Audio on your blog (by request, but boring)

Tamar, who blogs at Only Connect –what an interesting and apt name for a blog — asked me in a comment about the bits of audio that I post on most of my Diving into the Past posts.

I noticed you have a podcast on the post. Could you outline key steps in making and uploading it? also, where you store the file? Perhaps you could write a post instead of answer just my email in case others would like to learn, too. thanks in advance, tamar

I’ll forgive you if you don’t read this as it is pretty boring 😉

This is what you need:

  1. A piece of (free) software, called Audacity, which I used for years, and which works on both Macs and PCs.
  2. If you want to turn your recordings into .mp3, you will also need to download Lamelib, which in spite of its name is indispensible
  3. A microphone
    My MacBookPro has an internal microphone, a pretty good one at that. As far as I know, all Macs have a mike, but sometimes not so good.
    On other computers, you’d have to purchase a mike. For just recording your voice, you wouldn’t need to buy anything expensive, the simpler the better.
  4. Depending on where you blog, you’ll need a place to upload your .mp3 files (audio files). If you blog with wordpress.org and are hosted somewhere, you can probably upload your mp3s. On wordpress.com, I bought the right to upload .mp3s and videos. There are also places where you can register for free and upload your .mp3, like odeo.com. I remember trying to record stuff there and finding the saving feature quite flaky. But it’s a good place to host your audio files.

Once you have everything ready, here is what you do

  1. Launch audacity, cut the outgoing sound, and turn the microphone sound as high as possible.

    Audacity settings

  2. Click the red button and start recording, speaking as close to the mike as you can. When you are done, click the yellow stop button.
  3. Go to the file menu and select Export as .mp3, name your file something.mp3.
    The first time you do this, Audacity will ask you to locate Lamelib that you have downloaded earlier. I leave it on the desktop, which makes it easy to find.
  4. When you are done, listen to your .mp3, to make sure it’s alright. I find that if it’s not, it’s much faster to start from scratch than to try and edit anything. Editing is really for people who know exactly what they are doing. 😉
  5. Upload to your blog or to your host, or to Odeo
  6. Make a link to the .mp3

    On WordPress.com, if you type [audio http://thelinktoyour.mp3] an audio reader will appear like this one
    Other platforms will probably function in different ways.

Anyway, these days, I do this in a much easier way. I have been using a piece of software that I just love: journler

journalr

It can be used for all sorts of purposes, it gathers my addresses, my urls, I type a lot of my blogs in there, and it’s a breeze to record an audio clip on it, by clicking the record button and then you make it an mp3 by clicking insert, and finally all you have to do is upload it where you want it to be. If I were so inclined, I could take a photo of myself with the iSight (webcam) on my mac, or I guess, record a conversation on iChat with one of you. But I only use about 10% of its abilities.
Now that’s for maccies only, as far as I know journler doesn’t work on Windows.

For those of you who blog at Blogger, here’s a demonstration of what you’re supposed to do.
I forgive you if you haven’t read this to the end.
Thanks, Tamar, for making me do this 😉 It took me forever, but I learnt a few things, like posting code on my blog.

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3 thoughts on “Audio on your blog (by request, but boring)

  1. Boy! This was good and useful, thank you. I bet old Mandarin meg would have been proud. I also found it very clear in the instructions, something most of us native English speakers are not even capable of. Well done.

  2. My first keyboard clicks this morning made a beeline to your blog. . . where you did not disappoint! THANK YOU for a post that is hardly boring. I am not gifted following the best directions (which yours are!) and when I run into a glitch, my head spins where others proceed undaunted to move forward. FORTUNATELY, I am a Mac user since the eighties (with a MacBook, now), and I live near an Apple Store where I can use the ProCare program (a steal at $99/year for 1:1 lessons on anything related to using the divine little device!). So, at my appointment in two weeks, I will ask my tutor to walk me through your steps. It appears that Journier, your second set of instructions, might be the best solution for me. Bless you for bothering to provide a rich post that not everyone would read or need. Yet what post is for everyone? I’ll surely keep you “posted.” Best!

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