Monday, April 18, 2011

From Text to Voice: Blog Talk Radio

In a former life (not metaphysically, just a really long time ago) I had some involvement with some internet radio shows. The first one was for an upstart "dot-com" in Anderson, Indiana. LocalWeb4U was branching out into all sorts of spaces and just happened to have captured a few talented local radio personalities. In the process of working for them and setting up the streaming verison of "On the Edge", I learned a lot.

While playing a sort of stunt that was half prank and half "I-bet-I-can" moment, I interviewed someone over the phone that we had picked out from an article read on slashdot. While interviewing this person seemed fun enough, I streamed it over the web using a custom-built VB6 application I wrote against Windows Media Services. The other guys I worked with at the time were having a blast with me, so we decided to give our own show ideas a go.

Within the week, we had a web page up and a show started called, appropriately enough, "The Crappy Show." It consisted of celebrity news, general commentary, and a mashup of free and self-made software. While it wasn't much, we had a great time putting it together.

As many creative pieces are destined to do, the show took up too much time and interferred with people's lives more than they would have liked. Hey, we were 20-somethings with things to do. So, when that show fell apart, it was replaced with a new one about 6 months later. This new show, "Dead Air," was an awesome show that was produced using TeamSpeak and was used in conjunction with servers and know-how provided by Radio NHCWX. Dan Plumlee and I had a real rythm and discussed all sorts of paranormal topics. Streamlining the group to 2 people allwoed us much more flexibility and freedom that we hadn't enjoyed previously.

Again, personal matters got in the way and the show had to be placed on haitus - a move that would accidentally become permanent. Since then, I always thought back on those days longingly, but spent what time I could devote to writing some blog articles and toiling away at development.

Back to the Future
Then, several months ago, Dan Plumlee sent me a link to a site he had come across - Blog Talk Radio. It had all the makings of the "best of" technologies that Dan and I had always discussed - utilizing the most primitive technologies for conencting geographically dispersed individuals. Namely: the phone. The company allows for free accounts that feature 30 minutes per day of access to a great web-based switchboard, regular scheduling, up to 5 concurrent callers, and more. If you haven't already, definitely check them out.

So, after a few sputters and false-starts, I have launched this very blog (Matt's Nerd Werd) into a talk radio platform using the Blog Talk Radio system. You can find me and other contributors (including Dan Plumlee) on periodically and always check out our archived shows at Look for my regular schedule to post and feel free to call in during the show for a live discussion. We will be covering the same sort of topics covered here: gaming, development, gadgets, and general technology.

Look forward to hearing from you!

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