What is a Podcast?

Podcasts are audio or video files which are distributed through the internet. Normally, a podcast is a reoccurring show and new episodes are added on a regular basis. Most Podcasts use common file formats such as MP3s, MP4s, WMVs, and MOVs. As a result, any common media player software can play podcasts.

How Do I Get Episodes of a Podcast?

There are several ways to download episodes of a podcast. One is to just go to the site of the podcast and download the file off the website. A second option is to play the media file through a flash player embedded on the web page. Please note that not all podcasts will provide this option. The third and most convenient option for most listeners is to subscribe to the podcasts through the podcast's RSS Feed. RSS Feeds are small text files which can tell pieces of software where to find the media files. These pieces of software, called podcatchers, can automatically download episodes of a podcast as they are released. The various RSS feeds for the Tabletop Battlefield can be found by clicking on the Home link in the left hand menu.

What is a Podcatcher?

Podcatchers, also called feed readers, are software applications or websites which know how to understand RSS feeds and can track and download the most recent episodes of a podcast.

Some Online Podcatchers are Bloglines and Google Reader

Some Software based Podcatchers are Apple's iTunes, Microsoft Zune, and Creative's Zencast

The Name Podcast Seems to Imply the Need for an iPod? Do I need Apple Hardware/Software in Order to Listen to a Podcast?

The name podcast does derive its name from Apple's iPod portable player. The reason for this is that Podcasts became popular thanks to Apple's iTunes software. Even to this day, iTunes is still the most popular podcatching software. While podcasts will forever be linked with iPods, Apple Software and Hardware are not required for listening to podcasts. It is very possible to listen to podcasts without using anything from Apple.

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