You’ve heard of podcasting, right? If not, take a look at the Swank Life home page and you’ll find 28 episodes of the Swank Life Show ready for immediate consumption. For the obscenely out of touch dude – which we doubt anyone reading THIS website is – a podcast is simply an audio file you download to your MP3 player and listen any time you want. There are thousands of podcasts out there on about any topic you can think of. For a comparison, think of it as talk radio listened to on your schedule.
But the real question is how can podcasting help your dating life. Regular readers know how we’re always stressing the importance of being a modern day Renaissance Man and it’s hard to think of anything swankier than having your own podcast. Think of it as the ultimate pickup line. “Hey, baby, have you heard my podcast?” Maybe you could work it into the conversation more subtly than that, but you get the idea. We’ve included a simple equation below if needed.
You + Podcast = Incredibly High Swank Quotient
Maybe you don’t realize how easy it is to create, produce, and upload a podcast to the world. A devoted beginning podcaster could have his first episode sitting there nice and fresh on iTunes within a few days at the longest. The following are the bare necessities to create podcast audio files. By the way, though you surely can spend thousands of dollars buying all the latest and greatest equipment and software, it’s certainly not necessary. Stripped down to its simplest form, the podcasting process is three simple steps.
1. Record audio and convert it to download-friendly format, which is MP3.
2. Create a simple but specialized text file to bundle with the audio. We call this the RSS feed.
3. Upload it all.
Got all that? Here’s what else you need. We’re assuming you know that a computer capable of recording audio signals is required, as is a broadband Internet connection. Technically, you could record and upload a podcast with a dial-up connection but we implore you to not even try. Frustrating to the maximum.
There’s a good chance your computer already has a built-in microphone, though we suggest you spring for the twenty bucks it costs to get cheap one from Radio Shack or Wal-Mart. For even more convenience, buy a headset/microphone combo. To be blunt, the built-in mic on most computers produces pretty crappy quality.
While audio geeks might be salivating at the idea of throwing down a few hundred bucks for GarageBand or some other high-dollar bit of software, the truly swanky guy knows that he can go to http://audacity.sourceforge.net and grab a copy of Audacity, an open source FREE software used by a whole bunch of podcasters to create amazing shows. Don’t let the price tag fool you. This is primo stuff. Don’t forget to also grab a copy of the MP3 encoder that goes with it (known as LAME). You need it to covert the raw audio file to MP3 format.
As far as software and equipment, that’s all you need to get your podcast going. At some point along the way you’ll have to get a domain and hosting package, then install WordPress on it. This will act as the online home base for your podcast and is where you’ll upload show notes and a direct link to the audio file. For a one-size-fits-all solution to hosting and all the technical details associated with podcasting, you might choose to employ the services of a website like LibSyn (Liberated Syndication at www.libsyn.com). They have packages starting as low as five bucks a month for the beginning podcaster.
The last question remaining is what are you going to podcast about? Make sure it’s a topic worthy of a swanky guy like you, always keeping in mind that your ultimate goal is to impress the ladies. With that slim guidance in mind, put that brain of yours to work. Remember though, If you’re serious at all about your podcast, and it’s not simply a one-off fling, pick something you have a passion for and wouldn’t mind spending a hefty amount of time with over the next five years. That leaves out weasel grooming and mating habits of the flying saltwater squirrel.
Here’s a hint. The ladies are always impressed with a well-read guy. Bonus points if he’s into poetry. Don’t ask us. We didn’t make the rules, but how swanky would it be if you started a poetry analysis blog?
The Swank Life Team
Flickr / Jeronimo Palacios