Some years ago, many schools from the Tonbridge cluster took part in a Podcasting project.
Softease Podium, as it was known back then, was the software of choice, as it offered an all in one recording, editing and publishing solution. It was (and still is) very easy to use.
In many ways the software proved itself to be very good. The pupils took to it very quickly, with minimal training. From their point of view the biggest issue in general use was the inability to amplify recordings within Podium that had been recorded a bit quietly.
The most significant issue though was the number of times Podium corrupted the project file – something that happened particularly regularly in one of the supported schools that had a flaky wireless connection. Without a backup, some schools were left to start from scratch – complete with a new RSS feed address for the Podcast as this was allocated at the time of first creating the file. One of the reasons the file was corrupting was the fact that it was so large. All episodes were contained within one file. This grew and grew as more audio was added until it made the file handling almost impossible.
When used for individual episodes that are not published directly from Podium this is not an issue.
While at BETT this year I picked up the install CD for the update to the version that we have at my school. This will enable the children to have multi track recordings and slightly more control over the recording levels. Once installed, I will train staff in how to use Podium to record individual Podcast episodes, export them and upload them to our Podcast section of the website: http://sussex-road.primarypodcast.com/
Lightbox Education, as the company producing Podium is now known, was demonstrating a new version of Podium – with video and slide show Podcasts. It looked quite a bit more mature than the older versions of Podium. The general process for recording and publishing is the same as before, but with the advantage of being able to sequence video clips and export them out as a Video Podcast file.
According to the representative that was demonstrating it to me, Podium handles files in the same way – with one large file for all episodes. Quite how this is going to perform across a network, I don’t know. The video version of Podium is a costed option, so we will be content with our newly acquired Podium v220.127.116.112.
If only they would sort out the file format and handling, it could be the ideal solution.