Finishing up!

Hey everyone! This is my final week in my internship with the Florida Historical Quarterly. To recap the summer and its goals:

I sought out an internship with Dr. Cassanello and the Florida Historical Quarterly podcast back in April, and Drs. French and Cassanello set up an internship meant o rebuild the Florida Historical Quarterly Podcast webpage. Initially, the webpage was built on a Blogger site, with each episode occupying a blog post on this website.

Our initial goal for the internship was to recreate the Florida Historical Quarterly Podcast in a storefront style webpage. Dr. Cassanello had previously created his “History of Central Florida” podcast series with the help of the University of Central Florida Library and the STARS team. Ms. Lee Dotson, the digital initiatives librarian at the John C. Hitt library immediately began working with us at the start of summer. From there, we consistently sent information back and forth as we added episodes and changed the layout of the STARS webpage. We finally settled on a design and began really adding information about 5 weeks in.

I also collaborated with Laura Cepero in the RICHESMI office in an effort to house our audio and video on the RICHESMI interface and database. Laura handled the uploading of the MP3 files to RICHESMI and also uploaded the MP4 files I created to YouTube so that we could add a streaming option to the new website.

From there, we added a variety of fields including:

  • Title
  • Downloading the podcast
  • Streaming the podcast
  • Description
  • Narrator
  • Interviewer
  • Interviewee
  • Date
  • Keywords
  • Length
  • Collection
  • Issue
  • Issue table of contents
  • Recommended Citation

One final thing I’m still working on is the inclusion of a hyperlink to the spotlit author or editor’s personal website/institutional website. This will allow users to find additional publishings by the other, possibly on a similar topic.

As you read this, I am probably working hard at finishing up the content uploads to the website before my final presentation of the project. I’m currently  doing large batch fills of a variety of last minute information and generally cleaning up the site. This process is not particularly difficult, just time consuming. The process of uploading the information, if you want to do it efficiently, requires a lot of preplanning. All of the information must be readily available so that you can fill the fields quickly. I’m the kind of person that determines the process as they go, but this task required much more planning on my part. By this time next week all of the final changes to the website will be done, and the final product presented to Drs. French, Cassanello, Lester, and Murphree.

My time in this internship has taught me a lot about collaboration and time management. Depending on other people for a part of your project really makes you get things going in a timely manner. Setbacks of an hour can lead to a day long setback if that hour falls when people are leaving their offices.

Ultimately, my time with the FHQ has been fun and interesting. I would definitely recommend any undergraduate or graduate student to seek out an internship with the journal. Interning in such an academic setting, no matter what your internship is, gives you a clear advantage over those who haven’t taken hold of these opportunities.

i hope everyone had a good summer, hopefully Fall is just as fun!




Nearing the End

Hello everyone!


This week in my internship I worked with Dr. Cassanello on our website, as well as collaborating with Laura Cepero and Lee Dotson of RICHESMI and the UCF Library.


In regards to Dr. Cassanello, our meetings this week consisted of figuring out information for the front page of the website, as well as determining the different things i need to finish by the end of my internship. I’ve worked on all of these things throughout the week finishing a few, while still having a good bit left to do.


Here’s the first page blurb i came up with (pending Dr. Cassanello’s approval):

“The Florida Historical Quarterly Podcast Project is part of a digital initiative within the Florida Historical Quarterly. The podcast is edited by Dr. Robert Cassanello and produced by Dr. Daniel Murphree.

The FHQ podcasts provide listeners with insight on the content published in the Florida Historical Quarterly and the authors and others who help create it. Published four times annually, the FHQ promotes scholarly research and appreciation for the peoples, places, and diversity of Florida’s past.”

This first section states those who work on the podcast (minus me since I’m a student and work under Dr. Cassanello), and the latter half of the blurb was taken from the FHQ Podcast iTunes pages.


