Hi, I'm James Bilsbrough. I'm an all round nerd who loves helping people with their tech support needs, as well as podcast production and more.
I'm working entirely remotely, with a few exceptions, so no matter where in the world you are, I can work with you.To find out more about how I can help, take a look at the sections below, or if you just want to book a chat, click the Book Your First Chat above.
Do you need help figuring out the latest tech?Want one-to-one tuition that goes at your pace?Small business IT getting you down?Let's have a chat!
I've been working in tech and customer support for over 10 years, and the biggest thing I've learned in all that time is that everyone has different skill levels, different ways of learning, and probably most importantly, different passions for tech.That's why I genuinely believe that everyone deserves the best tech support they can get. When I offer support, I want to get to know you and the ways you work, rather than just rattle off a bunch of boring IT jargon.One thing that the recent pandemic has been good for is the huge shift to remote support. It doesn't matter where you are, I'm happy to support you remotely through things like FaceTime, Signal, Google Meet, Zoom, and Google Remote Desktop.I've put together a bit of a menu of sorts below, but that really is just a starting point and my first step is always to have an introductory call with you to figure out your needs. Don't worry, the first call is always free and I generally put aside about 30 minutes for each session.Once I know what you're looking for, and that I can help you, we'll agree some pricing and start working out a schedule for you.
Some things I can help with...
Choosing the right computer, phone, tablet, printer, etc.
Finding your feet with Windows and macOS
Getting the most from your iPhone or iPad
Managing your photos
Organising your files and documents
Keeping safe online
Setting up backups
Managing your passwords
Sorting out your pesky WiFi and network issues
Using Word, Excel, and PowerPoint
Getting the most out of your email
Getting your business a great, professional, email address and powerful email hosting.
Speeding up that slow computer
These prices are really just a rough guide. As part of our first call, we'll discuss your budget and needs and work out a fair price point for you.
|Tech Lessons||£30 / hour|
|Tech Buying Advice||£10 / call|
|Emergency Tech Support||£40 / incident|
|Network & WiFi Tune Up||£50|
|Business Email Setup||£100|
Starting a new podcast?
Need editing for your existing show?
Just want some advice?
I've been podcasting on and off for over 10 years, with my latest show being Crossed Wires, which in some ways is an extension of my mission here, to help people discover cool and positive technology.Where podcasting shines is its ability to convey stories, news, comedy and so much more in a way that's easy to access for pretty much everyone. My favourite times are often those long train journeys with my favourite podcast playing.Podcasting doesn't have to be a daunting experience these days, with incredibly affordable recording gear, great hosting solutions (both paid and free), and an amazingly energetic community, modern podcasting is something anyone can get their teeth into.Let me talk to you about some of the ways I can help you as a podcaster, whether you're brand new to the journey or just need some help and support to get your show sounding the best it can do. When you're ready to discuss your needs, just click the 'Book Your First Chat' button above.
There's an old expression in computing, "Rubbish in, rubbish out", and that's always resounded with me when it comes to podcast recording.If you don't have a decent microphone and the right equipment to capture your musings, the end result will be hard for people to listen to and engage with.Please don't misunderstand me here, though, I'm by no means suggesting that everyone needs to spend hundreds of pounds (or dollars) on that huge shiny microphone you see big names use. Far from it, there are some amazing microphones for under £100 that will serve you for many years.But, as with anything, it's about choosing the right equipment for your needs and your budget. That's where I can help, I'll spend the time working with you to find the right gear for your voice, your existing setup, and your budget.
When it comes to recording your podcast with a co-host or guests who aren't physically there with you it can be a real challenge to get the right audio quality, never mind making sure all those recordings are in sync.That's why I trust SquadCast for all my recordings, and as part of my full podcast production package, I highly recommend you do too.Simply put, SquadCast gives you the best audio quality from everyone on the call, makes it super easy for me to get the files to edit your show, and best of all it's affordable with fantastic support.Best of all, I'll help you get set up and make sure you've got access to all the great resources from the SquadCast team.
Disclaimer: I have an affiliate link with SquadCast, this just helps keep the lights on around here.
