Audioblogging 2.0
Communities of new audioblog posts and podcasts.


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My contribution to Audioblogging/Podcasting


Harold Gilchrist's contributions to Audioblogging/Podcasting - "work in progress" - originally created on 2/19/2005 - last modification date at bottom of page

It never has been easy for me to write about or talk about myself.  The other day it was suggested to me in an email conversation with Dave Winer about the lack of credit given to the Audioblogging community and I that I write a web page about my contributions to Podcasting.

So here it goes.  If I have missed something, some event or if you just don't agree with something I wrote here it is probably most likely because I forgot.  Please don't get mad just email me and I will fix it.  I am writing this as I find time. 

Below is my list of contributions to Audioblogging/Podcasting:

1) First Userland Radio customer to blog about the idea of audioblogging and asked Userland to allow their new blogging software at the time to integrate and create an audioblog post.  Yes it was I that requested Userland (the company that made my blogging software) to put the Radio in Radio Userland.

For the record, I posted my first official audioblog post on Sunday, January 13, 2002.  Boy has time flied by.  I had my son PJ also do an audioblog post that night.  He was only 12 then.  He is now 16 and a junior in high school.

It was right after the holidays and Userland Radio had just been launched .  I was thinking about the audioblogging idea for months.  My wife bought me an Olympus DW-90 Digital Voice Recorder for Christmas just for the purpose and then Userland Radio was finally released.  Bing! The parts I needed to pull it off finally came together.  While others were typing "Hello world" into this new tool called Userland Radio I was uploading and linking audio files in my Radio weblog posts.

I remember asking Dave Winer to help us upstream wav files.

Here's what I wrote in my first audioblog post:

I like this idea of adding radio to Radio.

Now what if all weblogs and stories were also available as audio files like wav.  Think of the cool apps that would come from this.

Sure could add alot of these on a minature mem card.

And for us commuters that travel 1 + hour each way to work, cool way to catch up things during that boring ride.  

2) One of the first (if not the first) Radio Userland members to create an audio post with a RSS enclosure - this audio post has all the makings including content of an audio post today that would qualify as a podcast. 

originally posted Sunday, October 27, 2002

This morning I'm experimenting with producing an audioblogging show.  Check it out.  This morning I cover what's up at 5:00AM on SlashDot, Wired and other weblogs.  It's a beginning.->

I also found this in my archives (would also qualify as a podcast):

Monday, October 21, 2002 -> [Adam Curry: Adam Curry's Weblog] -> " Cool to hear my own audio-blog post on the webtalk guys radio show where Mitch Ratcliffe guest hosted. I've included the full show as an enclosure in my RSS feed, if you are using Radio UserLand, you will automagically receive the mp3 file for immediate playback. "

3) Participated in an "Audioblogging frenzy" in August 2002 with other pioneering Audiobloggers that  sparked some media attention and linking from the emerging weblogging community.

4) Constant evangelizing through my blog of the idea that the stage was set for an Audioblogging Community and "Audioblogging Revolution".

Did you ever wonder who it was that sparked the idea for  Check out this link and this one.

Scripting News - May 3rd, 2004: "Harold Gilchrist says it's time for audio blogs to have their own We can do it if there's enough interest -- has the ability to spawn new communities. So if there are enough audio blogs or tools to start one, let's do it. Probably the best way to find out is to create a post and ask people with audio blogs to comment. Permanent link to this item in the archive."

5) Created a blog about Audioblogging in mid 2002.  Still exists today. Purpose of weblog was to help people with questions about Audioblogging and discuss my observations and visions about audioblogging.  The blog serves as both an audioblog and launching point for new audioblogging ideas.

6) Led the audioblogging discussion at BloggerCon 1 -  demostrated the first Windows RSS Enclosure (podcatching)  program -  named Enclosure Extractor.  Went into some detail about the use of RSS enclosures with an audio post - this exact process is refered to as podcasting today

Betsy Devine wrote the following in her blog on 10/5/03": "I (Betsy) asked, How does an audio "enclosure" in an RSS file work? Harold showed us onscreen: the RSS "enclosure" gives you a title, description, and the URL of the audio's mp3. If you want to hear the audio, you click the link to go to the URL. My software saves audio in 3 formats: mp3, Ogg Vorbis, and wav."

See the online archived video of the Audioblogging session from BloggerCon 1, October - 2003.

