It's lunchtime at the PodcastUK con, and I have managed to find a little corner to write out a blogpost. I'm thinking that it would be a good idea to write this now, as there is a plan for a reasonable amount of (non-binge) drinking later in the evening.
The first thing that goes when I drink is my memory, then my inhibitions, then my legs… I don't intent to lose any of these things, but my memory of recent events does tend to disappear after about half a pint of weak beer.
Because it is lunch, the most important thing is the observation that while the food is very nice looking (strange cuts of meat, lopsided rolls, bits of melon, and something that resembles a cold shish-kebab), none of it is hot. The room the talks are taking place in are air conditioned, so I'm also a bit cold.
I've just come back from a pizza run. Never underestimate the ability of ambulance people to find hot food and caffeine, it's all part of our special training.
The location itself (posh hotel in the middle of London) lends the event some serious gravitas, although I dread to think how much it cost to hire, especially for something that in reality is quite a small meeting. The professionalism of this event is great, and although this is the first European Podcasting convention – it only adds to the impression that podcasting is a professional and useful part of the internet.
The actual talks have been very interesting, although I feel like a bit of a fraud being here. So far my podcasting career has been limited to readings of my posts, and one 'proto-cast'. Needless to say, the enthusiasm of the people here means that it is inevitable that I shall start a more regular podcast. Keep your ears open later in the week.
I was a bit late (Hey! I needed a bit of a lay-in in bed), and I arrived half way through a talk by a man from the BBC.
The fellow from the BBC (Chris Kimber, head of interactive radio) was interesting (despite a slightly embarrassing audio failure, that left his talk without example podcasts). It appears that the BBC are very interested in how podcasts are shaping up, how they can complement their broadcast programmed, and how it might be possible that podcasting replaces the more traditional hospital radio route of getting into radio presenting.
There was another talk by Neville Hobson of 'for immediate release’, about how podcasting has been embraced by a wide range of business, and he has given me a few ideas that I'm going to suggest to 'important people' in 'high up places'.
There was then a very short break for coffee, where other people 'networked', something I thankfully don't have to do – I think I'm secure in my job, and I try to avoid new 'clients' as much as possible. I keep going to these things and I always feel out of place that I’m not trying to drum up new business.
Then a talk by the creator of The Tartan Podcast (highlighting unsigned Scottish bands) about a good way to get podcast safe music into your 'cast. Very interesting, very useful and I walked away with a free CD of an up and coming Scottish band.
Then a talk by a journalist lecturer, who suggested some uses of podcasting to educate and inform remedial children and community nurses ( very interesting to hear how both groups have similar problems in receiving and retaining information).
Then lunch, which brings me up to this point in the post. The rest of this post may well be written 24 hours later and after the effects of alcohol – see if you can spot the difference.
Richard Vobes show which was performed and recorded live for us, interesting to see it put together, but the way he puts on a ‘wacky’ radio voice makes me want to stab small animals. I’ve never heard his podcast, and I doubt I ever will. (especially because he is charging for it).
James Cridland from Virgin radio did very well against a couple of people who just didn’t think that he ‘got podcasting’. From what I can remember of his talk, it was actually pretty well thought out, but I don’t think that the Virgin radio ‘cast is as popular as he may think it is.
More coffee, another two Red Bulls before Paul Nicholls gave pretty much the same talk I gave at Opentech. However he is a lawyer, so I shall bow to his knowledge. Interestingly he offered free legal advice in the field of Podcasting and libel. One name for the address book then…
I can’t remember much else, apart from another unfunny live podcast from Simulacrum, and a small presentation from the sponsors Be who are offering 24Meg Broadband.
Then I found myself in a pub with a load of great people, even though one of them dragged me away from a Steakhouse and into a fancy Japanese restaurant. But I like steak…
Ambulance stuff tomorrow, and no, I’m not spending all my time in World of Warcraft, or in City of Heroes.
Posted much later than it was written – ambulance stuff tomorrow