Tuesday, July 21, 2009
  Biblical studies podcasting
I've just had an interesting "chat" with Mark G about Biblical Studies podcasting. Some of the conversation (we used MSN, if we had only used Skype I could have recorded it, but ironically we used plain text ;) was technical stuff that would only be of interest to others doing podcasts, but there were two nuggets that deserve wider thought:
KQED Radio - Michael Krasny's studio by David Sifry
  • a joint biblical studies podcast, maybe of two sorts:
    • a virtual common-room, where a few of us chat about some topic
    • a more prepared edited 'cast where different people speak briefly and then perhaps respond to what another has said (getting the interactivity but allowing a more considered approach)
  • maybe using a Facebook page to encourage wider interaction with our podcasts - we each said that while we appreciated the way voice adds a richness, nuances like tone distinguish sarcasm from more gentle wry humour, we missed the interaction with an audience that other media like live talks or blogs provide
I'm convinced that both ideas are worth following up. But, at the start of a new semester, am also too busy to remember ;) so this post is (a) a "reminder to self" and (b) a call for comments - what do you think of the ideas and (c) a call for expressions of interest, would you be interested in participating in such a recorded conversation?

On the technical details:
  • we thought of using Talkshoe so participants could phone in and would not need recording gear themselves
  • we also thought of getting someone to act as host and ask questions / guide the conversation
So, what is needed:
  1. a topic: needs to encourage different points of view, probably to work well needs to allow different personalities to 'come through" (audio rather than text medium) needs to be potentially interesting to a wider audience
  2. a host: needs to be willing to refrain from expressing their own opinion!
  3. some speakers
  4. an editor: to take the recording and cut the fluff (remove the worst ums and errs, or where the participants make asides like "is this too loud?") - I'd be happy to do that.
This post has mainly been about the joint podcast idea, but I do not want to forget the Facebook idea either... this would be a page where podcasts by bibliobloggers or others who open serious biblical studies to a wider audience would be listed and so get mentioned on the profiles of the page's members and perhaps encourage a bit more interaction...

Dramatis Personae:

Mark (as well as being the biblical studies Blogfather) has started an excellent NT focused podcast series NT Pod and for a couple of years I've been doing an occasional 5 Minute Bible podcast (basically Hebrew Bible focused but occasionally trespassing - nearly 40 'casts so far).

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Friday, July 17, 2009
  PodBible podcasts the last chapter
Today PodBible podcast the last chapter to complete the whole Bible! Fittingly the chapter was also a whole book - Philemon. After nearly four years of work, starting with 300+ volunteers reading the whole Bible live over Labour Weekend in 2005, and continuing with teams who brainstormed ideas for "something to Think about, Pray about and Do" for each daily chapter the podcast series (of the 66 books of the Protestant canon) is complete.

The daily chapters will continue to be podcast, but the whole Bible is now available to download chapter-by-chapter. Work has begun on two new delivery projects to develop PodBible further.

First packaging chapters to make 60 minute collections (book by book) so that people can download these "Bible60" collections to put on CDs, tapes or their car radios to listen to longer swathes of Scripture (with no TPDs added).

Then making the daily podcasts available in AMR format (much smaller files than MP3files) for download to mobile phone...

By the way, if providing Bible readings to more than a thousand people a day sounds worthwhile to you maybe you could help by taking a share of the regular tasks needed to run the podcasts, with a little training we can provide, anyone who is moderately computer literate could do what is needed in less than an hour a week... write to Tim to get more details...

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Monday, July 13, 2009
  Hebrew Bible (plus Appendix ;) podcasts
Chris Heard has a post in which he asks what sort of things people would be interested in hearing in a series of short podcasts on the Hebrew Bible/Old Testament. My answer would sound something like this "short (5 mins only) somewhat scholarly, but accessible to all, material that helps make sense of the Bible". This is what I try to offer at 5 Minute Bible. Do let me know, or drop a comment on Chris's post, if you think I should focus the material differently.

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Saturday, July 11, 2009
  'Exile away from his land': Is landlessness the ultimate punishment in Amos?
Here's an audio recording (made on my phone) with the presentation slides from the paper I gave to a Laidlaw Carey Graduate School seminar on The Land of Promise earlier this week. The paper is more the first stage of a work in progress than a finished work, so I would be interested in any comments you have.

The recording includes the question time from the day. The recording lasts about 30 minutes and is available in two formats:

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  NZ's best computer store?
I've often told friends and colleagues that PB Tech is the first place to look for computer gear in Auckland. Their prices are often the lowest, always among the lowest (try Pricespy to confirm it), and they give the best service of any of the cheap PC stores.

Last weekend PB Tech had a great laptop sale, it ran on to Monday. Sarah wanted to buy a laptop to use during her exchange year at the University of Glasgow. Sarah was working hard all weekend and Monday, so we went in early on Tuesday morning. They still had not taken down the sale signs, but would/could not give us the prices. Sadly we resigned ourselves :( to paying the full price. Aparently most of the good deals were because Toshiba had given them a one off reduction, and could not be repeated or even extended to opening time on Tuesday.

Then this morning, I was livid, there in the Herald was a big advert for another Three Days Only Laptop Sale! I stormed over to PB Tech, I wouldn't settle for less than them meeting me half way, and dropping $50 on Sarah's laptop. No worries! PB Tech have a if you find a better price within a week we'll match it policy, it even applies to their own prices! We got the full $116 and some cents back (i.e. $100 plus GST).

So, PB Tech is brilliant, lowest prices, good repair service if it is needed, well informed salespeople, and a straightforward and honest price match guarantee :)

Declaration of interest: I own 0 shares in PB Tech, they have paid me nothing and given me no inducement to write this. None of my family or friends have ever worked there. I have no interest except to declare my pleasure at a great deal from an honest and helpful company :)

Friday, July 03, 2009
  The Apocalypse of Eve
Patrick George McCullough, a student of the New Testament and Christian origins announces the discovery of a new pseudepigraphical writing The Apocalypse of Eve. This miraculous document, which contains both astounding revelations and links to yet more, will be of interest to all readers of Sansblogue so rush on over folks!

Thursday, July 02, 2009
  Refugee camp threatened
The refugee camp where I taught a class on Old Testament Narrative for a four week intensivelast year is being threatened by armed attack. The DKBA a proxy force equipped and paid for by the Myanmar Junta is threatening to attack the camp across the nearby border. The Irawaddy reports:
Burmese refugees at Mae La refugee camp are on alert due to a threat of attack by the Democratic Karen Buddhist Army (DKBA), according to the vice chairman of the camp. 

“The DKBA said they will destroy our camp,” said Vice-Chairman Htun Htun, speaking to The Irrawaddy on Wednesday.

Many of the refugees have packed clothing and belongings in preparation for a military assault, sources in nearby Mae Sot said. Camp authorities have imposed a curfew of 9 p.m. On all refugee residents.

The DKBA threatened to attack Mae La camp after one of their influential commanders, San Pyote (aka Soe Myint), the head of Battalion 7, was ambushed and killed by an unknown armed group while traveling by longtail boat on the Moei River on June 26.

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