Audrey posted on Friday, June 7th, 2013 | PRX | No Comments
If you live in Boston, then we already have your weekend plans made for you.
Tomorrow night, Saturday, June 8 at 7 PM (6 PM doors), the Middle East Club in Cambridge presents a night of stories featuring our friend and Moth Podcast host, Dan Kennedy, alongside Ask Me Another’s Ophira Eisenberg, The New Yorker’s Ben Greenman and McSweeney’s editor, Chris Monks.
Come out to Central Square, grab a drink and enjoy a solid evening of stories from these amazing writers and storytellers.
Tickets available here.
Lily posted on Friday, May 31st, 2013 | PRX, STEM Story Project | No Comments
Earlier this year, PRX received a grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation to fund public radio stories about STEM topics: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. One of PRX’s strategic goals is to massively increase listening to public radio works of all kinds. (We do pretty well!) This partnership with Sloan was an opportunity to add to the pool of stories about an often-underrepresented genre in public radio.
Our prime directive (as Spock would say) with the STEM Story Project was to:
- Unleash highly creative, STEM-based original stories and productions
- Educate and excite listeners about STEM topics and issues
- Tell stories and explain STEM issues in new ways
We received over 100 proposals that covered a remarkable range of the STEM spectrum — from hacker space to outer space, the physics of rhythm to algorithms, evolution to technological revolution, drones to prime numbers.
Here are the proposals that will receive funding for the STEM Story Project. We look forward to hearing the final products as much as you do! They’ll be coming July 15.
Forensics in Flames, Michael May – Hundreds may sit behind bars because of faulty forensic science. What engineers are doing to change that.
52Hz, Craig Shank and George Drake, Jr. of Everything Sounds – The world’s loneliest whale can’t be heard by others. Learn about this creature that fascinates and confounds ocean scientists.
Remaking the Science Fair, Adam Hochberg – Styrofoam solar system models. Homemade volcanoes. Do the typical projects at school science fairs really teach kids about science?
Last of the Iron Lungs, Julia Scott — Sixty years after polio vaccine, some Americans still cling to their iron lungs. Come inside the machine they can’t live without.
Space Crafty, Julie Sabatier – Fearless do-it-yourselfers are engineering their own rockets & space suits. How do their efforts fit into a growing private space industry?
Seeing with Sound: The Science Behind Human Echolocation, Meg Cramer – Echolocation isn’t just for bats. With practice, people can echolocate too. What’s it like to see with sound & how does your brain do it?
The Elusive Digital Stradivarius, David Schulman – Apps copy the guitar sounds of Hendrix and Santana. So why not the digital Stradivarius?
The Poison Squad: A Chemist’s Quest for Pure Food, Sruthi Pinnamaneni — How one chemist fed his men poison to win public sympathy against the food industry and laid the grounds for the FDA.
Proving Kepler Right, Ari Daniel Shapiro — A mathematician cracks a 400-year-old problem. But his colleagues can’t be sure, so he goes to the extreme. A story on the proof of obsession.
Magicicada Misunderstood, Louisa Jonas – ”It’s lonely down here.” Cicadas emerge from the dark for raucous party.
Scout-Like Groups Focused on STEM and Making Form Around the U.S., Jon Kalish — The Bay Area as a hotbed of DIY culture that yields an incubator of cutting edge fabrication.
Fighting Crime With Math, Aaron Mendelson – What if an equation could put police officers at the scene of a crime, before it happened? For eight years, a team of academics in Southern California has worked to make this science-fiction a reality.
Engineering Gotham From Below, Bishop Sand – How does Manhattan stay moving? Find out the engineering creativity that lurks underneath the city.
The Secret Life of Particles, Reid Frazier – The secret life of dust–how particles pick up toxic hitchhikers in the air before you breathe them in.
Sailing the High Seas 2.0, Jason Albert – Wings flutter in nature, help planes fly, and oddly make sailboats fast and efficient. America’s Cup wing sail technology may revolutionize trans-ocean shipping.