Editing and Post Production
So, you've recorded your episode, and the audio has come out sounding really nice, what happens next? Well, unless you and your guests haven't coughed, got something wrong, or umm'd a lot, your episode will need some editing.Realistically, there are two styles of editing in podcasting. The first is your basic quick clean-up, trimming the recordings to time and making sure all the levels are good and the audio sounds the best it can do. The second type is more around the content of the episode, so removing pauses and all those nervous umms, errs, or repetitions on the same point.A content edit is definitely more involved, but in my experience, it can give your listeners a great experience and let the natural value of your content shine without those little distractions.For all my editing needs, I use Ferrite by Wooji Juice on my iPad Air (4th Gen). Being able to use my Apple Pencil to trim bits of audio and work almost anywhere (I've edited an episode of Crossed Wires before now on a beach!).The best way to get an idea of my editing style is to listen to a bit of one of the Crossed Wires episodes. So, I've embedded a little clip below for you to check out.
Getting Your Show Out There
If you want people to hear your show, it needs to be hosted and distributed on the right platforms.There's a bit of a common misconception that Apple, Google, and Spotify all actually host your podcast for you - they don't. Instead, you need somewhere to host the actual audio files and generate the RSS feed that's effectively the list of all of your episodes and where to find them.There are lots of great hosting options out there, but the two I tend to recommend are Substack if you're not yet at the point that you want to pay for hosting, or if you want a truly great experience with lots of features built by a fellow podcaster (Dan Benjamin of Back to Work fame) then I'd recommend Fireside.Of course, I'll be happy to upload your episodes for you and handle all of the nitty-gritty that comes with distribution (like submitting to Apple, Google, Spotify, etc.).
Our Working Agreement
Here's the thing, we all hate reading long lists of terms and conditions for a service or product; I'm exactly the same and between me and you I often just click that button that says I absolutely have read them.But, in this case, it's really important that we're on the same page before we start working together. That's because I want to make sure there's no misunderstandings and that we have a great working relationship.So, that's why I'm calling this 'Our Working Agreement' and I hope you'll find that more helpful as we go forward.
We'll treat each other with respect. We're all humans, differences make us who we are and we should celebrate those differences.
We'll be honest. That means we'll always strive to be open when things go wrong or when we're struggling. For example, if you're having a hard time with a particular concept or aren't happy with the outcome, you can tell me.
You're over the age of 18. To keep things simple, particularly in this lovely online world we live in, I feel it's wise to only work with those over the age of 18.
Fair pay for a fair days work. This really just comes down to being awesome and paying the amount we've agreed in advance by the date we've both agreed.
Keeping to time. I'll always be on time for our calls, and I'd ask you do the same. If, for whatever reason, we need to move things around, we agree to give each other as much notice as possible. This also applies to production stuff, sometimes I'll need files from you and it'll just hold things up if you don't get them to me on time.
Problems? Share them with me first, I'll always do my best to resolve them quickly and fairly.
Thanks for booking a chat with me!
I really appreciate you booking some time to chat, and I'm looking forward to meeting you. You're probably wondering what happens next.You'll get a calendar invite from SavvyCal which you should be able to add to any of the main calendar apps (Apple, Google, Outlook).In that invite you'll find a link to Jitsi which is the awesome video conferencing tool we'll use for our first session. You don't need to sign up, and it should work on any device.When it's time for our call, just follow that link and we'll be connected. It'll just ask for your name, so I can confirm I'm talking to the right person!In the meantime take a look at my general terms, or as I like to call it 'Our Working Agreement'. We can discuss all of this in our call, but it's nothing too daunting.
From logos to full branding, from podcast artwork to beautiful crafted presenations, if you need something designing, let's talk!
Getting the right look for your company's brand, your podcast artwork, presentations, advertisements, and printed material can be a real challenge. Not everyone knows their way around graphic design software, not to mention the fact that it can be expensive to buy just for a few bits of artwork.I've been designing in both digital and print for quite some time now. How long, I hear you ask, well let's put it this way when I was first doing presentation design for projection, you had to make sure not even a candle was anywhere near the projector.Whatever your needs, I'm sure we can find the right budget and timeframe for you. I always like to show you a bit of my work when we first chat, rather than just put it on the site as you really don't get the context around the design or the background as to what the requirements where.