It's quite frightening when you look at how the digital natives consume content these days. I don't listen to the radio anymore. Full stop. Too many ads, not enough good content and too reliant on middle-of-the-road personalities.
I've put an iPod jack in the Audi and now consume podcasts on a daily basis. There is some damn good content out there. Here are my top picks - as good a starting point as any.
South African Tech Podcasts
ZA Tech Show
Simon Dingle, Brett Haggard, Duncan McLeod and a whack of other IT journo guests host SA's most technically astute podcast. This is some heavy tech stuff - but no BS, straight down the line. Often accused of talking more about their iPhones than the news, you have to realise - the iPhone is the news. And they're cool. From the latest chips to online gaming to Apple vs PC debates - it's all here.
The Digital Edge
A lot more accessible for those just getting into podcast consumption, The Digital Edge has taken a much more mainstream approach. The episodes are shorter than ZA Tech, highly produced and nicely chunky. While the content can be a little shallow (perhaps because of the brevity), it's really easy to absorb and you'll get a good view of the digital direction in South Africa and abroad.
International Tech Podcasts
This Week in Technology. The quintessential, pioneering and most loyally supported tech podcast in the world. Hosted by Leo Laporte, this is a well produced (complete with a live streaming video broadcast) tech gem. The content is accessible, humorous and current. A favourite feature for many is the Audible.com sponsorship and resulting book recommendations.
It has been accused of being a bit of a tech "old boys" club, but when you look past that - you get a quality of guest not available in many other productions. Big tech names: Jason Calacanis, Kevin Rose, Patrick Norton et al. **HIGHLY RECOMMENDED
International Current Affairs Podcasts
It's a bit on the coo-coo side, but Adam Curry and John C. Dvorak cook up a media assassination par excellence. Curry, of MTV VJ fame and subsequently a couple of online startups and a couple more PlayBoy models is a superb anchorman, and although many tend to disagree with Dvorak's (hallowed and cranky US tech journalist) take on things - you can get a lot from a +- 60 year old who has grown up and through the digital age. They cover everything from healthcare to politics to entertainment news, all in a heavy veil of sarcasm. A bit US-biased, but I'm always glad to find other people who think the "system" is poked.
International Music Podcasts
All Songs Considered
Although not digital, NPR's All Songs Considered makes the cut due to sheer production value. Everyone knows a good digital guy/gal requires accompaniment from some good tunes - and this podcast has become my de facto music discovery and analysis source. Bob Boilen and co produce this show weekly, featuring a mix between new music reviews and full track listens and interviews with interesting industry people. A couple of highlights included a 40 minute interview with Andrew Bird and an episode where Bjork DJ'ed some Icelandic Electro. Yes, it's that diverse. The podcast even manages to incorporate music from outside the US - admirable.
It's a great start to your podcast listening life stage. Get going. Who needs radio in a world of bits and bytes anyway eh?