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Slashdot Asks: Your Favorite Podcasts? And Why? 268

Are podcasts finally starting to go mainstream? Are they the future of radio? Who knows. Over the weekend, a reader asked us if we listen to podcasts -- and if yes, which ones? I started listening to podcasts five years ago, and I try to listen to one podcast every day. Here are some of the podcasts I have subscribed to (though I rarely manage to listen to all of them, each week): The New York Times' new podcast The Daily, Bloomberg's Decrypted, WSJ's Media Mix, The Information's 411, The Economist's The Week Ahead, The Economist's Babbage, Financial Times' Tech Tonic, NPR's Pop Culture Happy Hour, The New Yorker's Radio Hour, The Accidental Tech Podcast, John Gruber's The Talk Show, Slate's Audio Book Club, and Kara Swisher's Recode Decode. What are your favorite podcasts and why? Also, when do you listen to them -- at work /during commute / before bed / weekend or some other time?
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Slashdot Asks: Your Favorite Podcasts? And Why?

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  • Podcasts (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Phusion ( 58405 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:05PM (#53820009)
    I walk around a lot, so I've started listening to podcasts a little bit more. I've been listening to Leo Laporte for the last decade or so, TWiT and his various podcasts like Security Now with Steve Gibson are sometimes educational and entertaining. Outside of the tech genre I've been listening to a lot of Harmontown, the podcast by Community and Rick + Morty creator Dan Harmon. It's a feel good kind of show, which I definitely need these days. I'd like to listen to more tech/security oriented podcasts, but having to subscribe to them is a pain in the ass and eats away at my limited space on the iPhone 6S.
    • I've been listening to Leo Laporte for the last decade or so, TWiT and his various podcasts like Security Now with Steve Gibson are sometimes educational and entertaining.

      I have an 1.5 hour commute (each way) 4 days a week, so I listen to a lot of podcasts.

      I like TWIT most of the time... but there are a few guests that will cause me to just preemptively delete the podcast because I find them so annoying (Robert Scoville and Jason Callicanis are two who come to mind). I don't really find it educational because they're just tech writers, and sometimes their deeper tech ignorance ends up on display - but occasionally they'll bring up a story I'm unaware of, and in general it's

      • I like TWIT most of the time... but there are a few guests that will cause me to just preemptively delete the podcast because I find them so annoying (Robert Scoville and Jason Callicanis are two who come to mind)

        I do the same thing. I agree with your off-the-cuff choices. I would go further and add that I WILL absolutely listen to any episode with JJ Stone or Dvorak (I heard that Dvorak was banned from the show now... which really makes me sad. He challenged Leo and guests and their techno-bubble lives). Also, if Leo expounds on AR vs VR one more time, I think I am dropping TWiT from my weekly lineup... he just won't shut up about it. I will, however, always keep Windows Weekly and Security Now going no matter what

        • Oh Doctah is hilarious! And I was wondering where Dvorak had gone to... he could be grating at times, but I completely agree with you - the discussions tend to turn into a bit of an echo chamber at times, and he was good at preventing that. It's too bad if he's really banned nowadays.

          Also, it looks like the guy's name isn't "Scoville" - it's Robert Scoble. He was on this most recent show, and after about seven minutes I just couldn't take it anymore... away it went...

      • by bazmail ( 764941 )
        Yeah Robert Scoble is an irritating douchebag. Eminently punchable face. Talks an enormous amount of shit in that annoying voice that makes me want to smash my phone.
    • I commute on bicycle whenever I can, which is when most of my podcast listening happens (it's mostly trails and low-traffic neighborhoods, and I use earbuds that let a lot of ambient noise through). I also usually listen to them at about 1.3x speed, to pack a little more in. Unless my wife is listening with me, because she can't stand the sped-up talking. She says it makes her feel like bugs are crawling on her. Some kind of weird synesthesia thing, I guess.

