Sunday, October 24, 2010

Contemplating a Pod Cast

Has anyone else besides me seen a real need for a weekly video podcast for RepRap?  I LOVE watching videos by/about other people in the hobby, but most interviews I see are by people who don't know much about the hobby, so you spend 3 minutes with them asking questions like "So that's plastic right?  When will the robot revolution come?  What can it print?, and Bre, how do you do that with your hair?". 

I would love to see a Weekly vidcast for RepRap that had:

-Little tips that people tend to have a hard time grasping, like how to wrap nichrome, to set up and operate skein forge, the difference between the electronics, etc

-A non company view of the printers.  How awesome would it be to see an interview with the Makerbot, UP!, Mendel-Parts, Botmill, Techzone, The RepRap core team, Ultimaker, Makergear, Ultimachine, 3dink, BfB, the list goes on and on, where the questions come from the community (sent via twitter), and they all get to show off on a show directed at our community.

-How great would it be if we had someone from our community going around interviewing people at the NY Makerfair?  I wanted an Interview with Rick from Makergear, and Tony Buser, Someone at Makerbot besides Bre or Zack, or how about the other folks that where there, I saw some awesome bots in the pics, but we don't know anything about them.

I could think of a 100 things I would love to see in a nice 4-5 minutes pod cast each week, the only issue is I really don't want to do it myself, mostly because.

-I am a overweight white dude, not exactly the image I think we want to portray.

-I am from the Southern United States, and I have an accent that does not convey... intelligence :)

-You have likely seen my videos, the video quality is good, but the production quality is really poor, I don't have a communications degree, and it shows.

Should I:

A. Start a pod cast and hope someone comes along and does it better than me and lets me off the hook.

B. Just drop it, there is no need/let someone with more skill start it.

Please do me a favor and respond in the comments, I am very on the fence about this idea.

BTW I got my Gen6 Electronics and motors in, and 1 of my Prusa Mendels is nearly completed, and 2 others are started, videos and pics hopefully later this week :)


  1. I spend at least 30 hours a week listening to podcasts and audiobooks, and I would love to have some reprap-related stuff in the mix. I generally prefer audio podcasts in the 30-90 minute range, but there are also a few 7-15 minute video podcasts that I enjoy. Anything shorter than that I will eventually stop watching because it's not worth the effort (especially if it has an ad, which those short ones usually do).

    If you're thinking of using the short video format, consider the model of the Make Magazine podcast, with multiple contributors submitting videos (preferably with some quasi-standardized intros/outros/formatting so that nothing looks too amateurish). Make seems to post whenever they get a submission (nothing for a month, several in one week, etc.), but it might be nice to work out a weekly schedule so that people could sign up for a slot ahead of time, and you might bank a couple of episodes so that you can still release consistently if someone flakes. Special events like Maker Faire might warrant an extra-long episode that includes submissions from a few people, and if someone was covering a current event like the BFB acquisition, it might either bump another submission that would be posted later or be released as a special episode.

  2. Good suggestion, that would also allow me to hand it off to someone else came along and did a better job of it :)

    I wonder if I would get any interest if I offered a set of the Prusa Mendel plastic parts in trade for a set of intros/outros/formatting.

  3. I will do the podcast! I am in school for communications and have plenty of time to do things.

  4. Hey John, give me an email at, maybe we can work together.

  5. Feature idea: thing of the week. A quick featurette, either as an interlude or at the end of each episode, showcasing one printable thing posted on thingiverse each week (preferably one that was posted during that week). This should include footage of it in use (either filmed by the person making the featurette or taken from youtube with the uploader's permission) with a voiceover describing the thing and why you might want to print one.

  6. Sounds interesting. Unfortunately:
    - I am also an overweight white dude
    - I am from Southern Germany. This not only gives me an unmistakeable accent when speaking German, but also an even worse English accent (think Dr. Strangelove)

    But if I don't need to speak, sing and dance for the videos, I'd be happy to help :)

    ... not full time, but maybe I could provide some stuff on video now an than...

