Audacity Setup for Podcasting

This tutorial will provide instructions on how to create an audio recording suitable for a Podcast using the Open Source software Audacity. This is not meant as an in depth tutorial on all of the functions within Audacity, but rather how to set it up so that you can record an audio file and save it in such a way that you can then upload it as a Podcast. All of the screenshots will be taken in Mac OSX, but you should be able to follow along in Linux, Unix, or Windows. This tutorial assumes you have already downloaded iTunes from http://apple.com/itunes

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FTP to WordPress Using Cyberduck

This tutorial is designed to aid in explaining how to download and configure a free FTP client on the Mac called Cyberduck, and then find, upload and enable new themes for your WordPress installation. This tutorial assumes you already have WordPress installed on a server, and that you know your login name and password for that WordPress installation. Free FTP clients also exist on Windows and you should be able to follow along pretty well with any FTP client. Some make it even easier than Cyberduck. Personally I’m fond of WinSCP on Windows.

Screenshots were taken using WordPress 2.7. Earlier versions of WordPress will show different screens because they redesigned the interface, but if you look for the words I highlight you should be able to muddle through. For example, Themes are always in Appearance, but where they put Appearance changed between revs.

I’m using as my example a website called Gangs Out of Downey.

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Wireless Router Troubleshooting

I’m writing this tutorial to assist my in-laws in troubleshooting their wireless access. It might be useful for many more people, so I’m publishing it here. Their setup is a Linksys WRT54G router with one hardwired iMac, and a wireless MacBook. The scenario they face on occasion is the iMac can get on the internet, but the MacBook cannot. That eliminates the router’s wired connection and the modem and their internet service provider.

1 – Make Sure the Airport Wireless is Turned On

Up in the menu bar look at the wireless signal indicator. If it’s an empty pie symbol, then it’s off. Pull down to Turn Airport On.

2 – Make Sure You’re Connected to Your Router

If your wireless symbol shows the concentric arcs shown above, then the Airport wireless is on, so pull down and make sure your router name is chosen in the list. in this case my router’s name is White Dart, so it’s selected with the check mark.

3 – If You’re Getting No Signal at All

You might see your wireless indicator showing the concentric circles as shown but they’re grey instead of black. This means your airport is on, but you’re not connected to your wireless router. Again try pulling down to see if your router is there in the list. Assuming it’s not there, then we know we need to work on the router hardware.

4 – Time to Reset the Router

In this image you can see the reset button which is actually recessed. Take a paperclip and press it in and hold it for about 10 seconds. Next go back to the MacBook and repeat steps 1-3, checking to see if the wireless signal is being received by the wireless Mac. This may not fix the problem, but it doesn’t hurt to do it a couple of times.

If this doesn’t work, next you can unplug the power to fully reset the router. Leave it unplugged for about 2 minutes. Then plug it back in, and watch the lights blink on the front until it looks like they’re stabilized. Just a few will blink but not all of them. Again go back to your wireless Mac and run through steps 1-3 again.

Note: because you’re resetting your router, it will very likely change it’s name from the one you’ve chosen back to Linksys. If you see Linksys in the list on the wireless Mac, try it.

If you still don’t have a working signal to the wireless Mac, it’s time to call Allison!

5 – You’ve Succeeded, but…

After you succeed in getting wireless working again, it’s important to check and make sure that you reset your password on the router. You’ve reset the router several times and maybe even unplugged the power, so there’s a good chance you need to put your security settings back.

Open a web browser (Safari, Firefox, etc.) and type into the address bar:

http://192.168.1.1/

This will open the Linksys interface. Click on the Wireless tab.

Rename Your Router

Step 1: To the right of Wireless Network Name enter the name you prefer for your router. It’s considered good form to change it from Linksys for several reasons, one of which is to be able to identify it in the list of routers you see.

Step 2: Click on the Wireless Security tab.

Set Your Wireless Security to WPA2

The most important thing you’re going to do in this tutorial is to set your wireless security to WPA2.

