Essential Podcasts

I keep weeding my podcast list. What casts stay on your list?

  • The Candid Frame — photography
  • Sodajerker on Songwriting — like it’s called
  • Appstories — intelligent app discussion
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My “never skip” list:

  • Bombshell
  • Greatest Generation / Greatest Discovery
  • Top Four
  • ATP
  • Analog(ue)
  • Connected
  • Cortex
  • Hello Internet
  • MPU
  • The Pen Addict
  • The Talk Show with John Gruber
  • Thoroughly Considered
  • Upgrade

I have others on my list but they depend on time available!

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I’m not a fan of podcasts in general There are only 3 I try to listen to regularly:

Photos with Sherita

Even with these I skip some of the episodes. Problem is the time. I can’t listen to them and do anything else and keeping up takes a big chunk of time so I am selective in what episodes I listen to.

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Not much time in the day for podcasts, unfortunately. My tech podcast list is down to one: MPU

  1. MPU
  2. Fresh Air
  3. Invisibilia

Unfortunately, many tech podcasts are 90 min+ with a lot of interesting banter, but time consuming. Show notes and links are always appreciated even if I cannot listen in.

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The Steve Dahl Show
Reconciliable Differences
Accidental Tech Podcast
The Talk Show
Let’s Talk Apple
Back to Work
MacBreak Weekly

Also select episodes of:
Chit Chat Across the Pond

I wouldn’t say I have any essential podcasts because I skip varying amounts depending on how caught up I am with news, familiarity with the guest, falling-asleep-but-too-lazy-to-rewind, etc. When I am actively listening I use the skip button a lot. (I also do this with Netflix. Several judicious +10s taps during an episode really tighten up the editing!)

The Apple podcasts I like are pretty well covered. For game design, which is my biggest interest, I really like The Business of Videogames, Designer Notes, Three Moves Ahead and Game Design Roundtable.

I listen to every episode of 4-5 podcasts which are hosted by people I personally know so I can keep up with them.

And then 30-40 get 80% of their episodes deleted because I just don’t have the time but I don’t want to miss really interesting guests or topics. I especially like to catch meta episodes (state of the podcast, etc.)

I have a daily playlist for when I’m commuting (at other times of year I barely listen) - all only 1-5 minutes long:

Scientific American 60 second science
KQED The California Report
KCRW Today’s Top Tune
MLB Boston Red Sox podcast

(It’s been a good year to be a Boston sports fan in LA)

Here are the one’s I’ve been listening to the most these days:
Culture Gabfest
Grammar Girl Quick and Dirty Tips for Better Writing
MacBreak Weekly
Mac OS Ken
Mac Power Users
No Agenda

My favorites are:
Mac Power Users (of course)
Accidental Tech Podcast
The Remnant with Jonah Goldberg
The Daily
Turn on the Jets
New Classical Tracks with Julie Amacher

I’m thankful for the smart speed playback where I can adjust the playback speed for each podcast so that the hosts don’t sound like chipmunks. It helps to cut down the amount of time for playback. I also do a lot of selective episodes. I’ll listen fo the for 15 minutes on some episodes and might pass on it. Then there are other episodes where I will go all the way through.

For the most part, I’d rather listen to an audiobook during my commutes. Books will have a chance to last longer than most of my podcasts. A lot of podcasts aren’t evergreen. But books have a better chance at being evergreen.

Agreed; some kind of speed up is necessary, even if Ira Glass is disappointed in me for using it.

Can you tell I’m in Chicago and haven’t left the house for two days by the time I put into this post?

Essential listen podcasts:
The Tony Kornhesier Show - I’m a little. If you don’t know what that is … Anyways, I listen to every single episode no matter what.

Mac Power Users - Long time listener since show #1. There’s the odd show that I skip around depending on the topic (I wasn’t all that thrilled with the latest fitness episode) but I take in every show

Marketplace with Kai Ryssdal - I was an economics major and love the smart, relevant take on the economy and business

The Daily - New listen for the last 3-4 months. In any given week I probably listen to at least 4 episodes. Can’t stand the host constantly saying “Huh” every time the guests speaks but the relevant subject matter is usually presented in a smart way.

Instant Message - I like Stern and Pierce a lot over the years so I’m giving it a listen. The production of the show is not the best but usually some smart topics.

The Talk Show with John Gruber - Always listen and never skip. Usually save these for flights, long commutes or yard work.

Upgrade - Long time listened and never miss an episode.

Connected - Long time listened and never miss an episode.

Fusion - I like the cross-over you get from these infrequent shows.

Slow Burn - Was blown away with the first series on Watergate. Also thought the Clinton one was really well done. Heard recently the guy who started the podcast has left the show so it will be interesting to see where this goes.

Origins with James Andrew Miller - I’ve read his ESPN, SNL, and CAA oral history books and was impressed. These usually come in batches. They did a handful on ESPN that was really interesting, same with Alabama football and SNL. I didn’t listen to the Sex in the City or Curb Your Enthusiasm episodes. Worth the listen if the subject of each mini-series interests you.

Almost Essential Listens (I might fast forward here or there but I pretty much listen to these)
Planet Money - It’s economics based, relevant and usually has a fun tinge to it.

How I Built This with Guy Raz - I listen to 90% of these and really love hearing from people who have created companies that we all know.

Today, Explained - Just started listening to this in the last two weeks. Short episodes on a relevant news topic, explained in a down to earth way.

Marketplace Tech with Molly Wood - I like Molly Wood and the episodes are short. I probably only listen to 50% of them though.

Corner Office from Marketplace - Like ‘How I Built This’ but much shorter and more focused. Not as good as ‘How I Built This’

Supertop Podcast - I was a ‘Castro’ user for a bit so it was interesting to hear the logic behind the app. I’m off ‘Castro’ right now so not listening as much, but I did take in the episode where they talked about selling the app.

App Stories - I listen to 75% of the episodes.

Completely Dependent on the Subject Matter (more often than not I don’t listen):
Tiny Desk Concerts - If it’s someone I like I’ll listen to the audio and then check out the video on YouTube.
Song Exploder - When it is a song I really like, this is a great podcast.

Travel Genius - New to me - not sure yet.
Works for Me - New to me - not sure yet.
Automators - I like the concept but not sure how well it translates into a podcast.
Welcome to Macintosh - Interesting when it publishes.

My regulars are:

MPU (of course)
CarDebate by Everyday Driver
Louder with Crowder
Whims that Work

Occasional listens:
The Smoking Tire podcast by Matt Farah
Why Didn’t They Laugh by Owen Benjamin
Off the Cuff podcast

Never skip:
Skeptics Guide to the Universe
Accidental Tech Podcast
Security Now
Court Appointed
Mac Geek Gab

I really enjoy The Critical Path podcast as Horace Dediu is very knowledgeable on Apple & wider technology field. Always interesting.

Non-tech podcasts include:

I am provisionally subscribed to several dozen podcasts (personal, health/medical, tech, comedy, photography, writing/poetry, politics) that don’t auto-download, and when new episodes appear in the feed I read the blurb for each then decide whether to download.

I have a few weekly podcasts I auto-download:

Improvised Star Trek
Conan O’Brien Needs A Friend
Off Book
The Memory Palace
Risky Business
Nerd Poker
Buddhist Temple of Toledo