Podcasting update

Podcasting update

I got back to recording a new episode of Lott’s Thoughts.  I tried writing everything down that I wanted to say and still came to a mental block when I went to record. Then I read what I had written verbatim and recorded it.  I immediately deleted that recording and tried recording again without reading and I think that went a lot better because I knew what I was going to say, I can add extra bits of information while I’m recording, and it doesn’t sound read. So I’m going to try this workflow: Write what I want to say, read and record a podcast, delete it, record one final time extemporaneously.

Podcasting Hangups and Possible Solution

Podcasting Hangups and Possible Solution

A few weeks ago I posted this to the San Antonio Podcasters group on Facebook:

I’ve been having a real hangup lately on producing podcasts. For the past several months I have not wanted to do audio podcasts. 
I have been doing occasional screencast videos on YouTube. 
Possible issues:
• It takes me several tries to start a recording. I’ll start and then pause and then feel like I’m pausing too long and want to start over. I’ll start and then trip over my words and then start over. I’ll start and then blank on what I want to say or how to continue. My goal for podcasting has always been improve my speaking voice and I haven’t really seen much improvement there. 

• No one seems to listen, or if they do listen I would never know it because there is no feedback. It feels like I’m talking into the void. I could get in to the mindset that I’m doing it for myself and if someone gives feedback, that it is icing on the cake.

• Topic. I’ve been doing this on and off for about 8 years. I’ve done movie reviews, book reviews, play and concert reviews, personal journals, iPhone and iPad app reviews. I never felt like my reviews were ever that strong, not a whole lot goes on in my life to make a personal journal all that interesting for very long.

So, I think I’ve come up with an idea on how I might produce podcasts going forward.  It will probably mean more work to produce than my podcasts have been in the past, but the speaking will be easier. I’ve tried scripting podcasts and then reading them and that always sounds like I’m reading; it never sounds natural. My idea is to script podcasts, get all my thoughts down in a word processor, and then do the podcast without reading the script. I think this way I will know where I’m going in my head, know what I’m going to say, and still be natural in the presentation.

Hopefully soon I’ll be starting season 2 of Lott’s Thoughts with movie, tv, and book reviews and anything else I may want to talk about which, if you are interested, you can find at lottsthoughts.com .

My Voice

My Voice

 

I’ve written and spoke about my voice in the past. It is probably the part of me that I like the least. In particular, I feel like the pitch is too high for an average male. However, in this post, I want to focus on another aspect of my voice which needs work. I don’t think I speak extemporaneously very well. There are a lot of pauses in my speech. I’m not the kind of person that can talk endlessly about a particular subject. Most of the podcasts I do are usually between 7-10 minutes long and maybe as long as 20 if I’m talking about 5 apps for example. I am an introverted person and that concerns me because I would like to go into the teaching profession. Teaching means communicating which means a person needs to be comfortable speaking.

Like playing a musical instrument, I believe that in order to get better at speaking I need to practice. I tried Toastmasters and attended a few meetings and then stopped going. As soon as I stopped Toastmasters, I joined the Community Band which meets on the same night. I enjoy being in the band a lot more. This brings me back to practicing. I’m not a social person and don’t go to parties or get-togethers so I don’t get a lot of practice speaking to or with other people. During the school year, I am a substitute teacher, but I usually just talk enough to tell them their assignments and how to do them or correct misbehavior. Sometimes I may get the opportunity to teach a lesson, but with me it always goes pretty fast because I am man of few words.

So in the meantime, I will be doing as many podcasts and videos as I can in order to practice or at least keep up with my speaking. If people want to listen, they are welcome to and as always any feedback is welcome and appreciated. However, with my voice the way it is, I think that is why my listener numbers are so low. Unlike someone like Scott Johnson with his deep voice and engaging personality, my podcasts will mainly be a practice mechanism.

App Experiment Recap

App Experiment Recap

On the App-A-Day podcast episode number 290, I talked about the conclusion of a month long experiment I did to see what apps I use on a daily basis. The purpose of this experiment was to see which apps get used the most, how many apps I actually use, and which apps I might remove from my iPhone and iPad to save space. This blog post is a written version of what I talked about on the podcast.

Days in the experiment
28
Number of iPhone and Universal apps that I own
703
Number of iPad apps that I own
114
Average number of iPhone apps I use per day
13
Average number of iPad apps I use per day
11
Most number of iPhone apps I used in a day
18
Most number of iPad apps I used in a day
16
Least number of iPhone apps I used in a day
6
Least number of iPad apps I used in a day
6
Number of apps on my phone
217
Number of unique apps that I used in the last month for iPhone
84
Number of apps on my iPad
155
Number of unique apps that I used in the last month for iPad
57
Apps that I used the most on the iPhone
Mail and Downcast tied for everyday.
More than 20 times: App Store (21), Facebook (20)
Between 10 and 20 times: Zite (14), Settings (10), Phone (15), Safari (18), Tweetbot (13)
Between 5 and 10 times: eBay (7), Weather Channel (7), Google (9), QRANK (8), Flipboard (8), Calcbot (5), Foursquare (5), Music (6), Runtastic Pro (8), Groupon (7), CheckPlease (7), Kindle (5)
Apps that I used the most on the iPad
Downcast was used everyday.
More than 20 times: Safari (24), Settings (21), Mail (25), Alien Blue HD (20), Evernote
Between 10 and 20 times: Instacast HD (11), App Store (16), App Shopper (17), Facebook (13), Progressive Alarm Clock (10)
Between 5 and 10 times: eBay (7), Remote (6), GoodReader (5), LastPass (5)
Use of built-in apps vs 3rd party apps
My most used built-in apps on the iPad and iPhone were Mail, Settings, Safari, Phone, and App Store
Conclusion
It was really interesting doing this experiment and seeing just how much I use the apps that I have on my devices. Some things were not a surprise. I listen to podcasts everyday so it was obvious that Downcast was the most used app. However, it was interesting that I check Mail a little more often on the iPhone than I do on the iPad. The reason I used Settings so much on the iPad is I have Bluetooth headphones that I use to watch podcasts and I have to open Settings every time to pair the Bluetooth.

There was one mistake I made throughout the duration of the experiment. I used Evernote a lot on the iPad to write down what apps were used every night. I did not write down Evernote itself, though. Most of the time I used Evernote on the iPad, but a few times I used Evernote on the Mac and I should have kept better tabs. However, it would not have been relevant to average use since Evernote was special to this experiment as it was the app I used to record the data.

The last thing I want to say about this is that these results are a good sample of the apps I use most often. There are a lot of apps I use once or twice that were not mentioned. These might be apps that I’m reviewing for App-A-Day or something I feel like using. There may be times when I feel like using a certain kind of app that were not represented in this list at all such as Music apps or other games.

Podsafe Christmas

Podsafe Christmas

This is a tribute episode to the Christmas episodes that Jen has done on her Inside My Head podcast for the past 3 years. I chose some of my favorite songs that she has played.
(One correction from the show: I said that Chiron Beta Prime wasn’t played on a Christmas episode of Inside My Head and I was wrong. It was played on Bah Humbug (2009))

  1. Chiron Beta Prime by Jonathan Coulton
  2. Santa’s Too Drunk to Drive by The Hot Rods
  3. Christmas Here on Mars by Bubble
  4. You Little Fruitcake by Ingi
  5. Christmastime by A Band Called Quinn
  6. Christmas My Love by Gilli Moon

Inside My Head Christmas Shows:

 
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