7) Voiced my opinion against and condemed the use of copyrighted material in early podcasts.  It was clear to me that if this practice didn't end early the new evolving commmunity was doomed.

8) something I originally wrote on Friday, December 19, 2003:

I like to see SAM enable the creation of a community of audio messages that lets the SAM listener choose the audio messages they want to listen to.  This preserves download time and bandwidth.  Listeners could use the message title, description and other audio message attributes to make clear choices.  Why download media that you are not interested in?  Downloading audio or any media automatically at this time on the Internet adds unnecessary load and bandwidth costs to the SAM network.

Imagine waking up in the morning, reading your SAM enabled RSS reader from either your PC, notebook or PDA and picking and choosing a couple hours of audio messages. Then as you were doing something else, like getting ready for work the iPod using it's builtin WIFI or bluetooth (not available today) automatically syncs and retrieves your morning audio message picks.   This process can be repeated throughout the day.

SAM makes the audio message chooser aggregator piece possible today and most importantly enables a community of available audio messages.  SAM makes it easy to write SAM-aware aggregators and feed readers. 

I have a hunch that MP3 players with WIFI or bluetooth are right around the corner.  Stay tuned for their announcement at the end of next year.   But what is the next feature after wireless networking is added to Mp3 players?  Why not SAM enable it?

In the meantime we will just have to sync our MP3 players to SAM using USB or FireWire.  Imagine how many new users will be receiving MP3 players over the holidays.  All are potential future SAM listeners. 

9) Wednesday, February 11, 2004 -> Started to post multiple links to others audioblog posts on my weblog.

Around July 2004 things really started to heat up.  July was a huge growth month for what seemed to be a ever growing blogaudsphere.  You could really feel that the pot was ready to tip. 

Audioblogging community - plan B - "Even though I'm seeing the amount of audio posts in the Blogosphere growing every day/week,  I don't believe and can't convince myself that anybody else that follows the blogging space is seeing the growth I'm seeing (unless of course they been following this blog this week).  That's a pretty strong and bold statement, but the reason I feel this way is because I'm not seeing any of the text bloggers (A or Z list), blogging or quoting any of the many audio posts I'm finding.  Despite that fact,  the amount of audio posts in the BlogAudSphere continues to grow each day. "

Audioblogging was really starting to catch on.  Check out any of the dates in the July 2004's calendar after the 13th to see and hear what I and others were witnessing about the bootstraping of the "Audio Revolution" on the web:

I've been listening to your entries pretty regularly, and I did notice the jump in audiobloggers. Interested to see what you come up with, Harold.  Lucas Gonze - 7/19/04; 9:35:48 AM #

July 2004
Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
        1 2 3
4 5 6 7 8 9 10
11 12 13 14 15 16 17
18 19 20 21 22 23 24
25 26 27 28 29 30 31
Jun   Aug

10) Saturday, April 10, 2004 -> Integrated WEBJAY, a WEB MP3 playlist service written by Lucas Gonze into my audioblog.  By doing this I was setting up the first audioblog channel via a Blogging authoring platform.

11) Linked to an article on my weblog article (Friday, February 13, 2004 ) by Ben Hammersley called - Audblible Revolution.  The article talked about what to call the emerging Audio Revolution emrging in the blogosphere - the name "Podcasting" was mentioned and noted in my post.   I also audioblogged the next day about the article: Listen:   The Audible Web

Audible revolution

Audible revolution - Ben Hammersley ->

With the benefit of hindsight, it all seems quite obvious. MP3 players, like Apple's iPod, in many pockets, audio production software cheap or free, and weblogging an established part of the internet; all the ingredients are there for a new boom in amateur radio.

But what to call it? Audioblogging? Podcasting? GuerillaMedia?

In the audible revolution article, Ben Hammersley writes about Grant Henninger's  five-minute radio show:  TestRadio: Second Chances

and lastly here's something I wrote on December 09, 2003:

"In 2003 audioblogging came a long way.  Even though we didn't focus on using streaming audio like some said we needed to do audioblogging prevailed and works.  Even though some didn't get it at first others kept rocking and Audioblogging keeps growing everyday.  Audioblogging doesn't really care if it's streaming audio or fixed downloadable files or what transport is the best.  It's not about what web audio technology is the best.  It never was.  Audioblogging like the web itself can use them all.  At the end of the day it's about the message.  It's a new way of using audio on the web to get your message out.  Audioblogging today is simply about creating and putting any audio message on the web however the web can help you get them there.  But we're not done.  Now is the time to get to the next level.  Now we need to build on the past year's work and start creating the "audio messaging community" together.

