Thursday, 26 July 2012

IMARK Lesson 11: Podcasting and Online Radio

A podcast is an audio file that can be made available for others, usually via a web site, to download and listen to whenever they want, and that they can take with them on portable devices.
One of the most important advantages of podcasting is that the production process is very easy. Podcasters usually record using a digital recorder device or a microphone connected to a computer. Editing consists of listening to the files, cutting and pasting parts of the file, inserting music, introductions, transitions etc and getting program to an adequate length.
The key to podcasting is making audio files available on the web and allowing people to subscribe to them using an RSS feed. There are different applications to subscribe to podcasts; they are usually called “podcatchers”. Most podcast formats allow the transfer of file to portable devices such as mp3 players.
Strategic value of podcasting:                             
It provides value for the organisation’s communication strategy by:
  • ·         Overcoming literacy barriers among the audience
  • ·         Engaging many different voices
  • ·         Capturing oral history, popular music and so on
  • ·         Disseminating audiofiles

IMARK Lesson 10: Online Video and Image sharing

Audiovisual materials are of great value for knowledge sharing, education and information.
Digital images and digital video present many advantages to the user: they can be easily transferred to a computer, edited with basic software and shared in different formats, sizes and levels of quality.
Video sharing services allow users to upload short videos and offer features such as the possibility to embed video in web pages, rate and comment on videos, subscribe to video channels or send video replies. Image sharing allows users to easily upload digital images to the web and organize them in albums, groups or clusters according to their preferences. Image hosting services include different features, from sharing photos with friends to printing and getting prints delivered by mail.
Video and photo collections can be very strategic for an organization or a project. Images and video can be used to create engagement with the audience, create participation in a group and keep a digital record of activities that can be easily shared. When working with digital images and video it is important to keep in mind the technical issues that may arise including bandwidth, equipment, software, processing power and others.

IMARK Lesson 9: Blogging and Microblogging

A blog is an easily created web page made up of postings of text, images or multimedia. Blogs can also be used in teamwork. Blogosphere refers collectively to all blogs.
Most blogs use a remotely hosted blogging tool: the application is hosted on a remote server which can be accessed via your web browser while you are connected to the internet. Most organizations create policies that apply to social media in areas of concern such as confidentiality of information.
A blog can be set up by:
  • ·         Using a free hosted service, such as Blogger, Wordpress or Edublogs
  • ·         Using a free hosted service with the possibility of having paid accounts with pro features, such as Livejournal, Xanga or VOX
  • ·         Using a commercial service, such as TypePad
  • ·         Using a service provided by the internet service provider
  • ·         Installing a blogging application, such as movable type on the organization’s server
  • Deciding which application to use involves thinking about technical skills, technical environment and content needs.
Microblogging is considered a more recent form of blogging allowing the user to post short text updates via web browser and instant message. Most common tool is twitter. It allows one to post updates of 140 characters. Twitter has its application in TweetGrid for instance.
Best practices of blogging and microblogging are important ones to follow for every blogger.

IMARK Lesson 8: Tagging and Social Bookmarking

One of the ways to describe electronic resources is to use metadata. Metadata allows users to describe information and provide context to information within the electronic file.
Tagging helps to describe the content of a web resource.Tagging provides content with context and meaning. It can provide different ways to navigate through content and discover new information.
Social bookmarking services allow you to save web addresses on the internet, under a personal account, and tag each page you find with keywords. The social aspects of these services allow users to share and create a collaborative tagging to describe and locate content on the web.
There are different ways in which sites and services allow a user to visualize the aggregated tags that he and other users have created, for example graphics, tag clouds, aggregated lists, tag searches and tag combinations.
Tags are also used in multiple social networking services and sites with different purposes: aggregating content about users, providing intuitive navigation, facilitating access to data and improving search results.