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.


New Media Expo 2007 - Getting Started With Audacity Session

I will be at the New Media Expo 2007 this weekend (Sept. 27-30).  I am giving a presentation on 'Getting Started With Audacity' in the Podcaster 101 track:

Session 8 - 3:15pm to 4:15pm
Ballroom B
Saturday, Sept. 30, 2007
http://www.newmediaexpo.com/saturday2007.htm#Audacity

If folks are bringing their laptops to the session, then it is highly recommend that the come with Audacity pre-loaded ... http://audacity.sourceforge.net. I also have upload some demo audio files in zip format that I will be using if folks are interested in working hands-on with the same material: http://www.newmediaexpo.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=1634.

If you'd like to meet-up at the Expo please drop me an email or post a message to me on Twitter.


Recommended Podcasts To Listen To Via Google Reader

I have created a "Recommended Podcasts from sholden.typepad.com" site and RSS feed based on my research from my last post on this topic.

podcast, comment, recommend, podcasting, rss, technewsradio, google, readerIt seems to work pretty well for my workflow and it helps to be able to get links back to the individual podcast so I can put them into TechNewsRadio recommendation podcasts.

Only thing missing is a good comment option for myself on why I liked the podcast.  I'd really like to be able to add that as an option.


Investigating Options For Commenting On Specific Podcast Episodes

I have been wanting to come up with a quick way to comment on specific podcasts that I've been listening to.  In a recent brainstorming session with a friend we considered that maybe Apple iTunes was keeping the RSS referral post link in the meta data of the iTunes music library XML. 

Unfortunately after digging into the XML file and looking at what iTunes exposes to AppleScript, it doesn't appear to work.

Maybe I should output the podcast OPML file I have from iTunes, and use something like Google Reader to manage my options for specific podcast episode commenting. Thoughts?!?


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.


Movie Recommendation - Thank You For Smoking

I have to echo Reel Reviews Radio's recommendation for the movie Thank You For Smoking

Based on the podcast review, I ordered it from the library on Thursday and picked it up on Friday.  Christy and I watched it on Friday night.  It was very enjoyable and funny.


Manager-Tools Conference Summary Live Show Annoucement

I'd like to announced that I am going to be joining fellow FriendsInTech.com member Douglas E. Welch, host of the excellent Career Opportunities podcast, for a Talkshoe Talkcast on Tuesday, April 24, 2007 at 9PM EDT/6 PM PDT.

The subject of the Talkcast will be a re-cap from my recent attendance at the Manager-Tools.com's Effective Manager Conference held last week in Washington, DC.


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.


Special Podcast from FriendsInTech - "Island Of Misfit Geeks"

The very talented members of FriendsInTech (FIT) have put together another special Christmas podcast that should be out on Dec. 18, 2006 over at FriendsInTech.com

This original story and production highlights "Lucky the reindeer and his friend Herbert's adventure to find the Island of Misfit Geeks and save Christmas for Santa."

Here is a promo:

The team did this last year for Christmas (2005), and we also did two custom Halloween casts: 2005 & 2006.


I Am Thankful For Less Email

Something in a recent David Allen and 43Folders podcast convinced me to execute on a "someday maybe item - unsusbscribe to 90% of all the email lists" I'm getting to my primary personal email address (I'll work on work email later - already on my someday maybe list). 

The truth of the matter is that I don't actually read most of these but spend about 1 second deciding to delete them or read them with 99% of the time being the delete decision.  Every delete though generates two unanswered questions: 'What did I just miss?' and 'What if it was important?'  Which is more thinking and worrying than I really need.

Here is the current list (in no particular order):

United Cruise, Wired, GoDaddy, Audible, InformIT, WalMart, Gryonix, MP3Motivators, Nancy's Recipe Newsletter, SPOW, iRobot, HIT, Crutchfield, Moutain Dew, HP, Dell, FilePlanet, Nuance, Oriental Trading Company, Symantec, Stratfor, Toyota, Punch Software, Maximum Impact News, KMWorld, Kodak, Nitewise, Nordstrom, Iomega, ARTISTdirect, CRI, LHM, Vons, Sony, Billy Graham, Forbes, OfficeMax, Truly Nolan, Classmates, Rick Warren, Atari, Verizon, PC Magazine, DiVX, Direct2Drive, and Yahoo Sports.

Only a couple asked why I was unsubscribing (I expected more questions), and a few were a complete pain and I'm still fighting with them via accounts/usernames/passwords that I don't have nor have managed to keep.

If my analysis is correct and each one was a second to delete, then I could see a maximum of ~60 seconds of more productivity on any given day if they all send me email on the same day.  My current guess that over a week, I'll have a net increase of 5-6 minutes productivity time, plus less distractions from more meaningful productivity and less worry in addition to no unanswered nagging questions.