      Anyway, most of my podcasts are comedy:

      • Comedy
    • by elrous0 ( 869638 )

      TWiT is great. Leo is still the man. I would also add some other personal favs:

      Cord-Killers [] (formerly Cord Cutters on the TWiT network)
      TekThing [] (from another former TWiT/TechTV alum Patrick Norton)
      Anything from Kinda Funny Games [] (Colin isn't ALWAYS right, though)
      Elder Scrolls Off the Record [] (a must-watch for fans of the Elder Scrolls games)

  • by Victor_0x53h ( 1164907 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:09PM (#53820047) it's weird
    • I skipped the link to get the top-post and still missed the deadline. Sysadministrivia [] is great, they sit around drinking beer to discuss the latest news and best-practices for system admins. I've picked up a few tricks listening in.
  • by Luthair ( 847766 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:09PM (#53820049)
    For me they've pretty consistently brought the funny for years.
  • These two are unlikely to get much love here: []
    http://www.thesurvivalpodcast.... []

    Also: []

  • by John Jorsett ( 171560 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:14PM (#53820093)
    Embedded, Space Welders, The Ezra Klein Show, Federalist Radio Hour, Internet of Things Podcast, The Amp Hour Electronics Podcast, O' Reilly [Bots | Data | Design | Hardware | Radar] Podcast, Mad Dogs and Englishmen, Vox's The Weeds. The why is because they're interesting and introduce me to developments and topics that I haven't previously encountered.
  • by Colin Castro ( 2881349 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:15PM (#53820101)
    Train by day, Joe Rogan podcast by night, all day!
  • I very much enjoy the podcast genre even though it is a rather broad spectrum. Here are my faves:-

  • by Karganeth ( 1017580 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:16PM (#53820121)
    Rogan is funny and good, he has many interesting guests: recently had a former scientologist. Also, sam harris's waking up (philosophy) and very bad wizards (philosophy)
  • I like (Score:5, Interesting)

    by The-Ixian ( 168184 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:16PM (#53820125)

    I listen to the following every week:

    Security Now
    Windows Weekly
    This week in Tech
    This American Life
    99% Invisible
    On the Media
    TED Radio Hour
    The Bugle

    • This American Life is great. And now, it's so easy to access via Pandora.

      But if you like this, you have to (if you haven't already) watch the spoof that SNL did of Serial.

    • As for when I listen. I walk a lot and I ride public transportation. So I listen during the commute or when I am just walking around or at lunch.

      I am definitely looking for more podcasts to listen to as well. I have already written down some that I have seen in here today.

      Thanks guys.

    • I listen to the following every week:

      Security Now

      I'll have to give that a shot. I really like Risky Business []. The caster, Patrick Gray, brings in a lot of interesting guests, and really seems to have a good handle on what kinds of stories and things matter, and what is just smoke and mirrors.

    • +1 for Radiolab. The best explanation I've come up with for it so far is that it's a variety series of incredibly well-produced audio micro-documentaries. I listened to one on a whim (Bigger than Bacon [], which was about the mystery of a crackling sound one of their reporters used to hear at boat dock near their house) and was immediately hooked. It finds the perfect balance between being educational and entertaining.

      I also love their More Perfect podcast. It's worth a listen for anyone who wishes they knew m

  • by zerofoo ( 262795 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:18PM (#53820147)

    Freakonomics podcast is awesome: []

    Wait Wait Don't Tell Me is also quite funny (although the Trump jokes are getting old at this point): []

    • On NPR I listened to Says You! [] at Sat noon all of the time -- a nice game of wordplay. Right after that Wait Wait Don't Tell Me came on. On the former, very occasionally one of the panelists would make a snarky political remark but that was extremely few and always had a funny bent related to the topic at hand. On the latter ....

