Sunday, November 20, 2005
New Media Picks Of The Week: Sharewood Picnic 27
Sharewood Picnic is Robin Good's weekly basket of goods, tools and services found in the last week. Including several newly-released resources, these little gems can help you better understand and utilize the independent publishing revolution we are witnessing.
Photo credit: Berkeley Robinson
You are encouraged to visit the sites and test these new products and services. They are all powerful digital weapons, and this week's list contains many podcast-related resources.
- Personalized podcast news channels
- Network for podcasters and musicians
- Central location for all things podcasting
- All-in-one podcast search and ping service
- Notification service for new podcast content
- Applet for determining the hypothetical monetary value of a blog
- Browser add-on that allows you to save media found on the net easily
- Search for web contend available under a Creative Commons license (Google-based)
- New free wiki platform
- Social networking community based on FOAF (friend-of-a-friend)
- Website validation and accessibility tools available from a single site
PodcasterNews is a site that lets users create customized channels of news podcasts. PCN offers several topic-specific or region-oriented podcasts and users subscribe to the content they want, creating a personalized group of podcasts delivered to their aggregator each day. Users can also listen directly to the podcasts from the PCN site. With categories ranging from business news to sports to Hawaii-related news, PCN offers several three to five minute podcasts diverse enough to appeal to almost anyone. Although PCN is new and their offered content is sparse, they are currently looking for contributors. Creating an account is free.
- PodSafe Music
PodSafe Music Network is a site where musicians and podcasters come together. Through PodSafe, artists without restrictions from the RIAA, ASCAP, or record labels can make their music available to podcasters, who are then free to use the music without fear infringing on copyrights. PodSafe is a great way for music podcasters to find unrestricted material for their shows and for unsigned artists to get exposure. The network provides a searchable database of musicians and podcasters that allows easy networking, and is also a useful resource for music fans looking for new music or music-related podcasts. It is also possible to download and listen to many music-related podcasts directly from the site. PodSafe is free to join.
- Podcast Empire
Podcast Empire is a central location for podcast-related information. Including a directory, an informational blog, reviews, forums, how-to's, tips and more, Podcast Empire has almost everything about podcasts, except a podcast of its own (the creators say they ran out of things to say). Boasting a huge directory, Podcast Empire indexes nearly 1100 podcasts in more than 25 categories. Free to use.
AllPodcasts is an all-in-one podcast search and ping service that polls podcast feeds, caches the information and makes it searchable. Created by OpinionatedGeek, users can use AllPodcasts to search for specific podcast feeds, categories or podcast listings, while podcasters can use AllPodcasts' ping service to notify directories like Odeo, BlogDigger and others of updated content. Podcasters can add their content for free and the site is free for anyone to use.
- Fresh Podcasts
FreshPodcasts is a service that delivers the latest podcast content to users. Podcasters can submit their podcast to FreshPodcasts easily, and anyone can browse the site for new content or use it to find new podcasts to listen to. Free to use.
- How much is your blog worth?
The Business Opportunities Weblog created this applet that assesses a weblog's hypothetical value as determined by using reference value from the Jason Calacanis sales of Weblogs Inc. to AOL and calculated on the number of links that a blog receives from the outside. According to this applet this site, MasterNewMedia.org is presently worth over $ 850,000. The applet was inspired by Tristan Louis's research into the AOL-Weblogs, Inc. deal, estimated to be $25 - $40 (€21 - €34) million. Louis' research found that for the vast number of links on Weblogs Inc, the creators received between $565 and $903 (€484 and €773) per link to their site. This applet uses Technorati's API to apply that ratio to any blog. Although Louis said he doesn't know "if those values are based on any real rationale...it's nice to dream up the value of one's blog based on this." Free and fun to use.
Magpie is a Firefox add-on for bulk-downloading of media files. Designed by Firefox developer Ben Goodger, Magpie makes downloading .mp3, .jpg, .wma and other media files easier, especially for people who download multiple media files simultaneously. The tool lets users specify which file extensions to download, and with one click and a keyboard shortcut Magpie will automatically download all the files with that extension on any selected web page. Magpie is available as a free download.
- Google Advanced Search Enables CC-Customized Searching
Now it is finally possible to search for re-usable content directly from the major search engine: Google. Usage rights specifications from Creative Commons have now been included in the advanced Google search options. Users can now search exclusively for Google results that are "free to use or share," "free to use or share, even commercially," "free to use, share or modify," or "free to use, share or modify, even commercially." The Creative Commons Google search works like any other Google search and is completely free to use.
Schtuff is a new free wiki platform available to anyone. The service makes it easy to set up and use a wiki page and integrates tagging and image cataloguing features. Schtuff provides users with three wiki spaces with an integrated storage space of 200 MB, a search facility, RSS notification, document history and revision capabilities. Users can also use Schtuff to set up a blog, and can allow unlimited authors to collaborate on the wiki.
Mooble is a Flash-based social networking community similar to Facebook or Friendster. The community lets users create a customized page complete with personal info, photos, a blog, and friend list. Mooble users can then browse others' lists for members with similar interests, allowing them to connect with other Mooble users like they would in the real world: through friends of friends. Mooble supports text chat and instant messaging and will soon allow voice and video chat as well. The network is also accessible via mobile phones, enabling users to upload photos and browse the site directly from their phone or mobile communication devices. Free to join.
- Site Check
Site Check is a service from UITest.com that allows you to use a useful set of website accessibility tools and validators from a one unique location instead of needing to access these services by having to go to different web sites. Users just enter a URL into Site Check and the service presents multiple links to services that allow to:
a) immediately check the HTML markup of any web site via the official W3C validator,
b) measure the load time of any web page through WebsiteOptimization.com,
c) check Google view of any site through Poodle,
UItest is completely free to use.