Podscope and Podzinger are services that create searchable, full text compilations of audio and video content that is available on the Internet. This means that one can go to either of these sites, perform a keyword search, and be provided with an extensive list of farmed media files that include the requested keywords. Links to the exact spot in the media file are provided so that the site visitor can listen to the audio that resulted in the returned text. Obviously, there are phenomenal applications for this in the Podcast community.
So… do they work?
I submitted the RSS feed for Electric Sky to Podscope last summer, and several times in the last six months. I don’t recall ever submitting that same information to Podzinger. Today, I performed three searches on each site.
Search one: I submitted the keywords four officers on board, a phrase that appeared in the most recent episode of Electric Sky (Preserving Aviation History, released June 16). Podzinger had me at the top of a list sorted by relevance. Podscope found no results.
Search two: This search was for Ian Copeland who was mentioned in the first ever Electric Sky, and was the feature guest of the ninth episode of the show. Again, Podscope came up dry. Podzinger listed my first episode at the top of a results by relevance sort, and failed to pick up the feature show.
Search three: I searched for hello possums, the opening two words of my interview with Dame Edna. Neither Podscope nor Podzinger offerred any results.
A final thought, there are some issues with respect to speech-to-text accuracy. For example, in the transcription of my Preserving Aviation History episode, I read the following text on Podzinger:
“on this edition of portrait jim carrey takes ever played in the pacific — world war two”
Jim Carrey should be Jim Terry, and I’m not sure what the rest of the sentence means.[UPDATE 120917: Removed links to Podscope and Podzinger as the services no longer exist. Thank you Alexandra Sawyer for the email bringing that to my attention.]