Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Making Podcasts

NeoNurseChic had asked us how we make our podcasts.  After writing it up, I thought it might help someone else if it got put up here.  It's not as hard as it sounds.

  1. RECORD.  I record it in GarageBand (Female radio voice... doesn't really matter... whatever sounds best with your mic).  (If you haven't got a Mac yet, what are you waiting for?).
  2. EDIT.  Edit out stuff you don't want... mostly athe beginning and end.
  3. MARKERS.  Add in markers if desired... must first click on the podcast track to enable this... add links or pics if desired.
  4. MUSIC.  Add opening and closing music, as well as musical bumpers to signal transitions... I put these in the Jingles track, but it doesn't really matter... fiddle with the volume of this track so that it sounds right, fading in and out smoothly.
  5. TAGS.  Edit your Episode Info items... the "Description" is what appears in iTunes to the right of your podcast... it is just one line, so I make the description pretty telegraphic.  You can put more detail in the <itunes:summary> tag in the XML file (this is what you see if you click on the little gray "i" button to the right of the description in iTunes). 
  6. SAVE.  When it's all done, click on Share in the menu, then the bottom choice (Export podcast to disk), which saves it as an .M4A file.
  7. XML.  Revise your XML file accordingly (that's a whole 'nother set of instructions, so I hope you have that one down).  There's a good guide at http://www.apple.com/itunes/store/podcaststechspecs.html.
  8. FIX XML.  Upload the XML file to your server and then validate your feed.  I use feedvalidator.org. Fix any problems... I always have problems... usually because I forget to use the codes for the 4 punctuation symbols that XML files do not allow in the tags (such as "&amp;" for "&", "&apos;" for an apostrophe, and "&quot;" for a quote).
  9. UPLOAD.  Use iTunes to convert the M4A file into an MP3 file, then upload both versions to your server.
  10. PING.  Finally, ping itunes with your new feed (it's like speaking another language, isn't it?).  The Apple link above tells you how to do this.  This tells iTunes to update its files with your new podcast.
  11. LATHER.
  12. RINSE.
  13. REPEAT.
You're done!

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Dr. A said...

Hello. I'm a Mac. Great advice. I'm no longer allowed to give podcast advice since you've done more podcasts than me now. Although, I was looking at purchasing the snowball microphone - it sounds great.
Lather. Rinse. Repeat. Funny stuff!

NeoNurseChic said...

Dr. A - Just so you know and don't feel betrayed (esp since we've been out of touch for awhile now) - I did tell Roy in the email that you had given me a lot of advice for how to upload it the way I wanted...but that I had problems when I tried to upload, so I figured it was something I did with the actual podcast!

Roy - Thanks again! I have a lot of reading and playing around to do I guess! Today was the first of 3 12 hour shifts in a row, so I don't know that I'll be really spending time on it just now.

Thanks again! I hope to be adding my own podcasts soon, although they will probably be mostly music! :)

Carrie :)

NeoNurseChic said...

If you'd like some nice background music (and not the dollar store version of classical piano music - ie. this stuff is by top name pianists), check out my latest playlist. I'm going to make a post now about the songs. Certainly couldn't find all of my favorites on the list of songs to choose from, but these are some that I've played, some that I'm working on, and some that are just plain favorites in the solo piano/piano concerto genre. :) Can't believe it's taken me this long to create a playlist of piano music! haha

Take care!
Carrie :)