SpoolCast #1.1: What Has Brown Done For You? (Part 1)

Jared Spool

August 31st, 2006

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SpoolCast #1.1: What Has Brown Done For You?
Recorded: August 23, 2006
Part 1 of 4
Duration: 25m 36s

Present for this recording were DeWayne Purdy, Kyle Pero, Lyle Kantrovich, Rashmi Sinha, and Nate Bolt.

In our first podcast, the SpoolCast Crew convenes (virtually) to discuss a variety of topics:

  • What can we learn from the new Brown University web site?
  • What does it mean to be usable?
  • Why is MySpace so successful?
  • Which is better designed, the new Brown Web Site or Craigslist?
  • How important is the design of a home page? (I think not so much. Everyone else disagrees.)
  • The value of social networking
  • The UPA Body of Knowledge project
  • The design experience, as it applies to conference design

You can meet the crew here.

Lyle does a magnificent job, considering he was suffering from a multi-week installation of laryngitis. Apparently, these are the first words he’s uttered to anyone in almost a month. (His wife still doesn’t know he’s gotten his voice back. Please don’t tell her.)

Josh Porter couldn’t join us for this inaugural episode, as he was in a secret government hospital having alien implants removed from a recent abduction.

After we recorded the session, Brown University went ahead and launched their new site, which you can see here. DeWayne shared us some user feedback to the beta: here, here, and here.

We also talked about the UPA Body of Knowledge project and the DUX 2005 conference that happened late last year.

I’ve divided the recording into four parts to make it easier to listen to while commuting. I should have Part 2 available tomorrow. (Here’s a feed that iTunes likes.)

The transcript for the entire broadcast is available here.

When you’re ready, you can listen to Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4.

We’d love to hear what you think. Leave your comments below.

19 Responses to “SpoolCast #1.1: What Has Brown Done For You? (Part 1)”

  1. Grzesiek Wolański Says:

    Maybe separated iTunes–friendly feed?

  2. Jared Spool Says:

    Grzesiek, Try plugging this into iTunes: http://www.uie.com/podcast/

  3. Grzesiek Wolański Says:

    Thanks, Jared : )

  4. maish nichani Says:

    I’ve written an article titled The Chaning Face of University Websites at http://www.pebbleroad.com/article/the_changing_face_of_university_websites/

    Thought it relates to the discussion here.

    Btw, the Brown Uni discussion is taking place at the University Web Developers List at http://listserver.itd.umich.edu/cgi-bin/lyris.pl?enter=uwebd&text_mode=0

  5. UIE Brain Sparks » Blog Archive » SpoolCast #1.2: What Has Brown Done For You? (Part 2) Says:

    [...] More info about what’s in this inaugural episode here. We want to know what you think. Leave any comments in the Part 1 post. [...]

  6. Grzesiek Wolański Says:

    BTW. Jared, could I use a short part of your podcast in my podcast to promote it?

  7. UIE Brain Sparks » Blog Archive » SpoolCast #1.3: What Has Brown Done For You? (Part 3) Says:

    [...] More info about what’s in this inaugural episode here. We want to know what you think. Leave any comments in the Part 1 post. [...]

  8. UIE Brain Sparks » Blog Archive » SpoolCast #1.4: What Has Brown Done For You? (Part 4) Says:

    [...] More info about what’s in this inaugural episode here. We want to know what you think. Leave any comments in the Part 1 post. [...]

  9. Steve Burgess Says:

    Would be helpful to have a program length in the notes – even better in the RSS feed – to determine whether the download fits into a time slot I have to listen to it…

  10. Stephen Burger Says:

    So I just finished listening to part 1, but wasn’t paying too much attention to the URL to get to part 2–just figured it would be conveniently linked from this page. Oh, just found it in the responses section. Not exactly what I would expect.
    How is that for usability?

  11. Jared Spool Says:

    Steve Burgess: Added duration into notes and RSS. Thanks for the great suggestion.

    Stephen Burger: Added links to subsequent episodes. Thanks for your suggestion too.

    How is that for usability? :)

  12. Sam Says:

    I love the idea of the podcast, but you need to do some Usability Engineering on the VOLUME. You’re 20-30dB quieter than every other podcast/audiobook that I listen to.

    Why can’t I just turn up the volume on my iPod? Sure, and blow out my ears with the background hiss? I’ll pass. I’d love to listen to more, but please normalize your volume when you create the episodes.

    Good freshman effort. I’m sure you’ll get better once you get the hang of audio mixing.

    - Sam

  13. Aaron Says:

    It’s interesting that you harsh on Brown so much. I showed this redesign to 5 different 20 something friends, of graduate age, and each one clicked on AND read each panel. Seemed compelling to most of them.

    It also seems designed to generate buzz. Any self respecting candidate will Google “Brown university” and “[college or discipline]” and bypass the homepage.

    Agree on the crappy color… but it’s impact seems minimal.

    And it’s JavaScript… not Java. Very different technologies and user experience on the client desktop.

  14. Dianna Says:

    Is it possible to see the OLD Brown University Web site? I tried to view it on wayback but didn’t see the most recent version.

  15. Kevin Crossman Says:

    Love the idea of the show, though I think there are one or two panelists too many (and Jared needs to get a better microphone). However, the show notes need a lot of work; I thought it was some cruel joke to see all those “click here” links, but they appear in multiple shows! (I second the volume comment; needs to be turned up).

    I’m enjoying catching up on the shows and look forward to hearing more.

  16. Jared Spool Says:

    Dianna, I wasn’t smart enought to snap a screenshot of the old Brown site before it disappeared. Sorry.

  17. blog.kutova.com » Ainda sobre escolhas Says:

    [...] No primeiro SpoolCast que coordenou, por Jared Spool lembrou de uma questão sobre as escolhas: usuários experientes se sentem confortáveis com muitas escolhas. Os editores de textos poderiam, por exemplo, ter seus recursos disponibilizados (ou tornados visíveis) a partir da percepção do domínio que o usuário tem da ferramenta. Usuários novatos teriam apenas os recursos básicos disponíveis. Ferramentas como macros, mala direta, modelos, estilos e suplementos seria visíveis apenas para usuários avançados. [...]

  18. Traces of Inspiration Says:

    [...] forward to more. No Comments so far Leave a comment RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI Leave a comment Line and paragraph breaks automatic, e-mail address never displayed, HTMLallowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong> [...]

  19. Per Esmann Jensen Says:

    Great podcast – please keep it coming! Don’t think a single show should be devided over multiple files, however.

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