I got a 4 MB blue iPod Nano 2nd Genfor my birthday last June, and while I do have a few music playlists, I almost exclusively listen to podcasts. I can’t believe I went so long without one of these. Putting together the list below led me to some others that I might give a try, but for now here’s my list:
- In Our Time – A weekly BBC production discussing various events, people, or ideas in history (recent or ancient). Always interesting. About 45 minutes long.
- Philosophy Bites – A weekly interview with someone about a specific philosophical topic. About 15 minutes long.
- Talk of the Nation: Science Friday – Weekly show about all sorts of issues relating to science. It’s in a very easy-to-listen-to format. Broken into segments. About 1hr per week.
- Science Talk from Scientific American – I don’t think I like it as much as Science Friday, but it’s still very interesting. It’s usually focused on one or two topics per episode, sometimes recording of lectures by prominent scientists. Weekly, about 30 minutes.
- Grammar Girl – Nice and short, answers to tricky grammar questions. Often plays off current events. Weekly. 5 minutes.
- Get-It-Done Guy – I’m a fan of Getting Things Done, as I kind of discussed in my entry on Outlook. This is a nice, short podcast with simple ideas for efficiency in your life. Weekly. 5 minutes.
- Legal Lad – Answers to interesting legal questions. Weekly. 5 minutes.
- Fundamentals of Piano Practice – really just somebody reading out loud the online book of the same name. I play piano, and I’m learning a ton of fundamental principles from this book that help. The hands-separate method? I’ve played for 8 years and never had it explained to me so clearly. It’s obvious in retrospect, but that’s the kind of good thing you learn in this book. Unfortunately, new readings haven’t been added since October. Varying length and frequency.
- Learn Jazz Piano – I haven’t listened to any of these yet, but I’ve always wanted to play jazz. Infrequent (but still being updated!). 30m.
- WordNerds – Interesting discussion of words and language. I always learn something interesting. Every three weeks. 30-60 minutes.
- MarketPlace – I like to follow the business news, and their format is really good. Entertaining, informative. Daily. 30 minutes.
- MarketPlace Money – Their weekly show that goes into more depth on topics, discusses more “timeless” issues, answers questions. I really like this one. Weekly. 1hr.
- Entrepreneurial Thought Leaders – Forums at Stanford with lecture and questions by famous entrepreneurs. These are frequently interesting, especially if you want to start a business someday. Weekly. 1hr.
- Car Talk – how can you not have this on the list? They’re hilarious. And I do learn something about cars. Mostly, just fun, though. Weekly. 60 minutes.
- LAMLradio: LEGO Talk Podcast – Interviews with LEGO builders, and others in the online LEGO community. I like it, but you probably have to be familiar with the community to follow it. Weekly 15 minutes.
- MunchCast – A weekly show about junk food! I’ve only listened to the first episode, but I’m hooked. It’s more interesting than it sounds. Weekly. 30m.
- .Net Rocks – Very well put-together show about .Net development, upcoming technology, interviews with industry pros. Twice weekly. 1hr+
- This Week in Tech – Casual discussion of the week’s computing news with Leo Laporte. Highly entertaining. Has the cranky John C. Dvorak on often, but the panel rotates. Weekly. 60-90m.
- Windows Weekly – Covers Windows-specific news (mostly) with Paul Thurrott and Leo Laporte. Also interesting stuff. Weekly. 1hr
- Security Now – With Steve Gibson and Leo Laporte. They talk about all sorts of security-related topics. Very interesting, very well done. They have a knack for explaining difficult concepts in a way that’s easy to grasp. One of my favorites. I am not a security guru, but this is fascinating stuff. Weekly. 1hr.
- HanselMinutes – with Scott Hanselman who now works at Microsoft. Discusses various technical topics, usually related to programming. To be honest I don’t like this one as much very often, but I still listen to it occasionally. Don’t know why…a little dry?
- NPR Technology News – stories culled from various NPR programs into a 20-30 minute collage. Weekly.
- The Tech Guy – another Leo Laporte show, in a longer format, with interviews, callers, and more.
- The Restaurant Guys – Discusses “food, wine, and the finer things in life.” If you like food, you’ll probably enjoy this podcast. I was probably interested in about half of their shows but something about them bugged me so I’ve dropped them for now in favor of other things. I may add them back soon. Daily. 1hr.
Check out my latest book, the essential, in-depth guide to performance for all .NET developers:
Writing High-Performance.NET Code, 2nd Edition by Ben Watson. Available for pre-order: