What I Like (Favourite Podcasts)
This post is part of my What I Like series
Podcasts are a huge part of my life, I spend a lot of time driving and on the move (walking and cycling) during the day and I’m often on my own. Podcasts keep me company, entertained and educated. I almost always listen to podcasts on my iPhone using the Downcast app which I love for reasons explained in a previous post on how I listen to podcasts. Downcast downloads podcasts I subscribe to automatically in the background, but I can also add individual episodes that I discover on my laptop using a web service called HuffDuffer which I highly recommend.
One of the things I like about podcasts is that they allow me to get a wide perspective on the world in a way that I can’t get by reading alone, in part because they give me a great insight into other peoples lives and as a people watcher this is a real bonus.
Anyway onto the list, which is in no specific order:
- The Infinite Monkey Cage, a very funny and surprisingly educational podcast which Brian Cox and Robin Ince and invited illustrious scientists discuss an interesting topic each week, these can sometimes be quite deep but always fun
- BBC Inside Science, an exceptionally presented general science programme, hard facts with a little light humour thrown in
- The Naked Scientists, another good science programme, the lead presenter Chris Smith is really superb.
- Money Box, the only source I have (and need) to keep informed about the economy and my money management since I don’t watch or read the general news
- The TED Radio Hour, an exceptionally well produced podcast that takes a theme each week and explores it through discussions with TED speakers interspersed with snippets from their TED talks. It’s a great way to discover TED talks too
- The PC pro Podcast, I subscribed to the magazine for a decade, now I just listed to this podcast. It’s my only source of general consumer PC chat
- Science Friday, the must listen to podcast on the list, discusses all the big issues from a scientific perspective. Because it’s the premier science podcast in the US it gets all the big names (authors, politicians, scientists, NASA administrators …) involved in great discussions. The presenter Ira Flato is amazingly well informed and often has superb insights and questions. The format is very entertaining too
- The Tim Ferriss Show, very long, sometimes wandering, interviews with accomplished people, that really explore them as people and their ideas. Great coverage of health, lifestyle, philosophy and more.
- Brian and Gabe Live, excellent coverage of enterprise desktop and mobility topics by the top two independent analysts
- BBC Costing the Earth, well produced coverage of the top issues in global sustainability
- The Economist: Special Reports, well produced interviews with the authors of the Economist special reports, these cover the mega issues and trends and are almost always very interesting
- Hanselminutes, an interview show focussed on the latest trends in software development, but also covers other topics that are always very interesting. The presenter, Scott Hanselman, is a very impressive person in his own right and a fantastic interviewer. What he reveals about himself often provides the best content
- Latest In Paleo, an exceptionally well produced news show on the latest in health, the bias is towards the paleo lifestyle but Angelo is open minded and happy to introduce challenging and controversial topics. Angelo himself is a very interesting guy and what he reveals about himself is often fascinating
- The Life Scientific, an interview show with illustrious scientists, it’s an exceptional show, revealing a lot about what it takes to succeed in a career in science. As in so many of my choices the interviewer makes all the difference and in this case Professor Jim Al-Khalili is excellent
- Nature Podcast, good coverage of general science news by a team of journalist scientists at Nature Magazine, the top journal for science
- NPR Intelligence Squared, an exceptionally well produced podcast capturing debates on the most important issues in the world, the debaters are often at the very top of their fields. It’s great to see two perspectives debated by four accomplished people.
- Revolution Health Radio, the very best health podcast, a mix of Q&A where you really get to see how the mind of one of the top integrative medical practitioner’s works and episodes going deep into particular topics. Chris Kresser is the health professional I trust most in the world.
- Science Talk, the podcast of Scientific American, presented my the amazingly well read Steve Mirsky. This is mainly an interview format and Steve is a superb interviewer, who adds so much value to the discussion.
- Triangulation, an interview programme mainly with authors with a book to promote, but Leo Laporte has superb interviewing skills and knows everything and everyone so he adds so much to the discussion.
- Windows Weekly, a discussion show about what’s happening in Microsoft with the two top journalists (Mary Jo Foley and Paul Thurrott). Paul Thurrott in particular is exceptional as he really has a great perspective on most of the markets in which Microsoft operates. Mary Jo has all the scoops and knows all the players in Microsoft and Leo knows the whole industry. It makes for a great show, although sometimes it’s a little slow and repetitive on slow news weeks.
- The News Quiz, a very funny comedy panel show, loosely based on the weeks news
- The Evernote Podcast, an infrequent update on one of my favourite products and the amazing team that create it. I listen mainly to get an insight into this amazing company and how it’s managed.
The photo is the wind farm off the coast near Blackpool, it’s one of my favourite views to accompany a morning of podcasts and walking.