Category: Multimedia

The one lesson I learned that The Nightly Show needs to understand

After the first year of hosting my daily chat show at the Edinburgh Fringe (which is still running thirteen years later), Brian Luff gave me one of the best pieces of advice I have had in my broadcast career. It went something like this: “I listened to the Fringe podcasts, but now I’ve met you I have to ask… why is the ‘you’ that I see in front of me not in the podcast? I want to spend time with that person.” You can have the latest names, the greatest guests, and the biggest world-changing ideas, but these will only get people

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I thought M*A*S*H answered the laughter-track question in the Eighties?

Apart from the curious fact that Lucille Ball’s mother is the ‘Wilhelm Scream’ of chuckles on US TV’s canned laughter track, it still surprises me that the debate about whether a laughter track is a good idea continues to this day in America. Anthony Crupi on AdAge is the latest voice: There’s actually very little research to justify the practice. The last comprehensive study to suggest that a laugh track could precipitate genuine peals of merriment was published in 1974, or a good three years before DeDe Ball chortled her last. A far more recent inquiry into the matter arrived at a

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Gene Cernan RIP: Speaking To The Last Man On The Moon

[audio:http://archive.org/download/sxswbaby_20150319_19_LastManOnTheMoon/sxswbaby_20150319_19_LastManOnTheMoon.mp3] Gene Cernan died today. He was the last man to walk on the moon, an astronaut from a time of heroes, a pilot from a time where best friends didn’t come home. He also drew his daughter’s initials in the moon dust. They’re still there…   I was very lucky to speak to him in 2014 as he promoted Mark Craig’s documentary/biography ‘Last Man On The Moon.’  I’ve posted it above, and I’m going to listen to it again. Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of earth, And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings; Sunward I’ve climbed, and

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The twenty albums on the first iPod

Fifteen years after the reveal of the first iPod (with a world changing 5GB of storage), Nobuyyki Hayashi recalls the presentation,the first sample machines handed to journalists (for the flight home), and the twenty hand-picked albums that were loaded up on the iPod. Of course there was a big push to not ‘steal music’ so alongside the iPod were CD copies of those twenty albums. Hayasi still has them, and it makes for a fascinating playlist. I love the fact that Jobs and his team included two albums from The Beatles (‘A Hard Day’s Night‘, and ‘Abbey Road‘), a band that would be one of

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A third way to make money from mobile apps

First up, I consider Overcast the best mobile podcast clients currently available. Marco Arment’s client has grown over the years and developed almost every feature that I could want. The only trouble he’s had is trying to create a solid income from it. Following the initial one-year subscription model, then a patronage-based model, he’s now looking at a third option: Ads are the great compromise: money needs to come from somewhere, and the vast majority of people choose free-with-ads over direct payment. Ads need not be a bad thing: when implemented respectfully, all parties can get what they want. Most

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