Tuesday, March 3, 2009

My Computer Ate My Homework!

Yes, that's what I told the students at South Philadelphia High School. My computer ate my homework! We had finished recording Episode 8 of the Communicast, and I had done all the editing. When I went to share the GarageBand file to iTunes, in order to convert the file into a podcast, something went wrong. None of the pictures came through, so it was just an audio file. I re-opened the GarageBand file, and all the audio tracks were gone! I kept getting error messages, saying "File Not Found".

This was a disaster! I wanted to use the GarageBand file a second time, but all the audio tracks that the students recorded were gone. I had saved the file repeatedly, but I didn't make a back-up copy. So that's why I had to go back to the school and explain to the students that the computer had indeed eaten my homework. Therefore, we had to record the episode segments all over again. Luckily, the students did the second recording quickly and easily.

I'm sorry to say that this isn't the first time this has happened to me. Last year, working with the students at Childs Elementary School, the same thing happened. After that experience, I started to make back-up copies before sending the file to iTunes. But, after having no problems a few times, I let that slide. Hopefully, I'll always remember to make a back-up before sending the file to iTunes.

Once the recording was finished for the second time, I made it a priority to get the file edited and posted. So, Episode 8 is now available on our website.

It's already March, and we've only completed two episodes so far this year. I hope we can get another one done in the near future. While I'm not overly concerned with the quantity of episodes, there is something to actually producing a finished product.

Tomorrow, I'm going to try to get to the school to work on ideas for the next episode.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Catching Up

I can't believe it's been two months since I posted anything here. I'm trying to document the process of working on the Communicast podcast, but I need to make regular posts in order to do this.

A lot of work has actually been done on the podcast, including the production of a new episode. So, let me try to catch up with the story...

There wasn't much activity during the month of December. It was just too hectic, so we decided to let the podcast slide until after Winter Break.

Then, because of a big project for the department, I wasn't able to get back to working on the podcast until the middle of January. That gave students time to work on their segments.

The students and their teacher, Valerie Howard, decided to focus on the greenhouse effect. This is a different approach, only covering one topic, so I agreed, figuring that it might make it easier (and faster) to get the episode completed.

The recording went very smoothly. The students were well-prepared, and enthusiastic about their work. By now, they feel comfortable in front of the microphone.

When I left, I had everything I needed to put it all together. That was the end of January. So, why did it take until February 19 to get Communicast 8 published?

I'll continue the story...hopefully tomorrow.