Author Topic: Intros ~vs~ Outros  (Read 22523 times)

IT_Spook

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Reply #25 on: May 27, 2008, 05:50:31 PM
I'm not a big poster, but I listen every week without fail.

I am all for keeping the intros and outros. I find they are one of the aspects of Escape Pod that sets it apart from others of its type. Plus, Steve always has something to say that either keeps me informed or makes me reflect on some aspect of my life.

Some weeks, when the story doesn't turn my crank, the intro and outros still leave me feeling satisfied.

I just wish I had the smooth delivery Steve has for my own feeble attempts at podcasting. :)

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MacArthurBug

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Reply #26 on: May 28, 2008, 02:14:59 AM
I totally dig Steves EP intros, they've made me feel like I'm being given a story by a friend. I also dig the PP outros (though that man could talk the stock market and I'd listen..mmm) The PC intros are DEFINATLY strained and need some warming up, or a sweeter/softer vocal touch -is it just me or does her voice make anyone else feel jarred?  Maybe I prefer male intro.. humm how terribly biased of me.

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goatkeeper

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Reply #27 on: May 28, 2008, 06:43:54 PM
I'm a big fan of Steve's Intros and would prefer to keep them as Intros.
There is a certain release I feel after listening to a story- I want to think about it, soak it in.  Give me some creative commons mumbo jumbo and lets be done with it so I can ponder.

I find Steve's commentary extremely insightful and the flashes into his personal life fun and engaging.
The personalization is what makes podcasting cool- it's a real person out there putting this together, not some team at Random House.

Steve may want to consider dividing the episode into "chapters" so those who just want a story and then want out can push forward on their POD and skip the intro, going directly to the story.

I was going to do this with DC but then realized that everyone needs to know about colossal squid findings- it's for their own good.






wintermute

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Reply #28 on: May 28, 2008, 07:19:56 PM
Steve may want to consider dividing the episode into "chapters" so those who just want a story and then want out can push forward on their POD and skip the intro, going directly to the story.
I refer you to my previous comment on the subject.

If there's an mp4 version that's divided into chapters, there must also be an mp3 version that I can listen to without having to transcode.

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Liminal

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Reply #29 on: May 28, 2008, 07:56:04 PM
I'm also a fan of keeping the intros as intros - Steve's commentary is always interesting and he is adept at presenting the story--not explaining or analyzing, but presenting. In a way, it feels like he is welcoming us into a shared story space. By taking a few moments to bridge the gap between our everyday lives and the story, he creates a smoother transition, and a more natural, intimate experience.

I think that's one of the reasons I comment more on EP stories that PsuedoPod or PodCastle - I feel more tied in to EP and I think it is partly due to the intro structure and to Steve's abilities as an essayist and host.

I don't want to diminish Alisdair's outros - which I think are quite good, but because of their placement, they don't create that intimacy of someone saying "Hi - so, you know there's this thing about life that we can all recognize and hey, you know what, here's a story that kind a speaks to that, let's share that together."

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goatkeeper

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Reply #30 on: May 28, 2008, 09:52:09 PM
Steve may want to consider dividing the episode into "chapters" so those who just want a story and then want out can push forward on their POD and skip the intro, going directly to the story.

If there's an mp4 version that's divided into chapters, there must also be an mp3 version that I can listen to without having to transcode.

But you agree the concept of chapters might be worth looking into, so people can skip intros if they just want the story content? you (or your player I should say) just has a problem with MP4 format?
I don't want to derail this, as I know people feel strangely passionate about their players and file formats but I don't run across many players (the most recent versions at least) that don't play MP4 nowadays. It's not really apple/ipod exclusive- winamp, realplayer, windows media player all play them I'm pretty sure.
Granted, if you are boxed in with some sort of phone/device that limits your format, or you just really like Windows 95 or something, it does suck to not be able to get MP4 files, and podcasts should offer an MP3 option as well.  If podcasts really wanna be more accessible they should also offer episodes as .wav formats, so my Grandma can listen.   ;)




wintermute

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Reply #31 on: May 29, 2008, 11:58:32 AM
I don't have a problem with chapters per se, no. Just with people assuming that everyone has a device that supports them. So long as there's an mp3 lowest common denominator*, I'm in favour of people putting out their work in as many alternative codecs as they see fit.

OK, according to this, I can play AACs, which are basically the same thing as MP4s. But I know I've downloaded files with an .m4a (or .m4p? It was a while ago) extension and been unable to play them. I might have to do some research on this point.

*If you can point me to a portable player that can't play MP3s, I'll concede the point about WAVs. But installing a new audio codec on a desktop computer is a lot easier (even for grandmothers!) than doing so on a DAP.

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wintermute

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Reply #32 on: May 29, 2008, 02:22:13 PM
OK, it seems that Rockbox's AAC support is (at best) flaky, that it doesn't support chapter marks, and that no-one's actively working on it. So, yeah, I'm going to have to keep listening to the MP3 version, regardless.

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goatkeeper

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Reply #33 on: May 31, 2008, 03:31:59 AM
To play devil's advocate- you know who's support is "flaky" at best when it comes to publishing basic mp3's rather than AAC or mp4?  iLife (apple).
Hmm...I wonder why that is.
I have a friend who listens to Drabblecast mp4 files with Rockbox, I'll see what he did.
 



wintermute

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Reply #34 on: May 31, 2008, 01:53:37 PM
I have a friend who listens to Drabblecast mp4 files with Rockbox, I'll see what he did.
I would be very interested to hear. Keep me updated.

