Automatic Podcasting From Your Blog with Odiogo

Recently I came across Odiogo, a service that generates audio podcasts from your blog posts automatically. Considering its text to speech technology, I was surprised how good it sounds. I mean you can tell its Mr Roboto but the voice and speech are impressively more natural sounding than any other text to speech things I've heard so far.

Their business model is to place audio ads inside the generated mp3s which makes sense as a way to offer the service free. Pretty cool idea they have going if you ask me.

So I signed up last week and within some hours I had an account and a link to the podcast page they generated for my blog.

Today I got around to integrating it into the mojoPortal blog to make it easy, so all you have to do is enter your odogio feed id and your podcast page url. They have some javascript that sets up a "Listen Now" button right in your post which is very nice. Those of you reading this from a feed reader will have to visit this site to see the listen now button or visit the podcast page linked above to go directly to the podcasts.

So now its possible to subscribe to this blog in iTunes if you like.

I also implemented the ping to their service page when a new post is added so it can know right away that there is new content to convert from text to speech. It will be interesting to see how long it takes from the time of making a new post to when the podcast is ready.

This feature will be in svn trunk by later tonight for anyone interested in trying it themselves.

UPDATE 2008-03-24:

Since I've been using the Odiogo service on this site, several times I've seen extremely long page loads on the blog, where apparently the Odiogo service goes down and the delay in rendering the page is caused because the javascript coming off the Odiogo server is not available. Finally the request times out and the page loads without the "Listen Now" button. So I've been turning the Odiogo feature off when this happens by removing my Odiogo feed id. This is something I hope the Odiogo folks can figure out and resolve effectively, possibly due to growing pains but I'm not one to keep using services when stuff like that starts happening repeatedly. They either need to improve the availability of their service or let us host the javascript on our own sites so that when the service is down it doesn't kill performance of our sites. So far this has happened twice that I know of and who knows if it happens when I'm not looking so its making me leave the Odiogo feature turned off because I don't have confidence in it.

Gravatar Joe Audette is the founder of the mojoPortal project and was the primary developer until February 2017.