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replay all podcast cover which is a space rave cube mountain
Speaking of podcasts, PJ Vogt just dived into 30-50 feral hogs and it was pretty great. I would subscribe to his feral hogs newsletter. Also, can we talk about the reply-all cover which is a space rave cube in a gradient mountain for some reason? I blame Spotify.
ourfakehistory.com ourfakehistory.com
The Our Fake History podcast tells the true stories behind untrue things we believe about history. I really enjoyed this episode about the absurdist secret society The Clampers and a hoax they accidentally (?) perpetrated involving an artifact Sir Francis Drake left in California in 1579.
johnaugust.com
image from johnaugust.com
In this podcast episode screenwriter Craig Mazin of Chernobyl fame explains how he approaches writing scripts. His idea about having the main character push backwards on the theme until believing the truth of the theme is a great way to understand how character arcs work. You might expect high drama examples but Mazin uses Finding Nemo as the prime example throughout.
Relay FM Relay FM
image from Relay FM
I really enjoyed this conversation between Jeff Veen and Mike Monteiro discussing Ruined by Design. There's nothing like hearing from two Internet Olds™ who watched the Web appear and had their idealism about it crushed in many ways. (And I say that affectionately as an Internet Old who has had crushed idealism.) They also discussed Chris Wetherell's remorse about automating retweets. There has been a lot of regret floating around lately. Tim Carmody called it The Builder's Remorse:
"This is the builder’s remorse. Not that you invented a thing, not that the consequences were unforeseen. It’s that you gave the thing to a power structure where things were overwhelmingly likely to end in ruin."
Web development as punk rock was a lot of fun for certain segments of the population. Now it's time to nurse our hangovers, clean up the garbage, and turn it into a profession. Mike Monteiro says it much better than that though which is why you should get his book if you haven't yet.
Freakonomics
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“We understand prices. But in a community, many of these transactions are not priced. You may do more favors than you get. You may not even get greater status as a result of something you do.”
This Freakonomics Radio interview with economist Raghuram Rajan is fantastic. He talks about the value of communities and the difficulty economists have quantifying their value. Local communities are also one of the primary ways we find meaning in our personal lives. There's a lot to think about there.
thisiscriminal.com thisiscriminal.com
image from thisiscriminal.com
Intermittent Podcast Saturday™ continues with Criminal. Phoebe Judge produces stories that are related to some form of criminal activity. She has a fantastic classic NPR style and I say that as a sincere compliment! The contrast between her composed tone and the often chaotic stories is what makes this show amazing. Her latest episode about misplaced online vigilantes was absolutley chilling with its just the facts delivery. But keep in mind they aren't all meant to be chilling. Often the episodes are moving or highlight a particular time and place in history. She brings them to life with research and typically one in-depth interview. (Here's the episode list if you want to get a sense of the material.) I have always found it worth the time to listen.
Maximum Fun Maximum Fun
Bullseye Logo
Welcome to a very special edition of Podcast Saturday. In the focuslight today is Jesse Thorn's flagship pop culture podcast on his Maximum Fun network. Yesterday Jesse traveled from his southern California home to the wilds of Portland, Oregon to entertain us with a live recording of Bullseye. I've been a fan since Jesse's show was The Sound of Young America and it was a treat to see his rapport with guests in person. Jesse has a great way of teasing the humor and emotional highlights out of someone's story during his interviews. Much like my desert island favorite Judge John Hodgman, the podcast isn't just about the surface content. The content here is meeting artists and hearing about their creative process. Its hidden message is about being a decent, curious, earnest person which makes it a subversive podcast indeed.

I also really like this video series (?) Jesse is working on called I Work Here that features artists giving tours of their workspaces. Last night he showed: I Work Here: Inside the Work Space of 'Wondermark' Creator David Malki!

Update: Forgot to link to this great interview in Willamette Week: Bullseye’s Jesse Thorn on the Early Days of Podcasting...
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99pi Planchette
Recode Recode
image from Recode
Great news for Gimlet, especially for my favorite show Reply All. Congrats! Troubling aspect: could this signal the end of open web distribution of podcasts? Moving away from RSS to walled gardens would be a total buzzkill.

Update (2/6): It is so, Audio-First.
Maximum Fun Maximum Fun
image from kanopy
On this Podcast Saturday I'd like to recommend another pillar of my podcasting pantheon. Minor television personality John Hodgman is in reality a prolific comedian and author. The conceit of his podcast is that he is a judge that settles the kinds of interpersonal disputes we all have with our friends and family. The show is that, but also a frequently touching reminder to be kind and thoughtful with others. It's part of the Maximum Fun network where you'll find many more great podcasts.
99percentinvisible.org 99pi.org
image from 99percentinvisible.org
Podcast Saturday continues with another one of my desert island picks. 99% Invisible is a design podcast that explores the mostly invisible work of planning and design that goes into all the things around us from cities to buildings to everyday objects. It is the Platonic Form of podcasts. Episodes are typically a tight, highly produced 20 minutes with interviews, locations, and music. It is a masterclass in audio storytelling every time. The show's host Roman Mars also started the podcast collective Radiotopia and if you're new to podcasts you won't go wrong browsing through their offerings.
hotpodnews.com hotpodnews.com
Remember podcasts? They're an industry now where people have careers and businesses grow and thrive. Hot Pod tracks this burgeoning industry so you don't have to. I like to pick up suggestions for podcasts I might be interested in, but hearing how companies are investing (or not) in podcasting is also interesting and I don't see this news covered anywhere else. This Newsletter Wednesday was brought to you by Squares...sorry, can't do it.
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