By Stephanie Ciccarelli
June 18, 2007
Need a helping hand finding a podcast you like, listening to it and then subscribing to receive it on a regular basis?
This article will help you do just that!
Learn more about how to browse, listen and subscribe to podcasts at VOX Daily.
What is podcasting?
Podcasting is radio your way. Podcasts are radio-style shows - some from major media, others from passionate individuals - delivered over the Internet to your computer. Unlike streaming audio, which requires you to listen in real time, podcasting lets you control how and when you hear your favorite shows.
According to our good friend FeedBurner, a publisher of podcasts, blogs and video podcasts, they are now managing over 114,939 podcast and video podcast feeds (a feed is basically another word for a podcast, for our purposes).
What does that statistic mean?
There are quite a few fish (and podcasts) in the sea that are out there for you to browse through, listen to and subscribe to.
As you know, there are many a directory online where you can find items that you are searching for. The same is true for podcasts.
There are literally dozens of podcast directories that break up podcasts by genre, content, and more.
Once you arrive at one of these directories, it is easy to find a break down of the kinds of podcasts that they list.
Let's say you were using iTunes to search for a podcast.
iTunes is a software application created by Apple that allows you to store and organize music on your computer as well as subscribe to podcasts and video podcasts. By downloading the software, you'll be able to enjoy as much audio as your computer's hard drive can afford, including podcasts!
Great News: You can download iTunes even if you use a PC. iTunes, though made by Apple, is compatible with all computers.
A technical word for what iTunes does regarding podcasts is that it acts as an "aggregator" of content, always updating so that it has the most current material ready for you each time you open the iTunes software application.
To go a little further, an aggregator is responsible for locating a podcast RSS feed, updating podcasts when new feeds become available, and delivering the new feeds to you, the subscriber.
This is highly advantageous for subscribers hooked on podcasting.
Similar to a news ticker on television, feeds are sent on demand and are accessible at your convenience. Not only are podcasts available on your personal computer, you can also receive them on your iPod or media player.
So, let's assume that you have iTunes or have just recently downloaded it.
Now, the browsing, listening and subscribing can commence!
When you open iTunes, go to the Podcast Directory. Once you're there, you can search for podcasts and even listen to a preview of a podcast to learn more about the show before you subscribe.
Subscribing to most podcasts is a free activity, however, there are some podcasts out there that charge you as the listener to receive their content.
Both of these podcasts are available in the Apple iTunes Podcast Directory and are free to subscribe to.
You can find podcasts through iTunes by searching by genre, podcast title, or author name. For instance, if you wanted to subscribe to either of our podcasts, you could search for my name Stephanie Ciccarelli or Voices.com.
In our next article, we're going to explore more about the podcasts offered at Voices.com and how you can listen to them for free either here at our website or through services such as iTunes.
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