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Recently republished, written a few years ago.

Net casting (in recent years known as podcasting), started for me, way back in the 90s.

I first had a web domain back in the 90s which was an audio service catering for musicians, classical and jazz mostly, I used to record a variety of performances and make them available on the internet for download, and some of these were to “show-off” new violin builds for example, by way of comparative recordings, kind of like A/B recordings. Of course back then this was a fairly time-consuming process due to restrictive speed connections.

Around 2000 I started (edit: since sold this business) as a post-graduate research project, as distance learning school for music production, sound engineering, and immediately made recorded voice content avaliable for download and streaming. Most of this audio was me giving tutorials in the RealAudio format, on topics such as music production, mixing etc. Being RealAudio format meant listeners could stream fairly easily from the site, RealAudio would select the bandwidth setting automatically for the user. Incidentally these early streams are still available on the downloads section and are dated to autumn 2002!

Throughout the early 90’s I uploaded more and more audio content, including such things as drum samples, sound effects and complete 24 track recording studio sessions. I then started audio blogging, which saw me using the telephone as an audio-blogging tool, I also rolled this service out for students, which enabled them to blog their thoughts simply by using a telephone, this was very popular, was quite a buzz chatting into a cell phone back in 2003 and having the content appear on a site as an audio file.

It is since the addition of the enclosure tag in RSS feeds that the concept of “podcasting” (a misguided name, in my opinion) somewhat “popularised” the concept of internet audio and video, but in essence the only thing that had changed (albeit an excellent change) was that content could be downloaded automatically. The fact is that audio/video content had been cast over the net for many years before this.

Having been “waist-deep” in audio content over the web for a number of years I had always toyed with the idea of a “radio show” for sometime (I did a number of radio style streams back in 98/99), but it wasn’t until 2006 that I decided that perhaps a regular show might be damn good therapy for myself and provide added value to the site visitors. I’ve always been very keen to ensure clients and students have plenty of virtual community building tools, a distance learning school is all about a sense of something virtually powered, so AC Radio (formally AC Podcast) was born.

Since then I have also introduced some other audio casting services including a text to speech service on SLEDucating, and a soon to be active cast on Audana (both called podcasts, but yes I have issues with that). I also have pro-audio news converted to aggregated audio on AC.

Whilst Podcasting seems to be a current popular term I have now decided to come full circle and reject it, basically just using net cast, or radio, or stream, as to be frank 50% of my current listener’s just stream right off the websites, as they have for years. The other issue is that the word Podcasting is very confusing for non-tech people, (no pod needed). I’m not alone in thinking the term podcasting will be dropped in the future, I of course may be wrong, but Radio, or cast, is far more widespread and understandable which is my excuse for sticking with it, plus I may also actually broadcast some of my shows live, which gives some more validity to using the term radio, even though technically I’ll probably not use radio waves, in the electromagnetic sense.

Recently I have been capturing sound in my car and calling these Car Casts, as well as a new fun brain dump called the Running Man Radio show, where I take a portable recorder out on my road runs.