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Thursday, August 25, 2005

Start Me Up

I don't own an iPod. I don't even own a portable MP3 player, unless you consider a laptop to be such a device. However, I know that portable MP3 players are becoming as pervasive as mobile phones. I actually believe that all mobile phones will soon be portable MP3 players too. In any case, I've set my eyes (and ears) on podcasting this summer.

I mentioned my summer projects in an earlier blog entry. Back then, I didn't think that I'd dedicate much time and energy on podcasting. I thought I'd manage to get to some of the other projects I've had on my "to do in summer" list for the past few years. Alas, most of my list remains pending but at least I have the world's first series of podcasts in Maltese to show for it.

Last Sunday I mentioned that things were coming to a head with my experiments on adding audio to my blog. Fellow blogger MaltaGirl, who has also played around with audio on her blog, didn't realize how serious I was about doing what I said last Sunday. I don't blame her. I'm a notorious procrastinator and I've made thousands of promises I never kept. She had no way of knowing that this was not one of them. Without sounding melodramatic, I think there's far too much at stake here.

So on Sunday evening I put together my first podcast in Maltese. Nothing spectacular, just a rehash of my experiment from last May. I put together an RSS feed for it and sent the URL to Pierre Mejlak who listened to me rave about how revolutionary podcasting can be after playing my first podcast on his newly downloaded iTunes for Windows. To be quite honest I didn't think much of my first test. Since I still pride myself as a professional broadcaster (even though I no longer broadcast on any radio or TV station) I felt that my first podcast was not suitable for broader public consumption just yet.

On Monday MaltaGirl put a fire under my butt by publishing her first podcast in Maltese. After hearing it, I decided to use it for my second podcast: another test file with music by yet another blogger, the one formerly known as Archibald. Pierre started seeing the true potential of podcasting after this second test, and everyone else involved started urging me to make my podcasts available to a wider audience.

I felt there was still too much to be discovered before I put my neck on the line for all to see. I wasn't sure what to do next, especially because I still needed to figure out the best way to handle the RSS feed since Blogger doesn't offer the same easy interface for podcasting that Typepad added to their features last week. Then, on Tuesday afternoon, Dominic Grech died and Pierre blogged about that. I was so moved by his tribute to Dumink that I decided to do a podcast about this. And so my third (test) podcast found its way to the MaltaMedia Online Network server.

My plan is to launch a long series of podcasts about 9/11 starting this weekend and building up towards the 4th anniversary since the attacks in 2001. To get there I felt I needed one more test podcast. Last night I created a few minutes of audio based on Spirit in the Sky, my blog entry from last Monday. Pierre was now as fired up about podcasting as he'll ever be, until he starts doing it himself.

Today I give you my first 4 podcasts. You need iTunes or another podcast aggregator to really appreciate what we're on about here. You can listen to the audio directly from the feed or by downloading the MP3s, but that's not what podcasting is all about. If you have an iPod or some other portable MP3 player I'd love to hear what you think of the first series of Maltese podcasts, even if it is just a test. I may produce one last test before I proceed with my 9/11 series tomorrow, or perhaps I'll just let my next podcast be an introduction to the first proper Maltese podcasting series. Whatever I decide, the plan is for the 9/11 series to start this weekend.

Blogger Robert Micallef said...

These podcasts bring back wonderful memories of your radio and TV broadcasts years ago. I heard all of your four podcast tests and I look forward to your 9/11 series. Excellent work, Ton and let's hope that these podcasts get the audience they deserve. 

9:55 AM, August 26, 2005
Blogger Athena said...

Prosit. I'm really enjoying these podcasts. 

12:52 PM, August 26, 2005
Anonymous Krystle said...

Well Done Toni:)

I am really looking forward for more podcasts. I am planning to download podcasts on my mp3 player and listen to them while travelling or at University. Can't wait :) 

6:53 PM, August 31, 2005
Blogger jjpzammit said...

INTERESSISSIMU SANTO TON, Idea manifikanti, ipportunita' ghal hafna HWEJJEG. Jiena li jien kollettur ta hafna SNIPPITS AUDIO
nithajjar naqsam MUMENTI MIL PASSAT minflok li inhalli lill werrieta jiggieldu fuqhom. Looking forward to see it growing into a mini series Programm. I just had a production of 38 minutes called IL-BALLATA TAL-CONVOY TA SANTA MARIJA AIRED ON 13 LOCAL COMUNITY RADIO STATIONS IN MALTA including those of RADJU MARIA and also CAMPUS FM. Somthing of this sort on PODCAST would be 'XANDIRAPOD' Lura bil Malti anzi bl-Ghawdxi. Pruset Tun, u kumpli hekk halli mankinx wahdei bla xar. Insellimlik. Zeppi l-Ghawdxei. 

7:40 AM, September 01, 2005

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