I am a big, big consumer of podcasts. I became really fascinated by the ability for anyone -from large established media companies to individuals with an opinion and a microphone- to be able to record audio programs, and distribute them as easy to grab “episodes” over the Internet. I loved the idea of being able to listen to people discussing my favorite topics at moments during the day where you are either doing nothing but when reading is not practical, or when performing low-duty tasks that don’t need your full attention. Commuting to work by train or bus, walking to the grocery store, doing the dishes and other household tasks and my semi-daily walks past the Waal river: they are all accompanied by what I tend to call a “spoken magazine” : a podcast episode for me to enjoy.
Currently, I listen to about a dozen podcasts, mainly covering the Mac. They range from daily shows such as the excellent Mac OS Ken from Ken Ray, who summarizes the Apple news from various sources in about 15 minutes, via the hour-long weekly MacWorld podcast, up until the MacBreak Weekly show, which, depending on its panel of hosts, can be up to one and a half hour long (my absolute favorites are the ones featuring Andy Ihnatko, the funniest and one of the cleverest Apple commenters around). My favorite blogger (and inspirator for starting my own blog) John Gruber from the Daring Fireball also hosts his own show every few weeks, simply called The Talk Show. And then there are some local shows in Dutch that I listen to, such as the One More Thing podcast (which, despite its name, is in Dutch), whose three presenters pioneered podcasting in The Netherlands in 2005.