I love audio podcasts. They are easy to load into my mp3 player, and I can listen on the go. No need to be tethered to my computer as with Youtube videos. (I know - newer iPods and other players can show videos - but my aging eyes do not enjoy those teensy screens.)
There are thousands and thousands of podcasts to choose from. Here are a few of my favorites (in no particular order):
- This American Life - Ira Glass's award-winning series in a class by itself.
- Fresh Air with Terry Gross - You'd think that Terry is sitting right there with her guest experts discussing their books, their films or their music - but she's never met most of them in person. They converse from different studios in different parts of the world.
- Wait Wait...Don't Tell Me - A news quiz show with a humorous twist (comedienne Paula Poundstone is a frequent guest.)
- Story Corps - Everyday people interviewing one another about their lives. Heartwarming and poignant.
- Here's a list of all NPR podcasts
From Scientific American:
- 60-Second Science - Amazing how much information can be packed into one minute. Learn about the latest scientific research, and how it impacts our lives. Before you dismiss this podcast as dry and boring, have a listen. The reports are timely, interesting, and easy to digest (especially the segments reported by Karen Hopkin, like this one)
- 60-Second Psych - Reports research on the mind and brain, in a conversational style similar to 60-second Science.
- The Onion Radio News - One-minute "fake news" that's more fake than Jon Stewart's Daily Show. Each "news" item is a spoof that pokes fun at our culture.
- HBO - Standup Comedy, Bill Maher and other entertainers
- The Moth Podcast - Entertaining true stories, 15-20 minutes long, performed at The Moth, a story-telling venue that sells out within 48 hours of program announcements.
- New Yorker Fiction - short stories by John Cheever, Vladimir Nabokov, and less well-known authors. Also, discussions of novels and short stories.
These are just a few of the many, many podcasts available for free.
To find podcasts that match your taste and interests, you can search from within iTunes (you need to have the iTunes program on your computer. Get it here.)
Or you can search one of the popular podcast directories:
With most podcasts you can listen online or download to your computer - and later transfer to your personal music player.
If you subscribe to podcasts, you'll get updates every time you open up your podcast reader - either an RSS reader like Google Reader or iTunes.
You can subscribe from the website of the podcast you're interested in - simply look for the link to subscribe (like the one at the top of this page.) Or you can subscribe from within the iTunes store.