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Thursday, March 24, 2005

Eric Rice Podcasting For Dummies

Eric Rice - Founder of AudioBlog.com Showing Me How Podcasting Is Done I recently connected with Eric Rice via Bill Flitter. I asked Bill if he knew how we could podcast a phonecall interview. He said he didn't know but his buddy Eric was a wiz and I should ask him. So that's what I did.

A bit of background info on Eric. He lives in the Bay area and co-chair's the East Bay IT Group's Blogging & RSS Forum. He's the Producer at SlackStreet, the founder of AudioBlog [podcasting service with a $4.95 monthly fee] and is big on sharing information. I like him cause he hates it when people are getting bs-ed and he's got a jaded view about egotistical technology monarchists.

Without further adue, here's the Q & A with Eric Rice on Podcasting 101. Enjoy!

Q: Can you compile a list of posts [may or may not be your own posts] that would help a would-be podcaster get started on the right foot? No fluff please :)
A: Doh! I can't answer this in the car.

Q: What hardware do I need in order to begin podcasting?
A: Actually, it can be as simple as a telephone. Or as complex as expensive studio gear. Realistically, the only thing you need is a USB microphone or USB mic/headset combo... once you start getting into things like calls over the internet, it gets trickier, and then you get into inexpensive mixing boards.

Q: How do I get a fancy playback skin like the ones on The Eric Rice Show so my listeners can control the playback?
A: Actually, that's part of the Audioblog service. There's three styles of players and plenty of colors for the foreground and background. Also, you can choose the number of buttons... play/playstop/playpausestop/playpausestopskip... etc.

Q: Are there any free podcast playback skins?
A: The players aren't skinnable in that regard. We do offer branding service for customers at a premium.

Q: What software would you recommend for editing a podcast? Please include examples for pc and mac :)
A: On the Mac, I use garageband and itunes. On the PC, (and it's mac too) is Audacity. Which is free. Good basic stuff. Of course I dig Soundtrack on the Mac and Adobe Audition (formerly cooleditpro) on Windows.

Q: Is there any advantage to creating / editing podcasts on a pc vs mac?
A: If you use a USB mic on a PC, you have to be careful of latency issues. The Mac is rock-solid for audio, however doing fancy looping to record things like Skype calls is icky. Windows has better solutions there (bigger market share, naturally)

Q: As you know I frequently conduct Q & A's on MarketingShift but I'd love to complement those text interviews with a podcast. How would I podcast an interview when it's conducted over the telephone? Is Skype the answer?
A: On Windows? Use VirtualAudioCables. You could also just setup a conference call and toggle in a third party service like Audioblog.com to record the whole thing.

Q: Where to the mp3's for a podcast reside?
A: With Audioblog we host them. And in turn, we provide detailed reporting for playback, not just for the player but for straight downloads too.

Q: What if I want to host my podcast mp3's on my own server? Is there any reason to do this or any reason not to?
A: Some people like having the DIY abilities... it's like running MT for your blog or hosting it with Typepad. Personal preference.

Q: How do I help people find podcasts from people or on subjects they're interested in? Are there any special directories or places to find podcasters?
A: Use a directory like PodcastAlley or podcast.net.... or for a raw dump, audio.weblogs.com

Q: I have an iPod photo and the Griffin iTalk mic/speaker combo. Is that a good setup for podcasting? Are there any disadvantages in using the iTalk mic?
A: It will do the job, sure, but the iPod has crappy recording capabilities without hacking it. I use an Archos AV 420... there's an onboard mic and it works like a champ. Full quality too. I use it to get promos from people in person.

Q: Are there any special things to be aware of when podcasting and driving other than the obvious [watch the road] cautions?
A: Road noise eq heavy bass. Other than that, just find a place for your recorder, and if you can, plug in a lapel mic. And just hit record and let it roll, and edit later.

Q: How does Chris Pirillo get those ads in the beginning and ending of his podcasts in there?
A: I don't know. Ask him?

Q: Are there affordable voiceover services to record my own ads? If so, who are they, where are they and how much do they cost?
A: Voice123 is an uberservice; my studio has talent as well, and lately Jeff Radio is making the rounds... he also works with some talented women too.

Misc Questions - Some Humorous, some inciteful.

Q: Who are your top 5 favorite podcasters?
A: This changes so much because I know many podcasters and various topics interest me. The ones I like lately are PodcastNYC and Jawbone? I think, they're in Cleveland. Reel Reviews is a top notch show.

Q: Do you think that not having a mullet like Adam Curry is hurting your public persona? Is that why they interviewed him for Wired and not you?
A: I'm not sure. My hair is pretty damn near perfect. And we're both Mac users. Maybe I'll just create my own MTV and take it from there.

Q: What does the phrase 'power to the people' mean to you?
A: Help people make media and go back to their roots of being the watchdogs. Since television emerged, we became consumers. We don't make media anymore. Time for democratization.

Q: Firefox or IE [Safari is not an option]?
A: I use both, although Safari gets a little more love. Firefox is awesome but I need it to be more Safari like in looks and in speed.

Q: Do you ever wear sneakers that aren't black? If so, what brand and color are they?
A: A pair of Oakley sandals and birks, and some Skecher skate shoes.

By Jason Dowdell at 12:08 PM | Comments (0)


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