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October 2004

Who invented podcasting

SCRIPTING -- Dave Winer questions the origins of podcasting by pointing to comments and discussion related to himself and Adam Curry. His concerns also point to the way history is made and revised at internet speed. Let the record show that Harold Gilchrist was audioblogging well before "podcasting" was coined. And Audible enjoyed a brisk trade in downloadable audiobooks that I first saw in use on Amtrak in 2001. One thing for certain, podcasting did not start at BoingBoing because anyone searching that gigormously popular site will discover that its search engine knows "nothing of this 'podcasting' of which you speak. Despite the enormous breadth, depth and obscurity of the Boing Boing posts over the years, your oddball query has us stumped. Have you considered the possibility that 'podcasting' is a nonsense phrase that is the product of your fevered imagination? Cos that's my bet."

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Halloween Wind-up

KILKENNY -- I used to carry pictures of the homes I lived in when traveling back through the 15 different communities that served as my home throughout the US. I started thinking about encountering the current residents of those homes when reading a humourous Byrd Report on the run-up to Halloween. What a way to wind up a homeowner--tell them you know the ghost in their house. From the Byrd Notes version of a drive-by visitor:

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Tiny Flores Man

Flores SkullA SPECIES OF tiny human has been discovered, which lived on the remote Indonesian island of Flores just 18,000 years ago. Researchers have so far unearthed remains from eight individuals who were just one metre tall, with grapefruit-sized skulls. These astonishing little people, nicknamed 'hobbits', made tools, hunted tiny elephants and lived at the same time as modern humans who were colonizing the area.

The find has excited researchers with its implications - if unexpected branches of humanity are still being found today, and lived so recently, then who knows what else might be out there? The species' diminutive stature indicates that humans are subject to the same evolutionary forces that made other mammals shrink to dwarf size when in genetic isolation and under ecological pressure, such as on an island with limited resources.

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Eminem's New Video Lyrics

Slim GlassesYAHOO -- Searching for Eminem's controversial new agitprop video? Think of poor Gavin Sheridan who is getting buffeted with 12 gigs a month of transfer data, much of it related to the rapper of our time. Then point your eyes to Singing Fish where the hordes have pushed Eminem to the top of the digital video search charts.

Yahoo reports "the rapper's new anti-Bush video Mosh is up 1,239 percent in search. Eminem himself is up 37% in terms of search engine queries. The video is quality animation, expressing very direct criticism of President Bush. It could earn the rapper a visit from the FBI because the vdieo makes Bush a shooting target. But this video has legs. It should be getting primetime play in front of a white bread American public going blind from Fox News and the pseudo-religious waffle that emerges with an election pitch. There is no way anyone who watches "Mosh" can stereotype Eminem as an inane, uneducated rant case. This is required viewing on our multimedia degree course in Tipperary Institute.

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Deluged but Running

UNDERWAY -- The Irish countryside is soaking wet which means electric signals on mainline train routes are malfunctioning, effectively cutting off Waterford rail service to Dublin. That means I have greater seat selection when boarding in Kilkenny and more time to discover the Friday papers where this blog gets mentioned in The Irish Times

Truth be told, this blog is a second generation survivor that has borrowed from inspiration and examples of those who have gone before. An entire generation of Irish bloggers mashed up cyberspace using LiveJournal just after we deemed ourselves Y2K-compliant. I marveled at college students who kept bashing away with musings about anything under the sun. That intrigued me because I wanted to encourage first-year students to write and I felt I had discovered a natural channel where they could express themselves in a self-motivated way. I think that psychology works and now we have woven blogging into education at Tipperary Institute. Different samples of student writing appear in our Sunny Southeast and Media Studies Classroom blogs. Both will evolve with student-designed identities in 2005.

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John Peel MP3 Collection

RADIO PLUS -- Check out free and legal MP3 downloads of songs that John Peel featured on his Radio 1 show recently. All these tracks have been made made available by the bands or record labels themselves. They don't involve Kazaa or anonymous postings to alt.binaries.sounds or anything like that. The idea is that if you like the track, you'll buy some of their records.

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iPod Photo

WE KNEW THE iPod Photo was coming because Toshiba was having problems getting the 60 GB hard drives.

Now that it's out on the market, multimedia students can start trawling the used iPod market for last-generation iPods. The new iPod Photo comes in two sizes: a 40GB model, available for $499, and a 60GB model that sells for $599. Both feature a crisp LCD display that lets you see your photos in 65,536 colours. Its backlighting looks to be as good as the Sony Clie's. Like its big brother, iPod Photo features the touch-sensitive Apple Click Wheel that quickly navigates iPod Photo’s new colour menu. Spin the wheel to Music, and you can scroll effortlessly through dozens of playlists, hundreds of albums or thousand of songs.

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Keyhole Review

CharlestonKEYHOLE -- I just burned away an hour of browsing time searching Keyhole for several of my former Stateside addresses. It not only found the addresses, but it returned satellite images of the aircraft I flew as well. I used the program to fly over Ireland. It found roads and terrain features and named all the towns in Irish. Then I started typing in all the LAT/LONG coordinates that were on "Enemy of the State" because I was watching that program at the same time. The NSA satellites are faster than Keyhole's imagery but I know the NSA won't license that speedy imagery to punters.

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