As I look at the new Audlink homepage I see a glimmer of community starting to form.  It's raw but it's there.  I see some elements missing, but it has a seed.  The answer is to work together to water that seed and grow the audio messaging community.

126 years ago, in a small laboratory in Menlo Park, New Jersey Thomas Edison invented recorded sound.  In 2004 we can take Edison's invention and create an online audio messaging community like none before it with the help of SAM."


What others have said about this whole lack of credit situation:

Lucas Gonze - 2-18-2005: Distortion from the power-law structure of web logs -  Harold Gilchrist has a passionate post, with overwhelming supporting evidence, about not getting credit for the invention of audioblogging. I was there, I saw it unfold, and he's right. Dave Slusher and other folks who came to audioblogging after June 2004 can rationalize all they want, this situation is wrong.

Calling on Doc, Jeff and Dave - Eric Rice gives overdue props to Harold Gilchrist for being the father of audioblogging. Irish Eyes confirmed it. Now it's time for the alpha bloggers who gave it all to Adam Curry to kick in some meme-fu and help Harold get the credit he richly deserves. That means, most importantly, Doc Searls, Jeff Jarvis, and Dave Winer. Dear Doc, Jeff and Dave: you guys are fabulously wealthy in reputation, please use the blessings you've received to help right a wrong. Adam had the balls to create the first podcatcher, which is great, but Harold had the vision and patience to create audioblogging.

IrishEyes -> Who invented podcasting -> "SCRIPTING -- Dave Winer questions the origins of podcasting by pointing to comments and discussion related to himself and Adam Curry. His concerns also point to the way history is made and revised at internet speed. Let the record show that Harold Gilchrist was audioblogging well before "podcasting" was coined. And Audible enjoyed a brisk trade in downloadable audiobooks that I first saw in use on Amtrak in 2001... "

Doug Kaye weblog -> Who Invented Podcasting? -> "Update: Eric Rice reminded us that Harold Gilchrist was audioblogging long, long before podcasting or IT Conversations.


Email conversation I had this week with Dave Winer that led to this webpage being written:

Hey Dave,

Since we are talking about giving credit, I always wondered why you never gave me or anyone in the small Audioblogging community before podcasting any credit at all in any of the stories about podcasting.

Surely you new we were out there as I led in october/2003 the Audioblogging session at Bloggercon 1.  The webcast of the session is still online (you should watch it when you get a chance).  During the session I talked about the history of audioblogging I knew about, Chris Lydon and your work and using enclosures with Audioblogs among other things.  I showed in the session how one would go about adding mp3 files to a RSS feed using enclosures.  I even demostrated a Window's program (program not script) called Enclosure Extractor that works like what today call a podcast catcher.  I still use the program today.

In the session I did my best to give credit where credit was due and tried as much as possible to keep myself out of the story.  Audioblogging was young at the time and unknown by most.  It was hard to lead something nobody really did at the time.

As I watch this whole Podcasting story unfold I am feeling so frustrated that the real/whole story never got out.  The story fed to the media just explains a small blip in time that gives no credit to the history (yes it took more the 6 months to get here).  Somebody needs to tell the blogging world that just because you change the name of something doesn't mean you loose it's history.

If blogging continues to tell this kind of incomplete story telll me why the blogging news has any more integrity then what we have in the mass media today.  It's looks to me like the blogging community never wants to tell the whole story when it could make one of it's own look bad.  But as you are seeing the snow ball about this story keeps getting bigger and bigger.  Sad!

Does the blogging world have a solution to a situation like this?

Sorry if I picked a bad time to email you about this but this has been bothering me for a while and I needed to get that off my chest.

Thanks for listening,
Harold Gilchrist

Dave wrote back:

Harold, I support you, of course I remember that I asked you to do a session on audioblogging at the first bloggercon. If you want to know how well I understand, go look up weblog on wikipedia and see how they position my contribution.

My experience is that you can't be bashful if you want credit. Put up a web page explaining your contribution to the development of podcasting and I'll point to it.


Click here to visit the Radio UserLand website. © Copyright 2005 Harold Gilchrist.
Last update: 12/4/2005; 1:47:27 AM.
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