But I have to read everything…

July 14, 2010

Using tools like Google Reader or Twitter it can become pretty compulsive to read everything. If you use iTunes and subscribe to lots of podcasts you can feel you need to listen to them all.

The more RSS feeds you subscribe to, or the more people you follow on Twitter, the larger the number of those unread messages becomes… Likewise with a lot of podcast subscriptions you can find the number of podcasts you have not listened to growing…

Then after a while you feel you are not coping or those unread feeds and Tweets are always there…

Waiting…

The number also gets larger… and larger…

You start to set yourself targets, you will read all your feeds by Sunday night! You will catch up with Twitter over dinner!

You go away to a conference or on holiday and when you get back the list is even bigger!

Eventually it will reach the point that you have to give up. Then you mark all as read and start again down this downward spiral.

Is this a wise course of action?

Of course no it isn’t.

The key in my opinion dealing with tools like Twitter and Google Reader is to rethink them as streams of information rather than as an email inbox.

In the same way that you don’t watch every TV channel or even watch ALL of your favourite TV channel.

Or reading the weekend paper, you don’t attempt to read every article in every section. Likewise if you didn’t read the paper yesterday, do you read it before you read today’s paper?

Or continually listening to Radio 4 all day long… well I know some people who do that, but you know what I mean!

It doesn’t matter that you don’t read every Tweet posted. It won’t be the end of the world if you don’t manage to catch every article in your newsfeed. So what if you miss a podcast?

What is the worse that could happen?

Well yes something bad could happen, but not very likely! But every day because you didn’t read all the Tweets in your Twitter stream, something bad would happen, no I don’t think so.

To be honest nothing bad is going to happen.

So what if you miss an exciting blog post on a subject you care about?

Does it really matter that you missed out on an interesting conversation on Twitter about PLEs?

The thing is you miss stuff all the time outside RSS and Twitter. More often than not, the good stuff resurfaces again and again (well it certainly does on services like Digg).

You need to treat Google Reader, Twitter and iTunes all in the same way. When you have time dip into the Twitter stream. Allocate time during the day To peruse your aggregated feeds in your newsreader. Listen to the most recent podcast, not the one from three weeks ago.

This is a much easier way to manage the huge amount of information that comes into our lives. Yes you will miss stuff, but the stuff you don’t will not be rushed, it will be perused with care and attention not just glanced over because you need to ensure that all your articles in the RSS feed are read.

It’s never about all the stuff it’s about the right stuff.

Now should we talk about e-mail?

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e-Learning Stuff Podcast #046: We’re talking podcasts

May 9, 2010

Enhanced podcasts, subscribing to podcasts, iPhones and other stuff with James Clay and Lilian Soon.

This is the forty-sixth e-Learning Stuff Podcast, We’re talking podcasts

Download the podcast in mp3 format: We’re talking podcasts

Subscribe to the podcast in iTunes


In at number one!

April 19, 2010

Those of you who read the blog of a regular basis will know that as well as the blog I also (with a group of e-learning friends) record a podcast.

You can listen to the podcast on the blog, there is a simple Flash based player, so you don’t need to download it to listen to it.

You can download the mp3 file from the blog which then allows you to transfer it to a mp3 player, an iPod, burn it to CD, listen to it on your computer, or on your phone.

You can also subscribe to the podcast, either through the blog RSS feed (which incorporates all the blog postings and media files uploaded) or through the podcast RSS feed. You can subscribe via applications such as iTunes, Juice or your browser.

Finally you can subscribe to the podcast through the Apple iTunes Store. I submitted the podcast to the iTunes Store in October 2008 to the Educational Technology Podcasts section of the store.

It is proving reasonably popular and the podcast is generally always in the top twenty, quite pleased though today to see it is in at number one!

Now if you go and look I suspect we may have dropped a fair few places, the top podcasts list does change on a daily basis dependent on how many subscribers you have and how many new people subscribe.

I am working on a workflow document which describes the process I use for recording the podcast, it is currently a work in progress but you can view it here.

Since Christmas I have been putting an episode out every week, which is a lot more challenging than you would think

Always interested to hear about topics people would like us to talk about or even those who would be interested in taking part.


In at number two…

February 19, 2009

Those of you who read the blog of a regular basis will know that as well as the blog I also (with a group of e-learning friends) record a podcast.

You can listen to the podcast on the blog, there is a simple Flash based player, so you don’t need to download it to listen to it.

You can download the mp3 file from the blog which then allows you to transfer it to a mp3 player, an iPod, burn it to CD, listen to it on your computer, or on your phone.

You can also subscribe to the podcast, either through the blog RSS feed (which incorporates all the blog postings and media files uploaded) or through the podcast RSS feed. You can subscribe via applications such as iTunes, Juice or your browser.

Finally you can subscribe to the podcast through the Apple iTunes Store. I submitted the podcast to the iTunes Store last October to the Educational Technology Podcasts section of the store.

It is proving reasonably popular and the podcast is generally always in the top twenty, quite pleased though today to see it is in at number two!

In at number two...

Now if you go and look I suspect we may have dropped a fair few places, the top podcasts list does change on a daily basis dependent on how many subscribers you have and how many new people subscribe.

I am working on a workflow document which describes the process I use for recording the podcast, it is currently a work in progress but you can view it here.

Apart from an (extra long) break over Christmas I am tying to post the podcast on a weekly basis, every Sunday. Always interested to hear about topics people would like us to talk about.


Subscribe to the e-Learning Stuff podcast in iTunes

October 21, 2008

Having now published episode number four and a fair few videos as well, decided it was high time that you could find and subscribe to the podcast in iTunes.

Subscribe to the e-Learning Stuff podcast in iTunes

Not as simple as it sounds as though the WordPress RSS feed does work for podcasting in iTunes using from the menu Advanced > Subscribe to Podcast… and just pasting in the blog RSS feed.

Subscribe to the e-Learning Stuff podcast in iTunes

It was not suitable for submitting to the iTunes store itself as the WordPress RSS feed is missing a lot of the information which should be in a podcast feed.

So what I did was use Feedburner to create a new feed which will work with iTunes as a podcast feed. Once I had the feed I could then go ahead and submit the podcast to iTunes. A day later and it was authorised and available on the store. It should start to show up in searches in a day or two.


Oxford lecture tops iTunes chart

October 19, 2008

BBC reports on how Oxford University are top of the pops academic podcasts on the iTunes Store.

An Oxford University economics lecture about the credit crunch is at the top of a global iTunes chart for education.

Earlier this month Oxford and Cambridge began to distribute lectures to students and the public through the iTunes downloading service.

A talk by the Nobel Prize winning economist, Joseph Stiglitz, is the current chart topper in the “iTunes U” service for university lectures.

Listen to it now (requires iTunes).


Adobe Launches Media Player 1.0 for Mac and PC

April 12, 2008

After their success with Photoshop Express, we now see another web application from Adobe.Adobe Launches Media Player 1.0 for Mac and PC

This is a media player application which works on the AIR platform.

Macrumors says about it:

In many ways, the Adobe Media Player mimics iTunes Video and Podcast functionality by providing users with an all-enclosed application that provides access to network shows and podcasts. Content is sparse at the moment, but Adobe has partnered with a number of content providers such as CBS, PBS, MTV and more. Unlike iTunes, however, Adobe’s Media Player is not presently a “store” and offers free and ad-supported content. Adobe, however, has said that it plans on adding payment systems later to offer purchase and rental options.

Certainly this looks like it could be a real alternative to iTunes for those looking for a way to play podcasts.