Episode 5 of Lawful & Orderly: Special Visions Unit is now available for watching on YouTube! L&O:SVU is a weekly live-streaming police procedural set in a fantasy universe played (loosely) with D&D 5th Edition rules.
Jeremy raises some great points here that mirror some of my own worries about trying to summarize the discussions happening on the IndieWeb wiki and the many #indieweb chat channels.
When I had the initial idea to do an “audio edition” of This Week in the IndieWeb, the question of “who is the audience” seemed to have an obvious answer: folks who would read the newsletter but preferred an audio edition.
However, it quickly became clear that doing a “direct read” of the newsletter — where much of the content is names and links to changes on wiki pages — wouldn’t make a lot of sense when spoken aloud. So, my first crack at the format evolved into answering a slightly broader question: “how can I explain these updates to someone who might not already be familiar with the wiki?”
My short (and unhelpful) answer is: this is hard. The discussions on the wiki tend to be very technical, jargon-heavy, and touch on an extremely wide set of topics. In the first episode, I attempted to give some structure with groupings like “IndieWeb Events”, “Software and Services”, “Silo Updates”, “Silo Issues”, etc., but I agree with Jeremy that it is still very fast and dense. While I want to keep the podcast short (less than 10 minutes), I think a next positive step would be to give topics more time to breathe with some explanatory commas that give context.
It is my hope that projects like this podcast will help find new ways to phrase and frame the things that the IndieWeb community are doing and talking about, helping to reach new folks. I have a feeling it is going to be a lot of work. :}
Thanks for the write-up! I would absolutely love to see multiple folks posting IndieWeb audio content, including interviews and deeper discussions. Maybe aggregated at IndieNews and converted to podcast format there?
First up, I added support for "tag aggregations" - essentially, pages that list all posts with a certain tag. So, any future editions of this audio newsletter that I post can be tagged with "this-week-indieweb-podcast" and will then show up on the "This Week in the IndieWeb Podcast" page. It should soon be possible to feed that page to a tool like Granary to convert the feed on that page, with its audio entries, into an RSS feed suitable for subscribing with a podcast app.
Next up, I added support for "Media Fragments", a W3C recommendation that allows linking to a specific timestamp to start (and even stop!) playback of video and audio. Aaron Parecki's recently implemented this on his own site and was kind enough to share the implementation! Now, you can create links that jump to a specific time of any audio or video post on my site.
For example, if you want to quickly jump to the part of the This Week in the IndieWeb audio edition that contains info about the next upcoming Homebrew Website Club meetings, it looks like this: https://martymcgui.re/2017/02/18/151503/#t=54
Media fragments could enable some fun things, such as a list of links that index directly to particular sections of a long recording.