Why? Podcasts and the internet.
Basically every show that I bother to watch is packaged, posted, stripped of commercials and automatically updated into the little happy phone that I carry around with me all the time anyway. Better still, I'm able to listen to each podcast in pieces, and with the audio versions I can listen while I'm in the car going to work or to lunch. Also, there are some things out there in podcast land that just don't exist on TV that are very worth checking out.
The couple of notable TV or radio show exceptions (including the Daily Show) are just posted to the websites that day anyway. The one thing that I don't have covered? Hockey on cable only broadcast. Most of the Stars broadcasts are on FSN this year, and that means that I'm either going to a bar to watch them or I'm missing them entirely. That's mostly negated by the fact that I'm attending all of the home games though.
All of the podcasts that I'm going to review are available at the iTunes store or at the website linked. Without further adieu, here's whats in my iPod:
iPhone and other technology related stuff
-If you have an iPhone and love it like I do, check these out-
Today in iPhone (audio)
Cool call in styled podcast that reviews iPhone and iPod touch applications, discusses technical issues, and showcases some tips and tricks for advanced users. For example, I learned how to crop a photo in the phone from this podcast. The host is also unafraid to call Apple out when they step out of line. He's on thier case for application censorhip at the moment. Each episode runs near an hour. Highly recommended.
Tekzilla daily tip (video)
Short and awesome video podcast that is packed full of actual useful computer tips and tricks. They cover both operating systems as well as all of the popular applications like firefox and excel. Worth checking out daily. Highly recommended.
CNETs Buzz report (video)
This is a good and quick video podcast hosted by Molly Wood. She's generally fun to watch, and they do cover a good list of cool new things in the technology world. I watch this one very consistently, mostly just as brain filler.
iPhone apps reviewed (video)
This is a video podcast where the author goes through the functionality of an individual application by opening up the app on his screen and going through all of the fucntions and features of the program on camera. He covers regular apps and jailbreak-only apps. The host has a pretty meat-and-potatoes style of presentation, and while his reviews never really have enticed me to pick up a certain app, they certainly have shown me a few to stay away from. His demos are usually very short - each podcast only tends to run a couple of minutes.
Wired's Gadget Lab (video)
Medium length podcast that mostly reviews the latest phones, cameras and other personal digial technology out there. Sokay.
Engadget HD (audio)
This is an audio podcast that runs about an hour in length. Topics usually include various consumer level technology products and standards, and while the hosts are usually very knowledgable I've found that they don't always do the greatest job with topic selection. Maybe I'm just less interested in the subtle differences between television brands and technologies, but when I subscribed to an engadget podcast I was hoping for something more computer related. Its a good show if you're always updating your home theater setup though.
Art, learning and other smart stuff
-There's a whole world of smart people out there who have each decided to share a buch of smart stuff with the rest of us. I like that, so I get these-
TED Talks (video)
This is one of the most bountiful podcasts I subscribe to. Every day I get a new 20 minute presentation by some form of genius or another about something either incredibly relevant to the world around us or otherwise just incredible. Learning, culture, arts and humanity are explored and explained by the titans of the field. The podcast also does a great job of mixing in both recent talks and older but still relevant ones, and they're unafraid to put unorthodox people up there - they just have to be icons or geniuses.
I can't recommend this one enough. Here's a little taste
Grammar Girl's quick and dirty tips (audio)
I really enjoy language, and this podcast just makes me happy every time I see a new one waiting for me. Grammar Girl is very easy to listen to, and she covers all sorts of situations that I run into on a daily basis both as a blogger and in my professional life as a person that records and edits scripts. She goes into things like whether to use "data" as a singular or plural noun, why we can be "disgruntled" but not ever really "gruntled" and how to decide whether to use "effect" or "affect." She also provide useful memory tricks for remembering the rules later on. Very highly recommended.
Ask the naked scientists (audio)
This is great call-in styled radio show based in the UK. They talk about a very wide range of subjects, and generally just answer questions about the world around us submitted both by email and on phone calls. I've learned about everything from the difference between nuclear fission and nuclear fusion to why bumblebees are critically important to our economy here in the US. Great stuff every episode and highly recommended.
Coffee Break Spanish (audio)
A very solid and listenable podcast produced by Radio Lingua. The hosts are actually Scottish (and sport the accents to prove it) and they teach Castillian Spanish as opposed to Latin American Spanish, but the differences are subtle and when they do speak the language they do it perfectly. They also do a great job of explaining why things work in Spanish the way that they do, and have interesting segments to practice with. Recommended.
Discovery Channel (video)
This is a series of podcasts that cover a wide range of shows broadcast on the discovery channel. They cover the shows Man vs Wild, Human Body, Dirty Jobs, and Deadliest Catch among others. The podcasts themselves are basically short excerpts of the shows themselves, but they carry enough content to be worth the watch. There is a series in here called "How to Survive" that's worth the subscription all by itself. Its a short 5 minute or so tutorial on how to survive various life threatening scenarios like being attacked by a bear, escaping a car that's submerging in water after an accident, even biochemical attacks. Fast cuts and very cool to watch.
Recommended, and if the How To Survive series was a podcast by itself it would be highly recommended.
Here's a recent "How to Survive" vid.
Stuff you should know (audio)
This one is produced by HowStuffWorks.com, and while it isn't exactly as high minded as the TED or Naked Scientist ones it does cover some interesting stuff. Topics are usually interesting, but the hosts are mostly guys who just seem to be have looked stuff up as opposed to being the definitive experts on the topics that they are discussing. Sometimes you need a grain of salt, but it can be a useful podcast. Only moderately recommended.
NPR Fresh Air, Marketplace and Talk of the Nation (audio)
NPR actually podcasts ALL of its shows from all of its markets. I have a couple more from NPR that I'll get to later, but these are the only real talk shows that I have from them right now. These two are flat out great interview shows though, and Terri Gross and Ira Flato are some of the best interviewers in the business. Marketplace is phenomenal. Each of these shows are recommended if you have the time to listen. I actually much prefer the podcasts to the actual broadcasts of these shows for what its worth. No breaks, and I can pause as needed.
-There's a whole world of random podcasts out there. Here are a few more that I keep handy-
Yes, there is a daily Dilbert video podcast and yes it is the coolest thing ever. Each episode only lasts a few seconds, but what a great way to get started each morning. Dilbert is genius and you should watch it.
NPR 7am newscast (audio)
A five-minute NPR News summary you can take with you. Updates: Daily at 7:15 a.m. EST. Great quick newscap.
NPR All Songs Considered (audio)
Great indie and otherwise high-quality music podcast. Sometimes this podcast has artist interviews, often its just a rundown of some very cool stuff that you'll never hear on the radio and it makes for some really great listening while doing stuff around the house. These guys appreciate the fact that we have ears attached directly to our heads, and are great at digging up some candy to feed them. Highly recommended.
XM Weekly podcast (audio)
This is a weekly music show that actually ends up pretty short by music show standards, but can have some pretty cool stuff in it. Usually they only get to 2 or 3 songs, but they do get quality stuff in there. The link has a bunch of other good XM stuff in it.
Television shows (video)
I'm constantly amazed at how many cable news shows are available in thier entirety as commercial free (or at least drastically reduced) podcasts. Shows include Meet The Press, This Week with George Steph, Countdown with Olbermann, all of the Presidential Debates, and many others. Have a show you like? It's probably worth checking the itunes store or the website for podcasts. Better than tivo!
Well, that's about it. Yes, I do listen to all of these on a regular basis. Yes, it occupies hours of my life, and yes I love it. I'm pretty much on the edge how much media I can consume in this format though, and if I find other stuff that I end up wanting to add to the roll then I'm probably going to have to sacrifice something else.
For what its worth, I have an 8 Gb iPhone, I have iTunes set to only keep the latest episode on the phone, and I tend to have about 2.5 Gb used up on this stuff at any one time.
Hope you find something interesting in there!