What’s A Podcast?

February 27, 2006

Ok, most people probably already know that a podcast is an audio file wrapped in an RSS feed. Huh? Um, a radio program you listen to on your iPod or computer.

How’s it work?
Well, the easy way is to just come to this site and click on a link to listen. The more elegant way (which turns out to be even easier, once you have it set up) is to subscribe to the podcast, via iTunes or other podcast “aggregator” software. Then, new episodes will be downloaded to your computer as soon as they’re released, along with episodes of all the other podcasts that you subscribe to. Believe me, once you start, it’s hard to stop.

Feed? What the #!$%?”
A RSS Feed is an XML file that has all the information about a podcast. All you really need to know is the address, or URL, of the feed. Something like http://feeds.feedburner.com/reophile. You’ll take the address and feed it to your software, so that it knows where to find information about new podcast episodes, so that it can download them, and episodes of older episodes, so you can decide if you want to download those, too.

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