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Geeks in Space, Take Two 76

Well, the fine folks over at The Sync have informed me that episode two of Geeks in Space is ready for listening-with Nate, Rob and I's commentary, and featuring a live report from CowboyNeal from Martha's Vineyard, concering JFK Jr. Honest! *grin*
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Geeks in Space, Take Two

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  • Thank you, do you charge for your spell check services?
    Perhaps this post is sarcastic as your reply to mine.
  • Keep up the good work!
  • Howdy,
    Got a question. Why 10 minutes and 37 seconds? Both episodes have been exactly this long....
    There must be some reason :)
    Got sigs?

  • I definitely like this show :)
    Its major fun!!
  • by Skyshadow ( 508 ) on Wednesday July 21, 1999 @04:04PM (#1792697) Homepage
    It's not *too* terrible (for first-time radio people), but here's how to improve the show:

    1. Assign Roles: By giving each person a specific role, you'll make listening to you easier. Specifically, someone needs to play facilitator; that means opening/closing the show, setting up the topics and helping to direct who should talk (making sure everyone gets a turn and that you all don't try to talk at once). This leads to...

    2. Stop Stepping on Each Other: Yeah, I know it's hard sometimes to decide who will talk at any given time, especially when you're recording. Until you get used to the whole setup, I'd suggest only having two people with a live mike at any given time; even people with a lot of radio experience can have troubles coordinating three people, and (no offense) you guys can't handle it yet.

    3. Cut down on the jokes: I know it's hard to ad-lib, but try to cut down on the jokes -- you put too many in and you just sound nervous. Besides, humor on even funny-newsy shows is best if it's paced a bit. Otherwise, you end up sounding like (again, I mean this with no offense intended) a bunch of giggling morons.

    4. Stop saying "um": I cured myself by having my then-girlfriend stand behind me with a yardstick while I practiced and had her thwack me every time I said "um" (she got mean with that thing).

    5. Slow down and enunciate: Remember all those public speaking classes you had to take in your liberal arts program? Well, here's your chance to make use of them. Slow down a bit and make an effort to be clear.

    Again, I'm really not trying to rip on the guys here. What I might suggest is that they find someone whose done some radio work to help with their delivery (or even, if that person has a sizable geek side, play the "facilitator" role; think Adam Corolla to Dr. Drew on Loveline). Again, the idea isn't to be like every other radio show, conform, or be unrealistically professional. The idea is to smooth your delivery to make your show more enjoyable.


  • I dunno dude, I think there's a certain level that most humans are owed.

    I mean, c'mon. They guy and his wife (who were still pretty much newlyweds) died on their way to a family wedding. That's really depressing, no matter how it happened or who he was. Besides, it's not like it's his fault that the press is swarming all over it.

    Sure, maybe the feds are giving this one special treatment; that doesn't make it funny.


  • I was struck by the 10:37 thing too. I felt it was quite freakish. Terrifyingly, the reading on JFK's plane's compass was 10 degrees 37 minutes...

    This is getting scary.

  • I think this week is better than the inital one, as it flows smoothly, and there aren't many pauses between dialog. The sound effects, which I persume are added after the recording, go in well, and are ok quality. One thing maybe could be have them be a little less loud, so we can hear the intro better. But it was overall good and i'll be looking forward for the next edition.
  • Right on, bring us more Geeks In Space. We were listening to it here at work and having a grand ol' time. Sure, it's dorky, but at the same time you crazy kids are funny, like listening to me and my friends except with no effort.

  • Mirror located here:

    http://maas-neotek.dhs.org/GIS/geeks2.mp3 [dhs.org]

    10Mbps connection. Streaming accepted :)

  • ...okay, well not really, but I do like GIS.

    I do think you should keep it to radio format (though there is no "radio" technology involved). It's fun this way. Video would be a hassle and not quite as much fun.

    And who is that with the sqeaky voice? Jeff is that you? Cowboy Neal? No more squeaky giggles! If forbid it.

