I thought I would highlight podcasts here this week as i have been streamlining my feed with the ongoing year of less. I am still surprised that there are many who either don’t know about podcasts or who have never tried them out. I would say that they are one of the things that have helped keep my sanity, passing time whilst waiting for all sorts of things. when I first started listening to them on my daily commute in London they were informing and educating about a whole plethora of subjects from travel, health, tech and although I hate the word, lifestyle. If memory serves me correctly I started out with macpowerusers one night on the 141 bus in central London with the usual grinding commute home and that opened up a whole new world for me and very quickly there weren’t enough hours in the day to listen to my backlog of content. To me it is just like listening to the radio but it’s a stream of content that I want and not having to wait for the programs you like or want to listen to come round on the good ol’ radio. Yes there are catchup services now but they are no where near as useful as podcast downloaded to ones media player of choice and at the time there was noting really like it. Obviously the quality of the podcast is an important factor but now with decent quality kit not costing the earth it is relatively easy to create them on a kitchen table or in a bedroom, It doesn’t have to sound like someone’s coming from the bottom of the Marianas Trench. Amazingly there are people that produce regular shows and episodes with nothing but a mobile phone. But on the whole the level of production needs to be considerably less complicated and therefore opens and democratises the whole process.
Once only the territory of usually public broadcast programming there a of a lot of niche topics and conversations that can be found whether you are into current events, hustling or backyard bodging. The fact that YouTube is now so dominant not as a search engine in its own right but also in the online media doesn’t mean that podcasts are waning away, on the contrary they are starting to boom. People obviously, myself included, like to listen as we do other things and in this modern era of everything always on we are now able to choose how and when we consume. There is something about the spoken word that is relaxing and undemanding much like the radio of old also and I guess depending on the podcast one likes and identifies with the voices of the host(s). There is also the added benefit to podcast listening that you can choose to listen or not. From the very beginning I always used to listen religiously not missing a minute but then as time went by I realised that skipping the bits that were and I use this word advisedly, uninteresting to me didn’t make me a bad person and it gives me more time to listen to more podcasts, at least I don’t listen at double speed!
So what to listen to? Well my playlist includes a variety of genres and really the best place to start is the Apple podcast directory which is now in its own app, but also available on Mac and PC via the iTunes Store on these respective platforms. It is the most complete list that I have come across although there are other alternatives. Apple really championed podcasts long before it became popular and so far seemingly uninterested in controlling this medium. The benefit of looking at iTunes is that it also offers recommendations for similar podcasts in that group. I talk about iTunes and the Apple ecosystem as I have an iPhone and started listening to podcasts on that platform however there are alternatives for Android though I am not aquatinted with this. So what follows is a selection of ones that I listen to or have listened to in the past and is by no means extensive.
https://itunes.apple.com/gb/podcast/podcast-tiny-house-chat/id911216379?mt=2 (now finished but some great stuff in there if your into tiny homes)
A bit of tech, but I won’t bore you..
https://overcast.fm/+E7b6LVQzM (productivity and tech)
https://overcast.fm/+FrCFFA3dg (Apple related tech and interviews)
As for podcatchers I have tried just about all of them including Apple’s App, Downcast, Castro, Pocketcasts and others (these can all be found on the iOS App Store) but have settled with Overcast as that has some features(Smart Speed especially) that I like and I like the fact there are ads at the bottom for other podcasts, funny when we spend most of out time trying avoid ads.
One things for sure, you can easily go down the rabbit hole on this one. See where it takes you if you haven’t tried a podcast out..
Till next time..