My professional life has been greatly enriched by the advent of podcasting. I've listened to countless hours of informative shows downloaded from ITConversations, most recently Scott Mace's excellent interview with Lisa Dusseault on the history and current status of calendar-sharing technology. And while I wasn't able to attend the recent RSA security conference, I've been sampling the audio interviews filed by InfoWorld contributor Bob Garza.

(Here's a tip, by the way. Although Bob's weblog feed doesn't (yet) offer podcatcher-friendly enclosures, it's easy to synthesize such a feed. One application that will do that for you is webjay. Visit webjay and click Import. Enter the URL of a web page that includes links to MP3 files you want to hear -- for example, Click Go. The resulting page is a playlist that you can use to play the whole collection. But it also includes a Podcast RSS link that points to a feed with enclosures.)

On most days I devote an hour to outdoor recreation. Music used to be my companion, and it still is, but thanks to these innovations I'm now also accompanied by informative voices.

Until recently, audiobooks were never part of the mix. But that changed when Hugh McGuire invited me to contribute to his LibriVox project. It's been written up a lot lately, but in case you haven't heard about it, LibriVox publishes free audio versions of public domain literature.

I don't know if I'll manage to contribute any recordings, but I tip my hat to everyone involved in this excellent project. This weekend, for example, New Hampshire was blanketed with new snow. On my outdoor rambles, I've been listening to Call of the Wild. I can't remember when I last read it, and I wouldn't have made time to reread it, but it's been wonderful to hear it while tramping through the snow. The voices are Gordon Mackenzie, Kristen McQuillen, Jean O'Sullivan, and Miette, and all four of them did a great job. Thanks!

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