In addition to this, I created social media button/widgets for the website.These include a facebook button that links to the Florida Historical Quarterly facebook, a itunes button that sends you to the iTunes page in your browser, and a final one that is a twitter button. This sends you to the Florida Historical Quarterly Twitter page.

THis is the HTML code I wrote to embed the button and images, I took the images from the FHQ website and the links come from the FHQ social media pages. The code may require some reworking, but I have the information I need to send to the library.

<a href=”“><img src=””FHQ on Facebook” /></a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <a href=”“><img src=””FHQ Podcast” /></a>&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp; <a href=”“><img src=””FHQ on Twitter” /></a>

In addition to the media buttons, I left the MP4s i created with Laura Cepero on Thursday. She uploaded them all to the RICHESMI YouTube, and gave me a link to all of them. On Monday I’m shooting these over to Lee Dotson, and all the MP4s should be on the website for streaming.



Finishing up old projects and planning new ones.

Hey everyone, this week might be a bit short due to some time crunches this week. I’ve had a lot going on with my British Empire course and my job with Dr. Cassanello, Florida Frontiers, and digital initiatives here at the University of Central Florida.

Regarding the future of the Florida Historical Podcast website, Dr. Cassanello has been preparing multiple things for me to continue doing until the end of my internship, and then to follow the internship if I am interested, which I am.

Last week Dr. Cassanello asked me to take note of the difference between the Florida Historical Quarterly podcast site hosted via STARS, and the History of Central Florida Podcast website (the inspiration for the FHQ site). Dr. Cassanello really appreciated how the library and the STARS crew set up the History of Central Florida site, but he thought it needed a more storefront sort of look. We accomplished that earlier in the semester by changing the layout and template for the STARS site to give it a storefront feel. Instead of layout, Dr. Cassanello wanted me to take inventory of the things the History of Central Florida site had that we have not begun working on.

The first thing I noticed was the main pages were slightly different. The History of Central Florida podcast project has a brief blurb explaining its content and purpose. We are currently figuring out a working blurb for the FHQ podcast site. Ms. Dotson also recently put the banner with the FHQ logo on the front page of the site for the podcast, which knocked that off my list.

Next I took a look the individual sites for the podcasts. The primary differences i reported to Dr. Cassanello were:

  • Social Media Buttons
  • iTunes buttons
  • Download counts
  • Professional pages
  • Related Materials
  • Maps
  • Related Images
  • Video Streaming of the the podcast

The first, Social Media buttons, was knocked out quickly as the STARS interface has a built in function for that. Ms. Dotson simply had to activate and place the buttons on the page for us. Next, we want an iTunes button for people to download the podcasts through the iTunes service if they use apple devices. After all, the podcast was invented by Apple! Next, I was informed that download counts only appear after 15 downloads of the podcast, so that is something that will come with time.

Off the topic of buttons, the professional pages for each podcast participant are available through the History of Central Florida podcast website. I thought that links fot the interviewee’s personal website, university site, or employment page would be useful in helping listeners find related material by that author. In addition to this, the next step would be provided related reading materials or further readings for the podcast to help those who want to learn more on a topic. This would likely come after the personal websites due to their related information and considering that the personal websites should be consulted for this information.

I don’t think maps or related images can be included with the time left in the semester, but I am interested in adding them later on. The maps are particularly hard to make due to the lack of spatial factors in the podcasts. Many of them may use locations for a portion of the argument, but they tend to focus on people, movements, or other vague things when it comes to mapping. Related images will simply be a time sink that will require the uploader to have some semblance of knowledge when it comes to each topic. This could be done, but not in our time frame.

Lastly, I am nearly done converting videos, so these will definitely be included on the podcast site this semester. I should have them finished over the weekend hopefully.


Dr. Cassanello and I have to work out what he wants to be finished by the en of the semester. He knows that the site is not a 12 week job, and i okay with breaking it up into another student’s internship or with me outside the internship. I’m always for working on projects to build the CV. See you next week!

