The AudioNewsgroup uses a type of software known as RealAudio. RealAudio
is a fast and growing Internet standard for playing sounds in real time.
Basically, you aren't stuck downloading the entire sound file onto your
machine to play it...rather RealAudio plays the sound as it's receiving
it. RealAudio can play sounds in the background, that is you can do other
work like typing your term paper that's due on Friday at the same time
you're listening to the audio messages from the AudioNewsgroup.
I chose RealAudio for the implementation of the AudioNewsgroup because of
the fact that you don't need to download the audio file to listen to it.
In other words, without RealAudio you would have to wait until your
computer received the entire file (and with files that can be upwards of 9
megabytes in size, this is a LONG time), you would have to have enough
disk space to store the file (which many people don't have to spare), and
you would have to be able to convert it into the native format of the
machine (WAV, snd, etc). RealAudio avoids all of this, and allows you to
have the pleasurable experience of using the AudioNewsgroup much like you
would an answering machine.
Setting up the RealAudio software not only allows you to gain access to
the AudioNewsgroup, but also a whole host of other RealAudio sites out on
the Internet. Listen to jukebox music piped in while you work! Get
updated news broadcasts 24 hours a day! Listen to one of the Internet
radio stations! Listen to live broadcasts of NBA games! And there's much
To use RealAudio, you need:
- a Macintosh or Windows (3.1, NT, or 95) machine
- around 400k free disk space
- a supported browser (Netscape or NCSA Mosaic will do)
- a direct connection to the Internet (e.g. college network, SLIP/PPP on
a 14.4 modem)
You can download the RealAudio Player Software from http://www.realaudio.com.
Installation instructions are also available on the RealAudio website.
After you install the software, come back here to learn how to post to the first ever Audio Internet