So, something else that entered out lives last a few years ago and really entrenched a first hold on, at least, my heart, is podcast programming.
I first got into it in 2006, when I had a Creative Zen V Plus mp3 player (a real beaut, and compact, to boot). Fit nicely in the hand,
felt like a Japanese toy and was a hefty 1GB.
The device came with an introduction to ZenCast, Creative Zen’s own podcast manager and boy did it open my eyes and mind to one of the real possibilities of the web.
I think I started out with downloading and listening to sleep meditation podcasts, you know, the kind with ocean waves and aural humming sounds to evoke brain wave synchronization or something (I was having trouble falling asleep in those days)….. and then I moved to meditation podcasts, then to programs about jazz and NPR’s music broadcasts…. It was really amazing. The problem was, 1GB couldn’t hold many podcasts AND hold music, as well!
I moved to MediaMonkey in 2008 and I learned about media players that managed music AND podcasts AND radio, and made for quick playlists and ratings. I loved the one-stop-convenience of MediaMonkey and learned how to easily add podcasts, select episodes, download them and sync my Creative Zen, then the iRiver Clix 2nd gen, then the AWESOME Sony S-series Walkman, seamlessly, hassle-free.
Well, in 2009, I was introduced to iTunes and the world of podcasts via my purchase of the iPod classic that was included in the educational summer Mac deal. Not only did it perform the functions that I liked in MediaMonkey (which was fine, since MediaMonkey is not available for Mac OS), it also had a very pretty UI, with visual indicators for the podcasts, and had categories and user reviews for each program.
My first serious podcast subscription after switching to iTunes was This Week in Tech, with Leo LaPorte. I did not know that a whole empire existed in TWIT, as the empire is called, but I became a devotee.
Week after week, I downloaded This Week in Tech and listened to the show on my walk to and from the office. I would say that most of my immediate introduction to current technology news and happenings, other than reading Engadget, CNET and The Unofficial Mac Weblog, was through this podcast.
Thank you Leo and hosts for the informative walks to work!