My wife and I want to create and publish a podcast; don’t want to go into details here but topic is basically related to raising a child with severe anxiety/depression issues. We’d like to create it and start a series of them and get a website or blog or whatever as the “base” while also publishing them for subscription on iTunes. To make it even more complicated, we’d like to be able to include occasional clips of commercial music (just in a transition type mode, 5 or so seconds per clip.)
AND we’d like to move as fast as possible. What we currently have for recording, in terms of mics, recorders, etc. - nothing. Just my laptop.
I’ve heard people recommend SoundCloud for hosting, but you’ll need a separate site (free blogger/WordPress/tumblr blog would be fine). I’m not sure about RSS though. It sounds like there are some solutions out there, but I never did that part when I was playing with recording.
It seems like windows is okay with 2 mics, after that you’ll probably want to use multiple machines and then just merge the audio tracks in audacity, which is pretty easy. (True multi track recording needs special hardware.)
It takes a minute or two to configure, but you can make audacity use your audio output as direct input, so you can merge interstitial audio clips that way as well.
If you want to Skype in people from offsite, you can either have them install audacity and send you the recording file to merge, or you can grab the Skype audio with a local recording program (I think the one I used is just called mp3 Skype recorder), and merge yourself.
Audacity is pretty simple and has good community and tutorials. You’ll figure it out in no time.
Yeah, I’ve got Audacity, though the only thing I’ve ever done with it is edit audio clips (as in remove parts and then reconnect the parts I wanted, and I’m sure I did that in the most inefficient manner possible!)
I’ve never set up a website before, so I think for us the most challenging part in terms of “figuring it out” will be setting up a site, putting the MP3 audio files on it, doing whatever you do to make them RSS, figuring out how to get it on iTunes, etc. I.e. I think I can figure out how to figure out how to make the MP3s, but no idea at all how to create our home web site for the podcasts and turn the MP3s into podcasts and publish them.
Wordpress is pretty great for setting up quickly, cheaply, and easily. Moreover, most hosts these days have an auto-installer for stuff like WP, so you buy your hosting package + domain, log into the hosting backend link they give you, click the Installatron/Softaculus link, and then click “Install WP.” Follow instructions, and there it is. Very easy to configure from there.
Basically, I have full confidence in you here, Jeff :)
OK - so if I get a Wordpress blog account, do they have a domain registration built in? I.e. if I want the site to be, say, powerparents.com, do I buy that from Wordpress and then get my blogging account with them, and people go to powerparents.com to see it and get the podcasts if they aren’t getting them from iTunes? I am looking at a video from blubrry, and he says first he assumes you have a Wordpress account - OK - the “A Powerpress installed and configured” - HUH?? - and then that you a Blubrry hosting plan - Huh?
Wordpress is a little confusing, because you can install wordpress software on an external host you own, or you can get a wordpress.com blog where they host it and control the server. That means they keep it up to date wth patches, etc, but i think youre limited in the kinds of plugins and stuff you can use. It sounds like blubrry is talking about installing WordPress on another host, not sure if that is necessary for what you want to do or if you can use a WordPress hosted blog.
You can get domain registration from WordPress when you sign up for your blog. I forget how exactly, but its easy enough that I figured it out on my first try. I think its like $15 a year. If you do that, you’ll be able to access the blog at both powerparents.com, and at powerparents.wordpress.com because they’re still hosting.
Its possible to host the podcast files on WordPress itself, but you need to upgrade to a pro account for media features, and I assume the limits are less generous than the dedicated hosting services.
You can go ahead and sign up for the free WordPress account, and just walk through the process. They don’t charge you until you do the domain registration.
OK - so… I get a website from somewhere. So that I can host my powerparents.com or whatever.com website. Then I sign up for Wordpress, and use that somehow as the tools for what I want to put on my website. Then Powerpress for something. Then Blubrry. For the actual mp3 media podcast to be put on the Wordpress something on my website on some host and to put it on iTunes. Ack!
So - at least in my searching today I have narrowed down to Blubrry and Libsyn. For the podcasting capabilities. I’ll keep looking for a step by step tutorial for web tech idiots, LOL! But it sounds like I should perhaps go to a domain host - like GoDaddy but not them cause I hate their ads, maybe Bluehost - and pay for a domain and host for my website to put my blog or whatever on. (BTW - they show for blubrry and libsyn prices for storage, and they have storage such as you can add 250 meg per month, and they keep the past media so people can download older podcasts. Not sure how this interacts with, say, the diskspace you get with the domain host.) Anyway, get the domain host and domain. Get a Wordpress account and use that to put together the blog. Also set up Powerpress with it, and then blubrry. They all of that gets imported to my, say, Bluehost website?
