Friday, December 25, 2009

Live Streaming Video & the Return of CRT

Thanks to the Ustream Live Broadcaster App for the iPhone (also available for Android and Nokia) I've been playing quite a bit with live streaming recording sessions. This gives listeners a look into the inside workings of the podcasts, and an unedited version of those shows. To make that happen I've been using either the WiFi or 3G connections (3G when we're using the local connection for VoIP) on the iPhone with audio coming into the iPhone 3GS through a camcorder cable, out of the mixer. That audio connection is very hackish, but its much better than the internal microphone and allows the viewers to hear everyone on the recording. Ustream handles all the video processing from there, both live streaming and recording, making the process very easy. Most recently I tested the Ustream connection over the 3G connection during the recording of the Geocaching Podcast episode 134.

We're planning on attempting the same set-up as I used for the Geocaching Podcast to live stream the recording of the Cachers of the Round Table episode 25. That will be Sunday, December 27th at 4:00PM Eastern (3:00PM Central/2:00PM Mountain/1:00PM Pacific) and we'd love to get some interaction with the live audience if possible (we need to figure out a means for someone to watch the iPhone's screen while still pointing the camera at something interesting). If you'd like to check that out, go to my Random Geocaching Happens channel on Ustream to watch live and participate in the chat room. CRT025 will be released to the feed though on January 7th, so this will give the Ustream viewers a preview of the content.

Please let me know if you like these live streams. They do take some work to set-up but I love the concept of people watching in live, especially for things like the Cachercon 2010 sessions. As for the podcast recordings, it might be a little redundant and spoils the finished show. At the same time it could offer a means for the audience to participate and shape the conversation interactively. If people enjoy the live streams though I'll likely keep them going.

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