us at work meet together every so often to improve our skills in a certain area. On Monday it’s presentations. My first thought was to present using a single image related to a random Wikipedia article. However, this is what came up:

Hence my tweet asking for a random subject and method of presentation for an upcoming (informal) peer review session at work:

(click to enlarge)

I hadn’t come across Juxio before, so have decided to use that. As for the subject, I really like Lou McGill‘s suggestion of dandelions as it had a connection to work (I collaborated with Lou on the OER infoKit for which we used a dandelion motif).

**Update***

Here’s my presentation as I delivered it. You may need to turn the sound up as the Flip camera was quite a distance away from me!

My interview on Productivity for educators

A few weeks ago I posted extracts from an interview with Tim Bradburn of Connected Teaching, the continuing professional development network. Tim’s taken our hour-long chat (whilst I was still Director of E-Learning) and boiled it down into a manageable, focused 11 minutes.

What do you think? Do you agree with what I have to say? πŸ™‚

The ideas I discuss in this interview feature in #uppingyourgame: an educator’s guide to productivity

#uppingyourgame: an audio preview

I was interviewed last week by Tim Bradburn of Connected Teaching (@cpd4teachers) who was interested in having me expand up the ideas contained in #uppingyourgame: an educator’s guide to productivity.

In the extracts below (taken from the interview) I explain my belief that productivity is a learned behaviour based upon serenity, reliability and focus. πŸ™‚

(if you’re reading this via email or in a feed reader you may need to click through!)

Podcasting: Step 1 – RSS and setting up a teacher blog

Podcast

Over the next three weeks, staff e-learning sessions will focus on getting started with podcasting. This first session starts off with the basics you will need as a teacher before even pressing that ‘record’ button:

  1. An understanding of what RSS is.
  2. A blog onto which to put MP3 files.

The easiest way to get your head around what RSS is and how it means that audio files can be delivered to interested parties automatically is by watching this excellent explanatory video prepared by CommonCraft:

A podcast differs from simply placing an audio file on the Internet because of RSS. It means that new content can be ‘pushed’ to interested parties rather than them having to manually check for updates. The process of interested parties requesting that podcasts are delivered automatically is known as ‘subscribing’.

Now that you know what RSS is, you need to have a mechanism by which you can generate one. In our case, this is going to be a blog. Anything that you add to a blog post will be automagically turned into a subscribable podcast.

To learn how to set up a blog, check out the elearnr guide entitled:
Creating a homework blog in 3 simple steps using email

If you want to jump ahead and have a go podcasting before the next session, you should visit the Box of Tricks website where JosΓ© Picardo has put together an excellent short presentation entitled Podcasting in Five Easy Steps. πŸ˜€

EdTechRoundup 5 – group discussion on VLEs and GLOW

EdTechRoundupThe EdTechRoundup meeting last Sunday night was an unusual one. We decided to record the FlashMeeting session and invited a number of VLE experts and those familiar with the Scottish GLOW network.

The resulting discussion was excellent with some great insights and useful information conveyed by a diverse bunch of educators.

You can listen to the podcast and get the del.icio.us links by visiting edtechroundup.com or click on the ‘play’ button below. πŸ˜€

EdTechRoundup 4 featuring, erm, me again…

EdTechRoundupSinclair Mackenzie and I are proud to present the next podcast under the auspices of EdTechRoundup. For those who don’t know, we’re a group of UK-based educators interested in the potential of educational technology to enhance teaching and learning. We’re a diverse bunch and anyone’s welcome to join us. There’s more details at our wiki – do feel free to join us on Sunday nights from 8-9.30pm!

EdTechRoundup podcast episode 4 is all about Internet Safety and features Ollie Bray – the man, the myth, the legend. He’s doing some great things up in Scotland that you really should hear about. So head over to the post to get the links and subscribe to the RSS feed, or just listen to us by clicking below! πŸ˜€

Oh, and that absolutely rocking music at the start and end is the magnificent guitar solo from Muse‘s Knights of Cydonia. Of course. πŸ˜‰

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