What tech-related podcasts do you listen to?

We had a tangent in the iPhone 8 thread about ATP, so I thought I’d mention the ones I listen to, and see what others listen to. I’m listing these in general priority order, even though it’s rare that they all overlap. I have about an hour commute each way which is were I listen to most of them

The ones I catch about 80% of the episodes:
Free Agents

Tier 2 depends on time, and content
Mac Power Users (this one completely depends on who the host is)
Under the Radar
Core Int

The “goddamn it, I need SOMETHING to listen to
Rec Diffs
Still Untitled. I love it, and Adam Savage, but I just don’t have the time.

Honorable Mention:
Hello Internet. I’m working through the backlog, so it tends to bump some of “tier 2” stuff out of the rotation unless the content of those moves it up the list.

I gave up on:
Back to Work. I liked it, but I couldn’t tell if Merlin was actually doing a good job at getting things done in life, and some of the episodes just took forever to get on the main topic.

No The Talk Show? Don’t have time for three hours every weekend?

The Talk Show (John Gruber) is where it all started for me, which spiraled out into Hypercritical (John Siracusa’s first podcast with Dan Benjamin) and Build And Analyze (Marco Arment’s first podcast, also with Dan Benjamin) and then I just kept making connections as hosts started new shows or recommended others on their networks.

So I still listen to The Talk Show, Accidental Tech Podcast, and if we’re calling it a tech podcast (Merlin would be so amused), Back to Work weekly. I really only listen to Back to Work for the in jokes and the fun of Dan and Merlin interacting, it’s when they actually get onto a productivity topic that I’m least interested. Give me comic book or parenting discussions any day!

Canvas I listen if the topic sounds specifically interesting (rarely), The Critical Path is always good but seems to show up only every couple months now, and Hello Internet is my back-catalog-catchup show when I’ve got more time than current podcasts in a week (currently listening to their reactions to The Force Awakens).

I also listen to Reconcilable Differences, Robot or Not, and Remaster but wouldn’t call them tech podcasts.

That’s almost every podcast I listen to, so I might as well add the ones that definitely aren’t tech podcasts just for completeness: Top Four on a topic by topic basis, Song Exploder is one of the best podcasts around, Roderick on the Line is probably my favorite overall, and then of course our own Tom Chick’s Qt3 Movie Podcast, but only for movies I’ve actually seen.

I forgot the Talk Show. I do listen to it, but it depends on the topic and host. I don’t listen to the one with Dalrymple because it came out after the leaks. I didn’t have time to listen to two guys be wrong.

He is famous for just running through a stable hosts, though.

Might be too specific, but I’ve been enjoying CppCast. After a long fallow period, C++ is going through a period of real innovation. Changes to the language appear to be targeting specific, concrete needs of the developer community. The podcast hosts are both amiable and knowledgable, and well connected to the people breaking ground at the forefront of language development.

(If anyone is interested in this show, I also recommend the CppCon videos. I’ve been marathoning through the 2016 proceedings and learning a ton. The 2017 conference is in a couple weeks!)

So, I guess I am lame, cause I listen to This week in tech, Windows Weekly, This week in Google (which is much more about politics and media then Google) and All about Android.

I’m a devotee of ATP (I even own one of their T-shirts). I also never miss The Talk Show, although I admit I have some guests I tend to pay less attention to (e.g., Dalrymple, who agrees with everything Gruber says, leading to hilariously boring conversations).

Other than that, I have these pure tech related ones:

Connected (never miss)
Upgrade (never miss)
The Rebound (sometimes skip, depending on backlog)
Download (missing it more and more often lately)
Exponent (I listen to about half of these, depending on the topic, from a tech business standpoint, Ben and James known their stuff)
Clockwise (just got cut from my list, too much repetition of topics that other podcasts do better, and not a fan of the new co-host)

Touching on, but not purely tech, I’ve got:
Do By Friday (hilarious)
Robot or Not (I cannot get enough John Siracusa)
Reconcilable Differences (see above)

And not tech at all:
Hello Internet (came to it late, almost through the backlog, I work these in through my other listening on a regular basis)
My Dad Wrote a Porno (new discovery for me, hilarity ensued)
Serial (duh)
S-Town (hmmm, guess this won’t be continuing as S-Town, even if it goes on)

The two Talk Show guests I like are Ben Thompson and Jason Snell. Ben has a lot of good insights, and John and Jason get pedantic about baseball and keyboards which I like.