Following in Darwin’s Footsteps, Veronique La Capra – Two young women scientists in the Galapagos. One—Ecuadorian—hopes to stay, the other to take what she learns back home to Papua New Guinea.
The same heuristic processes motivate storytellers and scientists alike: curiosity, skepticism, and a hunger for higher truths about the world. We’re hopeful that these stories help uncover just that.
Follow #PRXSTEM on Twitter for updates and to get a first listen to projects as they’re uploaded!
Image from Shutterstock.
Genevieve posted on Friday, May 24th, 2013 | Global Story Project, PRX | No Comments
With support from the Open Society Foundations, PRX recently had an open call for stories from around the world, called the Global Story Project. We received over 200 proposals and picked 19 producers, who created hour-long documentaries, series of short pieces, historical journeys, and personal commentaries — and introduced us to issues and people that we won’t soon forget.
Here’s a map of where the stories took place. Click to see piece titles, where they aired, producer names, and links to listen:
View Global Story Project in a larger map
We’re thrilled with the hard work the producers put into their productions, as evidenced by where they aired: Snap Judgment, PRI’s The World, RTE Ireland, TheAtlantic.org, dozens of public stations around the country, The Story with Dick Gordon, 99% Invisible, PRX Remix, and Making Contact, among others.
In addition to the map, you can find all of the stories in this playlist. Click launch popup player to listen through them all, or pick and choose from the descriptions.
Stations and programs: Join your colleagues and grab Global Story Project pieces for air. Find them all here and click on the titles to buy them on the following pages. If you need help, get in touch.
Stay tuned for science, technology, engineering, and math pieces from our latest open call, the STEM Story Project, coming July 15.
Audrey posted on Wednesday, May 15th, 2013 | PRX | No Comments
It’s a wonderful time of year for radio! Today, the 2013 Third Coast Festival / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition opened-up shop for submissions.
Radio makers from far and wide will submit their very best audio to the competition by July 10, with an early (discounted price!) deadline of June 19. The highly experienced panel of judges will base their selections on story choice, technical quality, editorial integrity, creativity, writing and use of sound.
From the competition website:
The Third Coast / Richard H. Driehaus Foundation Competition seeks the best audio work produced worldwide in the following categories:
Best Documentary (Gold, Silver, Bronze, Directors’ Choice, Honorable Mention), Best New Artist, Radio Impact, and Best News Feature
Winners will celebrated at Third Coast Awards Ceremony on October 20 in Chicago. Their winning stories will be featured in Best of the Best: The 2013 Third Coast Festival Broadcast, distributed to public radio stations nationwide by the Public Radio Exchange (PRX) this Fall.
Need some inspiration? Curious about what wins? Check out this playlist of past winners on PRX.
Or, listen to the last year’s Best of the Best: The 2012 Third Coast Festival Broadcast:
Jake posted on Monday, May 13th, 2013 | Blog, Press Releases, PRX | 1 Comment
PRX is always looking for ways to improve distribution tools and platforms for producers. While we have mostly focused on getting completed programs to audiences across broadcast and digital, we are also increasingly hearing from producers and stations that the task of managing audio archives is a constant challenge.
So when we first heard of the remarkable efforts of Anne Wootton and Bailey Smith – the dynamic duo behind Pop Up Archive (winner of the 2012 Knight News Challenge) – we knew we should join forces.
An awesome partnership was born, and for the last several months PRX’s development team has been working with Anne and Bailey to create an easy-to-use web application that archives audio and a lot more.
Today the official announcement of the Pop Up Archive beta site is out (see below), and interested producers can request an invite to take it for a spin.
Among other things, the Pop Up Archive:
- Generates automatic transcripts and keywords so that audio is both searchable and easy to organize.
- Provides access to an archive of sound from around the world.
- Has options for both private and public storage.
- Saves time and money for producers, creators, radio stations, media organizations, and archives of all stripes.
Pop Up Archive is integrated with PRX so members of both can use their existing accounts, and will have the option of publishing their audio to PRX for distribution.
