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What is a podcast, how do I find one and how do I consume it (or whatever you call consuming one).

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8  
I believe you need some sort of edible CD to consume one. –  Phoshi Aug 31 '09 at 15:09

5 Answers 5

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Podcasts are usually topic specific audio programs like radio talk shows. Most podcasts can be aggregated using the RSS feed address in a media player like mediamonkey or in a reader like your google home page. Usually they can be downloaded as an mp3 as well. Just get the podcast address and you can add it to a google page at add stuff> add new feed or gadget.

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Podcasts are audio or video broadcasts distributed over the internet using a feed. once you subscribe to a podcast, the feed allows your pod catching software know when a new podcast is available and to automatically download it.

The mot popular (tho not with everyone) pod catching software is iTunes. They also have a long list of podcasts covering a wide range of interests.

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There are a lot of sites that syndicate podcasts and make them available in your browser. A few are:

CastRoller

SpokenWord

Fora.tv

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A podcast is just an audio or video file. You can download it from whatever site it is hosted on and listen to it with whatever your favorite media player is.

If the podcast is syndicated, this means that it has an accompnying XML file that lets podcast client software (like iTunes) understand some meta-data about the files so that the client software can download the most recent file(s) for you in a more automated fashion.

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1  
This is incorrect thinking. –  Mike Wills Aug 31 '09 at 15:00
    
Why is that? –  EBGreen Aug 31 '09 at 15:03
    
Just see my comment below. –  Mike Wills Sep 1 '09 at 16:17

What is a podcast? Despite popular thought, a podcast is not an audio file or video file.

A podcast is the technology behind delivering content automatically to a podcast aggregator which will usually automatically download the file. This content (while usually a video or audio file) can be any file of any file type. Normally the RSS 2.0 standard is used, but ATOM also supports enclosures.

How do you consume a podcast? For the typical user, something like the Zune software or iTunes will work. There are other applications that will also consume podcasts. A web search should turn up many more.

In iTunes and Zune, there is a directory to search and typically the show is listed in there. If it is not listed, copy the URL of the RSS feed and under the Advanced menu, choose Add Podcast...

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I've always assumed the actual file was the podcast, so thanks for the clarification. –  Phoshi Aug 31 '09 at 15:15
    
Well since the term "Podcast" is not linked to any formal specification, I would say most of the previous answers are just as valid as this one. While podcasts are almost all syndicated via RSS or ATOM, that is not universally the case. –  EBGreen Aug 31 '09 at 15:22
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@EBGreen - I left it open-ended on purpose. It doesn't have to be RSS or ATOM. Just any technology that allows a person to subscribe and automatically receive the file. The previous answers seem to refer to the actual file being downloaded as the podcast. What if my "podcast" was a few pages of a comic book a week? What if my "podcast" was the city counsel packet? The term podcast then is confusing. Podcast has been defined as Portable On-Demand broadCAST. –  Mike Wills Sep 1 '09 at 16:16

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