Generally sounds like you’ve got the right idea. A combination host/domain purchase is nice since there’s no annoying "point my nameservers from the domain registrar to the servers of the host and keep them up to date whenever either changes. . . " nonsense, but even then, that only takes a few seconds if you can get a better deal by buying a domain from one company and your hosting from another.
Additional storage space on your hosting and decent bandwidth are reasonable considerations if you expect to have a lot of media files uploaded and a lot of potential downloaders, respectively. Other than that, price, uptime, and general customer satisfaction are what I’d look out for with hosts. For my own very simple needs, NameCheap domains and SpeedySparrow hosting have worked well, but there’s plenty of fish in those seas.
Wordpress is software installed in hosting you own (or you can “rent” a WP install from them at WordPress.com, where they host/install everything for you, but you don’t get as many configuration/control options). A domain name will let others access whatever’s hosted on your space via a URL–e.g., powerparents.com. The rest of the stuff is probably plugins for WordPress that extend its base functionality and make it better for podcast stuffs, but to be fair, that’s more the area of the folks who recommended those tools than me.
It’s worth reading up on this stuff, for sure. THere’s a ton of options, not all of which are good and many of which are unnecessary for the average person. I wish there were a guaranteed simple way, but it’s kinda like flavors of Linux–every nerd’s got his preferences and a book-length list of reasons why ;)
Good stuff, thanks. The clouds are starting to part a little in terms of how to do this. I think we just need to pick a podcast name so we know what domain name to register (and I’m SURE we’ll go through 30 great names that are already registered,) sign up with a web hosting site (leaning towards Arvixe right now,) get the domain site and then sign up with Wordpress and get it and Powerpress figured out, then the same for Blubrry. I think it will be much easier once I’m actually doing it.
And I think once I’ve figured this out I will write a simple, step by step guide for the person like me who has no idea what they are doing. ;)
I disagree, and I’d strongly advise you to keep them at different companies. I’ve seen enough issues where poor web hosts have created issues when they are also the domain registrar, making changing away annoying. Keep the domain at a big registrar, and have that be your only business with them. (And incidentally, buy for two years at a time, long story but it’s related to not getting any emails weighted as spam).
So, this is getting dangerous, LOL! We haven’t even got a name for the podcast, and, in typical go for it fashion for me, I’ve decided to go with a couple of mics, a mixer, a Roland R-05 digital recorder, and already have a couple of nice headphone sets to hear ourselves. I think we’ll go with Arvixe’s Wordpress hosting option with Blubrry as the media hosting service. I paid attention (due to some studying) to make sure that if I register a domain with Arvixe and then decide to move it elsewhere later, it will be no problem (apparently some web hosting sites will be asses if you later decide you want to move your domain somewhere else.)
Sounds like I know what I’m doing, LOL! But not quite. I need to actually sign up and start trying to create the site, etc.
Mm. I have to wonder at the value of that sort of managed wordpress install - you can get normal web hosting and use a one-click installer for very little additional trouble, and not be limited by whatever they decide you can and can’t do.
(In fact, it’s not even cheaper than their standard web hosting package)
On the other hand, if they can guarantee the configuration is tried-and-true for a certain brand of webpage and you don’t have to spend time futzing around with permissions and themes and plugins and keeping everything squared with the constant stream of WP updates? I could kinda see the benefits in that.
Then again, I’m tasked with maintaining the backend of our website for work even though someone else in the org gets paid to do it (and got the job over me–not that I’m bitter or anything). Sure, it’s never more than 5-10 minutes a week of applying updates and making sure nothing huge breaks, but if that’s not your passion in life, I can definitely understand wanting to evade the hassle.
Same as with the earlier recco about hosting/domain co-purchase. I’m generally in agreement with you about it being risky, but if you’re trying to keep everything as simple as possible and keep all your services under a single umbrella, I can understand that there is AN appeal to it.
Eh - Wordpress comes with it’s own internal updater for itself and it’s plugins. It’s remarkably hassle-free, and the second you want a plugin for a “wordpress hosted” site which isn’t, say, on their whitelist you’ve got a problem.
(Heck, I had to help someone migrate away from a “wordpress hosting” site a few months ago because he wanted to use a theme with a static front page and they didn’t allow it, and we had to resort to a solicitor’s letter to make them cough up a database. I wish I could name the villains ><)
And well, domain hosting is such a simple service I’d rather keep it separate and avoid the hassles if you do need to move.
Ok. The semantics still confuse me a bit. When you talk about keeping the domain hosting separate, what does that mean? Separate from what? For example, I’m leaning to Arvixe for my web site hosting. Are you saying it’s better not to purchase my domain from them? Say, powerparents.com? I’m not sure why.
As for the managed Wordpress hosting they and others offer, again, I’m not sure I get the downside. I have read in various places examples of the upside, but I haven’t really read people talking about their bad experiences with it (at least for the places I’m considering. )
I’m agnostic about all of this - I’m in it for the easiest and best way to host podcasts and support followers.