Multi-Topic Update: San Diego Fires, Jersey Boys, Technology

The last week or so has been extremely crazy and busy. 

First up the San Diego Wild Fires (aka FireStorm 2007) have been all consuming, and I'm happy to report that my immediate & extended family, friends, and co-workers in the San Diego area have been spared major hardships.  But our hearts go out to those who lost love ones or their homes.  The fire fighters and public safety folks have been outstanding and they deserve a ton of credit & praise.  Thanks!

The weirdest thing about the fires, was that during the whole time it was going on, Christy and I have been in Jersey Boys heaven.  They have released a new Jersey Boys Book, Frankie Valli has an excellent new album out called "Romancing the 60's", the touring cast is in San Diego, and we traveled to New York City (NYC) / New Jersey (NJ) on Sat. 10/20 returning Tue. 10/23 for the Fan Tribute and to interview Tommy DeVito. And did we mention we've seen the musical three times in six days: Fri. 10/19 (Opening Night in San Diego), Sun. 10/21 (Broadway), and Wed. 10/24 (Cast Talk Back in San Diego).  Yes ... we are crazy.

Lastly a quick update on some technology stuff.  Things are still going on over at TechNewsRadio but a little slower than I'd like.  My fellow FriendsInTech members have put together another new Halloween special called "It's The Great Server Chuck and Kreg."

Other quick tech mentions:

I recently upgraded from a Cingular 8125 to an AT&T Tilt and I'm really loving the new phone with high speed 3G/UMTS/HSDPA connectivity plus Windows Mobile 6 and integrated GPS.  The camera is also a big improvement, as is the keyboard/button interfaces.

A couple of weeks ago I did upgrade my 8-GB 2nd Gen Apple iPod Nano to an 8-GB 3rd Gen Apple iPod NanoI have some unboxing pictures posted to Google.  I like the video option a great deal. I used it to watch dozens of video podcasts recently on the trip back to NYC/NJ.  I have also been using it a lot at home sitting in bed or by my computer using a DIY  Lego stand.

I have also picked up a copy of Apple's new OS X via Amazon.  I hope it gets here soon so I can rebuild my old G4 iBook for Christy and finally get her off of Windows XP and spare her the horror of Vista.


Brewery Recommendation: Mad Anthony in Warsaw, Indiana

I am working through my stack of stuff to blog about and I am up to my endorsement of a great brewery in the Warsaw, Indiana area:

Mad Anthony's Lake City Tap House

113 East Center Street, Warsaw, Indiana 46580

574-268-2537

www.madbrew.com

We had a great dinner there, amazing microbrews, and a great cover band called The Fabulous Rhythm Kids was on stage for several hours. They played some very good rock and blues covers.


Podcast Recommendation - Interview With New Media Author Philip Meza

Chris Gondek over at the Invisible Hand Podcast had a great interview with Philip Meza the author of the book "Coming Attractions: Hollywood, High Tech, and the Future of Entertainment" that is definitely worth a listen.

The one great thing in the podcast was that Chris let Philip outline some key recommendations that companies and organizations should be doing to excel in this new media world.


Internet Radio / Streaming Issues

I haven't been following this story very closely but I just read this article at CNN because it had a picture of Rusty Hodge (Grove Salad) who does Soma.fm which I do enjoy from time from time.

It looks like some changes in the royalty business and regulatory oversight that makes doing future Internet radio/streaming very difficult. 

From a technical standpoint I think this is going to bleed over to podcasting, since a lot of listeners are effectively streaming from website links.

More info from the Pandora Blog also on this topic, that links to some resources to help fight these changes.


RocketBoom Almost Makes Me Famous?

I was just catching up with my RocketBoom viewing and the 12Feb07 edition started off with what I originally thought was my ground breaking CountryWest-MP3 background track made popular in podcasts for TechNewsRadio.com.

Unfortunately, I forgot to publish it, making someone using my version highly unlikely unless they had PaulDotCom hacking skills.

So, reality has sunk in, and it is highly more probable that someone ended up using the same sound bed in Apple's GarageBand with Harmonica tracks in a pretty similar fashion.  Bummer ...

 (Size 464-KB, Running Time 0m28s)


ESPN Announcing System - Secret Podcast Tool?!?

ESPN PlayByPlay is a potentially interesting product geared for turning young kids into sports announcers.  It includes signature ESPN sounds, stadium chants, an 'on-air' light, 3 microphone jacks, one line in jack (for an MP3 player or other audio in), and speaker system.

No word if there is a mix out.  But there is an extra audio port that online resources fail to mention what its purpose is.  If it did do an audio mix out, then it could be a great podcast tool.


Techno Music Recommendation - Techno Squirrels

I signed up for IODA at the recent podcast expo.  Not sure why ... I pretty much know where my Jersey Boys Podcast related music is going to be coming from (thank you Rhino), but the service seemed interesting for music distribution and it is very podcast friendly.

One of the bands that recently contacted me for some 'air time' on the podcast circuit was Techno Squirrels.

After giving them a listen, I have to recommend checking them out if you are a techno fan, good stuff.


Quick Market Survey on MP3 Players

The San Diego Union-Tribune Sunday paper had a good number of non-Apple MP3 players for sale (cash prices listed).  Here is a sample of what I saw:

  • Big Lots! - RCA Lyra 256-MB MP3 Player for $29.99
  • Target - Memorex 512-MB MP3 Player for $58
  • Office Depot - Philips 1GB MP3 Player for $69.99 (with a $30 mail-in rebate offer); Archos 4GB Mp3 Player for $159.99 (with a $20 mail-in rebate offer)
  • Best Buy - Samsung 1GB U2JZ MP3 Player  for $79.99; Sandisk 2GB E250 MP3 Player for $129.99
  • CompuUSA - Sandisk 2GB E250 MP3 Player for $129.99
  • Circuit City - Sony 2GB Flash Digital Music Player for $129.99; Creative Labs 8-GB Zen MicroPhoto MP3 Player for $179.99; and Creative Labs 30GB Zen Vision:M for $299.99

It should be noted that the RCA Lyra also has a SD/MMC slot for expansion storage.  And the San Disk E250 has a Mini-SD slot for additional storage.

Also the only direct Apple iPods advertising that I saw was for the 30-GB Black or White iPod via BestBuy's online store (no price listed).


Musical Medley Tribute for 300 Podcasts from TechNewsRadio.com

I recently posted podcast #300 on TechNewsRadio.com.  And at the end of the podcast I mixed in a 10 song musical medley from the music that I originally had in podcasts #2-11.  Here is the list: