Wednesday, February 22, 2006

How to get podcasts.

Yesterday I posted some of my favorite podcasts, but how do you get them? As I mentioned before, you don't need an iPod. The first applications for aggregating podcasts were written with iPods in mind but owning an iPod was never a prerequisite to listening to podcasts.

Basically, podcasts are RSS feeds. Will Richardson over at Weblogg-ed has written a great primer on what RSS means and how to use RSS feeds in education. As with any RSS feed you need an aggregator (that's a fancy way of saying you need a program to find and bring together all the content you want).

There is a wide variety of programs for pulling together all the podcasts you might want to listen to. I've used iPodder and iTunes. iPodder has been renamed to Juice. While I haven't used Juice, I suspect it is still a great product. I use iTunes. I started using iTunes long before I owned an iPod because I liked the way it organized my music files. iTunes also has a great podcast interface. I have run into very few podcasts that are not in the iTunes directory.

If your new to RSS and podcasts then I'd recommend you start with iTunes. All you need to do is download and install the application and then click on the "Podcast" menu button in the left frame. When the podcast library come up just click on "Podcast Directory" near the bottom of the window. Now just surf around and subscribe to the programs that seem interesting.

For more info on how podcasts and how to subscribe try:

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