  7. I have been thinking about doing an audio podcast related to home fabrication for a few months now. I have even gone as far as planning different episodes, and recording a few intros (mostly to test audio equipment). While I understand that video would be essential for howto's, I think an audio version would be more likely listened to by those who have jobs. The format I was thinking about would be no more than 15-20 minutes per episode. Each episode would have a specific topic related to 3d printing or home fabrication. They would start with a short intro to the topic, and include a panel discussion or interview with various members of the community, preferably someone who knows about the topic. I wasn't really thinking about a howto series (although that's a great idea too), but more of a news/issues podcast. I don't have the best radio voice, nor do I have "the look" for video, but contact me if anyone is interested.

  8. Thanks Zaggo, I was wanting something more serious until you mentioned your outrageous German accent and Dr. Strangelove.

    Now I have been walking around thinking about a blog along the lines of Dr. Horrible's Sing Along Blog, hosted by someone wearing a RepRap lime green Dr. Horrible lab coat and a printed Monocle. Speaking about new things in RepRap, and how they will eventually be used in the domination of the world by Open Source Replicating Rapid Protoyping machines.

  9. Please do. As a guy with strongly geekish temperament and concomitant lack of confidence, I hesitate to begin so daunting a task a building a RepRap from scratch (even the kits from well-respected builders seem pretty scary). Video introductions to the basics and especially to the harder bits like extruders would be very welcome to those of us on the fence...of building one in the first place.

  10. I wish you would do this! Great Idea!

    Looks like at least four people are thinking alike. Get together and do it on a rotation.

    It would be great if the final results were at least linked on the reprap wiki so people like me that have a weird work schedule could still hear/see them.

  11. iMovie does WONDERS with video; just see my recent Maker Faire video.

    I would love to record video for a reprap podcast, but I have neither the time nor the photogenicity to do it right.

    Although, I'm not overweight AND I'm in the NYC area, so no accent for me :)

  12. Ok, I guess that nails it, I will go ahead and do it. It will be on my and I will print up a set of Prusa Mendel parts as a reward for a person that sets up a good into, transition, and outgo for the show.

    BTW Cyrozap, It's going to be done the open source way, I will do it till someone comes along and does it better :) If you like what you see this week, submit a video yourself!

  13. Neil,

    I would love to contribute. I am pretty familiar with podcasting, video/audio editing, and def "knowledgeable" in the whole 3D printing and personal fabrication scene. I am in the DC area though, but I am sure we can still work together somehow.

    Shoot me an email if you are interested in collaborating. My email is

  14. Fantastic idea. Please don't worry about your accents, appearance, etc. We're all geeks here :-)
    Reprappers are now all over the world so I'd expect a variety of accents from a wide mix of people.
    I'd be interested in some interviews with reprappers too - giving some human faces to the bloggers, how they got started reprapping, where they see the future going, tips on assembling your own 'rap/'bot/'man, tips on printing. You can always send them a mp3 of questions and get them to record the answers if you can't get face-to-face.

    Really good idea :-).

  15. Totally want to see a podcast. I don't really watch video podcasts that often, so it would be nice if there is also an audio-only feed as well (not much special, maybe a different intro/outro that describes a bit more what the podcast is about).
    I'd also like to help out in maybe producing an episode or two. I really like the idea of a submission format. My repstrap is a bit on the odd side since it's based on a cnc dremel machine I built and will run EMC instead of reprap electronics (for now).
    Another possible idea is to use a google group or similar to communicate among producers and take ideas for future episodes from the viewing public.
    I've listened to a number of good podcasts that also do interviews (skype is tolerable - google voice with record might be better.) and on-site visits to related companies and places. imaginge getting a video tour of nophead's shop or makerbot industries :)
    Yet another random idea - set up a few printers in a public space and video talking to people about the technology.

  16. I'd watch it! My wife keeps wanting to do a podcast, but I'd rather stick to text based communication, let's face it, a lot of us are overweight white dudes. :)

  17. For the record, I use no product in my hair. Also, I think a weekly podcast is a great idea. Go for it!

  18. @Bre, no product?! Now I want to know, how DO you do that with your hair? Unless shampoo counts, then it makes sense.

  19. Seems like you already have international news corespondent!

    This show is gonna be awesome!

  20. Awesome idea, Ill tune in. May just give me the kick I need to build a reprap.