Remember when 5by5 was the big network? Now only a few shows left

I’m always fond of when John Moltz is on, too. I find him hilarious, which is also a large part of why I listen to The Rebound.

I dropped all of my tech Podcasts besides ATP. Used to listen to a bunch of the Relay stuff, The Committed, Mac Geek Gab, etc, but gradually stopped. The Relay guys (mostly Myke), I am just not interested in their opinions or what movies they have seen and I find the 3 minute ads about the same old products and services unbearable. I make an exception for ATP (don’t think Hello Internet counts as tech). Plus, even though I am a heavy Apple user, I can only take listening to people talk about it for so long.

I loved Tom Merritt and Sarah Lane on Tech News Today (on Leo Laporte’s TWiT network) a few years back. They then parted ways, and TNT really dropped in quality. Luckily, Tom Merritt started up his own show crowd-funded through Patreon right after he left TNT, called Daily Tech News Show, and I’ve enjoyed listening to it ever since.

Even better, they’re about to meet their Patreon goal for September that will bring on Sarah Lane, so it’s like a TNT reunion all over again.


Tom does an excellent job every day compiling the news of the day. The show format has quick headlines followed by a more in depth topic of the day.

He has a regular rotation of weekly guests who know their stuff. He’s great at not getting obsessed with the Silicon Valley BS of the day and instead does his best to take a more worldwide approach to his coverage, including some international guests who can add a non-US-centric perspective.

The show is 5 days a week, 30-40 minutes/day, and I listen to it at 2x speed so it’s a nice quick hit of news each day.

So the Relay podcasts are interesting. I like that they at least try to get away from “two dudes talking”. Granted, most of their podcasts are that, but they try.

I’ve had a couple of exchanges with Stephen over Twitter recently. On Connected this week they pretty much skipped over the 8 intuiting that "no one that listens this show is getting one anyway.’ I called them out on it, since I was getting an 8+. Stephen commented that he regretted that comment, which I like.

The other one was when Ben Brooks called out the general nature of calling your article about an OS a “review” Stephen took this as a shot across the bow for Viticci’s magnum opus book on iOS. I agreed with Ben, and writing 20k words about something is not a review. A guide, how-to manual, yes. There was some circling of the wagons there.

As someone who tries to use his iPad as a main device, I appreciate what Federico can do on an iPad. Part of me feels, though, that his Internet Identity is “the dude who can work on an iPad.” It’s a great perspective, but it is almost like he is all-in on something. Back to the large reviews, I also feel that a large part of his identity is that he writes the big-ass iOS reviews. Siracusa struggled with this when he was thinking of quitting the OS X reviews:" The prospect of stopping has made me reconsider my public identity and sense of self. Who am I if I’m not ‘that guy who writes those OS X reviews’? I’m not sure spending the summer writing an guide for an OS pays off, buy maybe he sees enough of a jump in Club Macstories subs to get the ebook. I do find it a valuable reference for getting stuff done on the iPad. Especially now that Federico gets access to beta apps to help write sections.

Federico and Myke have changed a lot, though. Myke runs a good network, and episode 9 of Analogue is a good listen. It’s where Myke goes over leaving the bank to work full-time on Relay. I do like that Myke still has a little bit of the “I hang out with my heroes” vibe. I fear the day if they turn on them. I do not think it’s some odd coincidence Marco and Siracusa quit 5by5 so close to each other. Although, Siracusa’s love of whole numbers may have felt 100 episodes was enough.

Connected I listen to about 70% of the time. It depends on the topic. The last few I’ve skipped. I will catch Tuesdays where they talk about Federico’s thing. Upgrade I like a lot. Cortex is one of my favorite podcasts ever.

Download I have listened to only a few times. Clockwise I will only listen to the segment I want most of the time.

A non-Relay specific thing, but I find if a podcast doesn’t support chapter markers, I’m not likely to keep listening to it. It’s so much better skipping ahead to the section I want to listen to than try and fast forward to get to the bit.

Vittici is an interesting character, but I quit reading Macstories. He’s an excellent writer, but I find I disagree with him on almost everything. Every time he recommended an app for instance, I found it to be pretty with a great UI, but not the best at what it does (can’t think of specific examples now because it’s been years since I read Macstories, but I know OmniFocus was one I disagreed with him about).

I also think the whole iPad only thing is easier for him because he’s a writer and he’s just more willing to accept limitations. Sure I could use Excel/Numbers on an iPad, but it wouldn’t be feasible. I have never had a job where I could only use an iPad, due to specific software or just ease of use. I always need multiple windows, large screens, file systems, etc.

