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Kistaro Windrider, Reptillian Situation Assessor

Unfortunately, I Really Am That Nerdy

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The Audial Equivalent of "Wario Ware"
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So, in my usual Shrine of Inspiration- that is to say, the bathroom- I came up with what strikes me as a horrible mix of Wario Ware, The Gong Show, and podcasting- hooking MP3 files up to an RSS feed. Horrible in the sense that it's one of those ideas that you hear about, and your first thought is "Wow, that's a really awful idea", and then you think about how you're going to go about doing it because it absolutely has to be done. This is one of those ideas.

Imagine, if you will, a podcast called Attention Deficit. Each week's "show", which would be as long as I have content for, would be a sequence of unrelated segments, strung together as rapidly as possible, with only some familliar cue noise (probably a record-scratch sort of effect) to denote when segments have been switched. Perhaps very mini-series could start up, because this would be listener-contributed in large part- I'd open up a gmail drop-box for submissions.

The only thing the segments would have in common: They're all PG-13 or lower, and they are all fifteen seconds long or shorter, preferably shorter. The e-mail drop box wouldn't be "you will be on the show"; I'd try to put on as much as I can. "Hey, we're hitting ourselves in the heads with cardboard tubes" and then some rather Blue-Man-Group-ish musical "bonk bonk bonk" would be a definite winner. Completely non-musical? Not so much. Fifteen seconds of belching has a sharply lower chance, an American Idol reject will get on at five seconds but not at fifteen, "Hi mom" is on if it's two seconds or less, very short news reports are likely to make it, and in general anything I can't imagine anybody wanting to hear for the duration wouldn't make it on. Overall, I'd try to accept more than I drop, were I to do such a hare-brained cockamamie idea.

I might have enough free time this summer to pull it off, too. It strikes me as something that will either be completely ignored or wildly popular, and I have no idea which will happen. An audio show of a bunch of very short clips intended to make no sense at all is sort of funny as a general idea, but it won't last long unless it is actually funny or otherwise amusing. Imagine a badly-overacted soap opera with fifteen-second episodes. And drop the comedy, just make it entertainment! A sci-fi thriller with something akin to a plot... fifteen seconds at a time! For that matter, fifteen seconds of good music you composed yourself would probably make it on.

As I stated, this is either a really, really dumb idea or a really, really good one and I have no idea which it is. I think I'll have to try it to find out which.

Were I to start this, can I rely on any of you to try to produce anything to get at least a combined total of a five-minute show for each of the first two weeks? That's actually only forty segments, which shouldn't be that hard to make. I can probably cover a significant number myself, but the idea of that is definitely, definitely not to have it be a one-person or even a small-staff show; I'd like a variety of submissions from a variety of sources. If and only if it gets popular, my time for this ludicrous project will be fully taken up with choosing what submissions I want and pasting them together in Audacity, rather than producing content myself. Of course, to make it interesting enough to get popular, I have to have content...


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...dude. I WANT IT. You'd have to compile each broadcast into one mp3 file for those of us poor saps who want to archive it, or can't tune into streams for whatever reason.

I've a decent sound editor (SoundForge - old, but better than futzing around with something like Sound Recorder, or booting Premiere for trimming audio...) and some of the weirdest music ever - Queen in Japanese, for instance, which Demonyaj's car Discord apparently loves - and I collect and make movie sound clips. I have Princess Bride and Pirates of the Caribbean right now, and am very close to just saying heck with it and going through the Star Wars trilogy for sounds. (Might be able to snag you a lightsaber sound or something similar..) If that sort of randomness is appreciated, give me a dropbox account to send it to and I'll scrape up a zip (for convenience). Preference for wav or mp3? And there's always YouSendIt if the zip gets too big - that sends a couple KB text to an account, with a link to pick up a file of up to a GB. It's awesome.

Yeah, I'm 3/4 asleep. But I want to hear you do this, becuase I think it'd rock. OH! You have to open with "Your Attention Please: Please Yell if You Are Paying Attention." at least once! (Pretty sure that's on dead air at the very beginning of the track...)

You have to do this.

Podcasts are always just .mp3 or .ogg files sitting alone, attached to an RSS feed- an RSS service is what lets you, for example, put a site on a syndicated LiveJournal account. There are a number of programs that just check RSS feeds for you and "feed" you updates; most news sites noew have RSS feeds so you can get your news through such a viewer. This is just another one of those feeds, with links to MP3 files as each element of the feed- and there are specially-designed clients for just that sort of feed. That's all that podcasting- named, of course, after the iPod it's frequently heard on- is. So you'll have those MP3s!

I'd actually have to get permission from Blue Man Productions, Inc. to use that sound bite. That said, I'll ask them if this gets off the ground. My intended format is one clip, whatever intro I want to do (which I will try to keep to 15 seconds, but I won't hit that the first episode when I try to explain things- unless I talkveryquickly, which I can do), and then the rest of the show, non-stop. For one of the episodes, sure, "Your attention please- please yell if you're paying attention" can definitely be an opening- if Blue Man Productions agrees! (Considering what I've seen of their posts to their official message board, I've got a good chance. What with posts featuring them asking for a particular song- one they didn't actually have the authority to create or release- to be pirated... if you're curious, it's their version of the theme for Terminator.) What I intend to do for the first three episodes is a bite of me "Hi, I'm creating an online broadcast of nothing but fifteen-second sound bytes, what do you think?" and then shoving a microphone under the nose of whatever hapless passer-by I've hijacked. The fourth episode, I will interview triton668's cat in that manner (should both triton668 and his cat agree), get a good "meow" or two, and then go to some general good clip as the introduction.

MP3 because it's smaller and Audacity doesn't have any problems with it, but don't do it yet; I'm not ready. For that matter, what you've listed isn't quite what I'm looking for; in fact, I can't use copyrighted sound clips as I'd rather not be on the wrong end of a lawsuit. What would be what I'm looking for would be a fifteen-second comedy sketch between you and whoever else you can get involved (I'm certain you're creative enough to write something), you singing, a poem that can be read in fifteen seconds, a running gag over several clips I'll spread throughout a show, an episodic serial anything with 15-second-or-less episodes (imagine Red Dwarf in 15 seconds), movie parodies (complete movie parodies- can you summarize Star Wars in 15 seconds? Can you and a few friends act it out for a microphone? Can you send it to me if you do?) across an indefinite number of weeks- an infinite number of possibilities, but random sound clips from copyrighted sources aren't among them. I'd rather avoid legal hazards.

Yeah! Yeah! Yeah! :D Love it!

What about using free stock sound effects? Or would that kind of fluffy-filler be considered cheating? They might be alright for in the beginning. Or for making the record-scratch segue-sound.

What about "storytime" with readings of Book-A-Minute's condensed books, or similar works? (And from its companion, Movie-A-Minute? We could get their permission) Or things like The 30-second Bunnies Theatre, though those are usually pretty visual. I still really like the soap opera idea.

Oh, the possibilities- such a wonderful new original unique idea!

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