    Seriously, it's a good show. More content and new ideas and perspectives on the news would be nice. I really loved the War of the Worlds Y2K show idea (in this discussion). Keep it coming guys.

    grumble grumble...somebody in my lab sqeaked, mmm...grumble grumble

  • Given that the media's been on this like a starving dog on a T-bone, I think the public deserves one last picture -- John-John after 5 days underwater.

    Go to http://bitch.shutdown.com/kennedy.html [shutdown.com] and crank up the music [ubl.com].
  • When did lin-ix become the standard pronunciation for Linux? Did I miss a meeting. I thought it was just a typical american media slip up when the news people started saying it on TV, but now /. too?

    What happened to Linus' pronunciation rules:
    Lye-nuks in English, otherwise Lee-nukes (so it sounds like his name)
  • How about LIH-Nucks :)
  • I missed last weeks "broadcast" so this was my first taste of "Geeks in Space" and to be quite frank it kind of sucked (Can I type that on a webpage). But fear not, as much as it sucked it does have potential. Here is my criteria for improving SlashRadio.
    1. If I read it on slashdot or freshmeat I don't need to hear about it unless you have something good to add.
    2. Self deprication is fine and dandy on low budget shows, keep it up but don't overdo it.
    3. Add some other (interesting!) people to the mix but not all at once. For example take callers or interview people.
    4. Don't be afraid to make it longer, what you have is a nice introduction. It recaps the news, (tries to) grab our attention, and gives the callers something to talk about.
    5. If length and callers don't appeal to you then a round table commentary on the news is nice but make them shorter and more unified. Actually a one or two minute commentary assocciated with one of the days top stories would be very nice.

    The previous comments were made up as I went along, and not spellchecked. If they are not consistent that's because I changed my mind as I typed. One day I'll edit what I say. That day is not today.
  • I agree as well. The moderation system seems to propel PRO-slashdot commentary .... which is often as full of FUD as ANTI-microsoft commentary.

    FUD is FUD.

    Suggestion : moderation not allowed on pro or anti slashdot comments. leave it be for what it is. (dont know how you would implement that though)
  • No death is a funny matter, even if it's someone you don't particularly like. But I think the original point stands - if I was flying a plane out over the ocean, and did a nose-dive into the deep blue, I don't think anyone would be out looking that hard for me. Basically, some people are making more of this than there really was - the guy did something really dumb (flying late at night without enough experience in bad conditions). The consequences of that kind of thing frequently involves the person who screwed up not living to laugh about it. I fail to feel too heartbroken - he screwed up, and the consequences got him. Let's move on.
  • Well, I'd have to mostly agree with the other AC reply to this thread, but I do agree that it's hard to tell everybody apart. Through 8.5 kbps realaudio, Rob, Jeff, and Nate's voices don't sound different enough for me to be able to tell them apart. It'd be easier of one of them was female :P
  • I've heard of streaming MP3 before. I don't remember where, but somewhere there's a web radio station that is experimenting with it. I think you have to have a speedy connection though (cable, T1) to use it.
  • by vr ( 9777 )
    Maybe the answer is to use IRC. SlashNET maybe?

    Yeah, that's a much better idea. Internet-phone over the atlantic is probably not such a good idea anyway ;)

    .. or perhaps mail-ins?
  • Hmm, well if you find him, maybe get him to ask himself....

    If you find him you might tell him that there's an MP3 (and streaming MP3) to download there...

  • ...but it should last longer. There must be more you can talk about. Or if it isn't a longer program, it should be daily or three times a week. Anyway - good job, keep it up.

    this is my sig, do you like it?
  • by vr ( 9777 )
    and when are the callins going to begin ??

    Callins? Ahem.. excuse me, but there are a lot of people in europe too, you know.. I really don't want to spend all my hard earned money on calling to USA (or perhaps I could call from work ;)).

