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FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between subscribing to the podcast and just listening to individual episodes from this web site?
“Subscribing” to the First Forty podcast — through iTunes, say — just means that new episodes will automatically come to you as they are posted. It’s not much different than a magazine or newspaper subscription. However, you can still listen to episodes from this web site by locating the entry you’re interested in and clicking the “play” button. Think of this as going to the library and to browse through all available issues of your favorite magazine or newspaper. It all depends on which format you prefer. You can learn how to subscribe (and thus have newly posted episodes sent directly to your computer) by clicking How to subscribe under the Pages heading at the top of the right-hand column of this blog.
In what order are entries published?
Believe it or not, there is a system at work here. Rather than start at the beginning and make a long chronological trudge forward, I though it better to mix things up a bit by following 5 “strands” simultaneously. Currently, the years I’m working on are 1978, 1986, 1990, 1995, and 2000. After posting an entry from 1978, for example, I will proceed to the next entry from 1986, then 1990, and so on and so forth. (Entries are posted chronologically within strands, however, to maintain some semblance of order.) When I finish any particular year I’ll continue within the same strand so long as there are entries to post; the entry following December 31, 1986 would then be January 1, 1987 (but only after first cycling through the other strands before returning to 1986-87, if that makes sense).
    When are episodes posted?
    For a long while I was trying to post 5 episodes a week, but that has since proved too difficult to keep up. So, for now, I’ll simply post when I can. Subscribing to the First Forty podcast is the easiest way to receive episodes as they come out (rather than repeated checking of this page).
    How can I listen to episodes from only one year?
    No problem! If you’d only like to listen to the entries from, say, 1977, simply click 1977 under the Categories heading on the right-hand side of the top page. This will bring up all entries posted (to date) from that particular year.
     
      What is the play button for?
      Great question! Until I moved the button to a more prominent (and logical) position, many people thought the button was merely a link to play an episode’s background music. Rather, the button is for playing the episode itself (my reading of a journal entry, plus music and any sound effects).
       
      How do you decide what music to choose?
      This is a personal decision, as I try to include music that relates to the entry in some way. Sometimes a song is inextricably linked to a particular memory — to the point where not using it would be unthinkable — while other songs are more generally associated with a certain period, place, or state of mind.

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