      I was lazy and listened to the next show on (WWDTM) and came to greatly dislike that show -- they always had political jokes on "both" sides of the isle. The D ones were alwa
  • by Rob Riggs ( 6418 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:20PM (#53820169) Homepage Journal
    The two I listen to most are Marketplace and NPR News. Following that: Science Friday; Wait, Wait... Don't Tell Me; BBC News; Planet Money. I've been listening to some of these podcasts for 6 or more years now. I'm also subscribed to a bunch of Youtube channels. My favorite at the moment is EEVblog.
  • Once a week BBC4 panel discussion with multiple academics on ludicrously wide-ranging topics, aimed at a literate lay audience. One week you're learning about gravity, the next week the Han Dynasty, and the next week a classic 17th century painting. Smart and fast. []

  • RadioLab (Score:4, Insightful)

    by pr0t0 ( 216378 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:22PM (#53820189)

    For sure RadioLab []. I listen to The Daily Tech News Show [] for some extended commentary on the day's tech news. I'm a board gamer and listen to The Dice Tower [] and The Secret Cabal Gaming Podcast []. If you're interested in hearing about the business of board games, Board Games Insider [] is a great resource.

    Honorable mention to This American Life. If you haven't listened to the "Squirrel Cop" episode, here ya go, and you're welcome!
    https://www.thisamericanlife.o... []

  • Nothing against them, just prefer to read what people have to say. And I don't listen to radio because by 48 I own all the good music I need and not exactly sure current events are worth keeping up with constantly.

    • Do you commute by car? That provides a great opportunity to listen to some podcasts.
      • Do modern cars have audio systems that support/encourage podcast use? I have a 2012 Honda Civic without NAV, and the radio function seems like it was an afterthought. I can listen to MP3s from a USB thumb drive, but I have thousands of songs on it, and can really only advance to the next song. Forget trying to find a particular song from a particular album by a particular artist.

        I listen to podcasts from my android phone via bluetooth while in the car. The steering wheel controls can advance though the po
        • With my car's audio system, and an app on my cellphone, I can communicate with and control the Pandora app (to a limited degree, and rather unreliably) on my cellphone, via bluetooth.

          This American Life is on Pandora now.

  • by Ann O'Nymous-Coward ( 460094 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:23PM (#53820195)
    Wonderfully weird, amazingly inventive storytelling, been going strong for years now.
    • I stopped 18 months ago during the book hype and never got back to it. and now the pile is SOOOO large that I can't commit the time to it
    • The City Council announces the opening of a new Dog Park at the corner of Earl and Somerset, near the Ralphâ(TM)s. They would like to remind everyone that dogs are not allowed in the Dog Park. People are not allowed in the Dog Park. It is possible you will see Hooded Figures in the Dog Park. Do not approach them. Do not approach the Dog Park. The fence is electrified and highly dangerous. Try not to look at the Dog Park, and especially do not look for any period of time at the Hooded Figures. The Dog P

    • I'm behind but still enjoying it. Along the same lines: For parody radio shows, I loved Thrilling Adventure Hour. For spooky/weird, Limetown was really good. I'm a season in to The Black Tapes Podcast. that one leans a little too much on Serial's tropes but I've gotten past that to actually enjoying it.
  • This is more on the entertainment side, but also feature some of the deeper discussions on important topics than you'd find almost anywhere:

    This Week in Science (TWIS) - going for over a decade, and still just as energetic, and honestly hilarious as ever. Just the right mix of solid detail and genuine humor.

    Skeptics Guide to the Universe - has also been going for over a decade, and has some of the warmest, funniest folks out there. Lots and lots of science too - since at the heart of modern skepticism is t

  • I've had to pare down my podcast listening since I don't drive as much as I used to and usually don't get into listening at home. I have a few categories that I listen to a couple of podcasts each in. These should all be easily found in any podcast directory.
    War Rocket Ajax
    Jay and Miles X-plain the X-Men
    I also used to listen to Life Leave Me Alone but their feed address changed and I haven't gotten around to catching back up yet.

