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October 26, 2011

Thing 5: Podcasts, videocasts and iTunes U: subscribing to multi–media content.

Lots of people have listened to or watched a podcast recording, but subscribing to a regular output is a different “thing”! So, Thing 5 asks you to subscribe to a podcast: there are plenty of scholarly podcast sources available. You can do this using your podcast “catching” or aggregating tool of choice, but instructions are provided for you to use iTunes.

itunes podcast logo

What is a podcast?
Put simply, a podcast is a regular digital media publication which folks can subscribe to using podcast subscription tools on their computers or other mobile devices. However, there are more technical definitions of what is and is not a podcast, and you can read more about this on Wikipedia if you are interested.

Read more about Podcasts on iTunes.

And a videocast?
Podcasts were originally mostly audio content, although many podcasts are videos these days, and ‘videocast’ is just another word used to describe a video podcast: a variety of terminology exists! The word ‘podcast’ is a term which is also sometimes used to describe ordinary online audio or video content which does not have a subscription element, although this is not a strictly correct use of the term.

How do I do this “Thing”?
iTunes is software that needs to be downloaded, to both manage and play podcast material, and I have chosen it for this course because of the wealth of high quality material available on iTunes U which cannot all be discovered or played on the open web. Follow the step by step instructions, or read below about some alternatives.

Places to find podcasts:
As an alternative to iTunes U, AcademicEarth also has a lot of University video materials available for download and subscription. There are plenty of other podcast sources available, including:
Nature
BMJ
BBC
podcastdirectory.com

Tools to manage podcast subscriptions:
If you’re not using iTunes to manage your podcast subscriptions, you can use Google Reader for, eg Nature’s podcasts: on the Nature site there is a podcast icon which looks like the classic RSS feed icon, and clicking on this will take your through similar menus to the RSS feed subscription described in Thing 3.

Another alternative way for you to subscribe to podcasts is through a smart phone, and the Google Listen app is one which you might like to explore, as a way of managing your podcast subscriptions on your phone.

I wanna get involved: I have lots to say!
This course doesn’t cover podcast creation but if you are keen on podcasts and want to start to create your own, then I recommend starting with the Apple instructions at: http://www.apple.com/itunes/podcasts/specs.html

Explore a little further: Digital media in Arts and Humanities research

Arts and Humanities scholars using or planning to use digital media in their research might be interested in the advice of Stephen Gray, University of Bristol who appears in this video on Cambridge University’s website: http://www.sms.cam.ac.uk/media/1123465


Thing 4: Journal, search and citation alert subscriptions

For this Thing, you can just subscribe to one journal’s table of contents, or you can choose another kind of alert, or indeed many alerts to subscribe to. Don't forget to write about the process on your blog, so that our tutors can offer you support and tips.

One journal’s table of contents
This can be a pretty quick thing to do… You can subscribe to journal table of content alerts in a number of different ways. The simplest way might be to visit the home page of your favourite journal, and look for options to get e-mail or RSS notifications from there. For example, read about Wiley-Blackwell journal alerts here: http://www.wiley.com/bw/ealerts/

a journal home page

Many journals’ tables of contents
If you want to manage journals' table of contents alerts in your e-mail inbox then ZETOC is likely to be the best place for you to set up alerts: http://zetoc.mimas.ac.uk/ In this way, you can watch numerous journals and searches, and then manage the e-mails as they arrive in your inbox since all alerts will come from the same source and you will only need to set up one filtering rule to manage them all. ZETOC do also offer RSS feeds: http://zetoc.mimas.ac.uk/rssjnllist.html

Search alerts
Other than subscribing to tables of contents for journals, you might want to subscribe to a particular search on your favourite journals database, so that you get notifications of when new articles are added to the database which match your search criteria. It is probably best that you investigate your own database(s) of choice for your discipline, but as an example, Web of Knowledge’s instructions are available at: http://images.webofknowledge.com/WOK45/help/WOK/h_save_history.html

To visit Web of Knowledge, start at the Library’s databases listing at W: http://webcat.warwick.ac.uk/search/y?w
Note that you will need to “sign in” twice on most databases: once to authenticate yourself as a member of the University of Warwick and once to identify yourself to your own account on the database. One process might be called a login and the other a sign in.

Citation alerts
Web of Science within Web of Knowledge is a citations database. (You can read about the collections and their disciplinary coverage which is much broader than just science at: http://images.webofknowledge.com/WOK45/help/WOK/h_database.html) So when you are viewing an article on Web of Science, you can click on a small button “Create Citation alert” to get notifications of when new articles are added to the database which cite the one you are interested in.
Read more about these at: http://images.webofknowledge.com/WOK45/help/WOK/h_citalerts.html#cited_articles_add


October 24, 2011

Current awareness

The author of the blog posts this week is Jenny Delasalle. Jenny is an academic librarian with a particular remit to support researchers at the University of Warwick. Jenny's blog can be found on the Library’s Support for Research page.

As a PhD student, you need to know the published literature relating to your own research. How do you keep your knowledge up to date? There are a multitude of sources available to you and you could go back to search them every now and again… but that takes time to do and you might forget when you have those teaching commitments to meet. Or you might run out of time to update your knowledge just before that important conference where you want to impress!




You might want to keep up with higher education or other news too, and to get alerts about job advertisements or training opportunities and all sorts of other interests. As a digital professional you have plenty of current awareness sources to choose from, and the trick is to find ways to manage all the sources that are most appropriate and convenient for you.

This week we will be exploring ways of subscribing to content, so that it is delivered to you. We’ll be starting in thing 3 with instructions on subscribing to this blog!

Forthcoming events on this theme

  • Peer support : What is going on out there? - Tuesday 25 October, 12-1, REx sofas
  • RSSP literature searching for journal articles - Thursday 3 November, 2pm in Library Training Room

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  • Hi Doug, Which page is that? Can you provide a link so that I can update it if it's one of ours. Tha… by Emma Cragg on this entry
  • The video on the dropbox page is a video about Mendelay. by doug bamford on this entry
  • already had a personal twitter account – but now created a new one for research. unfortuantely could… by Abdulla Sodiq on this entry
  • This was a useful video and 'thing'. I have been part of twitter previously, but axed my account as … by Victoria on this entry
  • Hi Abdulla, I hope that your search alert proves useful to you. Another place that might be useful f… by Jenny Delasalle on this entry

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