Day: January 26, 2005

  • Taco and Podcast Use Case: Killing Time Before Class

    The one thing that has always bugged me about podcasting is that I never seem to have the time for it. There’s a lot of great content out there, but the vast majority of my typical day is spent either at home or at work, with a short 20 minute commute in between. I usually end up listening to WAMU, my local NPR station. If I sleep in just enough I can catch the Marketplace morning report.

    A 20 minute ride each way just doesn’t seem like enough time for listening to a podcast. The other thing that SUCKS is having to download an mp3, burn it to an audio CD, and then pop it in to my CD changer. That’s just too much work, and depending on the lengh of the podcast you’re lucky to fit one or two podcasts on a CD. That burns me up because you can usually hear how low the bitrate is, but raw audio is still raw audio.

    All of that changed on Monday when classes started again. Now not only do I have another 30-40 minutes commute to school from work and home from school, but I’ve got time to kill before class. Because of timing and the fact that I still needed o pick up a book that the campus bookstore didn’t have in stock last week, I arrived on campus well before class. After snagging my book and grabbing a bite to eat I still had a good hour or so to kill.

    Luckily it was 6pm and time for Markplace. I found a seat and whipped out my Taco, tuned the radio to WAMU, and picked up the Asphalt: Urban GT race I had started the day before. It’s situations like this that make me glad that I picked up an original taco used. There are only a handful of mobile phones that also have radio tuners and MP3 players, and I’m very glad that I have one of them.

    Over time my time before class will have to be much more productive, but for now I’ve found a viable use case for podcasting and my taco. Even if I just have the 10 minute walk to and from my car and 20-30 minutes before class, I should still be able to get through a podcast. I will probably have to save up for a larger MMC (my 256meg one is just full) or an iPod shuffle if I want to keep this up, but for now I’ll just try to throw a podcast on a spare 32 meg MMC. Of course I should really tie this together with the universal feed parser, some transcoding, and some scripted bluetooth sending. All in due time.