It’s kind of like the ATP guys were going on about who uses Office anymore. In their little world, no one, in the real world everyone does, from schools to the government and corporations.

I find the whole Apple tech culture to be kind of out of touch with the rest of the world. Every time Marco says “nobody does that…” I wonder where he gets his info.

Good thread and good timing, I was just listening to the Vergecast which I’m tired of. Plus the timing with the way podcasts deal with the iPhone launch will help me judge if I will like them… Really dislike “I’m so much smarter than Apple” attitude which permeates (not that I think there aren’t valid discussions, or wrong decisions to discuss).

Subbed to Connected and Upgrade, ATP I did a search and doesn’t seem to come up on Pocketcasts, is there a long form name?

Accidental Tech Podcast

I’ve found the more you control the output of your job from start to finish, the better chance you have of doing your job on an iPad. I work as a business analyst and outside of a few specific things (our insistence on using Skype for IM), I could do a good amount of my job on an iPad. I run into some problems with Excel, but Word works well enough. There are some macros we use which are out as well. I could create my flow diagrams in OmniGraffle on the iPad. If all I had to do was provide a PDF of the final document, I could probably do almost all of it on the iPad. The problem is, the Visio files are shared and edited by others. Even on macOS Omnigraffe doesn’t do the best job with this.

I’m a member of Club Macstories and I have used a few of his workflows.

I used to be a multiple screen guy, but at home and work I just use the one now.

Marco’s lack of corporate experience is funny. I loved in a recent episode where Casey wasn’t sure Marco actually knew what an Exit Interview was. He has definitely lead a sheltered life. That said, I think his Under the Radar podcast is excellent.

Would you want to do your job on your iPad though? When I was in school last year I often had to write papers. Sure I could have written them on my iPad Pro with a keyboard, it would have been fine. Would I want to though? Heck no. On my 27" iMac I can have Word, notes in OneNote, a folder of saved PDFs articles, and a web page open to refer to. The iPad was a nice supplement to my workflow (I used it to proofread papers, practice speeches, note taking, etc), but I would never want to be limited to it. It’s neat that Viticci does it, but even what he does would be a heck of lot easier on a Mac (I am really curious how he handles Macstories finances on an iPad). It always feels like he’s mostly iPad only because he can, not because it’s easier. It has made him famous in the Apple tech world to his credit.

I have never listened to Under the Radar, is it interesting for a non programmer/designer?

So, I’ve got a 12.9" iPad, which is pretty damn close to the size of a 13" Pro, and larger than the 12" MacBook. So, that skews it a lot. I wouldn’t want to work on the 10.5 or the 9.7. Altough, I did use an 11" Air as my main machine as well.

At my day job, yes. I frequently wrestle with our standard Windows build. At least once I day I have a “WTF” moment, and once a week I need to reboot to clear some error. I’ve started bringing my personal MacBook with me as fail safe. Also, the form factor and battery life are amazing. I sat in 8 hours of discovery sessions taking notes constantly and my battery life was around 50-60%.

Vititcci’s iPad-only lifestyle is pretty interesting. He goes into more detail here, but the short version is when he was undergoing cancer treatment he couldn’t have a MacBook with him, so he experimented with using an iPad and it stuck. I think he uses a combination of Numbers and FreshBooks for finances. What I do like about him and Ben Brooks is they challenge the idea that you need a desktop-class OS and hardware to get stuff done. I also subscribe to Brooks’s website for the iPad articles. What I like about them is he is the COO for Martian Craft, and isn’t a writer. Writers are the obvious use cases for iPad only stuff.

Outside of games, these are the roadblocks I have for working on my iPad (at least in my personal life, I think most of us are chained to our work computers in some way):

Blender: Use Blender for some 3D modeling
Photoshop/Lightroom filters. Affinity Photo for iOS is pretty damn cool, but I use some Topaz filters that don’t have an iOS version
Calibre for stripping DRM from my ebooks.

iOS 11 is such an improvement for doing work on the iPad. Maybe I will break this out into another thread.

Under the Radar. I am not a developer and I love it. It’s a good listen for general problem solving and the indie dev lifestyle. Plus they keep it to 30 minutes.

IOS11 is indeed a huge improvement on iPad but it’s nowhere remotely close to a real desktop class OS for doing real work. You_can_ do it, of course, but it’s laborious and annoying.

So, still working through this week’s ATP. Another Classic Marco line: “In hindsight, I should’ve not gotten the 15”, and just bought an iMac for the beach house."