Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Make way blogging, podcasting is here!

Taipei Times - archives

If you've never heard of a podcast, here's a brief description. The concept was developed last summer when Adam Curry, 41, a former VJ for MTV and an inveterate tech tinkerer, became intrigued with the idea of freeing Internet radio and audio blogs from his computer and putting them on the capacious drive of his Apple iPod.

He called the result podcasting, named after the Apple iPod that is often at the center of the system.

The basic idea is instead of listening to radio over the airwaves, you download the radio shows you want from the Internet onto your iPod and listen to them when you want.

That may not seem such a revolutionary idea, except for the fact that the wonders of digital technology make it easy for anyone who wants to record his own radio show to upload them to various sites that then use syndication feeds to deliver the radio segments directly to listeners' MP3 players.

"Podcasting will shift much of our time away from an old medium where we wait for what we might want to hear to a new medium where we choose what we want to hear, when we want to hear it," noted Linux guru Doc Searls when he discovered podcasting way back in September.

"It is totally going to kill the business model of radio," Curry said. He believes that mainstream media and advertising companies are rapidly losing the ability to reach their audiences as the decline of network television, the rise of the Internet and the fragmentation of the media make the models that have existed for the last 50 years rapidly obsolete.
But Dave Winer, who teamed with Curry to launch the first podcasts and is also the writer of the longest-running blog on the net, Scripting News, is more sanguine and warns against expecting an overnight revolution.

"We're the sources, the people doing stuff, and podcasting is a way to tell people who care what we're doing," Winer told the BBC last week.

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