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Shotobouv

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Reply #35 on: May 31, 2008, 10:11:19 PM
Going to have to say that I like the intros and outros as long as they are not longer then the story.

Intros should be short and a set up for the story, life comments if they pertain to the story are fine. I know Steve tries to keep the intro short and pertinent to the story.

Outros can be longer, you can always stop listening, with feedback and comments from other episodes. The comments from other episodes, makes me want to check up on the forums, when I have time.



stePH

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Reply #36 on: May 31, 2008, 11:08:21 PM
Going to have to say that I like the intros and outros as long as they are not longer then the story.

Intros should be short and a set up for the story, life comments if they pertain to the story are fine. I know Steve tries to keep the intro short and pertinent to the story.

Outros can be longer, you can always stop listening, with feedback and comments from other episodes. The comments from other episodes, makes me want to check up on the forums, when I have time.


I found the format of EP159 "Elites" most agreeable.  The intro was short and to the point, and Steve talked about what was going on in his life (and how it related to the story) in the afterword.

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Planish

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Reply #37 on: June 02, 2008, 06:48:44 AM
Slightly off topic, but am i the only one who cant stand the computer voice at the start of each episode?
Hey, don't say that. You'll hurt Vicki's feelings!  :(

I was hoping she'd get some cameo roles in some of the stories.

The only thing I can't stand is music in the outro that is not Daikaiju.

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stePH

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Reply #38 on: June 02, 2008, 01:42:39 PM
The only thing I can't stand is music in the outro that is not Daikaiju.

My iPod is not for music.  I tend to skip songs; I do it all the time when listening to Dani Cutler's podcast.

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jonathanhowell

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Reply #39 on: June 06, 2008, 01:32:08 AM
For me, I think it would work best if there were no "formula" to Escape Pod intros and outros.

The concept of forcing a marching order of "Intro/Meta/Story/Outro/Promo/Quote" would lose some of the spontaneity of the podcast. I enjoy listening to the intro and stretching the topic to lead into the story. I also enjoy a postmortem on the story and how it's relevant to society, Steve's life, soccer balls and ice cream -- whatever. The muse is with Steve and I believe it shouldn't be fettered.

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veganvampire

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Reply #40 on: June 13, 2008, 04:45:31 PM
What I like most about the intros is Steve's sincerity.  He really means what he says, no matter what it's about--I think the intros should stay intros.  When they are "outros" they seem more pushed aside by the credits, feedback, contact info, etc.



goatkeeper

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Reply #41 on: June 25, 2008, 06:56:23 AM

If there's an mp4 version that's divided into chapters, there must also be an mp3 version that I can listen to without having to transcode.

You're the straw that broke the camel's back wintermute.  Drabblecast now has a normal MP3 feed and enhanced AAC feed with chapters/pictures/url's.



wintermute

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Reply #42 on: June 25, 2008, 10:32:46 AM
Wooo! Power to the people ;)

I suppose this means I ought to check it out, now...

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Russell Nash

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Reply #43 on: June 25, 2008, 12:26:45 PM
Back to the outros v. intros discussion.

I really gotta say I like intros better, as long as they don't give away part of the story.  IMO the reason the outros work on PP is that there is no feedback section.  There's a flow from story to outro to begging for money to creative commons to sign off.  I think the feedback would just break that all up and make it too long. 



DKT

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Reply #44 on: June 25, 2008, 03:15:23 PM
Back to the outros v. intros discussion.

I really gotta say I like intros better, as long as they don't give away part of the story.  IMO the reason the outros work on PP is that there is no feedback section.  There's a flow from story to outro to begging for money to creative commons to sign off.  I think the feedback would just break that all up and make it too long. 

Also, I have to say I haven't noticed the stuff from EP intros in the new EP outros.  The EP intros are chopped down, but the EP outros seem relatively the same length.


Liminal

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Reply #45 on: July 02, 2008, 07:52:49 PM
I miss the Intros - I mean, they are still there, but they feel more perfunctory of late.

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Clutron

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Reply #46 on: July 08, 2008, 11:07:42 PM
And now for my first forum post ever.....

I vote INTRO's...100%.  I feel like I'm re-stating what has been said already, but the intros really hooked me in to EP.  They have been at least 33% of the reason that I listen week after week.  So please keep them at the beginning and keep them awesome! :)

I partially agree with Rain that the computer voice could be better.  It always seems to come in REALLY loud compared to Steve's volume.  So I usually have to turn my player way down at the start of a story and then crank it when Steve comes on...Maybe this is a problem with my EQ settings?  I should turn down my sexy computer voice booster?

Keep up the good work Steve-0 and EA in general!



DaveUnique

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Reply #47 on: August 13, 2008, 01:46:30 PM
One of the wonderful aspects of EscapePod was an intro that was personable, well-written, relevant to the story yet left the story untouched for us to discover, and often prepared us nicely for the story.  That is an extremely challenging writing assignment yet Steve did it well for most episodes.  The new layout just does not work for me because it can't accomplish everything the original layout could when done right.

I didn't see this thread when I posted my above comment and I think it has already been said better in this thread.  I really enjoyed Steve's Intros.