I have to admit that when it comes to activities like blogging, I’m never really satisfied with just typing up a block of text and calling it good. For a while I was satisfied with distributing images throughout my blog posts to keep them interesting.
However, once I did the research for a few MakeUseOf articles like using Postie to email blog updates or using Google Voice to blog, I realized that there are so many additional types of content that you can add to your blog updates to provide your readers with a richer multimedia experience.
With this in mind, I started researching a few video blog ideas to integrate my blog with video and audio capabilities using applications that are simple and easy to install.
I wanted applications that would allow me to quickly record video or audio with my mobile device or my computer, and instantly post that media to my blog with little effort on my part. I believe I’ve found those two applications, and I’m going to show you how you can use them to enrich your own blog as well.
Instantly Record & Post Video With Your Mobile Phone
You’ve probably been in those situations where something amazing is happening and you want to capture the moment, but you don’t have a video camera or even a digital camera handy. Maybe you’ve spotted a deer during your drive out in the woods, or maybe you’ve spotted that elusive UFO over the treetops behind your house. If you have an Android, Windows Mobile or iPhone and dozens of other Internet capable mobile phones, then Qik is exactly what you need.
Sign up with a Qik account, download the application to your phone, and you’re ready to start instantly sharing your videos with the whole world. This app makes it so easy to “video-blog” that it’s scary. The screen above is the video capture window, and when you press the green button, you’re recording.
When you’re recording, you’re also sharing live and any of your friends with a live feed can watch your live video (if you’ve enabled “public”). When you do capture a recording, just click on the share button and you can instantly distribute the video to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube or even to individual contacts listed in your phone address book.
In my case, I want to embed my recorded video into my blog. When you’re done recording the video on your phone, it automatically starts uploading to your Qik account. Once you get to a computer, you can log into your account and copy the embed code from your recorded video into your blog.
For my test video, I recorded a 20 second video of my pug. She’s cute isn’t she? Now, while this is a cool feature, there’s one more thing that you can do. In addition to auto-posting to Twitter, Facebook or emailing your friends as well as embedding your videos into your blog, you can also provide a “Live Feed Channel” to anyone running special “Qik-in-Touch” software on their PC (works on Windows, Mac and Linux).
The moment you click the green record button, you go live on the public “Qik TV” unless you’ve set your feed private. What good is this? If you think about it, it’s extremely useful. If you’re traveling, hiking in the woods or you’re anywhere far away from your friends and family, you can offer them live feeds of the cool things you’re doing. As long as they have the software running, they’ll see your live mobile feed pop up instantly.
Create A Blog With Audio Capabilities
So, now that you can embed recorded video feeds into your blog – what about audio? Let’s say you’re at an important conference and you get the opportunity to perform a once-in-a-lifetime interview with someone extremely famous. You forgot your digital recorder – what do you do? Well, as long as you have any mobile phone, you can use iPadio to instantly record an audio update to your blog.
Once you sign up for an iPadio “phlog” account, you can call the 1-866 number and, using your pin, record your audio post. When I recently wrote about Google Voice, I mentioned a way to forward the transcribed voicemail to your blog. Well, I have to admit that iPadio has made that process a lot easier, and it appears that the transcriptions are far more accurate than those you get from Google Voice. If you have an iPhone or an Android phone, there’s also a special iPadio app you can install to initiate your recordings.
Yes – you can even stream live audio if you want to do a live “show,” but for most of my purposes, I just want to record an audio stream that I can embed into my blog, so the second option will usually suffice. If you like listening to podcasts, then you’ll love the “Latest Phlogs” screen, where you can browse the latest recordings from other users.
On the way home from work I listened to a fascinating short 2 minute blurb from a business expert who discussed how getting constructive feedback can become addictive. Some of the recordings are just junk, but if you browse, you’ll find a lot of gems from some very intelligent people. People can visit your unique URL to view your “phlog”, which is basically a text blog from your transcribed audio recordings, and the ability for visitors to click play and listen to your audio.
When you go into your phlog on iPadio and click on the small “embed” icon next to the chain-link icon, you’ll get the embed code you can use to insert the iPadio object into your blog. I embedded the widget intoand this is what it looks like when you’ve embedded your audio stream into your blog.
As you can see, the attempted transcription is posted, and at the bottom your readers can click the “play” button to listen to the actual audio file. Your blog readers can even click within the widget to follow your iPadio phlog updates. iPadio is definitely a service that I plan to continue using to stream realtime interviews or to offer a play-by-play rundown of real news as it happens. iPadio is a very fun and exciting approach to blogging using multimedia resources.
Would you ever consider phlogging? Do you like the idea of embedding audio clips into your regular text blog? Share your opinions about phlogging in the comments section below.