Just returned home from the Podcast and Portable Media Expo (PME) in Ontario, California and thought I would post a few reflections. First, I was a bit disappointed in the lack of advancement in the podcasting world over the past year. On the show floor I didn’t find anything compelling except for a new portable recorder and a software utility. Instead of every software and hardware vendor (or at least a local distributor or retailer) that sells to podcasters, I found a hodgepodge of vendors with little I didn’t already know about. Even the updates from the year before from folks like Audible were less than exciting (basically the same service with lower pricing). Perhaps my expectation were too high. If I had to award a “best of show” it would go to GigaVox Media’s Levelator utility. It will be used in my full podcasts from now on and is a nice gift to the podcasting community being freeware.
I didn’t attend the conference sessions because for $300 I couldn’t justify the expense when official recordings will be available within a week for a fraction of the price and bootlegs from other podcasters are certain to be posted as well. I did hear that some of the sessions were particularly compelling on Friday.
So the main reason to attend were the side conversations with other podcasters and not really the expo itself. I came away from the first PME last November with the take-away that this event is really a gigantic, international podcaster meetup. As cool as it is to talk with Robert Scoble, Andrew Baron from Rocketboom and see a bunch of other podcasters I have been listening to for over two years now, I’m not sure if this is enough to justify flying 2,000 miles to attend. Since next year’s event will be over three days, I hope there is more of a reason than just the social aspects and that there are a lot more software and hardware vendors in attendance.
And now back to normal wine blogging and podcasting 😉