I made my first podcast this week and people can actually subscribe to it on iTunes!!! As part of my PhD program I am taking a class called Seminar in Instructional Technology. This is a class that explores Web 2.0 tools and their use in education. As part of the class I was required to create a podcast that others could subscribe to on iTunes. This was an interesting project as I had to use many other tools and types of technology to create the podcast and make sure it could be subscribed to by others.
The first thing I had to do was make a recording in MP3 format. I used a free program called Audacity to create the audio file. The first one I created was 26 minutes long. All the research I have read states that this is way too long for a podcast. I came to realize that my students would not listen to me ramble on for 26 minutes. I rethought the project and made a second attempt. This one was about 6 minutes long. This was much better. I used Audacity to take out the long pauses and few ums. I found a piece of instrumental music and played it at the beginning with it fading as I began speaking. I also played the music at the end. I was actually surprised how good it sounded. The next step was to upload it to my Web server. This was quite easy for me as I took a class in Web design and I understand how the FTP program works. I felt sorry for some of the students in my class who do not have this expertise as this could take a while to figure out. I then used Podcast RSS Feed Generator to generate the html code needed for the podcast to be subscribed to. The feed generator was very easy and once all the information was entered it generated the html code which I saved in a Notepad document. I then uploaded this document to my Web server. The name of this html file is what is entered to subscribe to the podcast on iTunes. I found this to be quite easy and I can see using it for my classes going forward.