Sunday, March 26, 2006

Lawyer Podcasting-Extreme 'Casts iPod & Olympus

I have been doing a lot of digging on podcasting. I'm now getting my new music from the KEXP podcast and the Tartan Podcast (for the funniest podcast award I'm nominating Mark Hunter's tartanpodcast #10 on the dangers of cancelling your television license in Scotland).

I am completely hooked on Denise Howell's Bag and Baggage podcast. Her first podcast was from a cell phone outdoors overlooking the Pacific Highway. She also podcasts from her car as she drives to work. She's an intellectual property attorney from Reed Smith. I think she's an inspiration to small firm potential podcasters because she's using extremely cheap technology in a very creative way that is rough and unvarnished. Big firms usually like to make things perfect before they are published (as do small firms). I think that in blogging and podcasting, we will see the whole range of legal personas emerge - from the rough & ready warts and all to the superslick ultrapremium production.

So, I think that this post may be my first "real" podcasts. Let me explain. First, I broke smallfirmlife's cardinal rule, which is to try it cheap or free. I wandered by J&R and was sold an Olympus DM10 voice recorder. How it happened was that I was looking at cheap MP3 recording solutions and the clerk told me that if I was looking for quality to look at real voice recorders. The DM10 has a cradle to work with your computer, tons of functions and lots to figure out. Food for another blog. So after a number of travails, I made a rather awkward recording of Alexander Hamilton's Federalist Papers #1. I was reading from a 10-point font version of it from Project Gutenberg and was reading it cold, so my voice is quite awkward. You can check the audio quality. I was holding the recorder in my hand in my conference room and you can hear traffic passing by my office.

The second podcast was made from a $39.99 iFM connection to my iPOD. There is a pinpoint tiny microphone recorder in it that I couldn't believe caught ANY sound. I recorded this podcast as Small Firm Life #1 and dedicate it to Denise Howell. I walked quickly and breathlessly down city streets, rode in the subways, and tried to record while doing all of this. There is more info on the process of recording on the podcast itself.

To get podcasts onto the 'net from Blogger, you've literally got to subscribe to a whole 'nother service, since Blogger does not support audio files. Rather than dump Blogger and all of my posts (Blogger is free), I found an article on podcastingnews.com showing me how to use Blogger with another service. I chose libsyn.com, since they were recommended by Todd Cochrane. Denise Howell chose to keep her blogspot, so I'm not moving for now.

Lots more to say, but I have real work to do. Motion to certify a defendant class under Rule 23 of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure. Lighthearted stuff!

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