Geek Beat: Apps to Host the ‘You’ Show

On this week’s “Geek Beat” (part of the “Sunrise” morning news show on Hawaii News Now), Burt Lum and I told Dan Cooke about apps that let you host your own show online. We featured three different ways to share your conversations online: in text, video, and audio.

First up was the new app that inspired the segment, Talkshow, created by former Twitter exec Michael Sippey. Pitched as “texting in public,” it’s actually a little like Twitter in the sense that you can exchange written messages with others in public. But unlike Twitter, strangers and trolls can’t butt into the conversation, only watch, enjoy, and react in limited ways. Users can tune into conversations among comedians, or sports experts, or teachers, or moms. I set up a test “Hawaii Talkshow” here.

Moving on to video, we talked about Blab, a popular video webcasting web service and app from the makers of Bebo. Its appeal is its simplicity, letting users fire up a grid of up to four video windows, each featuring a participant or panelist. Viewers can watch and comment live, and even be invited into the show (provided there’s an available slot). Once a conversation has wrapped up, the video can be saved to YouTube. Originally web based, there’s now an iOS app for Blab as well.

Finally, a couple of ways to run audio shows, a different kind of “public radio.” There’s Anchor, which allows you to post audio clips that others can comment on with their own audio, and there’s Unmute, which takes a more conventional conference call approach, but makes it possible for people to listen in live to conversations via the app. In both cases, completed conversations can then be made available as podcasts.

Fortunately, there are a lot of other great apps out there that can help you launch your own online talk show, including Spreaker and Talkshoe and Google Hangouts. If you’ve got one you’d like to recommend, comment below!

The ‘Geek Beat’ is featured every other Wednesday at 7:10 a.m. on Hawaii News Now “Sunrise.”

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