1 – Set the Security Mode to WPA2 Personal
2 – Set the WPA algorithms to TKIP+AES
3 – For WPA Shared Key enter a strong password. Make it at least 8 characters long, and use letters and numbers. It’s wise to use even more characters but that may be more difficult than you want to use. Make sure you write that password down for the future.

On the wireless machine make sure you can still connect – you may need to enter that password the first time you connect.

Podcasting on Podcasting

Subscribe to Podcasting on Podcasting in iTunes


PoP #01 Pick Your Passion

PoP #02 Hardware Tools Microphones

PoP #03 Software

PoP #04 Blogs

PoP #05 Agenda, Media Serving, Feed creation, FTP

PoP #06 disk loss, family support, Heil PR-20, M-Audio Fasttrack

PoP #07 Video file size, dig into GarageBand for recording

PoP #08 Encode to mp3 and set iTunes tags

PoP #09 Feeder Tutorial

PoP #10 Recording a Skype Conversation

PoP #11 How to Record a Live Show on Ustream

PoP #12 How to Register Your Podcast in iTunes

Feeder Tutorial

The steps below will give you an idea of how easy it is to create a Podcast feed using the software Feeder from reinventedsoftware.com by Steve Harris. A Podcast feed is a small text file that tells podcatching clients all about your show – what it’s called, artwork to be shown, and most importantly how to find the audio or video recording to fetch every time you post a new episode. This feed file created for you by Feeder is commonly called an RSS file.

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How to Upgrade WordPress

How to Upgrade WordPress

Finally wrote down my notes on how to do a WordPress upgrade so I don’t have to ask Bart every single time: "what files should I make sure not to overwrite? "

" what do I have to make sure to back up?"

For the Official WordPress Instructions go to: codex.wordpress.org

Backup

Select backup plugin from wp-admin inside the dashboard

Run the backup

don’t click anything while running this backup!

Back up the whole wordpress directory

drag the entire wordpress directory over to your machine

Download new version of WP

Follow download links and expand WP on your computer

DON’T OVERWRITE THESE FILES!

Bart explained that these files and folders shouldn’t be updated or the themes, plugins and even some content will disappear:

.htaccess
wp-config
wp-content

delete EVERYTHING (that belongs to wordpress) apart from the three items mentioned before

NOTE: you may need to select "show hidden files" in order to see the .htaccess files, make sure you don’t write over that one!

Copy WordPress over to the server

On the left (my disk) I made sure that there was no .htaccess, wp-config.php or wp-content before dragging over. That’s a good way to do it – because if anything asks to overwrite I know I’ve made a mistake.

note: this snapshot was made while file transfer had already started, you can see some files have already moved.

Upgrade your installation

Visit your main WordPress admin page at /wp-admin. You may be asked to login again. If a database upgrade is necessary at this point, WordPress will detect it and give you a link to a URL like http://example.com/wordpress/wp-admin/upgrade.php. Follow that link and follow the instructions. This will update your database to be compatible with the latest code. If you fail to do this step, your blog might look funny.

Upgrade complete!

WordPress is now successfully updated. Check the site to be sure.

Plugins might want to be updated too

After my upgrade to 2.6, I found that my Plugins icon in the dashboard had a numbered (6) bubble which implied I needed to do something. Clicking on it revealed that 6 plugins had updates. I went through each one and clicked upgrade automatically.

Proof that plugins are updating

Each plugin for which I clicked upgrade automatically gave me this window, writing each line one at a time. Took just seconds to complete each one. One of mine (del.icio.us) didn’t upgrade successfully, but I didn’t really use it anyway so iIdeactivated.

Email a Podcast URL

How to capture the url of a podcast out of iTunes, appropriate for emailing or imbedding in a blog.

Open iTunes

In the left sidebar click on Podcasts

Navigate to the Podcast Directory in iTunes

Click on Podcast Directory in the bottom right corner of the iTunes window.

