Recording from Phone to Quicktime – the Immortal Kid

For the Yysc.pngoung Scientist Challenge webinars explaining both the student category and the DEN teachers category, I wanted to have the overall student winner from last year say a few words as well as hear from a commited scientist at 3M. But the webinar schedule was extensive –inconvenient for both 11-year old Erik Gustafson and 3M scientist/Vice President Alex Cirillo. The solution seemed to be record their remarks via phone–but what was the easiest technology for that? I was willing to commit one trip to Radio Shack, maximum. First, I tried my trusty Olympus podcasting recorder. No good. It was greerik.pngat for 3D podcasts (see earlier posts) but not good with phones. since a buzz seemed unavoidable. The solution turned out to be connecting my telephone handset directly into the computer and recording in QuickTime Pro. QT Pro, the cross-platform $29 upgrade to the free QuickTime player, worked really well! Here’s how I did it. I bought a stereo (important) 3/32″ – 1/8″3m.png adapter at Radio Shack (see picture). 3/32″ is the standard for cellphone and handset earphone jacks. 1/8″ is the standard Walkman/iPod, etc., headphone jack. 1/8″ is also the standard microphone input on computers (not talking USB). I connected the opennewaudio.pngphone and the computer mike with a 1/8″-to-1/8″ stereo cable. Then by opening QuickTime Pro’s “New Audio Recording” and hittingphoneconnectlabels.png record while talking on the audio5.pngphone, I created a QuickTime file of the conversation. Note: You can’t hear the recording being made so you can’t talk to the person on the other end unless you have a second handset, which I had (two wireless low end Panasonics). QuickTime is very easy to edit in Pro, another plus. First, I recorded Erik Gustafson, the student winner from New York state. I was able to edit his remarks into a great two-minute statement. The kid really is remarkable. He talked eloquently about the compelling power of video for this Challenge. I edited our 8-minute conversation into a collection of small bites. Next, Alex Cirillo graced me with some great comments about the importance of science education andjacksplugslabels.png teachers. He didn’t need an edit, but we got to do two run-throughs which I could then easily sort. Note: Obviously, both these folks knew they were being recorded and granted permission (Erik’s parents, too). To hear their remarks, tune-in to the free webinars. While you’re there, learn about this remarkable Challenge that ties the power of video to enthusiasm for bigpicture.pngscience. (Kid’s prize: $50,000 bond, plus a trip to DC. Not too shabby!). Next task, I’ll dump three years worth of my daughter’s phone messages into QuickTime. Maybe throw some images in with them (simple paste in QT). Great blackmail for when she turns teen. Did I say blackmail? I mean “immortal tribute.”
Final Note: QuickTime Pro is also great for shortening editable DiscoveryEducationstreaming clips!

Comments

  1. Joe Brennan

    From one cable geek to another: In lieu of a second phone, a headphone splitter jack would let you use your iPod headphones in addition to the line into the computer. Hopefully, it wouldn’t weaken the signal too much in the process. ¡Viva Radio Shack!

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