    Welcome to Night Vale
    Thrilling Adventure Hour

    Role Playing:

  • Daily Tech News Show, This Week in Tech, Cordkillers, Security Now, Current Geek, NPR ( Ask me another and wait wait ), Sword and Laser, The Morning Stream, MacBreak Weeky, Polyamory Weekly, Strange Love seem to all rotate fairly rapidly, I keep promising myself to get back to Welcome to Nightvale, but after 18months it is a bit intimidating
  • by FrankDrebin ( 238464 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:49PM (#53820419) Homepage []
    Adam Curry and John C Dvorak. They take no advertising so no paid biases. Deconstruction of the spin from MSM.
    In the morning!
  • Dan Carlin (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Hardcore History is one of the most entertaining podcasts around (but there is usually a 5 month gap between episodes). His 6 part series on WW1, Blueprint for Armageddon is a masterpiece.

    Common Sense is also pretty good. Dan is the master of context so he takes the current social policital environment and places it in a historical context.

  • by iamcadaver ( 104579 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @02:50PM (#53820425)

    Dan Carlin's Hardcore History is just awesome.

    Dan Carlin's Common Sense suffers for the amount of effort that goes into Hardcore History. It takes him months to research and put out HH.

    I keep up with EconTalk, ContraKrugman, Freakanomics and Security Now every week.

    If you like Freakanomics give EconTalk a try.

    I have a list of podcasts called 'On The Road' which is for when I have guests / gf in the car. This has:
    Selected Shorts
    Wait Wait Don't Tell Me
    This American Life

    Random others:
    The Dice Tower
    Test and Code
    Talk Python to Me
    Science Friday
    StarTalk Tadio

  • Seriously, Westeros has nothing on the Eternal City.

    And knowledge of Roman history is something all Americans should have. After considering the history of Rome the notion that small-r republican traditions and constitutional arrangements can restrain a tyrant or preserve individual liberty seems naive.

    • by JustNiz ( 692889 )

      I totally agree and find it highly interesting how in their last days, most empires all do the same things just before they implode.
      We are now seeing MANY of the same things in the US that Rome went through during its last days, []

  • What: The Archers

    Why: I fantasize about Pip. Her accent is hot. Plus she knows how to drive a tractor.

    • Odd. I find Pip's voice (and character) wildly irritating. The Australian question intonation, the inability to pronounce 'cattle' (cattoo), the insufferable smugness etc. - ghastly.

      Not as irriating as her mother though...

      • Odd. I find Pip's voice (and character) wildly irritating.

        The only downside to Pip is her shacking up with that Fairbrother lad just to piss her gran off.

        Seriously, there's also Global News Podcast; World Update Daily Commute; Friday Comedy from BBC 4; Larry Miller Show; and Uncontrolled Airspace.

  • The best Astros podcast

  • These guys are doing gods work, eating at chain restaurants and reviewing them on a weekly podcast. The highlight being an entire month where they ate nothing but Red Lobster. []
  • I like Video Games Hot Dog. They play and then talk about computer games, new and old. Humor, nostalgia, news, and of course video games. No actual hot dogs.

  • Nerdist
    Under The Influence
    Serial (when it's back)
    My Favorite Murder
    Reply All
    Talk Nerdy To Me
    99% Invisible
    Science Vs.
    Oh No Ross and Carrie
    Here's The Thing

    I still routinely check out a few more every few months. Behind the Liner Notes, Song Exploder, BBC's The Inquiry, the Allusionist, etc. etc. etc.

  • by cmiller173 ( 641510 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @03:36PM (#53820761)

    AMPed New Music Weekly - currently on hiatus
    Android Central
    Dan Carlin's Hardcore History
    Scott Sigler - serialized episodes of his novels, most of his earlier stuff is on podiobooks
    Whistlestop - presidential politics history
    The Way I Heard It - Mike Rowe

    Used to listen to but either got bored with or the show canceled:
    How to brew it - Homebrewing
    The Jamiel Show - Homebrewing
    The Dog Watch Social Club - Cigar reviews
    Whiskey cast

    I am almost entirely caught up on my current list, except for "The Way I Heard It" which I just added last week. I'll use this slashdot article to select some new ones.

