Because of the breakneck pace of change in the technology world, there is so much information that most of us need to keep up with on a daily basis. Unfortunately, we don’t have enough time to read as much as we would like. As a result, podcasts are one of the most valuable tools that we use to stay current in tech.
Leo LaPorte, host of This Week in Tech and nine other podcasts, holds court with admirers following one of his recent keynote talks.
Here is a quick overview of the top ten.
I’m sure that 99% of you have never heard of this podcast. It’s done by Douglas Welch, an IT consultant in Southern California. He provides some short tips for IT pros based on anecdotes from his work with clients. He also includes recordings from an Internet Seminar he does at his local library – those episodes are safe to skip. However, this guy provides a nice perspective of an IT professional working in the trenches. I should hire this guy to write and do podcasts for TechRepublic.
Steve Gibson – a legend in IT security and host of grc.com – teams up with former TechTV host Leo Laporte for this weekly podcast that includes security updates, security tips and best practices, and a spotlight on various security technologies. Steve does a regular question-and-answer session based on submissions from listeners.
This CNET.com podcast (CNET.com and TechRepublic.com are both part of CNET Networks) is aimed at cutting through FUD, hype, and marketing-speak and providing real world information about technology. Some of their recent topics have included at look at how OpenID works and an episode on understanding bandwidth.
As you’d expect, this MarketWatch podcast looks at the most recent news and developments in technology through the filter of the stock market and the financial sector. As such, it mostly reports on news that relates to public tech companies. It’s also a great source of news on business technology.
Sponsored by Microsoft Canada, this monthly podcast does a deep dive into the current issues, trends, and practices that IT managers can use to improve their IT strategy and operations. Since this comes from Microsoft, it focuses on business technologies and solutions that are related to Microsoft products, but it still contains a lot of generally useful information.
BusinessWeek columnist Steve Wildstrom is an excellent technology writer who has made a solid transition to multimedia. In this brief weekly podcast, Steve provides color commentary on a specific product or technology. This tends to be very consumer-focused but there’s still a lot of stuff that will be of interest to IT pros, professionally and personally.
Delivered twice a day, this podcast provides a great stream of tech news in about 5-15 minutes each in the morning and evening. While you would assume this would be strongly focused on business technology since it comes from The Wall Street Journal, it actually includes a fair share of news about general technology. This one is hard to beat in terms of frequency and a quick peak at the top tech stories.
“The most important five minutes of your day” is the tagline that John Dvorak uses for his quick survey of tech news that he does on an almost-daily basis. I don’t think it’s that important, but I do think it’s the best quick summary of tech news because Dvorak does a great job of selecting stories plus he adds some commentary, something you won’t find in most news surveys this short. Plus, he has a lot of fun with the sound effects.
Officially “this WEEK in TECH” is one of the most popular podcasts in the world. It’s hosted by Leo Laporte and regularly features some of Leo’s former TechTV cohorts. Its panelists also include a regular carousel of colorful characters and talking heads such John Dvorak, Patrick Norton, Jason Calacanis, and Kevin Rose. The best episodes are the ones where several guests vehemently disagree. The show tends to run a little long for my taste – often over an hour – but the strength of the commentary often makes it worth it.
I haven’t missed an episode of BOL in about six months. That’s why I consider it the clear No.1 for this list. Hosted by CNET.com’s Molly Wood and Tom Merritt, this daily podcast does a great job at highlighting the most important stories, providing great commentary, and regularly including audience feedback. Tom is Mr. Gadget and Molly is technology’s Queen of Rant, and the on-air banter between them always keeps it interesting. While this 30-45 minute podcast is primarily focused on consumer technology, it covers enough general tech topics to make it worthwhile for IT pros.
How do these compare with what you’ve been listening to? Join in the discussion.
Via Jason Hiner