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Archiving strategies for podcasters

Posted: November 13th, 2009 | Author: andy | Filed under: productivity, workflows | No Comments »

archive-foldersAs work on the book progresses, I thought I’d write a few thoughts on the ikky subject of archiving. Do not confuse this with backup, which is a completely separate and very important subject in its own right.

As podcasters, we do tend to produce some pretty big files. A typical WAV file comes in at around 10MB per minute. Record three 30 minute interviews a week and thats the best part of a GB per week if you want to keep those high quality WAV originals around. Add to that the file infrastructure that editing and mixing software adds, and the situation becomes even more scary. I have eight episodes of our Internet Marketing podcast languishing on my hard drive right now, taking up 8.93GB of disk real estate (284 files).

The problem is that as time progresses, your hard drive can get clogged up with huge files that you probably don’t need to access any more. We need a way of moving those files off our hard drive, but in a way that makes finding them again easy, just in case a client says, “You know that podcast you did for us two years ago. Well…

Let me tell you about the archiving strategy  I use on my MacBook.

I have an Archive folder directly in my home folder. Inside that I have a Pending folder. As I identify stuff that needs to be archived, I move it to that Pending folder. I like to preserve the folder hierarchy of the files I’m archiving because it makes more sense when you come to search for things later. Every so often I check the size of the Pending folder, (select folder, Command-I), and when it approaches the golden size 4.7GB I know its time to burn another DVD pair. Now here comes the nice part. In order to make it easy to find stuff later we need to make an index. To do that I use the find command to make a list of all files in Pending and capture the results to a text file. In terminal just type:

  cd Archive/Pending
  find . > 20091113.txt

Notice I name the archive as today’s date. I then copy the resulting .txt index file into the root of my Archive folder, so I have a growing index there. At this point I burn the content of Pending onto TWO DVDs, label them with the same  name as my index file, keep one DVD in the office and one at home. Then I purge the contents of Pending ready for the next archive.

If I suddenly need to find a file or folder I use the grep command on my index files. Say I need a file called ninja02.wav, in terminal:

  cd Archive
  grep 'ninja02.wav' *.txt
  > 20091026.txt:./podcasts/2006/061109_dSCAPE/tue/ninja02.wav

The output from grep includes the file containing the search string at the front. So we can see that the DVD we need is the one labled 20091026.

Happy archiving.

Book progress: Approx. word count: 17,200.

Update 14/11/09:

To achieve similar results to find in Windows, use the recursive dir command:

cd Archive\Pending
dir /s /b > 20091113.txt
  cd Archive\Pending
  dir /s /b > 20091113.txt

Another mega session

Posted: October 8th, 2009 | Author: andy | Filed under: productivity | No Comments »

andy1Drilling into Feedburner today and all the nice little tools it gives for analysing and promoting. Absolutely shattered – hard work this writing. I need to do some exercise – perhaps a run – but not at 12:20am!

Approx. word count: 12,200.

The power of the Accountability Partner

Posted: September 16th, 2009 | Author: andy | Filed under: productivity | No Comments »

ian-ozsvald-delice-090916Met with Ian Ozsvald this morning for our fortnightly accountability meeting.

It was a chance meeting with Ian about 2 months ago that led to me writing Podcasting Unleashed. A book had been on my someday maybe list for some time, and when Ian told me he was writing The Screencasting Handbook, my someday maybe became right now and we agreed to meet every 2 weeks to spur each other on.

So here I sit, fully spurred for the next 2 weeks.