The History And How Podcasting Using RSS Works

Pod casting is a method of publishing audio broadcasts via the internet, and allowing users to subscribe to a feed of new files (usually MP3s).  


Pod casting enables independent producers to create self-published, syndicated "radio shows," and gives broadcast radio programs a new distribution method. 





Listeners may subscribe to feeds using "pod catching" software (a type of aggregator), which periodically checks for and downloads new content automatically.


Some pod catching software is also able to synchronize (copy) pod casts to portable music players. 

Any digital audio player or computer with audio-playing software can play pod casts. 

 The same technique can deliver video files, and by 2005 some aggregators could play video as well as audio.


Creating your own podcasts is a terrific way of advertising your business online for free. 

This is especially true because of its viral nature and if you tap on networks like iTunes, then your results can be very good.


Pod casting is a method of publishing audio broadcasts via the Internet, allowing users to subscribe to a feed of new files (usually MP3s).


It became popular in late 2004, largely to automate downloading of audio onto portable players or personal computers.


The word "pod casting" is a portmanteau that combines the words "broadcasting" and "iPod."

It became popular in late 2004, largely to automate downloading of audio onto portable players or personal computers. 

The word "pod casting" is a portmanteau that combines the words "broadcasting" and "iPod."


The term can be misleading since neither pod casting nor listening to pod casts requires an iPod or any portable music player. 

For that reason, since September 2004 various writers have suggested reinterpreting the letters POD to create "Bacronyms" such as "Personal On-Demand." However, the word is rarely presented as "POD casting."


Pod casting is distinct from other types of online media delivery because of its subscription model, which uses the RSS 2.0 XML (or RDF XML) format to deliver an enclosed file.


The term can be misleading since neither pod casting nor listening to pod casts requires an iPod or any portable music player.

 For that reason, since September 2004 various writers have suggested reinterpreting the letters POD to create "backronyms" such as "Personal On-Demand." However, the word is rarely presented as "POD casting."


Pod casting is distinct from other types of online media delivery because of its subscription model, which uses the RSS 2.0 XML (or RDF XML) format to deliver an enclosed file.


Pod casting enables independent producers to create self-published, syndicated "radio shows," and gives broadcast radio programs a new distribution method.


Listeners may subscribe to feeds using "pod catching" software (a type of aggregator), which periodically checks for and downloads new content automatically.


Some pod catching software is also able to synchronize (copy) pod casts to portable music players. Any digital audio player or computer with audio-playing software can play pod casts.


The same technique can deliver video files, and by 2005 some aggregators could play video as well as audio.


Initial development


By 2003, web radio had existed for a decade, digital audio players had been on the market for several years, blogs and broadcasters frequently published MP3 audio online, and the RSS file format was widely used for summarizing or syndicating content.


While RSS/RDF already supported media resources implicitly, applications rarely took advantage of this.


In 2001 User Land founder and RSS evangelist Dave Winer, partly inspired by users like Adam Curry and Tristan Louis, added support for a specific enclosure element to User land’s non-RDF branch of RSS, then to its Radio User land feed-generator and aggregator.


In June 2003, Dion Mellor demonstrated aggregation and syndication of audio files using RSS in his Ed Radio application. 

Ed Radio scanned RSS feeds for MP3 files, collected them into a single feed, and made the result available as SMIL or WebJay audio feeds.


In September 2003, Winer created an RSS-with-enclosure feed for his Harvard Berkman Center colleague Christopher Lydon, a former newspaper and television journalist and NPR radio talk show host.


For several months Lydon had been linking full-length MP3 interviews to his Berkman weblogs, which focused on blogging and coverage of the 2004 U.S. presidential campaigns. 

Having Lydon's interviews as RSS enclosures helped inspire Adam Curry's pre-iPodder script, and related experiments leading to a variety of open source iPodder development.


Indeed, blogs would become an important factor in the popularization of pod casting before many professional radio broadcasters and entrepreneurs with business plans adopted the form.


Possibly the first use of the term pod casting was as a synonym for audio Blogging or weblog-based amateur radio in an article by Ben Hamersley in The Guardian on February 12, 2004.


In September of that year, Dannie Gregoire used the term to describe the automatic download and synchronization idea that Adam Curry had developed. 

Gregoire had also registered multiple domain names associated with pod casting. That usage was discovered and reported on by Curry and Dave Slusher of the Evil Genius Chronicles website.


By October 2004, detailed how-to pod cast articles had begun to appear online. By July 2005, a Google search for "'how to' +pod cast" returned 2,050,000 hits.

Independently of the development of Pod casting and its distribution via RSS, an idea that resembles Pod casting was developed at Compaq Research as early as 1999 or 2000.


Called PocketDJ, it would have been launched as a service for the Personal Jukebox or a proposed successor, the first hard-disk based MP3-player, that Compaq's  department had started developing in 1998. 

Popularization


The word about pod casting rapidly spread through the already-popular weblogs of Winer, Curry and other early pod casters and pod cast-listeners. 

Fellow blogger and technology columnist Doc Searls began keeping track of how many "hits" Google found for the word "pod casts" on September 28, 2004, when the result was 24 hits.


"A year from now," he wrote, "it will pull up hundreds of thousands, or perhaps even millions."


Searls kept track of the search results in his blog through the next month. There were 526 hits for "pod casts" on September 30, then 2,750 three days later. The number doubled every few days, passing 100,000 by October 18.


His prediction of "perhaps millions" in a year proved to be quite conservative. After only nine months, a search for "pod casts" produced more than 10 million hits.


The amateur pod casts themselves were harder to count, but there were enough to capture the attention of The New York Times on October 28, 2004.


"There are pod casters in California, South Carolina and Connecticut," Times reporter Cyrus Farivar wrote, "with others as far afield as western Canada, Australia and Sweden. 

Though most pod casts tend to reflect their technologically oriented audience, newer shows are being created with topics like veganism and movie reviews.


Even conventional broadcasters are being drawn to the medium, which allows programs to be played at a listener's convenience."


When USA Today took on the subject of these "free amateur chatfests" with a pair of stories the following February, it profiled several pod casters, gave instructions for both sending and receiving pod casts, and included a "Top Ten" list from one of the many pod cast directories that had sprung up in just six months.


The newspaper quoted one directory as listing 3,300 pod cast programs in February, 2005. At that time, USA Today reported a circulation of 2.6 million, the largest of any paper in the United States. 

The story of pod casting was getting around.


The Top Ten programs mentioned at that time gave some indication of pod cast topics: four were about technology (including Curry's "Daily Source Code," which also included music and personal chat), three were about music, one about movies, one about politics, and -- at the time No. 1 on the list -- "The Dawn and Drew Show," described as "married-couple banter," a program format that USA Today's Marco R. della Cava noted was quite popular on American broadcast radio in the 1940s.


While USA Today was good at recalling the past, its story was less successful about the near future: It predicted that Apple Computer was "in a prime position to make pod casting significantly easier — but probably won't."

 Della Cava said Apple had "ignored requests from Curry and other technologists to discuss the matter, and declined USA TODAY's interview requests for this story."


In June, 2005, Apple added pod casting to its iTunes music software, staking a claim to the new medium its iPod had helped inspire and name. (See Coping With Growth Of Podcasting Here.)




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