Guest post from Brandon Crain:
Most tech guys own an MP3 player of some sort. I currently own three MP3 players, a Pocket PC, PSP, and iPod. The iPod is the only truly dedicated MP3 player of the three. The Pocket PC’s main purpose is an electronic organizer, and the PSP’s being a handheld game machine. Podcastrevolution
I don’t consider myself an expert on Podcasting or MP3 players, but I do get asked questions about Podcasting / MP3 players frequently. Hopefully this article will help shed some light on the confusing term, Podcasting. Podcasting is a method of publishing audio files via the Internet, allowing users to subscribe to a feed and receive new files automatically. Podcasting is still increasing in popularity, and has become more main stream toward the end of 2004. Podcasting is a confusing name because it implies you need an Apple iPod to listen to Podcast. That is not the case at all; you don’t even need an MP3 player for that matter. The main tools you will need to get in on this new audio revolution is a PC running some type of Operating System (Windows, Linux, OS X), Audio Software (Windows Media Player, Winamp, QuickTime), and an internet connection. If you own a computer, you are probably Podcast ready.

Podcasting is different from other types of online audio delivery because of its subscription model or RSS (Really Simple Syndication) file format. Podcasting enables users to create radio type shows & audio shows. Podcatching software can be used to periodically check for new downloads. Some Podcatching software is also able to synchronize Podcasts to portable MP3 Players. RSS can deliver video files, and since the newest version of iTunes supports video, I’m guessing a video iPod is in the works. iPodder is currently the Podcatching software I use, however there are many other good free ones to choose from. iPodderX is a good choice if you use a Mac.

iTunes is now jumping on the Podcasting revolution by integrating it into it’s newest version of iTunes, 4.9. I think Apple plans to keep this feature around too because iTunes offers thousands of podcast in it’s debut. However there are many other podcast to be found, and if you limit yourself to iTunes, you may miss out on some of the other great Podcast not listed with iTunes.

My goal here was to give a general explanation of Podcasting, and hopefully help you find the right software to start downloading your favorite Podcast. I love listening to my Podcast before I go to bed or on long road-trips. Check out some of my favorite Podcast links below, and get in on the new Podcasting revolution.

|| BCrain ||

Great Podcasting Resources
Podcasting Tools
Podcast Alley
iPodLounge

Podcatching Software
iPodder
iPodderX
iTunes

My Favorite Podcast
This Week in Tech
Diggnation
Engadget