The Power of Podcasts

 0 self improvement

I’ve been thinking about podcasts recently.

I spend a significant amount of my week doing necessary things that feel like lost time, like commuting or washing the dishes. When I commute I usually have my phone out, probably playing a pointless game just to pass the time. When I do the dishes I feel like “the dishes being done” is not enough of a return on the investment of time that I put in.

These pockets of time are perfect for listening to podcasts.

In general I feel like it’s probably worthwhile putting my attention into what I’m doing rather than letting my mind wander, but in these cases I make a conscious decision to put my attention elsewhere. I want to hear about new ideas, keep up with the latest technology news or machine learning research, and if I can do it while I’m doing something that needs to be done anyway, I feel like I’m winning.

I also find podcasts a good tool for learning.

Everyone learns differently, but I find I retain more information that I hear than I read. I only have limited time to dedicate to learning new things, so again podcasts seem like the right kind of resource. It also helps that there are some great podcasts out there for data science and technology.

I want to share a few of the podcasts I listen to, specifically for those interested in data science.

Data Science Podcasts

Data Skeptic

I like Data Skeptic because of the way they alternate between episodes dedicated to single concepts in data science, and interesting interviews. Recommended both from a learning perspective, and for the inspiration of hearing people talk about their cool projects.

Partially Derivative

A lighthearted (but sometimes serious) alternative to the more learning-heavy podcasts out there. The hosts are entertaining and alternate between talking about data news to talking to interesting data people. This is definitely the most “beginner-friendly” podcast on the list because it’s more about the data stories rather than the technical details. I like it because it adds variety to a list that’s otherwise quite technical.

Becoming a Data Scientist Podcast

Host Renee Teate documents her path to becoming a data scientist, interviewing plenty of inspiring data science people along the way. The podcast is accompanied by an excellent learning club for aspiring data scientists. I was a contributor for a while and a guest on one of the episodes, but that’s not why you should check it out. Also season 2 is coming soon!

Talking Machines

Arguably the most advanced and technical data science/machine learning podcast out there. The hosts interview academics, including machine learning greats Geoff Hinton and Yann LeCun, and discuss advanced topics in machine learning. This one is harder to listen to while doing the dishes because it requires my full attention, but it’s always useful and educational.

Talk Python to Me

Not limited to data science, this one is all about Python. I’ve only recently started listening to it, and already I’ve heard gems like 20 Python Libraries You Aren’t Using But Should. Recommended for all Python programmers and anyone interested in the Python ecosystem.

Other Podcasts

Hit Reply

A recently-launched podcasts about startups. The hosts have experience launching software products and each episode is dedicated to advice on a different matter, like competition or productivity. I’m enjoying it so far!

You Are Not So Smart

“A celebration of self delusion”, this one’s all about human behaviour, hidden biases, logical fallacies, that kind of thing. The podcast also contains cookies.


What podcasts do you listen to? I’m always looking for recommendations!


Footnote: This is the first entry in my 30 day blog challenge. One day in, I’d say it’s going well so far.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *