Mac20Q Podcast 65 Ray Ortega


otherwise known as the or @Podcasthelper, works as a professional podcaster and I we had an excellent chat about podcasting, using the Mac and making video. Ray searches twitter to find people asking questions about . Good Man Ray !

So naturally we talked about the equipment that we use to make podcasts and it seems he likes the Heil PR40 microphones. he also has a Blue Snowball, great USB mic. When he is making his video podcasts for the a science technology podcast he gets to use a prosumer Canon video camera and Final Cut Pro for editing the final result.

Ray talked to me about the process that he goes through to make the podcasts for Produce Picker Podcast, telling me about the early episodes being a bit horrible compared to the quality of the content that he produces now. But that is the great thing about podcasting, you can get started with no experience and cheap amateur equipment and move to greater heights when you get further into  podcasting and you know you have gone past the Pod Fade stage of the game.

I asked Ray about the niche he has with produce, as in fruit and veg. and he says that he took the advice, he would give to anyone starting a podcast from new and that is to talk about something that you know about. So seeing as he had been working in that realm for many years while he was a student, it was natural to make a podcast about Fruit and vegetables and how to choose the best from the supermarket or market fruit seller.

At the end of the podcast I asked Ray about the statement that Leo Laporte had made recently which stunned a bemused podcasting world. You would think that Leo Laporte knows what he is talking about seeing as he is doubling his podcasting  income each year, but I don’t agree with him one bit. Listening to podcasts is not hard, you can turn up at a web site and just listen, without any extra equipment. You can easily download a podcast through iTunes or other podcatcher and have the downloaded files ready for your listening pleasure on your computer or even if you feel like it have them transferred automatically to your mp3 player. it doesn’t have to be an iPod either.

PPPlogo300x300It really is not rocket science and all it will take is for the traditional media to promote it in the same way as Twitter is getting mentioned on main stream TV programmes. Podcasting is in its infancy and will evolve more to be hugely popular and not something that has to be explained as it is now, due to it’s newness. The BBC puts out many of its programmes as podcasts and in the U.S the media giants are jumping on the boat to join in with an exciting media that is about to explode.

Obviously Ray and I are biased towards podcasting and there is a possibility that Leo is making statements like that to get his name talked about even more than it already is. Other podcasters have commented on this also. I suspect that podcasting will change as it gets more popular and more of it will be streamed to computers and smart phones, rather than be downloaded. The general public are more and more getting the idea with podcasts and having media available for when they want to watch or listen to it, instead of being hog tied by traditional TV programming.

If you heard the rubbish that leo was talking and would like to comment on it or comment on what I have put in this blog post then please leave a comment. Or you might send  me an email to mac20q at gmail dott com. Looking forward to getting your thought on the matter.

Follow Ray on Twitter  - @podcasthelper

Mac20Q Podcast 61 Steve Sheridan

A burger is fine food ???

I was looking to get to talk with Steve for quite a while. I had heard he would be an interesting fella to talk to and it was true. We had a great chat about about how he uses his Mac. It was also known to me that Steve is well into the video end of things, so I asked him about that. he undertook a project which took him nearly forever to digitise a pile of videos from the old days. He liked doing it so much he even did some for his sister.

Steve provides the back up and support for Alison, both moral and technical for the Nosillacast. Moderating the room when Allison does the live recording of her podcast. I think that Steve deserves some of the lime light too. He claimed to be shy but was an excellent guest and in the end we had to stop or the podcast would just be too long to put out.

In the ramble I talk a bit about the screencasting I have been doing this week. I enjoy doing it but this week I have had extra impetus with having the new version of ScreenFlow to test out. I got in on the Version 2 beta testing run and it has to be coming out soon because I have not had any problems with it while making the screencasts.

I also comment in the podcast about Macbreak Weekly, following on from the condemnation of Leo Laporte by Allison made me re think how I felt about MBW. OK they could be annoying from time to time with the singing now and then on the show but lately I had to wonder about why they keep the show length when there is so little news sometime. They end up talking more about the competing products from competing businesses, making it less of a Mac Podcast and more of a general geek show.

Ah well it is their show and they can do what they like with it, as I do what I like with my show. Maybe my listeners will tell me what I could do with changing in the show here at Mac20Q, and I don’t expect to get the call now to go and talk on the MacBreak Weekly now. Ah well never mind…

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Leo Laporte gets a right lashing !

certainly didn’t mince here words in the latest Nosillacast, in which she gave Leo Laporte a verbal lashing for his hypocrisy over the Snow Leopard. She played a couple of clips from the Leo Laporte Twit show in which he said totally contradicting things. In the first one he was talking about how the $29 upgrade for Snow Leopard was a great deal and despite there not being many in your face improvements, the under the hood improvements made it a no brainer good value deal to get Snow Leopard.

