I Am Itchin' To Get Started

 
#1

A while ago I had mentioned that I would be starting a video podcast that functions as technical classes for homeschool students. I had also mentioned that I would go all in if I did it. Well, I went all in. My office has been converted to a video podcaster's paradise. Last weekend I was able to get the mixer, compressor, gate, Audio interface, green screen, dynamic mics, cameras, lighting and sound dispersion panels installed in my studio. My hosts (Tanner and Stori) both have a JD now and are learning about them by going through the LMS curriculum that was developed. We will start some "test" shows on Thursday evenings which will help the hosts to be more comfortable in front of the camera and allow them to get really comfortable with the robots and the technology behind the video podcast. The podcasts will be live so you will get to see all of the fun if you want to Smile

On another project, I have been working with a group in the middle of nowhere Texas that is setting up a ranch for people who have aged out of the foster care system in Texas. Next week I will be setting up their firewall, NAS, domain server, some workstations, network and such. They will be using the class mentioned above for their students to teach them about robotics on the EZ-Robot platform. I want to do a show from the ranch but the logistics could make that difficult.

I will post the links to the video podcast streams later. We will be streaming on Youtube and Twitch. We also will have the RTMP feed available to be viewed directly. We have a mumble room and IRC channel that I will publish also. These allow participation in the discussion that is happening and in the show. Along with that, 662-4ROBOT1 is a direct phone number into the show, and Skype is also available. If you want to check out our early tests, I will post the links later. The official start is on May 6th 2017. We will be broadcasting from our booth at a Homeschool show in Oklahoma City.

I want to also do a show on Saturdays on more generic topics but all relating to technology. Nicholas (my son) will be teaching an Intro to Programming class. The next semester we will move up to intermediate programming and robotics classes.

SM@RT Club is the Patreon support page for the classes. I still have some work to do on it, but it is there at least.
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I guess I still need to clean up some cables...

#2

Looks Good ! I look forward to a Podcast.

Ron

#3

Holy - this will be very cool! I'm excited to be a fan!

#4

Wow, there's a whole lot of buttons and sliders on that desk. Tongue What an exciting thing to do. I bet you'er having a blast. This is going to be fun.

#5

Good luck David on this endeavor! I too am looking forward to the podcast.

Tony

#6

Wishing you luck on your endevour! I'll be watching by too!

#7

I have made my first trip to the ranch that I mentioned earlier. It is going to be a great place for people who are looking for some help. I got the servers, wifi, firewall, public wifi and all of the good computer stuff setup in the main building. I spent some time with the owner and he is all in on the class structure and the classes for Robotics and Programming. Once they are up and going, there will be 2 classrooms ready for students to learn about robotics, programming, 3D modeling, 3D Fabrication and some other things.

I still need to setup sound and video in a very echoy auditorium. There is about 6 seconds of echo with a hand clap. This is going to be fun. I need to setup VPNs between the CEO's house and the office and the owners house and the office. I need to setup the computer equipment and 3D printers in the classrooms, and I need to get dedicated internet and firewall setup to the classrooms. I also need to setup a VPN between the main office and the classrooms.

This part of Texas is very hilly and has really no top soil to speak of so putting a wire under ground is very difficult at best. The land supports 1 cow per acre. This makes things very interesting and it is an environment that radio used extensively.

The ranch itself has a kitchen and class rooms, pool, river, 6 bunk houses, an Activities center, auditorium, a few houses for workers to live in and a lot of livestock. The owner has about 10K acres in that area to expand as he wants to. It is a great area for deer, elk and a lot of animals that I have know clue of what they are. I am sure that there are also rattlesnakes and many other animals that I don't want to know about. Anyway, it is shaping up to be a great place for people who don't have great bearings due to not having a lot of good instruction about life to come and get good instruction and some direction. I really look forward to a long relationship with this ranch helping them where I can to provide what I can for their residents.

Here is a map of the location of the main office for the ranch (Map)

This is a satellite image of the area that the ranch is starting with.
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Their website is here if anyone wants to checkout what they are doing.

On the class, I have been battling background hiss from my computers to the mixer and back. I got it all out of the feed unless at very high volumes, and we will all get together Thursday evening to run through a good test of everything class related and to introduce Stori and Tanner to the environment so that they will soon be able to run everything and make adjustments as needed during the show to things like audio levels and such. Things are progressing on all fronts and we will be broadcasting soon.

I will post all of the links before Thursday for anyone who wants to check things out with where we are with the classes. It will give you a good feel some of the overall ideas that we have and some things that still need the details ironed out.

#8

We will be doing a lot of testing on our streaming and audio setup this evening. The only thing that won't be connected is the phone to the mixer, so phone calls wont be tested this evening. If you want to see the stream or test some of the things out with us, we will be starting at 6:30 PM CST publishing a live stream of all of the fun we are having to try to get everything set correctly.

Here is the connection information for our test shows.

IRC Chat Room:
Server: irc.geekshed.net
Port: 6667
Channel: #IntroToRobotics

YouTube Live: This will give you about a 12 second delay
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iQLE7-xSWe4

Twitch: This will give you about a 10 second delay
https://player.twitch.tv/?volume=0.16&channel=cochranrobotics

Direct RTML stream (connected to from something like VLC): This will give you about a 5 second delay
rtmp://162.243.127.251/live/IntroToRobotics

Skype :
d.cochran AT cox.net

Mumble room:
Server 162.243.127.251
Port 64738

The IP Address should stay the same throughout the tests but will change when going live. The only reason that I see that the IP address will change during the test is if there is a difficult thing to figure out that requires a server rebuild.

A note about video broadcast delay...
The video is being recorded and sent to a server in New York. From there, it is being broadcast to twitch and YouTube. From there it is being sent to your computer for viewing. By using the RTML url, you are hitting the server in New York instead of waiting for the broadcast to get to youtube and twitch before being sent to you. The stream is in 1080p. Even when going through Twitch or YouTube, this is about the same delay that you get from live TV through the air waves or through cable service providers. It is mind blowing what can be done with this type of broadcast now and how professional a home studio can be.

#9

Nice! Let us know when you're launching the first episode and I'll make sure it's sent out through our social media

#10

The 3 show intros. Still working on them, but I like 'em. Waiting on some music from my music guy and some graphics from my graphics guy.