June 28, 2013
Talk Radio Technology
I appreciate technology in all its growing, evolving forms. But I also think that it is important to be reminded of older forms of technology. So, I decided to write a blog about why I love talk radio. Whether you have access to AM/FM radio, HD radio, Satellite radio, or online radio, talk radio like National Public Radio (NPR), Public Radio Remix, and even MSNBC or Fox News can really add to a radio experience. Whether you listen to political or religious stations, entertainment or news, right or left, or everything, talk radio has an option for you.
I have SiriusXM satellite radio in my car, which has been such a blessing on my long road trips, of which I embark often. I love to travel by vehicle for many reasons, so to have access to all the talk radio really pleases me. True, I do have to pay for it, but the rewards more than outweigh the money out of my pocket.
For instance, if you like MSNBC, Bloomberg, or Fox News television programs, which are essentially talk tv, then you still have access to these programs only without the hinderance of the visual. SiriusXM has a channel for each MSNBC, Bloomberg, and Fox News and many others. These take the visual tv shows and broadcast them via the radio. Very cool.
Beyond taking something that is usually a visual medium and making it an auditory medium, SiriusXM also has traditional talk radio like NPR. In fact, it offers several public radio options like Public Radio Remix, BBC World Service, SiriusXM Patriot and SiriusXM Left, just to name a few. It also has some private talk radio stations, too.
Plus, it has entertainment talk radio from Entertainment Weekly Radio and Howard 100 and 101 (the Howard Stern channels) to Oprah Radio and even Disney radio, which is both talk and entertainment for kids. Really, if you are interested in any form of talk radio, SiriusXM has it. There are even religious channels, like the Catholic Channel, sports channels, like Raw Dog Radio, and comedy channels.
But, you do not have to have access to SiriusXM for talk radio. All over the country, AM/FM and HD radio have talk radio stations ranging from conservative and liberal politics to religious to sports. Sure, these free stations may have more commercials and less talk than paying for SiriusXM, but any traveler, whether for work or play, can still get his or her talk radio fix.
And now that we have more access to online radio via our electronic devices, like smartphones and tablets, we can receive many of the talk programs when we have service. The major disadvantage to online radio is that if there is no service available, then we do not have the same access. Online radio is not the only option that runs into this problem. With satellite radio, if there is too much sky obstruction, say from driving in the mountains or forests or with too much cloud coverage, sometimes access is hard. And with AM/FM and HD radio, sometimes no stations are available in very rural areas. Whether you do not have access because of service, obstructions, or location, the good news is that soon enough, you will have access again. Just plug in your iPod, MP3 player, or CD for some music until you can get access to talk radio again.
And sometimes just silence is good, too.
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