Leo Laporte

Leo Laporte

In the next clip he was heard lambasting Apple for the very same thing. I suppose he just changed his mind or he forgot what he said before. Maybe when you are making 1.5 million a year from podcasting maybe it affects the memory a little. When you look at him in the picture to the left, you would think that butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth. Not  such a good guy after all, did you hear the one where he had a spat with a guest on his show and kicked him off with a few expletives thrown in for good measure. I saw the video of that one and he looked like he was in a bad mood to start with. Maybe he was having a bad tech day.

What do you think of Leo Laporte?

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Mac20Q Podcast 49 James Topping

James Topping
I am loving doing this podcasting because I get to talk to a whole pile of excellent people. In this podcast I was talking with James Topping who lives in Liverpool but has the sense to be an Everton fan. I like blue what can I say??

He tells me what he does with his Macs and about how they get commandeered by his children. Not sure I believe that though, the evidence on his Mac Book Pros suggests he is a TellyTubbies fan.

James is keen to upgrade his computers one by one and has a notion that upgrading in time for Snow Leopard will be a good idea seeing as Snowy will be leaving behind the Power PC users. It had to happen at some point in time. Apple is a forward looking company and will not let itself be hampered by the legacy stuff, in the same way as Microsoft is held back by that sort of backwards compatibility issues.

In my ramble I talk about why I am pleased to have Godaddy onboard as a sponsor. I use the service and have done for a long time so it is the first name on my lips when I am asked about web hosting and domain names. With the installation service of applications like WordPress, Joomla, Wikis, Forums, and things like photo sites it makes it very easy.

The only thing I don’t like is the way they like to up sell you on all of the steps you go through to get to paying for your purchases. Not a problem if you know what you want, although the default option is always no to the upgrades, so you can’t get tricked into buying more. if you want to get hosting and you want my help then let me know and I can guide you through it step by step on Skype or IM.

Mac20Q Podcast 43 DavidBCohen

Writes for and US based internet magaazine about Macs. reviews of hardware and software and more.
David started with a MacMini after his wife saw one in the shop and said straight away that she wanted one bought one too. Good plan to take her to the Apple Store huh??
He occasionally uses Bootcamp for a game but prefers the virtual route so can drop in and out as needed.
user on the iPhone and has a pile of iPods. While doing the waiting for the new baby to be born was landing planes. Well crashing planes anyway !!

Click on the picture to listen

David uses VM ware fusion for virtualisation of other operating systems on his Mac but also recommends Virtual box from Sun, Uses Safari now that works with it as well as with FireFox although he downgraded from safari 4 back to 3
Like many of us Mac users he is a believer in 1Password too
As for the Twitter client used Tweetdeck for a while, and then moved to Tweetie and liked it enough to pay for it
Like myself he is not impressed with the celebrities with thousands of followers that need a staff to be able to keep up with Twitter. It is not really what Twitter is about.
Into photography and uses Lightroom

David has a Contour Design shuttle for the work he was doing in Garageband

There is massive value in the Apple refurb store and David is quite happy to buy the refurbished  products. There are some great savings to be had.
David is a drop box user so he can have files synchronised on various computers to be able to work on them where ever he might be. I think is the bees knees and with 2 Gb for free you can’t go wrong. David was a user  but there were a few problems or syncing issues so switched to switched to Google reader

for writers with a green letter old school interface that sounds quite ugly, but lets David  concentrate on the writing job in hand

Uses Google calendar to sync to the iPhone and uses

Favourite podcasts.
Leo Laporte –

Mac20Q Podcast 26 Ben Fryxell

Click the picture to listen to the Podcast

Today I talked with Ben Fryxell of the Mac Mania Podcast. I was recorded early on a Sunday morning and poor Ben had to leave his bed at an ungodly hour to come and talk to me on the Mac 20 Questions Podcast.

We chatted about how he uses his Mac and what sort of things he is interested in doing with it. He is a Podcaster and makes a podcast called MacMania Podcast, in which he talks about Mac news and about the Mac applications.

Ben recommends the Twit Podcasts by Leo Laporte. I listen to Mac Break Weekly and I used to listen to the radio show podcast but after a while I couldn’t bear listening to the tales of woes from the poor sods that have only Windows machines.

Mac20Q Podcast 17 Don McAllister

Click on the image to hear the podcast

Really pleased to get Don on the show. So many interviewees are recommending him and his Screencasts online and also I met him in the flesh as it were last September at Podcamp Barcelona. Don did a session at the Podcamp and I certainly found it interesting as he talked about the monetisation of his Podcast and how he was able to give up the day job. Now he has a job in which he works harder, probably but when you are doing something you want to do it is often not like work at all.

Don produces Screencasts showing how to use many of the Mac Applications and does a great job of it too. Steps by step guides to using an application in real world situations.