Enter the podcast name in the search window

Select podcast of your choice

Click on the image for the podcast

Right click on the podcast image

You’ll be given the option to copy the url of the podcast in the iTunes store.

Paste into your favorite application.

When your recipient clicks on the link, it will launch iTunes, and take them right into the podcast directory ready to click the Subscribe button.

Just by way of example, here’s the url to subscribe to the NosillaCast

How to set up WPA on a Linksys WRT54G Router

The Linksys routers use a web browser as an interface, so it’s pretty easy to work with.
* First, navigate your browser to 192.168.1.1 (type this where you would normally enter a url like www.google.com
* Enter your password (there is no user name)
* I’m running Firmware v4.30.5, so your screen might look slightly different, but look for the wireless tab on the dashboard:
opening screen pointing to the wireless tab
* After you’ve clicked on the Wireless tab, look for the Wireless Security sub-tab. This might be confusing because you have to resist the temptation to click on the Security tab above that!
the wireless security tab
* On the Wireless Security page:

    set the Security Mode to WPA Personal
    Set the WPA Algorithms to TKIP
    Enter a COMPLEX password for WPA Shared Key. A complex password is at least 8 characters, is not a normal word that could ever be looked up in a dictionary, should contain letters, numbers, lower and upper case characters. Including non-alpha numeric characters will improve the security of your password. Make sure you make a note of this password! Note that for the screenshot below I didn’t show my Password, but when you type it in, it will be visible so keep that in mind if there are people around!
    leave the Group Key Renewal at 3600 seconds
    Click on Save Settings

enter WPA Shared Key Password
You are now secure. Keep one more thing in mind. Occasionally it’s necessary to reboot a router when things just stop working, by unplugging or pushing in the reset button on the back when things get hinky. Make SURE you go back in to this control panel and make sure your router password AND your WPA password are restored. They WILL be erased if the router is reset!

Car Waxing Tutorial Video

By popular demand, here’s a tutorial on how to clay and wax your car, by pre-eminent specialist, Allison Sheridan of the NosillaCast Podcast. Her credentials basically are that she’s obsessed with car waxing and has been known to voluntarily wax the cars of complete strangers’ cars, especially if they are the nieces of famous actresses.

Let’s get started. Below you’ll find a lovely video explaining exactly how to go through the entire process. Following the video you’ll find links to the products I use so you can rush out and buy them after you’re overwhelmed with enthusiasm from watching the video!

Using a Screen Reader? click here

Here’s links at Amazon to the products I use – but remember you can buy them at any auto parts supply store.

Meguiar’s Car Wash at Amazon.com
Meguiars_wash brand doesn't matter, just don't use detergent
Mother’s Clay at Amazon.com (remember to throw away the little bottle of wax, it’s awful!)
Mother's clay system
Meguiar’s Cleaner Wax at Amazon.com or if your car isn’t too faded, Meguiar’s Carnauba wax
Meguiar's Cleaner WaxMeguiar's Carnauba Wax

Here’s our 1998 Honda Accord hood before I started:
hood before

And here’s the hood of the 1998 Accord AFTER this process:
hood after

Show #93 MPEG Streamclip, PDF Filler, Neo Office, Call Recorder, Garmin 300, AutoSlideshow

Correct pronunciation of Fauxto, how to set FreeRuler to show correct dimensions by screen resolution, MPEG Streamclip from squared5.com to demux audio tracks out of DVDs, PDF Filler web-based application to fill out PDFs from pdffiller.com, HDA Bob on the ignition system at hdabob.com/Ignition.htm, Neo Office 2.1 from neooffice.org, Growl Part 3 with Coccinella at sourceforge.net/projects/coccinella. Call Recorder from ecamm.com/mac/callrecorder to record Skype calls, Garmin StreetPilot 300 review, AutoSlideshow add-on for Firefox from AutoSlideshow, Leo’s tutorial at macinstruct.com.

Subscribe to the Podcast –> Subscribe via iTunes
Listen to the Podcast Once (37 min 45 sec)

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