Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Instant Podcasting with Odiogo

I finally got around to testing the Odiogo automated podcasting system (they call it "podiocasting") on this blog-- you may have noticed the "Listen Now" buttons for each post. Try them out and let me know your impressions!

I have been very impressed with the ease of setup for Odiogo: just set up an account, incorporate the provided javascript code onto your site, and it's done. Odiogo's text to speech system works quickly to produce sound files and store them in Odiogo-land, and the podcasting feature works flawlessly in my testing. Shortly after I save a post, the feed appears on my podcast receiver-of-choice (Juice). Nothing to do after initial setup, it's all automatic.

The "voice" is clear enough to understand, and better than most I've heard-- better than the MS Reader voice, for example. The Odiogo voice also skips reading out the punctuation marks, something I've always found distracting in other text-to-speech systems.

I have noticed that listening to the posts out loud is very different than reading them.
It's the difference between writing an essay and writing a speech-- it's possible that this distinction will go away as this kind of technology improves and becomes more widespread.

The company promotes this technology as a way to catch up on blog reading via podcasting while commuting, exercising, etc. Based on my experience, I think they're onto something-- though I'm thankful my commute (long as it is) is not long enough to listen to all my feeds being read!

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The.Effing.Librarian said...

I heard it on your site and I think it sounds "natural." You use some groovy stuff on your site.

Roger Hiles said...

I like it too. Thanks for the compliment on the blog-- it's great to have a low-stress place to test out new stuff.

The.Effing.Librarian said...

how did you get your odiogo to not interfere with snap? when I installed the default odio widget, it blocked my snap images from loading (in the main story frames)...was the solution in the odio faq?

Roger Hiles said...

It *does* seem to conflict with Snap on links in the body of the post, but not elsewhere on the site. Some javascript conflict no doubt.

I'm on vacation and have limited computer access, but I'll check further when I get back. Let me know if you find anything.

The.Effing.Librarian said...

I moved the odiogo widget to the bottom of the list and now it doesn't interfere with snap previews in the body...I guess the snap script needs to load before the odio script?