I had an interesting question asked of me the other day. The person asked me what “time-shifting” was. I really did think everyone knew what it was so I was a little taken by surprise. I guess I thought everyone was up on the technology of today. (Like I have been at least a few times before, I was mistaken.)
Time shifting is not a new thing. (In fact, I’ve alluded to it before, “What is Podcasting? My View… pt 1” and “What is Podcasting? My View … pt 2”.) It has been in use for many years now. In the “old days”, time-shifting was generally done with reel-to-reel tape machines, audio cassette recorders and video recorders (both Beta and VHS). It was a way of saving something of importance to be viewed, or listened to, at a more convenient time for the person desiring it.
Just like in the “old days”, podcasting can be used to record something to be listened to, or seen, at a later time. In the “old days” we used to record programs or events to audio, or video cassette, for listening to, or watching, in the near or distant future. Now, instead of cassettes we use our Tivos, ipods and mp3 players and any number of capturing devices for doing the same thing.
The interesting thing is (an this is one big plus) that this is done via the Internet and can also be on a subscription basis. This means it can be sent to us automatically. It also means that we don’t have to remember to record something we want to see or hear. If we don’t have the subscription and the recorded files are available, we can log on and download it to our portable listening device (computer, Ipod, mp3, etc) and listen to it at our convenience. Not only that, but we can listen to it over and over again, until we tire of it. Unless we delete it from our computer or other listening device, we can always load it up again and take it with us at a later date.
So, though it is true time-shifting is not new, there are many new and excting things about it that make it even more desirable than before. There is so much information available on a day to day basis that there is no way we can absorb it all in a normal fashion. When we find sources that we want to keep us informed about our interests, podcasting is most attractive. I believe, along with many others, that we are just entering into the wave of the future.
Podcasting, or downloadable files of many different kinds, will find their way into our daily lives on a regular basis and will become as commonplace as watching TV and listening to the radio. The biggest difference I see is that the consumer gets the right to choose as opposed to having to choose between the things that make the most money for the advertisers. I think that is a good thing . . . How about you?
See ya next time