Interviewed by Podcast411

Rob over at Podast411.com interviewed me for his show about Audio Activism, PodcasterCon , and a few other things. Here’s the link to the interview mp3. You can use my podcast feed to get it too. [with Rob’s permission of course] One of my favorite parts of Podcast411 are all the podcasting HowTos and links to tutorials. My favorite question Rob asked me was “What was you first computer?” This took me back many years and sorta set my life in perspective. BTW… my first computer was a Apple II GS.

More Politicians Podcasting ?

Taegan Goddard’s blog entry Political Podcasts got me thinking. I know John Edwards has podcast, but what about other politicians? After a google search I came up with this BBC article about political podcasts. Seems it ain’t just the Dems getting into it. Now the GOP (Grand Old Party to ya’ll heathens. ;D ) Republicans are podcasting. When the rulers start using new tech, like podcasting, the OFFICIAL herald of mainstream adoption is sounded. All of ya’ll podcasters are saying, “Like no DUH!” Am I right?!?

Podcasting the Mobile Media Conference in LA

Wow… I’ve been given a fellowship to attend the Mobile Media Conference, Media Opportunities and Strategies for the Mobile, Broadband Generation on April 26 – April 29, 2005 in Los Angeles. I will be acting as a program reporter. This fellowship covers all of my travel, lodging, and event registration expenses. Good thing… ’cause I’m a broke VISTA. ๐Ÿ™‚

Here is a bit of info about the event from mediacenter.org:
“The Media Center 2005 Mobile Media conference will explore a range of topics examining all aspects of wireless adoption: how to do it, what the benefits will be and how it affects the end user. This is a hands-on, interactive event that will include one-on-one interviews, workshops, issue-driven discussion and focused, high-impact case studies รขโ‚ฌโ€œ all with intense attendee participation. ”

This even is sponsored by The Media Center at the American Press Institute. They have a cool blog called MORPH that I’ve been reading for quite awhile. Lots of cool grassroots journalism and new media stuff there.

GET READY! There’s going to be some interesting live blogging and podcasts coming at ya from sunny LA. Let’s hope it doesn’t rain!

Understanding poverty in North Carolina

WUNC, our state Public Radio station, is running a two week series about poverty in North Carolina called – surprise – North Carolina Voices : Understanding Poverty.

A lot of it focuses on the North Carolina Fund. From the WUNC website: “The North Carolina Fund was an effort to fight poverty across the state. Governor Terry Sanford established the Fund in 1963 with $9.5 million in grants…”

The classic style of this radio documentary was fantastic! I was very impressed by it and learned a bunch about the history of North Carolina. It was also very telling about relationships between races and classes in North Carolina.

My only real concern was how similar the topic is to John Edwards recently becoming director of the Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity at the University of North Carolina. Is the Center a rebirth of the North Carolina Fund in the ’60s? Happy coincidence or blatant promotion? Either way having more awareness about history and poverty that still exists in NC is a good thing. Especially letting people know the VITAL importance of programs that help folks around the state. The key to me is how this is conducted. How can we let folks know that being an activist is not a bad thing? That encouraging poorer citizens of NC to be poltically active is not a bad thing. I mention this because of the part of the WUNC documentary that mentions the heat that the NC Fund received for the poltical activism that people associated with it were invovled in.

This year much of my enjoyment of our state public radio programing, and NPR in general, was destroyed by WUNC reckless attitude towards a woman’s right to choose. (See the OrangePolitics.org thread Censorship at WUNC for more info.) This one documenatary piece has restored my respect for our statewide Public Radio station. If your reading my blog WUNC… what you’re doing is working! You’re making positive change!

Something seems to have changed over at WUNC besides their logo. Isn’t the name North Carolina Public Radio new? Or are they just using it more often?

As long as WUNC keeps producing and broadcasting documentaries with this HIGH QUALITY content and educational value I will continue to listen.

A communique from Unitarian Jihad

Jon Carroll, of the San Francisco Chronical, claims to have received an email “via an anonymous spam remailer” from a group calling itself Unitarian Jihad. Here is an excerpt:

“Greetings to the Imprisoned Citizens of the United States! Too long has your attention been waylaid by the bright baubles of extremist thought. Too long have fundamentalist yahoos of all religions (except Buddhism — 14-5 vote, no abstentions, fundamentalism subcommittee) made your head hurt. Too long have you been buffeted by angry people who think that God talks to them. You have a right to your moderation! You have the power to be calm! We will use the IED of truth to explode the SUV of dogmatic expression! ”

Man, if only this wasn’t a creative and well written joke.

Sin City is the mirror of America

Quite a few years ago I decided that I didn’t have to agree with every aspect of art to enjoy it. At the time I was thinking about the lyrics of the death metal band Slayer. I will never forget seeing them live and being blown away. Yet every time I read their lyrics I wondered why they chose those words..

To me this was a valuable lesson in aesthetics. There is art in many things. So many of us see only artfulness in the pretty and gorgeous. In a way this is much easier. Enjoying that which makes us happy is simpler than that which makes us disgusted. Intellectual concepts come in weird packages.

Frank Miller, the creator of the original Sin City graphic novels and codirector of the new movie, is my favorite illustrator of the comic world. His formal style of drawing is as expressive as any painter through out time. His quality isn’t so odd in the fine art world but a jewel in the pop culture pages of comic books.

I have many of the Sin City series of graphic novels. I even have several comic books he did the covers for. His Dark Knight Bat Man is quintessential. So after seeing the live action recreation of the Sin City graphic novels I am disgust at what it showed me.

Is this because I am older than when I found the graphic novels and sat down with them to read not getting up until I was done? Am I more sensitive to the death so often depicted in Frank Miller’s illustrations? Have I seen more violence with my own eyes? Yes and No.

Now I really find a great value in looking in the mirror of America that Frank Miller holds up for us all. This reflection was also created by other great literary and film noir creators. My country was founded on lies, theft, greed, and death. Why shouldn’t our art show us this horror? How could generations hundreds of years later not be sadistically intertwined and enthralled by this gore?

There really is nothing so strange as being repelled and attracted to the images that fly by so beautifully in Sin City the movie. I’m grateful that Frank Miller made it. Now I understand a bit more how a country like the United States could have ended up like it has.

Voice Recorder study by Geekcorps Mali

GeekCorps Mali volunteer Josh Borts wrote this pdf about using a USB enabled flash devices with a mic-in to record audio in the field. He also recommends using Mandrake Linux (user friendly Linux distro) and Audacity (great free audio editing software) to edit and prepare the audio for local radio stations. Cool idea! I’ve been having a hard time finding one of these USB flash audio recorders with a mic-in. Most of them have line-in only.