Sunday, May 15, 2016

Useful podcasts

I love listening to podcasts while commuting. I find that I learn a lot by listening to my selected list of podcasts, than just listening to the radio. I am blissfully ignorant about elections, US politics, and celebrity gossip.

Here are the podcasts I have been listening to. I will appreciate if you can let me know of your recommendations. Who said podcasting is dead?

(Here is one tip you may find useful. I listen to my podcasts at 1.5x speed. It is actually a more comfortable and natural way to listen to stuff than 1x. 1x is too slow, your brain starts losing the stream of conversation due to the slow pace, and starts wondering around. Give 1.5x a try.)

Dan Carlin's Hardcore History

Who knew history could be this interesting and captivating. Dan Carlin, a seasoned radio host and American political commentator, found his true calling in this podcasts series about history. The episodes are long, 4 hour episodes. But they are so exciting and captivating. I found myself depressed and scared while listening to World War 1 episodes. The Wrath of Khans episodes about the Genghis Khan were also very interesting.

The Tim Ferris Show

I don't like Tim Ferris's writing and his persona for the most part. But I am a big fan of his podcast. His host selection and his interviewing skills are excellent. The topics are almost always interesting. And I learn a lot from his podcasts.
For example, I learned about Dan Carlin's and Mike Rowe's podcasts from Tim's episodes. Just check this list, it is quite impressive. 

Some of my favorite episodes were:
Interview master: Cal Fussman and the Power of Listening
How Seth Godin Manages His Life -- Rules, Principles, and Obsessions
Luis von Ahn on Learning Languages, Building Companies, and Changing the World
The Scariest Navy SEAL Imaginable…And What He Taught Me
Scott Adams: The Man Behind Dilbert
Chris Sacca on Being Different and Making Billions

TEDTalks (audio)

I skip about half or 2/3rds of the talks, and listen to the ones that sound interesting. It is convenient to be able to listen to TED talks on your commute.

The Way I Heard It with Mike Rowe

Mike Rowe talks about 5 minutes about a captivating story. And, the story always has an amazing twist-ending, revelation at the end. Very interesting podcast.

OPTIMIZE with Brian Johnson

This podcast has 5 minute and 15 minute posts that review recent self-improvement books. It is nice to get the gist of the books summarized to you in a couple minutes to keep upto date with books.

Curious Minds: Innovation, Inspiration, Improvement

This podcast has 20 minute interviews with recent self-improvement books. The format of the interviews are a little dry. Topics are hit and miss.

This American Life

This American Life by Ira Glass. I don't think this requires any introduction.