IT Conversations and Podcasting
On the drive down and back to Albuquerque, I listened to nothing but interviews and presentations from the IT Conversations web site. I was amazed that I had managed to put so many onto a single MP3 CD that it would last me all those hours.
There were a small number of these that I skipped past, but in general I found value in almost every one, including technical insights that were quite useful. A fair number of the presentations were from conferences, so I had the benefit of hearing some of the conference talks without having to go. It seems that more conferences would do this, at least capturing things like keynote presentations and panel discussions that are already open to the public (I'm thinking in particular of the Software Development conference, but I could easily imagine something like the Python conference capturing a number of their presentations for IT Conversations). It seems like the downside is negligible and that it could only help promote the conferences.
They had a number of discussions about podcasting itself, and most of the comments were ones that made sense to me -- in particular that it's a different medium because you can't skim it like you can a web log, and thus the content and editing become much more important. I would like to further explore the possibility of podcasting but issues of hosting become important. Not just the volume of data transfer that becomes necessary, but If people require the enclosure model then that's something that I won't want to have to create and manage (I've got too many other things to do). I'll need some other system to host podcasts for me, ideally in the same way that blogger does it (i.e. free and easy). That's a bigger commitment because of the bandwidth requirements.
If you know of such services please note them in a comment.