AudioFuel – our daily dose of podcast inspiration
Video may once have killed the radio star, but the burgeoning Podcast craze could well bring it back. Although it wasn't always quite so popular, podcasting is over a decade old now and has even outlived the iPod Classic from which the idea was originally conceived. In recent years the ubiquity of the internet, the rise of on-demand media and the desire for entertainment whilst on the move have conspired to make this The Golden Age of Podcasts; and here at Gendall, we're lapping it up.
There's always lots of chat in the studio about podcasts. Maybe it's that some of us commute a fair distance to the studio in Falmouth each day. From murder mysteries to horseback adventures; tall stories about sheep to conversations with hackers; Nintendo light-guns to tulip bulb soup—four members of the team are eager to share with you their top 5 series (in no particular order). We hope you enjoy our selection...
Anyone that I’m hanging out with at the moment knows that I’m really into podcasts. I just love being transported into peoples lives and discovering stories I simply wouldn’t find out about in another way. I love a broad variety—from stories to outdoorsy ones, and geeky fact-based podcasts...
Ever wondered what it would be like to be incarcerated? This is a podcast that is produced inside San Quentin State Prison. There are some startling stories, but what also struck me is the startling creativity. From music that the inmates make to how they keep themselves busy. This is not Orange is the New Black.
This is probably the most emotional podcast you can get. Start with the episode "Gregor", and you'll never listen to Moby's break out album in the same way. It’s only one season but it’s a really good set of stories.
No Such Thing As A Fish
This makes my top 5 as it kept me going through long journeys between Falmouth and Bristol when I joined Gendall. This is a must for creatives—it's a minefield of creative inspiration put together in a humorous way.
I’ve recently binged on this podcast (from the guys who made Serial; you should look that one up too). It’s a peculiar tale with some unexpected twists and turns. Set in the backwoods of Alabama and centred on the life of John B Mclemore (antique clock restorer and maze-maker) it is startlingly gripping and emotive. Start from the beginning, and don't give up on it before you've listened to at least two episodes.
The Dirtbag Diaries
This is a podcast from Patagonia which is my favourite brand that I own nothing of! It's a podcast which will really inspire you to get outdoors. I loved the episode 'The Fear is Real’, about an amazing horseback adventure which puts real fear -vs- perceived societal fear into context.
Adventures in Design
A vital podcast for creators and designers. The host is so passionate about design. It’s tricky to listen to this one in the car as you want to see the work of the guys that are talking. It really makes me want to work late into the night on side projects like many of the amazing designers featured. I loved hearing from Ashleigh Axois who helped shape the design for the Obama administration.
I have a long commute, so blast through at least a couple of hours of podcasts every day. I enjoy polished efforts like those from Gimlet Media and NPR (e.g. Reply All and Planet Money), but for me the real gold lies in the more unstructured efforts. Without any constraints of format or time, the best podcasts get to dive deep into topics that wouldn't otherwise get covered. As a developer, I'm naturally drawn to the more technical end of the spectrum. I'm happiest when listening to an hour-long discussion about the intricacies of a new file format...
This podcast answers listeners' questions about frontend web development, with alternate topic-based interviews and "rapid fire" Q&A shows. The Web-VR episode is a good example, but the best-ever episode was when the host Chris interviewed the guy who hacked his site, in 'Special: One on one with a hacker'.
Discussion show about all things Apple. If you like geeking-out about file systems and enjoy endless debate about the next Mac Pro, this is the show for you. Best to just jump in at the latest episode: http://atp.fm/
The team behind the CodePen web app give a behind the scenes look at what it's like to run a tech startup. The episode 'Animation' makes a good jumping-off point.
Archetypal Silicon Valley VC firm Andreessen Hoeowitz (a16z) present discussions on the hot tech topics of the day. Recommended episode: The changing culture of open source.
The Creative Coding Podcast
A mix of game-dev tips'n'tricks and insights into the world of hardware hacking with Rpi-zeros, Arduinos, etc. (the clue is in the name!). I learnt a lot about how old-school Nintendo light-guns (Duck Hunt FTW!) worked from this episode: 'Hacking classic Nintendo guns and going viral'.
Oh, that quiver of delight when I stumble upon a new podcast that's right up my street. I tend to subscribe to series that focus on plants and conservation, food and culture—with a little history and comedy also thrown in. Any podcast by Radio 4 is usually my cup of tea (heavily dominating my top 5) ...
Plants: From Roots to Riches (Radio 4)
Our evolving relationship to plants throughout the last 250 years; on topics such as Victorian herbaria, the discovery of chlorophyll and rainforest diversity. Listen to 'Capsules of Life' on seed banks and plant genetic conservation.
In Our Time (Radio 4)
Scientists and academics pore over historical ideas, figures and phenomena. I highly recommend the recent episode about the C18th Japanese graphic artist 'Hokusai', and those on Pocahontas and the Salem Witch Trails.
Eat This Podcast
This podcast is about everything edible; from Egyptian street food, to 'whiskynomics', through to tulip bulb soup. The first I ever listened to and one I usually recommend to others was 'Back to the mountains of Pamir', about food and agriculture in the Pamiri mountains of Tajikistan and Afghanistan.
The Unbelievable Truth (Radio 4)
In this hilarious gameshow, David Mitchell challenges comedians to conceal 'unbelievable truths' amongst a pack of outrageous lies. As well as laughing-out-loud you're sure to learn some impressive facts. Start with S18 E1 (available on 4oD), which covers subjects as varied as sheep, islands, Steve Jobs and beans.
In Defence of Plants
This is a particularly geeky one based on conversations with experts about botany, plant diversity and conservation. Listen to 'Building a Flora of Syria' or 'Living Collections'.
I like listening to varied bits and bobs. Nothing revolutionary, but these are my current picks...
I grew up watching Adam and Joe on channel 4 and listening to their Christmas and radio 6 podcasts. Probably one of the podcasts I listen to the most. Dr Buckles interviews all sorts of people; from actor comedians and musicians to other interviewees. Insightful and silly in equal parts (and I mean silly as a compliment) it may be NSFW as the odd F-bomb can go off!
Jessica Helfand and Michael Bierut discuss design related news, themes and events. Always a good listen and thought provoking. Bonus points for starting at the beginning and travelling from the past.
A pretty obvious choice but still one of the best podcasts out there both content and production wise. Design related stories often revealing beauty in the mundane.
The Weekly Planet
Best film in the world or the worst film in the world; who would win if all the Bond's had a fight in a football field (Craig obviously); and what is Robot Cop? All questions answered in the The Weekly Planet. Two Australians talk about the latest films, games and comic books and generally have a laugh together. Don't let the comic book references put you off—it's super accessible to non-nerds. Probably NSFW depending on where you work.