Don gets out and about as part of his Screencastsonline with MacMania tours, he is going to China later this year. He also gets to Macworld events in places like San Francisco. Obviously he is doing well with the service that he provides so that he can afford his Apple hardware and gadget addiction. As a member you get a brand new tutorial every week and extra member only shows. If you want to try it out then you can have a look at the free shows he makes available to the non members. Its a try before you buy thing, which is always good. . While you are on the Screencasts online site have a look at the free screencasts too. I was just watching one about how to geo tag your photos for iLife09. Excellent stuff !

Don has nearly 200 screencasts available and the good thing is that when you pay your six month membership you get access to all of the back issues too. That makes the deal to be great value.

Here is a list of the equipment that Don uses

Computer Equipment
ScreenCapture, Editing and Encoding – Apple MacPro (2 x 2.8 Ghz Quad-Core Intel Xeon with 10GB RAM)
Sonnet Tempo SATA E4P Card
Shuttle Pro 2

Internal – 4 x 500GB (2 x RAID 1 Partitions)
External – 2 x Fusion D500P with Multiplier Support (each with 5 x 750GB in RAID 0 config)
Various Firewire external drives

Audio Equipment
Heil PR-30 Microphone
dbx-266XL – Limiter/Compressor

Mackie Onyx 1220 Mixer
Edirol UA-1ex USB Interface

Capture and Assembly Edit – Vara ScreenFlow
Final Edit – Final Cut Studio
Titling and Effects – Motion 3
Encoding – Compressor

As you can see Don has some good kit there. Maybe I will be able to get a MacPro one of the days with a pile of memory and hard disk thrown inside. You can find out about his work flow for making the screencasts on the blog he runs

Don is on a few other podcasts as a guest, including Mac Break Weekly with Leo Laporte and Andy Inatko. Mac Round table

Don also mentioned Mercury Mover, iBank. Logitech MX Revolution Mouse, Drobo, Jungle Disk, Plex, Boxee, The Automated home Podcast and Delicious Monster Podcast

Allison Sheridan Mac20Q Podcast 12

Click on the Picture for the Podcast

An absolute delight to be talking with of the ever so slightly Mac biased (cough – cough er bit more than slightly) which is hosted at The podcast was a little rushed as she was due to talk to talk on another podcast directly after me and time was short. She tells us about her microphone, Camtwist, geeking out with Bart Busshot, her podcast buddy on the Nosillacast. Allison even appears with the Mac superstars on the

Allison even teaches podcasting and I am sure I have a thing or two to learn about the matter. Have a look at
Podcasts Allison listens to:

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Allison of course has some great recommendations for Mac and iPhone software
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On the podcast the image I used for the podcast is not quite correct. I took it from Allisons’ podfeet site and should look like this..

Chris Pinchen – Mac20Q Podcast 3

Last autumn I met Chris Pinchen at Podcamp Barcelona along with Don McAllister. The Podcamp was a success and of course amongst the podcasters there, there were a plethora of Mac users. Amongst the Mac persons  Chris Pinchen, who was also the organiser of the Podcamp. I have already conducted an interview of Chris for the Podcamp and naturally he had to be considered fair game to be a victim (I mean interviewee, just joking !!) for the .

He is a Ludd Geek and you will find out the meaning of that in the podcast. Chris wants Apple to design a computer and software that he can command solely by voice as he doesn’t seem to like typing. He uses . Amongst the favourite applications Garageband comes top of the list, with him being a musician and that’s what he like to mess with on a day off and just messing about computing.

Chris works as an English teacher and likes to use Spaces to organise his desktop in OSX and he tell us all about that in the interview. With Spaces he likes to use apps called Dock Spaces and Space Suit to make it work better for himself.

He uses Google docs to store the work he does with his English students, so he is definitely not afraid of using the cloud to store files. Another place of storage he uses is called on which he has 2 GB of storage space for back ups. You get 2GB for free and unlimited space for a small monthly fee. I am a user of Mobile Me so have some storage space there. Don’t use it that much, but perhaps I ought to.

Chris also mentioned as an application he uses and asked me to mention Scrivener. I downloaded Scrivener after hearing about it from Andy Inhatko on Mac Break Weekly. Andy is a journalist with a Boston Newspaper and regularly comments on things Macintosh, he waxed lyrical about saying what a boon it was for him as a professional writer. I have really only had time for a quick look, but it looks nice and has a full screen mode that forces concentration on the job in hand. Skitch is a tool that you can use to do screen grabs and then annotate the image. I have it on my computer but often forget about it and go for the Cmd,Shift+4 to make a screen grab. I have just used it to do a test of  it again and I like it – Must leave it open and ready to play with, for sure.

Chris is doing some translation on a site called and is organising an event called which will take place in May.