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Thursday, July 22, 2010

My Current Podcast Listening List

My Android phone travels with me constantly. One of my favourite applications for it is a podcast manager/client called 'listen'. When 'listen' is working (a story in itself) it transparently manages downloading my favourite podcasts onto my SD card so that I can listen to them whereever I am with or without network access.

I've accumulated a list of podcasts that are pretty much my staples now and I thought I'd share them with a comment as to why I like them. They are unashamedly dominated by science casts as I find this medium about the only way that I get to regularly consume science now.


All in the Mind

I'm fascinated by brains and nervous systems and intelligence and thought and the things that can go wrong with them. Natasha Mitchell has an engineering background and does a fantastic job of hosting this program each week. Ironically thought provoking.

60 Second Psych

This program is prepared by Scientific American magazine and pithily describes an interesting and topical story of psychology in 60 seconds.

60-Second Science

This program is prepared by Scientific American magazine and pithily describes an interesting and topical story of science in 60 seconds.


The presenter of this program sounds far too chirpy and up-beat to sound credibly like a scientist himself, but balanced against the scientists he interviews it kinds works. If you're interested in keeping up to date with some of what the C.S.I.R.O. are doing this podcast is great.

Discovery Now

I presume this podcast is a spin-off of the Discovery channel. It presents succint coverage of a topical U.S-based science story.

Groks Science Radio Show

These guys are the real deal. Dr. Charles Lee and Dr. Frank Ling have been hosting this quirky show for a number of years now and I love it. Originally based in University of California Berkeley the show is primarily now centred around a well conducted interview with a featured guest each week. It's got a nice balance of science and quirky humour that I enjoy.

NASACast Audio

What's not to love about NASA? This is a weekly news show with good depth.

Ockham's Razor

While not strictly confined to science this show features special guests talking on a range of relevant and topical subjects of their choosing, thematically centred around William of Ockham's famous principle: "entia non sunt multiplicanda praeter necessitatem". Great speakers, interesting topics.

Quirks and Quarks

Science news from Canada. We don't hear much about what the Canadians are doing (outside of their television productions anyway). This show is Canada's Science Show and Bob McDonald is a great speaker and interviewer.

Science @ NASA

Another NASA podcast, but this one comes with a quirkiness and an earthiness that I think makes it more compelling and credible than some of its more heavily produced peers. One interesting and short story per episode.


There is only one way to say "Star Stuff" and that is Stuart Gary's way. It's quirky and Stuart has an annoying habit of interrupting and talking over his interview guests sometimes but if you're into Astronomy and Cosmology there is nothing better than comes from this country.

The Science Show

This show has been around forever, a testament to its quality. The show is sometimes irritatingly biased toward U.K-based research and sometimes feels a little slow and heavy-going but in every other respect is a must-listen.

This Week in Science

Kirsten ("Dr Kiki") and Justin host this refreshing science program each week. It's another organic program primarily driven by the personalities of the hosts, but I enjoy it. Sometimes they ramble, sometimes they forget what they're talking about but most of the time it's fun. I love the theme song and the over-all theme of enthusiasm for science is infectious.


Health Report

I love this program and admire its host, Dr Norman Swan. It's interesting, factual and compellingly no-bullshit coverage of medicine with a focus on relevance to Australia.


This is a new podcast to me, but it's already one of my favourites. Produced by the U.S. National Institute of Health it is remarkably palatable and covers stories of topical interest in medical research and practice.


Philosopher's Zone

I love Allan Saunders' voice. It's deep and rich and resonant and I listen to every word he says. I'm not going to pretend for a minute that I understand anything much about philosophy but I find this program fascinating and Saunders almost has me convinced I should learn more, either way I'm continuing to listen.

Old Time Radio

Horror Stories

I'm a big fan of short fiction and short fiction dramatised for radio works even better for me. This feed is of "old-time" radio horror stories. Some of my favourite authors are represented.

Old Time Radio Scifi

Old Time Science Fiction Radio? Do I really need to say any more?


Friday Night Comedy from BBC Radio 4

The BBC publish an enormous amount of online material. This feed currently provides the "Now Show" which is a funny take on the past week of UK politics. Hilarious during the past election, not the least for the parallels to our own comedic troupe.

Scotland's Funny Bits

This is a bit of an unusual choice. It's essentially a mash-up of out-takes from Scottish BBC radio. I like it for the funny accents and the strange things they say, it all seems pretty relaxed and human.

Shut Up Weirdo

This is one of my favourites. You take a witty, good-natured male Baby-boomer and pair him up with a sassy, rapier-witted female Gen-Y and then sit them in New Jersey amongst a collection of bizarre and quirky Jerseyites and New-Yorkers dialling in to tell their stories relating to whatever the topic of the week is. Andy and Frangry run this show like it's Lord of the Flies on Sesame Street. I love Frangry's voice, it's like the mewing of kittens, the cooing of Doves and the shick of a tempered blade being whetted on a stone.

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

I have something from CNN on my list, go figure. This show is a collection of weird news stories from around the world. I sometimes find the stories from Australia the funniest, as much more how they're told as what they are. It's fast-paced and makes me laugh.

Other podcasts have moved in and moved out, but these I listen to every episode of. What am I missing?

1 comment:

  1. science !!, I spend my reading time on computer literature, but I now contemplating picking up my old physics and chemistry texts. Also there was a documentary the other night on TV about Saturn and its moons, such as Titan, which NASA now feels is the best source of finding a life form on within our solar system.