Sunday, September 21, 2008

Podcasting Lessons

Every time I think I’m getting proficient on the computer, I run into something that absolutely stumps me. So it is with podcasting, which is beginning to drive me absolutely crazy.

I probably wouldn't have undertaken it at all if I hadn’t bought a new Mac and signed up for the $99 offer of a lifetime — Apple’s one-to-one training program. Along with individual training sessions, I received a little box of tiny manuals on topics to cover. After the Mac genius solved all my software problems; got my mail program to work; and taught me iPhoto, iPod, and iChat, it was time for Garage Band.

Garage band is mostly about making music, but it has other functions, as well. One of them is recording audio or video podcasts. Now that I’m blog savvy, I decided it was time to enter the world of podcasting.

Let me say out the outset that I am not Garage Band-literate or intuitive. It’s pretty much a mystery to me, despite four of one-to-one sessions on the subject and a book that a third grader could understand. After many false starts, I have managed to record one so far, but the second one isn’t going too well. In fact, I’ve recorded it five or six times and thrown it in the trash every time. While I know there are ways to split the recording, rerecord corrections, get rid of the mistakes, and drop in the new material, I can’t seem to do any of those things.

Frustration doesn’t even begin to describe my feelings on this subject. I want to scream and throw the microphone across the room (yes, of course, I bought a microphone). But wait. Let’s think this through. Since the late eighties, when I got my first computer — an Osborne — I have learned three different word processing programs, Excel, Photoshop, Quark Xpress and InDesign, several versions of Photoshop, Illustrator, Acrobat, two website design programs, time and billing, and mind-mapping. I’ve designed my own website, set up my blog, and become a fixture on on-line article sites.

In short, I am no cyber-slouch … except for this one elusive, little skill. I don’t understand it, and neither do my one-to-one trainers. But failure is not an option here, so back I go this week to revisit what we did last week. I wonder if five sessions on podcasting are some sort of a record.


Kim said...

Well, at least you know what a podcast is - you've got me there! My daughter is in charge of setting one up this year for the school newspaper, and I have absolutely no idea what she is talking about. You continue to amaze me, and I am positive that you will soon have this mastered!