consuming podcasts

podcasts/vidcasts are enjoying tremendous growth through itunes podcast directory[1], youtube channels and similar services. it is now easy to get overwhelmed under the amount of quality content mostly available for free. Some people overconsume a lot of podcast/vidcast/youtube channels/series. I'm one of them. There is just never enough time, so find a few tips to cope with the overload:


. simple stats: a speaker averages 150 wpm, a reader averages 250 wpm[2]. some podcast players can double the playback speed of the audio, comprehension may become difficult and the audio player barely reaches reading speed. You could go even faster with basic speed reading techniques (at least 400 wpm). For most podcasts, I can easily read any transcript x3 faster than a normal playback speed.

. retention rate is higher when reading (lesser when listening) [reference needed]

. it is so much faster and easier to scroll backward or forward with your eyes while reading a transcript and jump through "fluff" sections. your audio podcast player will never be as fast as your eyes.

. podcast owners do yourself and the world a favour: always post a transcript. this way your content gets indexed, it becomes searchable and you can reach more people.

. alias mplayer='mplayer -af scaletempo'  during playback, press "]" to speed up playback. pitch is conserved. very handy for things like "Game of Thrones" when it's just blablabla fluff and you have to wait the last 5 min of the episode for some meaningful action and the plot to actually move on.

. alias yl='youtube-dl --all-subs --external-downloader=aria2c  -l ' [3] note this speeds up youtube-dl thanks to aria2 [4] as long as you have the bandwidth. also it downloads the subtitles when these are available.

. format subtitles files for faster transcript reading: awk '{ if($2) {if($2 == "-->" ) {printf("\n%s",$0)} else {printf(" %s",$0)} } }'

. check my previous article [5] to provide intranavigation fast forwarding to the different speakers in the media file.







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