Podcasting Glossary

Let's use this page to add to, edit our glossary, adding terms as we encounter them. This field is constantly evolving, so we may find some interesting terms.
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AAC (Advanced Audio Coding) AAC is a proprietary audio file format from Apple that is only playable by Apple software and hardware. See Apple's Web site for more information. 
aggregator An RSS aggregator program used to collect and read RSS and Atom feeds. An aggregator may also be known as a newsreader, news aggregator or RSS aggregator. Some readers exist as stand-alone programs and others operate as extensions of Web browsers or e-mail programs; still others are available online so feeds can be read independently of the computer used to collect them. 
channel A channel is a group of podcast items, each of which represents one MP3 audio file (or show). When subscribing to podcasts, it is the channel to which you subscribe. 
chicklet  Chicklet is a slang term for the small, often orange buttons used as links to RSS files. Most podcatchers allow a user to "drag and drop" chicklets directly onto them to easily add a subscription. 
Creative Commons The Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that offers flexible copyright licenses for creative works, including tools and guidance for artists and authors who wish to release some rights to their material under certain conditions while still maintaining copyright. See Creative Commons.org for more information. 
enclosure An enclosure is the portion of an RSS feed that links to multimedia files to be including along with each item, specifically the audio file used for the podcast. Podcast clients identify enclosures and automatically download them. An enclosure might look like this: 
encoding Encoding is the process of putting a sequence of characters (letters, numbers, punctuation, and certain symbols) into a specialized format for efficient transmission or storage. In podcasting terms, encoding often refers to the conversion of recorded audio files into MP3 for upload and distribution. 
Fair use Fair use is a legal concept that allows the reproduction of copyrighted material for certain purposes without obtaining permission and without paying a fee or royalty. Purposes permitting the application of fair use generally include review, news reporting, teaching, or scholarly research. The idea of fair use originally arose for written works. With the advent of digital technology and the Internet, fair use has also been applied to the redistribution of music, photographs, videos and software. 
ID3 ID3 is a metadata specification that allows information to be added to MP3 files. Commonly, items like track title, artist, album and track number are placed within ID3 "tags" that identify the type of data contained within. 
intellectual property Intellectual property (IP) is a legal term for describing various rights or entitlements that apply to the ownership, and thus use, of certain types of information, ideas or other concepts in an expressed form. 
iTunes iTunes is Apple's multimedia player software, including a store where users can download music, videos, television shows and podcasts. Along with ripping, organizing and playing multimedia files, iTunes links to a directory of podcasts and acts as a podcatcher by allowing users to subscribe to podcasts. 
mixer Historically, "mixer" has been used to refer to an electronic device that allows a user to combine, route, or change the level, tone or dynamics of two or more audio signals. Modem software allows this function to be accomplished using specialized software on a PC, though many recording artists continue to use specialized equipment. Read this article from WhatIs.com to learn more about mixing.  
mp3 MP3 (MPEG-1 Audio Layer-3) is a standard technology and format for compressing a sound sequence into a very small file (about one-twelfth the size of the original file) while preserving the original level of sound quality when it is played. 
RSS RSS (RDF Site Summary, formerly called Rich Site Summary or Really Simple Syndication) is a method of describing news or other Web content that is available for "feeding" (distribution or syndication) from an online publisher to Web users. RSS is an application of the Extensible Markup Language (XML) that adheres to the World Wide Web Consortium's Resource Description Framework ( RDF). Originally developed by Netscape for its browser's Netcenter channels, the RSS specification is now available for anyone to use. 
RSS feed An RSS feed is an XML file that provides content or summaries of content, including links to the full versions of the content and other metadata, that a user can subscribe to using an RSS aggregator.  
XML XML (Extensible Markup Language) is a flexible way to create common information formats and share both the format and the data on the World Wide Web, intranets and elsewhere. 
codec Acronym for compressor/decompressor. An encoding algorithm runs on a piece of hardware or as software that compresses audi or video files into a format suitable for transportation over the web or for storage. The codec is also used to then decompress the file again at the end. 
plosive A consonant pronounced by completely closing the lips or air passage and then releasing air suddenly (e.g. "p" "b" etc.) 
podcast badge A graphic (typically 80x15 pixels in size) used to promote a podcast. 
WAV The de-facto standard file format (especially on Windows, where it originated) for storing raw, uncompressed sound. New portable audio recorders omit this step and can record directly to an mp3 file, saving you the time of compressing the file. WAV files are often very large compared to mp3 files. 
waveform A graphic representation of a sound recording. 
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