    At least it should be possible to use some kind of internet-phone thingy. :-)
  • Excellent!

    can't wait for next weeks broadcast.

    I am trying hard of something contreversial to say but... ahh... just can't think of anything ;)

    Good broadcast guys ;)
  • You should really use the airwolf theme everytime you are doing a helicopter noise.
  • what about going live with /. on a webcam. that ought to be nice, hehe (for those that could withstand the aggony of looking at rob)

    and when are the callins going to begin ??

  • I'm not sure what people expect from /. radio. I'm not sure you guys know even :-)

    For what it's worth, I like it. I'm not expecting serious discussion, and it makes me smile/laugh - thus I think it's good. Of course its a bit rough around the edges - but that's part of the charm (IMHO). My only word of warning is don't read from /. directly (I think you verged on that in show 2 once) - I can read /. perfectly well thank you very much!

    I hope it continues, as long as it doesn't take itself to seriously.

    -- Dougal

  • and when are the callins going to begin ??

    Maybe they should sit on slashnet and accept "type-ins" there for our international friends.

    IRC anyone?

  • Since we moved the MP3 server to a new provider, things appear to be going much smoother this time. We're cruising along at a handfull of Mbps, no problem. Thanks though!
  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    linn-ucks is that way that Linus pronounces it. If you invent something YOU get to decide how it's name is pronounced.

  • I liked both installments of Geeks in Space, but in the interest of honest feedback I wanted to offer a suggestion that it might be worth holding off on reflexively making light of people dying. I realize that making jokes about very public tragedies is supposed to be some kind of healthy societal coping mechanism, and I likewise understand the view that the boomers' fascination with John-John's death is more about their own ongoing self-absorbtion than about anything newsworthy, but, with all that said, I found the "Live from Martha's Vineyard" bits fairly unfunny.

    I was reminded of the time in college when my campus security officer job required me to do a shift guarding the entrance to Rock Hudson's room at the campus medical center. He was dying of AIDS, and reporters were crawling all over the place, so we were posted at his door to help him get some privacy. There were *lots* of jokes making the rounds back then about his particular predicament, but after my session standing outside his door they all seemed profoundly cruel and twisted. He was just a person -- a very sick, tired person -- and after being confronted with that reality the jokes just stopped being funny to me.

    Rob & Co. are young, smart, and irreverent, and that's a big part of what makes Slashdot (and the Geeks in Space stuff) interesting and fun. In this particular case, though, I think a little more compassion (at least as far as not making jokes about the search for someone's body) would be worth considering.

  • Posted by Lord Kano-The Gangster Of Love:

    It's a horrible shame when anyone dies young, but I never met the man. None of the media pundits who are following the "breaking story" were his close personal friends.

    His father died a decade before I was born. The only Kennedy that I have first hand memories of is Ted.

    The Kennedy's are NOT our fscking royal family. I feel sorry for the friends and family of him and his wife, but for the rest of us I say let it go!

    He may have been a swell guy, but none of the TV mourners knew him. It's phony, they've been sold a bill of goods. We're supposed to believe the lie of Camelot. The Kennedy family made it's fortune by bootlegging booze during prohibition. That is not something that we should emulate or hold in high regard.

    Too bad, but I won't lose a minute's sleep over this.

  • First a joke, now real... live video coverage of the recovery [cbs.com] from CBS.com. All I got was a test pattern when I checked up on it, maybe there will be some more "action" later.

  • Posted by oNZeNeMo (guns'n ammo):

    This show needs to be expanded. It needs to be broadcast over conventional radio to bring the good word of /. to the unconverted, sinful Microsoft-using masses. They need to be shown the way of our Linus. They need to learn The Right Way. Every time a windows user reaches for his reset button he lets out a cry for salvation and unknowingly longs for words from a Geek well-versed in The Source. This cry must be answered. We must reach down to those who let out this cry. We must reach down to those who must use a radio for news for they lack the faith that their packets will reach their destination, the faith that their computer can run weeks and months without faltering, and the faith that one day we all men will walk the face of the earth, PalmPilot in hand, knowing that they are free, at last, from the tyrany of bloated, buggy, software.
  • MP3 can stream with WinAmp (and X11Amp I believe as well). The .m3u file gives a URL where the MP3 file is.

