Learn Coding on Your Morning Commute
8 Awesome Podcasts to Follow
Knowledge is power. Podcasts are a great way to pick up new knowledge while walking your dog, cleaning up your room, or doing your commute. Especially for those of you who are auditory learners, it is surprising how much information you can acquire over time by simply listening to these easy-to-digest shows that connect you to entrepreneurs, engineers, or just great minds of all sorts from all over the world.
For aspiring and expert programmers, tech podcasts are a great way to get your daily dose of programming updates and learn new programming tricks. As Jeff mentioned, a good programmer doesn’t necessarily know HOW to use all the existing features, but knowing which ones are out there and getting familiarized with them is definitely crucial in the long run.
Most dev podcasts come in the form of interviews with established engineers or innovators in technology. These guests share technical knowledge, as well as perspectives on career paths and life in general. What’s better than gaining some valuable insights every morning to power you through a long day of hard work?
Below are some great programming podcasts to try —
- Ruby Rogues by DevChat.tv
Weekly / 60-90min / ✮✮✮✮✮
Hosted by a rotating panel, Ruby Rogues holds discussions on the latest news in Ruby and other general programming issues. Speakers include developer evangelists such as Avdi Grimm and Peter Cooper. Although it’s ruby-focused, it’s very helpful for any developers because of the eclectic guests and topics covered. Recent podcast topics include pair programming, refactoring, ruby gems, hiring in tech, and remote conferences. Informative and entertaining at the same time, this podcast has gained great popularity among aspiring and expert Rubyists alike.
2. Ruby on Rails Podcast by 5by5
Weekly / 60min / ✮✮✮✮✩
The Ruby on Rails Podcast, a weekly conversation about Ruby on Rails, Ember.js, open source software, and the…5by5.tv
Ruby on Rails Podcast, like Ruby Rouges, is also a ruby-oriented show with expert Rails developers. It covers discussions ranging from developing a career as a Rails developer to Rails conferences.
3. The Changelog by Adam Stacoviak and Jared Santo (5by5)
Every Friday / 60-90min / ✮✮✮✮✮
In a recent episode they featured Matz (Yukihiro Matsumoto), the inventor of Ruby, (who is actually also a listener of this show!) to chat about the 23 years of Ruby history.
4. Giant Robots Smashing Into Other Giant Robots by Thoughtbot
Weekly / 40min / ✮✮✮✮✮
The Giant Robots Smashing into Other Giant Robots podcast is a weekly show from thoughtbot discussing the business of…giantrobots.fm
Thoughtbot is a London-based consulting company of web/mobile designers and developers. Their Learn With Us series come in the form of books, blogs, podcasts, playbook, etc. All formats are consistently well-produced. The host of the podcast, Ben Orenstein, knows how to keep the show enjoyable with his laid-back yet insightfully sharp interviewing style.
5. This Developer’s Life by Rob Conery and Scott Hanselman
Very infrequently made / 60min / ✮✮✮✮✩
In this episode of This Developer's Life we ask the hard questions about space. Why aren't we on Mars? Why haven't we…thisdeveloperslife.com
As the title suggests, the show is structured in a style similar to “This American Life”, but focused on developers. Relaxing yet inspiring, Rob and Scott touch upon faith, drama, revolt, obsession, and other aspects of life that many developers resonate with. Some episodes could be more concise.
6. Hanselminutes by Scott Hanselman
Weekly / 3omin / ✮✮✮✮✮
ABOUT SCOTT I'm a teacher. I speak all over to whoever will listen. I have written code that you've used. I've been…hanselminutes.com
A very thought-provoking show produced by the same guy as This Developer’s Life, but with a more technical focus. Subjects include living functional programming, data literacy, native apps, punishment driven development. Don’t forget to bookmark the tons of resources that he shares!
This podcast brings out fresh air for developers with concise, informative, cutting-edge content with a humorous touch. It seems like Scott just knows what developers want to learn about. No pointless blathering that wastes your time!
5. Destroy All Software by Gary Bernhardt
90 episodes / 15min screencasts
Destroy All Software screencasts are short: 10 to 15 minutes, but dense with information. There are 90 screencasts…www.destroyallsoftware.com
This series of short screencasts are dense with information on advanced topics targeted at serious RoR developers. Unfortunately, Gary has stopped producing screencasts. But these 90 episodes will equip you with plenty of intense Ruby knowledge. Check out the Boundaries episode from SCNA 2012 where he talks about using simple values as the boundaries between components and subsystems.
Weekly / 60–90min / ✮✮✮✮✩
These next two are not so programming-related, but are great shows to broaden knowledge base for anyone working in tech.
7. The TOP Entrepreneurs in Money, Marketing, Business and Life by Nathan Latka
Everyday / 20 min / ✮✮✮✮✩
The TOP interviews entrepreneurs across all industries. Fast-paced and to-the-point, the show is somewhat similar to Shark Tank in that Nathan directs sharp questions to the guests on their business models and marketing channels. The last section of each episode asks the ‘famous 5’ — which CEO do you follow, what is your favorite book, what would you tell your 20 year-old self, etc. Great show to build up your business acumen.
8. Design Details by Brian Lovin and Bryn Jackson
Every Monday & Wednesday / 6omin / ✮✮✮✮✮
This show presents insightful conversations on product design with industry leaders such as VP of Design at Twitter, YouTube, Google, etc.
Below each episode, they include a list of interesting reads relevant to the subject. The producing team Spec Network also has a slack channel, where close to 5,000 product designers and developers exchange tools and ideas.
Feel free to also check out the following:
- RubyTapas (screencasts) by Avdi Grimm ($18–35 per month)
- RailsCasts by Ryan Bates (free/pro episodes)
- The Ruby Show by By Jason Seifer and Peter Cooper
- Ruby5 by CodeSchool
- Code Newbie by Saron Yitbarek
So there you go — the best tech podcasts for that long morning commute! For most of these podcasts, you can submit suggestions for topics that you want them to cover in the future. I would also recommend subscribing to Ruby Weekly, a newsletter on the latest Ruby features and trends, curated by Peter Cooper. You never know what you may learn!