  • by dead_user ( 1989356 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @03:37PM (#53820773)
    Well, I quit listening to radio ages ago, and have moved on to the following podcasts for my daily commute and listening throughout the day:

    Stuff You Should Know
    99% invisible
    Aks Me Another
    Common Sense with Dan Carlin
    Hardcore History also with Dan Carlin
    Judge John Hodgman
    Stuff They Don't Want You to Kow
    You Are Not So Smart
    Good Job, Brain
    Hidden Brain
    Surprisingly Awesome
    The Sporkful
    Stuff You Missed in History Class

    Podcasts to me are like a DVR for my radio. I can listen when and where I want and pause when I need to divert my attention elsewhere without missing anything.
  • by enjar ( 249223 ) on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @03:39PM (#53820791) Homepage

    I generally listen to podcasts on my commute.

    My top 3:
    Nerdist - long format interviews with celebrities. Not one to listen to with the kids.
    Planet Money - "pop economics". Generally entertainment and informative. Generally OK with the kids in the car.
    99 Percent Invisible - Roman Mars has such a smooth radio voice I could listen to him talk about making a bowl of cereal. Podcast concentrates on architecture and design.

    Other mentions have already been listed:
    Mike Duncan's History of Rome and Revolutions podcasts are very good.
    Dan Carlin's Hardcore HIstory and Common Sense make you think.
    Gretchen Rubin's Happier has some interesting ideas about happiness.
    Freakonomics continues where the books leave off.
    The Way I Heard It by Mike Rowe is a homage to "The Rest of the Story". Another great voice to listen to talk about just about anything.

    • I do love me some Nerdist Podcast. It's genuinely interesting to hear these celebrities carry on a fairly normal conversation. No audience (at the time of recording), no major plugs (though they might mention upcoming work), just a couple people talking about life. It gets weird though, when you find out that some beloved actor simply cannot carry on a normal conversation. Gary Oldman was one that caught me a bit off guard. It wasn't terrible, just felt kinda awkward and "meh." Meanwhile, others can f

      • by enjar ( 249223 )

        My wife and I have also seen Chris Hardwick live, if you like the Nerdist his standup is worth the price of admission.

        I agree that some of the celebrities just can't get out of "promo mode", but those that do really come out great. I've enjoyed Mark Hamill's appearances, Max Brooks, Daniel Radcliffe, Patrick Stewart and Bruce Campbell. Even his self-deprecating interview of Harrison Ford wasn't nearly as terrible as Hardwick made it out to be. Ford isn't an easy interview, and it wasn't the best Nerdist eve

  • The Number One podcast in all of Newbridge!
  • I love listening to Eli The Computer Guy on YouTube. One of my favorite videos was about being an asshole as a technology professional. At the end of the day, you need to get the job done and that's the only thing that matters. If that makes you an asshole, so be it.

    Being An "Asshole" As A Technology Professional []

  • I pretty much listen to all gaming podcasts. My first and favorite, way back in 2006ish, was "Endgame Radio" (looks like even the archives are gone now.) It was an interesting combination of video game news and discussion alternated with an eclectic mix of techno, goth/industrial, and video game soundtrack music.

    When the schedule for that got erratic i started listening to the various 1UP and GameSpot podcasts. When those were killed off/died off for various reasons i picked up Rebel FM and Weekend Confir
  • Crimetown
    Dan Carlin's Hardcore History -- This one is good for long car trips, as the podcasts are huge
    How I Built This -- NPR's version of Startup
    Planet Money
    Reply All
    Surprisingly Awesome
    TED Radio Hour
    This American Life -- Ira Glass probably introduced me to half of the other podcasts on this list
    and This Week In Computer Hardware

  • Conversations, Richard Fidler, Radio National (ABC Australia0
    Not tech specific; but very well done long form interviews on a diverse range of subjects. []

  • by Reteo Varala ( 743 ) < minus author> on Tuesday February 07, 2017 @03:55PM (#53820907) Homepage

    I am a big fan of audio drama, which means that the podcasting format is great for my kind of entertainment.

