Posted By RichC on March 25, 2009
I was talking to a friend about Miami University old WMUB’s “HelpDesk” radio program which has moved to the podcast only format now that the radio station is no longer broadcasting its own content (ended in February 2009). He asked me how to listen to the program now that it is no longer on the air since he was not familiar with receiving audio on the computer. My first suggestion was to use Apple‘s cross-platform iTunes software since it does a good job of collecting the latest podcasts from a variety of feeds — it is how I collect podcast on both my Mac desktop and Win7 Beta OS notebook.
BUT … listening for me is a different story since I’m often traveling and prefer using my Palm Treo with an earbud. Originally I synced files when I plugged my Treo into a USB cradle to back up my data (usually datebook, memos and contacts) with the Palm Desktop, but since I collect the podcast on my desktop computer and sync with my notebook without the podcasts, it doesn’t help. Instead, I use my desktop Mac to silently update the podcasts and make them available when I’m ready … so here is what I do:
- Use the free iTunes software installed on my desktop Mac which collects ‘subscribed to’ podcasts. (Window OS computers would work just the same with iTunes)
- I use Sugarsync to automatically — and immediately — back up my podcast folder which makes it available to all my devices online.
- On my Palm Treo I use the bookmarked m.sugarsync podcast directory to locate the podcast I’m wanting to listen too – click photo above for large image.
- With a single click I can begin listening with Kinoma, or save to my SD card and listen offline with pTunes – preferred since I can continue to take phone calls, etc.
This technique works well since I rarely listen to all the podcasts that collect on my desktop computer. It makes them available whereever I am with a couple clicks and the data rate isn’t all that challenging to stream.
- Hint: Before downloading large-ish MP3 files to your phone, be sure you have the proper data plan and that your device ‘stays alive’ during a long file download. (podcast files like Leo Laporte’s “Tech Guy” podcasts are well over 50 megs — BTW, he’s the best in the business.)