TR Out Loud FAQ - Videos, newsletters, and blogs
December 19, 2008, 4:39am PST | Length: 00:06:36
TechRepublic's Sonja Thompson is vacationing in Florida, and so we decided to put together a couple TR Out Loud Community FAQs to both inform and entertain the TR community during the holiday break. In this FAQ, we examine the Video door, Newsletters, and Blog RSS feeds.
To listen to this week's TR Out Loud FAQ as just an audio file, download the mp3.
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Negative on the assumptions
I also notice many videos on the Video page don't include a 'Transcripts' link. What determines what gets transcribed?
It does seem confusing...
The main TROLOV you see (that Sonja comments to) is placed within her blog - hence a different area (the blogs) and gets its own discussion.
Since all videos are also placed into the Video section (for those who wish to browse videos) - they also get their own discussion thread.
Since TR is unique in that it has discussion forums compared to say ZDNet/BNet which only has Talkbacks any comment made to anything is then also included within the discussion forums.
I'm assuming you're asking that within this page - http://video.techrepublic.com.com/2422-13791_11-256107.html - that there be a direct link to the Blog Sonja posts with the video included? (There is a tag that links back to the full TROLOV Blog) or the opposite?
Apparently so. I copied this from my post to a completely different discussion based on this same video.
Sonja and PTBs, here's a poorly phrased question about videos
New video content gets my attention either from a blurb on the home page / portal, or when a discussion based on that video appears in the Discussions forum. I notice that clicking a link to the video from either of those locations takes me to a 'traditional' TR article page, one without the fancy video layout and it's 'See Full Transcript' link. (Yes, I'm one of those who frequently complain about the lack of transcripts.) Is there a way to get all references to a video (home page, discussions) to link to the video-formatted page and not to the 'traditional' style page?
For example, I got to the TROLOV FAQ video from the discussion that resulted from it. Clicking the link at the top of the discussion takes me to a 'traditional' formatted article page without the features of the video formatted page. Why not have the link at the top of the discussion take me to the video formatted page for the video?
Also, I assume this discussion was started by someone who viewed the video on a 'traditional' page. If I click Comment on a video started from a thumbnail on the Videos page, it starts another discussion apparently separate from the one started on the 'traditional' page. See the discussion I started for the TROLOV FAQ video when I viewed it from a thumbnail on the Videos page.
In short, it looks like there are at least two ways to access videos, one of which appears to be superior but is harder to find and not the default method used at TR.
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Sonja Thompson: If you caught last week's TROLOV -- that's TR Out Loud on Video -- then you already know that this isn't your regular weekly recap of the top discussions and members on the boards. This week, and the week after next, I'm going to provide the TR community with some FAQs that will hopefully help make your experience here at TechRepublic a little easier. Now, some of you may remember the other FAQ I recorded back in July, where I talked about the Discussions and Questions forums, the Print/View all posts feature, and all about free TechRepublic goodies -- or swag -- that we'll send your way if you participate in upcoming episodes of TROLOV. And if you didn't catch that show the first time around, you better believe that I'll provide a link to it in the blog notes.
I'm Sonja Thompson, a senior editor for TechRepublic, and this is a TR Out Loud FAQ for December 19th, 2008.
The first thing that I'd like to share with everyone today is our relatively new Video door. Seriously, if you're watching this FAQ video and not just listening to the audio file, you should really take a few minutes to check out some of the bonus features here. Let's start from the beginning. You have Today's Playlist, and you can scroll down and see what items I've featured here -- I update this section a couple times a week.
Underneath, there's a TechRepublic Video Series slide bar, and you can hit the little arrow on the side to see some more of our video offerings -- like the TR Out Loud video series. That's right. When you click one of these icons, you'll see all of the videos within that particular series, and of course, the All Videos icon will display all of the videos on TechRepublic.
The words Now Playing will appear next to the video title that's being displayed in the player. From this particular video player, you have a few different options: Play, pause, restart, volume, full screen, and Menu, which has buttons that you can use for sharing the video on Facebook or Digg, or embedding it on your own blog.
If you scroll down, you'll see two tabs: Recently Added Video and Most Popular Video. If you click on one of these thumbnails -- voila the video will appear in its own player page. Not only does this page look sharp, but it also provides a few extra options that you can't access from anywhere else on the site -- for now, anyway. For example, you can Share this video to a variety of places, and you can see the Full Transcript! That's right -- no more complaining out there about transcripts! You can watch it OR read it -- the choice is up to you.
The second feature that I'd like to highlight has been TechRepublic's bread and butter since the beginning of time -- well, TR time anyway: Newsletters! I know, I know... when you sign up for your free TechRepublic membership, you automatically receive some newsletter offerings, but we also have quite a few topic-specific newsletters so you're sure to receive the information that you care about the most.
When you're logged in to TechRepublic, just click My Newsletters at the top right of any TechRepublic page. From here, you can see all of the newsletters that are currently available. Select the ones that you'd like to receive -- heck, go ahead and select a few to check them out. Remember, you can always deselect them later if they aren't a good fit. Then indicate your e-mail format preference: HTML or text, and click Update my account.
At the bottom of the page is a link for Alert subscriptions. What's this, you may ask? Well, let's say that you found a really interesting discussion or question, and you want to keep track of any new comments or answers that get posted to it. At the top of the discussion or question, click the link Subscribe to this Thread. Now you'll receive e-mail alerts for that particular item. You can also modify your Alert subscriptions from the RSS Alert Management Center. For example, you can specify the frequency -- hourly, daily, or weekly, and the format of the e-mail alerts -- html or text.
Of course, no FAQ would be complete without also pointing to the preexisting newsletter FAQ that you can easily find at the top of the My Newsletters page.
In the final FAQ item for today's show, I'd like to show you how to subscribe to blog RSS feeds. Let's say that you really connect with a particular blogger on TechRepublic, you find their posts informative and useful, and/or the subject area is one that you want to stay on top of. Just for an example here, and not because I'm trying suck up (e-hem), we'll look at Jason Hiner's Tech Sanity Check blog. From the home page, techrepublic.com, select the Blogs tab, and then click on Tech Sanity Check.
If you click the Subscribe link at the top right of the page, you'll see a variety of ways that you can subscribe to this particular blog, plus you'll be able to see the Current Feed Content.
Next to the Subscribe link is Alerts, and this is very similar to the Alerts we talked about for Discussions and Questions. If you click this link, you'll see various Alert options for that specific blog. The Mobile link is also very useful for those you IT pros who stay connected 24/7 with a smartphone or other mobile device. Simply click the Mobile link, and then save that URL to your phone. Now you'll be able to quickly and easy access and scroll through the blogs that matter the most to you.
That's a wrap for this FAQ. I hope that you've learned something new here today or at least found it helpful. As I mentioned earlier in the show, be sure to check back in a couple weeks for yet another TROLOV FAQ.
I hope that you all have a safe and happy holiday. I'm Sonja Thompson, and this is TR Out Loud.