Contact: Anne Wootton, 510-463-4066, email@example.com
Pop Up Archive to create open search and access for audio
Web platform stores, transcribes, and organizes digital media
We gather sound to tell stories. Memories fade and material can easily get lost or degrade. But when it’s easy to archive, it’s easy to find the threads that create stories when you need them.
OAKLAND, Calif. – (May 13, 2013) – Pop Up Archive and PRX are elated to announce the launch of Pop Up Archive, a web-based system that brings audio to life. The service is a lightweight web application that allows users to search and access audio files from anywhere, opening a door for content creators and journalists to strengthen their work. It is currently being developed as an invitation only pilot, but will open to the public in summer 2013.
Pop Up Archive allows media creators to save, organize and find audio without installing any software or managing a server. The system is capable of ingesting large amounts of digital sound and providing automated transcripts with subject tags, timestamps and robust indexing for powerful search. Visitors to Pop Up Archive can also access a quickly growing database of international sound from oral history archives, universities, media organizations and individual collectors. With this audio comes the potential to liberate undiscovered histories, bring new voices into media, and make archiving an integral and painless part of production workflows.
“Most small and independent multimedia publishers have not developed good systems for archiving and sharing their work,” said Michael Maness, vice president for journalism and media innovation at the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. “Pop Up Archive opens a real opportunity for these content creators to increase the value of their work by allowing them to organize and access audio content and preserve it for future generations.”
Pop Up Archive is a winner of Knight Foundation’s 2012 News Challenge.
Voices from archives around the world are waiting to be discovered in previously
Interested producers can request an invite at popuparchive.org to join the beta test. Pop Up Archive provides unlimited free public storage through the Internet Archive, a San Francisco nonprofit founded to build an Internet library with permanent access to historical collections that exist in digital format. For more sensitive material, private storage options are also available.
The entire Pop Up Archive system will be free for a limited time, with tiered service plans in the future. Planned future improvements to the service include editable transcripts and keywords, additional options for handling rights and access to audio, group memberships and enterprise services for digital audio collections.
For larger media organizations, Pop Up Archive acts as a layer on top of existing content management systems and production workflows. Its simple web interface integrates with reporter habits to strengthen newsrooms — no clunky software. A simple drag-and-drop functionality allows users to add audio that becomes immediately searchable with context beyond the typical YouTube search result. Pop Up Archive is building a dynamic archival body of content that can be easily searched and accessed via API, informed by related efforts such as the American Archive Content Inventory Project and the Public Media Platform.
Request an invite today at popuparchive.org for a free account to start making your audio searchable. Archive entire collections of raw audio and completed work — save time and rediscover amazing material by revolutionizing how you organize it.
PRX is an award-winning public media company, harnessing innovative technology to bring significant stories to millions of people. PRX operates public radio’s largest distribution marketplace, offering thousands of audio stories for broadcast and digital use, including signature programs like The Moth Radio Hour. PRX mobile apps include This American Life, KCRW Music Mine, Radiolab, and Public Radio Player. Contact: Jason Gordon, 2126278098; jason [at] pkpr [dot] com.
About Pop Up Archive
Pop Up Archive is building a collection of sound from around the world with partners and clients from a growing body of media organizations, oral history archives, and journalists. Born at the UC Berkeley School of Information and supported by the Knight Foundation and the National Endowment for the Humanities, the system is a lightweight web application that makes audio searchable without requiring technical expertise from users. Contact: Anne Wootton, 5104634066; edison [at] popuparchive [dot] org.
About the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation
The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation supports transformational ideas that promote quality journalism, advance media innovation, engage communities and foster the arts. The foundation believes that democracy thrives when people and communities are informed and engaged. For more, visit www.knightfoundation.org. Contact: Andrew Sherry, 3059082677; media [at] knightfoundation [dot] org.
Lily posted on Friday, May 10th, 2013 | PRX, STEM Story Project | 1 Comment
Slowly but surely, our team is moving along in the judging process for the STEM Story Project! The next round of judges will be going through proposals this week. (We know that waiting isn’t fun, so thank you for your patience!)