    It streams using TCP over port 80 (HTTP), and if the MP3 player plays it faster than it comes it, it will "skip" (i.e. have a period of silence) every now and then.

    "Real" streaming systems like RealAudio use UDP transmission, and if you lose a packet, it tries a couple of times to get a retransmission, but unlike TCP it will give up after just a few retransmission failures. The "holes" in the audio of RealAudio can be filled in with white noise or predicted audio, depending on the codec.

    To tell the truth, most people with a 56k dial-up modem should have no trouble enjoying listening to Geeks in Space in MP3 because it is encoded at 24kbps. It is not CD-quality MP3, but good enough for voice.

    I even tried listening over a Metricom Ricochet wireless connection (equivalent to a bad 28.8 kbps connection), and although it did stop to rebuffer with WinAmp a few times, it was listenable in spurts.

    The truly bandwidth-deficient can listen to Geeks in Space in 8.5 kbps RealAudio. Even a 14.4kbps modem should be able to work at that speed. If packet loss is a problem with the RealAudio over UDP, go into the preferences and set it to TCP transport.

  • Overall I liked the show. Callins would liven things up a lot! Like over the net or via an infared voice line. Ooooooooo I can't get Real Audio through our firewall. The mp3 version worked fine!
  • Yeah, maybe you could explore one or two stories in a little more depth, or perhaps cover a few stories that didn't quite make it to /. itself. Right now, it's basically just covering ground that most /.ers have already read.
  • by drwiii ( 434 )
    Hey, I just heard.. Some MSNBC fighter jets just shot down the Slashdot Copter and the Slashdot Infrared-Equipped Airplane. Will the news media now be obsessed with finding CowboyNeal? :P

    Neat show.

  • The *press* has been covering this in poor taste. C&H were just mocking the press coverage, not JFKJr's death. C'mon, grant them *some* humanity.
  • by unclei ( 55647 )
    OK guys, that does it. From this point on, you
    are commanded to never communicate with any
    living being again except through /. posts or
    email. I don't care if you're going into
    anaphylatic shock - if you don't wanna die, post
    it. "HEART FAILURE! - from the 'I dont wanna die
    Oh yeah, and have some cards made up for when the
    paramedics arrive. "Yes, that hurts a lot."
    "WHERE are you going to stick that?!"

  • I really don't understand why people fawn all over celebreties like they do with Princes Diana, the Kennedys, OJ Simpson, etc. Really, their lives are as worthless as everyone else's. Yes, read the last line again. Come on, the divorce, bankrupcy, crime, drug use and suicide rates must be higher for the 'stars' as they are usually pretty shallow. The only thing they have going for them is that they get / have more money. Otherwise they'd be ignored IMO, as they really don't have much personality and most except maybe Di only do token gestures of helping humanity, and even then Mother Theresa's character blows them all out of the water combined, even Di.
  • The show is a good idea, i'll give you that much.
    However, listening to the show leaves much to be desired, how about an intelegent discussion on the topics in the news, something that would stir up some conversation about stuff thats goin on instead of how juvenile the show sounds.
  • Maybe the answer is to use IRC. SlashNET maybe?
  • Good work gents.

    Thanks for the john-john blather, how about a Y2k ala WarO'Worlds future broadcast? You Lienuks pros *can* bend space and time, right?

    todays montra: hack to hell in post production...

  • /. effect
    - - -
  • >"Breif? What is `breif'?"

    The answer can be found here

    -- Dougal

  • More Apollo, less JohnJohn. Nuff said!
    - - -

System restarting, wait...