15 Podcasts Your Brain and Ears Will Love

Post by David Pierce. Find me on Twitter.

Podcasts are a funny technology: they’re incredibly simple, but for some reason no one really understands what they are, what they do, how to use them, or why you’d want to be in a pod or a cast in the first place. So what’s a podcast? The best way to explain is AP test-style: TiVo is to television as podcasts are to radio and Internet video. That is to say it’s a way to get it on demand, consumable whenever you want. Fast forward and rewind to your heart’s content, and keep as much content as you want – until your hard drive gets full.

You can listen to podcasts on your mp3 player, on your computer, or anywhere else you so desire. They get downloaded over the Internet, and are just simple RSS feeds, so anywhere you’ve got the Internet, you can get podcasts. iTunes is becoming the gold standard, though, and provides a great store for finding podcasts (“store” here is used loosely, because they’re mostly free). Many radio stations are syndicating their stuff to podcasts, and there are a huge number of podcast-only “stations” out there now. Unlike producing a TV show, creating a radio show of sorts, whether it’s video or audio, is relatively cheap and simple to do.

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Make The Commute Go a Little Faster

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Whether you’re driving to work, walking to class, or just sitting listlessly around the house, we’ve all got random in-between time throughout the day.

To make that time a little more productive, Steve Spalding over at “How to Split an Atom” has compiled a list of “14 Podcasts To Help You Through Your Commute.” It’s a list of podcasts on a number of topics, some of the best ones out there, to listen to when you have a few minutes to spare.

The list is here, and is very worth checking out. Some of them are more niche products than others- not everyone’s going to be into “Video Games Outsiders,” unless you happen to be a 14-year old couch sitter playing Halo. Which is cool.

My favorites? “The American Life,” “The Economist,” and “The Ricky Gervais Show.” My additions? CNN’s Hourly Update, here and the New York Times Front Page, here- both are also available on iTunes. Both of those are short, informative, and interesting.

If you’ve got some time to kill and a music player, this list is a great resource to give your in-between time some extra spice.