There Is No Cat

The alternative to flowers!

Friday, October 8, 2004

Thumbs down to podcasting

Doc Searls writes about the latest fad, podcasting, where bloggers post "radio programs" in MP3 format for you to download (the idea is to download them automatically with RSS enclosures, which then transfer the audio file to your MP3 player, but I don't use an RSS reader regularly). I tried listening to Adam Curry's Daily Source Code program that Doc linked to, but got so bored that I turned it off. Presumably, Adam, the ex-MTV VJ and long time radio program host, knows something about how to make decent radio, but listening to him put on his seatbelt and start up his fancy car ain't it. Near as I could tell from what little I could bear to listen to, this podcast was about "hey, I can do this from my car!" BFD. I suppose if you've got a lot of free time on your hands, maybe you could do this, but according to the small portion of Adam's program that I listened to, it took at least three hours for him to produce something I couldn't bring myself to listen to more than three minutes of. Presumably, it would take even longer to make something worth listening to.

Good radio is hard to make. I can read faster than you can talk, so if you want to talk to me, you had better make it worth my while by doing something with audio that text can't do, otherwise I'm going to go find some text I can read rather than bore myself with your audio.

The podcasts I've listened to so far have roughly the production values and scripting of Radio Bulgaria in the late 1970s reading tractor production statistics at me. Once the novelty of hearing Bulgaria wears off, all you're left with is crap.

I'm a total stone cold radio guy, but podcasting leaves me cold. Maybe if you added a VRML-based 3-D world so I could navigate among radio clips, selecting programs to have pushed to my computer....

Posted at 11:54 AM


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This site is copyright © 2002-2024, Ralph Brandi.

What do you mean there is no cat?

"You see, wire telegraph is a kind of a very, very long cat. You pull his tail in New York and his head is meowing in Los Angeles. Do you understand this? And radio operates exactly the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat."

- Albert Einstein, explaining radio

There used to be a cat

[ photo of Mischief, a black and white cat ]

Mischief, 1988 - December 20, 2003

[ photo of Sylvester, a black and white cat ]

Sylvester (the Dorito Fiend), who died at Thanksgiving, 2000.


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