If listening to audiobooks is your preferred method of digesting your favorite tomes during the morning commute or long distance trip, you probably wish you could do the same for your favorite blogs. Now you can with Podcastomatic, a Web app that converts blog posts into podcasts using text-to-speech technology. The resulting audio files may serve you well if you prefer to drive to the sounds of the blogged word, but the robotic cadence may prove distracting.
Text to Words
You begin by pointing your computer’s Web browser to http://www.podcastomatic.com. Next, you key a blog’s URL into the address bar. Sites without an Atom or RSS feed aren’t compatible with Podcastomatic.
The conversion process begins when you press the “enter” key on your computer keyboard or click Podcastomatic’s big, green “Go!” icon. Podcastomatic takes a few minutes to convert a site that wasn’t previously submitted; a small website such as my own 2D-X produced 12 podcasts (representing the last 12 blog entries) in 32 minutes. You can’t, unfortunately, adjust the number of blog posts that Podcastomatic turns into a podcasts during the initial conversion period.
Those 32 minutes seemed like a fairly lengthy amount of time, but it’s worth the wait; the audio conversion is surprisingly good. The text-to-speech technology recognized every word it encountered. The voice, on the other hand, is stiff and robotic—what you’d expect from a text-to-speech program.
Retrieving audio files isn’t always a lengthy process. If you key in a URL that’s already been submitted (such as CNN or Polygon), you’re taken to the podcast page near-instantaneously. The podcast page lets you subscribe to the newly created iTunes-compatible feed or stream/download the individual audio files. Don’t think, however, that the audio files make up an actual iTunes podcast feed—Podcastomatic simply lets you open its feed within iTunes. True iTunes podcasts involve a submission process.
More Than Words
Podcastomatic makes turning blog posts into podcasts an effortless affair. How much enjoyment you get out of it, however, hinges on how long you can take listening to the soulless voice read words with less passion than 2001′s HAL. Still, if you prefer the spoken word to the written word, Podcastomatic is a solid Web app.
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Copyright © 2012 Ziff Davis, Inc