    Here are my audio drama podcasts:

    I also listen to Dan Carlin's podcasts (Common Sense [] and Hardcore History []) for a pretty balanced view on history and politics.

    Also, as I'm studying and training to do voice work, I also subscribe to a number of voice-over feeds.

    In addition to the general voice-over stuff, I find that podcasts about podcasting (meta, anyone?) are also useful sources of knowledge.

    I know there's a lot here, so I hope you find something of interest.

  • I'm a consistent listener to Slates podcasts.. usually while at the gym or walking the dog. Particular favorites are:

    Slate Political Gabfest (informed, interesting political discussion about three topics)

    Slate Cultural Gabfest

    Slate The Gist

    Slate Money

    Also listen to Wait Wait from NPR

  • mostly listen to The Dad Bros Show. it's about 2 brothers, that are dads. one with 2 girls, the other with 3 boys. just talk about every day dad stuff, with a mix of current events, and current favorite alcoholic beverages, they try a new one every show. []
  • Having 3 hours of daily commuting, I live on poscasts. Though I call them podcats.
    • Software Engineering Daily
    • Developer Tea
    • Developer on Fire
    • Software Gone Wild
    • Fragmented: An Android Developer Podcast
    • .NET Rocks
    • Agile for Humans
    • Frontline
    • All About Android
    • Android Central
    • 20/20
    • SE-Radio
    • Coding Blocks
    • Create Software That Sells
  • My "listen to every episode ASAP" list:
    Opening Arguments
    Scathing Atheist
    God Awful Movies
    Cognative Dissonance
    Skeptics with a K
    Be Reasonable

    My backup list:
    Dogma Debate
    Naked Mormonism
    What's the Point
    Monster Talk

    I have this habit of wanting to hear people talk about truth and evidence, and exploring how that goes wrong...

  • I listened to one of the first ever TWiT podcasts back in the day (and have listened ever since) and thought it was the future then, so glad to hear it's taking off properly.

    Apart from TWiT network podcasts I like to listen to:

    Stuff You Should Know - So awesome, I'm a late convert to this from a few years ago. Chuck and Josh are the best!
    DTNS - Tom Merritt is great, really insightful. Some of his guests leave a little to be desired (Patrick Beja is great though).
    The Packet Pushers - Awesome in-depth networ

  • I've been listening to podcasts for over ten years now, these are my current ones:
    In english:
    - The sckeptics guide to the universe (seen a few time listed here, I think was the first one I subscribed to, going strong for over ten years with missing a single week due to one of the host dying, that's commitment!)
    - In our time (from BBC radio 4, very deep subjects)
    - Scientific American Podcast
    - Skepticality (going just as long as SGU, but not as near as regular)
    - StarTalk (Niel deGrasse Tyson radio sho
  • If I am looking for News or a Deconstruction of News Stories: No Agenda Show ( I have my own which deals with Cannabis: [] I also Listen to : Joe Rogan, Dan Carlin, Duncan Trussell, Sam Harris, Joey "Coco" Diaz....and a few randoms...
  • I mostly listen to:

    For entertainment:
    Wait Wait Don't Tell Me
    The Nosh Show

    For computer/IT business:
    Podnutz/Podnutz Daily
    Mike Tech Show
    Tech Vets
    Computer Business Podcast

  • Not really, but I do make a point to listen to new episodes of the Adam Ruins Everything podcast; I enjoy the show, and the podcasts are usually interesting as all hell.

    Also, Freakonomics Radio.

  • And now that we know how you feel about podcasts, have you heard of this "Twitter" thing? or "Facebook"? I keep hearing people talk about them, and I'm thinking it might be a big new thing...

Order and simplification are the first steps toward mastery of a subject -- the actual enemy is the unknown. -- Thomas Mann