We’ve spent the past couple of weeks parsing through proposals about practically everything–from nanoparticles to redwood trees, hacker space to outer space, the physics of rhythm to algorithms, evolution to technological revolution, drone music to prime number symphonies, neurons and brains to zombies and calculus. Without a doubt, we’ve received quite a spectrum of story proposals! Trust us when we say that we’re just as eager as you are to hear them.
For now, hang tight. Back to you soon!
Also, if you haven’t done so already, follow the #PRXSTEM hashtag on Twitter to see tweets about the proposals we’ve received!
Audrey posted on Friday, May 10th, 2013 | PRX | No Comments
Got pieces to upload? Programs to buy for air? Don’t do it from 11 p.m. – 3 a.m. Eastern on Saturday, May 25 into Sunday morning May 26.
PRX.org and Networks will have a scheduled outage and will be down during that time as our hosting provider migrates our servers from one datacenter to another.
We’ll be monitoring our Help Desk during that time and will have a maintenance page in place at PRX.org where we will provide a status update if the work extends beyond the maintenance window. However, we’re expecting this to be a smooth move.
Please contact us if you have any questions or concerns.
-The PRX Team
Now, relax and listen to Bruce Springsteen.
Audrey posted on Wednesday, May 8th, 2013 | PRX | No Comments
When a producer uploads a piece on PRX, it will join a vast and wonderful archive of stories, going back many years and spanning many different topics. Once created, the piece will stay up on PRX forever or until the producer takes it down or until the Apocalypse happens.
The lifecycle of a PRX piece is long and well-lived.
Let’s take a look at one:
Birth by Thin Air Media was added to PRX five years ago and has been licensed a few times each year since, some of those licenses being from major market stations like WGBH in Boston and KCRW in Santa Monica.
A piece on PRX has value over the long-term. The piece you made last year may be relevant to a station next year, which is why you should always pay attention to time elements that might date your piece.
Additionally, don’t be afraid to use social media and station contacts to remind programmers about the value of your works, especially if they might apply to a holiday or a recent news item. The piece you made about veterans would most likely be relevant to stations around Veteran’s Day, or a story like Birth, might be relevant to stations leading up to Mother’s Day, perhaps. Always consider these programming Date Pegs, and remember to remind us at PRX about your work too.
Consider your editing process. Remove any information that might date your piece and you will help ensure it can be listened-to and licensed year-in and year-out and see a happy lifetime on PRX.
John posted on Tuesday, May 7th, 2013 | PRX, Station Newsletters | No Comments
Memorial Day picks, breaking the cycle of poverty, and cool found interviews.› Continue reading
Lily posted on Friday, April 12th, 2013 | PRX, STEM Story Project | No Comments
“It is the tension between creativity and skepticism that has produced the stunning and unexpected findings of science.” -Carl Sagan
By now, you may have heard the news that PRX, with support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, is holding an open call for radio stories about STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) topics. We’re seeking highly creative, original productions that question, reveal, explore, and inspire.
Earlier this month during a tweetchat, we asked producers what public radio could offer to STEM. We were thrilled with the enthusiastic responses:
The inherent beauty of the scientific method lays in the fact that it’s sparked by curiosity, fueled by skepticism, and results in an approximation of the truth. If you think about it, both science and art strive to achieve just that – an understanding of a higher truth about the world. As a journalist, writer, or producer, what ardent questions do you have about the world around you? What ensnares your senses, drives you mad, or makes you wonder? And how do you capture that with sound?
This is PRX’s challenge to you–to be curious, skeptical, hungry for the truth–and we believe that you can rise to the occasion.
Radio producer Paolo Pietropaolo offers some creative inspiration on exactly this nexus between science and radio:
We hope that you consider participating in the STEM Story Project, PRX’s latest audio experiment. The deadline to submit a proposal (April 22, 2013 at 11:59pm ET) is approaching at light speed! We hope to see yours soon.
Find the application and more details here.
Still have questions? PRX held a STEM Story Project webinar recently to talk about the project.
If you’re a producer looking to make connections with other producers or join the conversation about the STEM Story Project, join the STEM Story Project Facebook group to keep in touch.
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