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Free Podcasting Workshop @ the Apple Store October 24, 2006

Posted by Jeff in Podcast Instruction, Podcasting.
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I went to the Apple Store for a workshop on podcasting. The summary on the website said:

“Podcasting” is one of the hottest buzzwords on the Internet. But what is it all about? Learn more about podcasting and how to create your own podcast. With the podcast recording studio in GarageBand and the podcast templates in iWeb, how can you go wrong?

True! GaragBand and iWeb make for quick and easy podcasting and everyone knows they’re awesome. I’m writing today to say that the workshop… however… is not.

I’ve been attending different podcasting classes around town to see what they’re like, and I figured what better way to learn about podcasting than to attend the Apple Store workshop. It was supposed to start at 12noon and go until 1pm. I got there at 11:45, and inquired from an Apple dude about it. He said “I’m not sure who’s doing that,” and promptly dissappeared into the back room. A few minutes later he came back out with a perplexed look on his face; giving me a nod as if to say “I’m still not sure… but I’ve got it handled.”

Another gentlemen walked into the store with a notebook under his arm, went to the counter and inquired about the class. The same thing happened until my guy queried his guy and they realized that they were both doing the same thing… looking for the person that was going to teach the workshop. They designated one person to look to see who it would be, and again gave us the nod.

At about 12:15, a Apple dudette came over to us and said “I will be teaching you’re workshop.” She led us to one of the machines, took about 15 minutes to show us how to click through the podcasting features of GarageBand and publish it through iWeb, but seemed pretty pre-occupied with what was going on in the rest of the store. I think it was her first time teaching the workshop. Why do I think that? Maybe because she said “this is my first time teaching this workshop.”

Get to the point Jeff! Okay, the guy that attended with me left knowing nothing more about podcasting and more confused about the software than when he walked in. He doesn’t know any more about podcasting than before. He was about to buy a mac for the GarageBand and podcasting capabilities, and just needed a lesson. Luckily, I caught him as he was leaving and we had an intelligent conversation about his needs, and I was able to give him some pointers.

About the workshop:

  • Apple wants to put on a workshop about podcasting – great!
  • They show off GarageBand and iWeb during it – good.
  • They make it seem like you need an ipod and a mac to podcast – not good.
  • The ‘instructor’ didn’t know what she was doing (ex. no knowledge of how to create chapters or enhanced podcasts, only audio) – bad!

Relating back to my post from yesterday, I think this workshop hurts the education of the population about podcasting. To be fair, I should go back a couple more times, get a different instructor, do a comparison, etc… maybe even hit different stores to see if there’s a difference. I asked if there was a course that she took to be able to teach this and she said that there wasn’t. “It’s so easy to do with GarageBand and iWeb that there’s no course really needed.”

So, my quest for podcasting instruction has started. Tomorrow, I’ll tell you about another free course that I just took.

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