Working hard at my mistakes, and more!

Hello everyone, this week’s blog post might be a bit short.

To discuss the developments of this week: our site was finally released by the library staff working with STARS! You can find it here at

With my time stretched thin between work, class, and this internship, I am still primarily working on the problems I discussed last week. I have three more videos to redo, which involves the uploading of the audio to Audacity, converting it from a more detailed MP3 file to a file that has no images interwoven within it, uploading that MP3 to Pinnacle and then reexporting the video file with the proper image attached. All in all, each process takes about 30 minutes to an hour and I’m closely watching them this time around.

In addition to that work Dr. Cassanello and I have contacted Ms. Lee Dotson (UCF STARS) in regards to a few minor changes regarding the site. One small thing that we didn’t think about when setting up the site was that the entries needed to be listed in reverse chronological order. Having the podcasts in traditional order would place the very first episode  as the one users first interact with on the site. We thought it would be best if the episodes were shown with the most recent first. My thought about this have to do with the idea that most readers/listeners will be searching for the podcast during the release of the latest issue. Ideally the two mediums will be working together. We also needed the FHQ banner added to the site, and we are currently working on getting the iTunes button so that those using iOS and Mac can directly download from the iTunes store rather than having to upload a file to iTunes.


I’m currently working on finding the differences between the FHQ podcast website and the History of Central FLorida website. We want to replicate the latter with the FHQ site. Basically I’m going through entries and finding what may be useful or may be different between the two. Currently, the pregenerated bibliographic notes are wrong and I am starting work on those next week. So see you then!


The Learning Process

Hey everyone!

This week at my internship with UCF and the Florida Historical Quarterly I made a bunch of mistakes!


In a few of my previous blog posts I had mentioned that I was working on creating video files, specifically MP3s, for the Florida Historical Quarterly podcast archive currently in the making with STARS at the UCF Library. I had talked about how I forgot to match the image length with the audio length, leading to a few seconds of video followed by nearly a half hour of black screen audio. I did fix all this when I ran across this problem, finally saving them to my Google Drive and the flash drive I carry around. This week i happened to check back on the files and make sure they were of a decent quality. Video quality isn’t of the utmost importance due to the purpose of the video being the streaming of the podcast, but I thought I’d check to see how they turned out. Here’s where I found my mistakes, or maybe they should just be called errors.

When I played the videos back they audio and video appeared correctly, with the timer starting at zero and the cover of the respective issue appearing in the center of the video. I contemplated remaking the videos because the image seemed a little grainy due to a 2000×4000 pixel image being squished into a 420p video, but I asked Dr. Cassanello and he said it was alright.After I got about 5 minutes into the video, I realized the timer had reached the end of its scale, but the audio and video were still running. I went back to the folder I had the videos stored in and checked the Length option to see how long Windows was marking them. The video vary between 20 and 40 minutes, but windows was claiming they were only anywhere from 1 to 10 minutes. I ran this by Dr. Cassanello and we tried to troubleshoot some problems with my version of Pinnacle by using his version on campus. Despite the computer change, it still produced the corrupted video.

Next, we began breaking down different parts of the process to figure out what was going wrong. We reexported the pdfs of the the FHQ covers to see if it was a problem with the image, but the program produced the same images with no problems. We also put the MP3s of the podcast back into audacity to see if anything was wrong there, but nothing came up. We then put both the image and the audio into Pinnacle, and this time something new came up. The audio had an image with it already, which must have come from the iTunes requirements for the podcast.

It runs out that if the audio has an image already paired with it, and you try to place another image on top of that it will ruin/corrupt the video files. To counter this, we put the audio back into audacity and exported it as a raw MP3, that way it had no extra data attached with it. When we used this audio the video came out perfectly.


All in all this week was another learning experience, and today Ms. Lee Dotson released the podcast website, which means we can begin working and uploading on the actual product! We’ll have something about that next week.