IT News for Your Ears – Tech Podcasts You Should Be Listening To

A colleague on the management team in my department insists on taking a few hours as soon as the biweekly issue of c’t arrives. If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably a time-pressed administrator who, like me, doesn’t have that luxury. However, it is part of our jobs to keep up on the wider IT world.

I listen to several podcasts each week during the drive to work – much safer than reading an IT magazine while on the road. These shows also help me put some much-needed miles on my bike ūüôā

I’ve included links to the show pages for each of my favorites, and for your convenience, an RSS link for copying into your player. If you’re looking for such an app,¬†Car Cast¬†is a nice, simple Android podcast player that is free, but once you’ve installed the free version, top it up with the paid version to get rid of the little ads and show your appreciation for this fine app.

Essential listening for Microsoft IT Pros

  • PowerScripting with Jonathan Walz and Hal Rottenberg: Love scripting or hate it, PowerShell has become a core skill for Active Directory, Exchange and SharePoint administrators, SQL Server DBAs and .NET developers. I started listening to PowerScripting shortly after I discovered PowerShell, and it really helped me along. These days, I mostly listen to it to find out about new applications for it, but still pick up tips and tricks from Jon, Hal and their guests. If you’re just getting started with PowerShell, download and listen to the first 30 episodes or so in order, along with the week’s latest one so you keep up with the community’s news. It was obvious those first few episodes that Jon, and later Hal, were new to podcasting, but now, it’s a very polished listening experience, so stick with it through those initial shows. [RSS link]
  • RunAs Radio with Richard Campbell: The main Microsoft IT Pro show, covering the wide range of MS enterprise technologies in an interview format. The older episodes are still good, but cover a lot of old news. I’d recommend downloading the most recent 10 or so for breadth, then searching the site for the specific technologies you deal with. [RSS link]
  • .NET Rocks! with Carl Franklin and Richard Campbell: Developer-centric parent show of Run-As Radio that comes out twice a week like clockwork. Good for getting a broader view of what’s going on in the Microsoft world. They also have occasional “Geek Out” episodes covering non-IT techologies for a technical, but not expert, audience. The back catalog is over 800 shows – they’re bound to have hit upon something you’re interested in. [RSS link]
  • HanselMinutes with Scott Hanselman: Scott works for Microsoft, but he covers a broad array of development-related topics, along with some non-IT ones, on his always thought-provoking show. Any random episodes will be worth listening to. [RSS link]
  • The UC Architects: An ensemble¬†of Lync and Exchange MVPs and other experts from around the world who keep us up to date on what is happening with the two¬†main constituents of¬†Microsoft Unified Communications platform, along with how it ties in to Office 365. Lync is becoming a very important secondary, even primary skill for Exchange admins, so if you are working with one platform, you need to at least be aware of what’s going on with the other. I’ve just started listening and am still catching up with previous episodes. Their website gives a very good synopsis of each episode, including when in the program each segment started so you can skip past the bits you’re not as interested in. [RSS link]

Other tech podcasts I like

  • NPR’s Technology Podcast: Highlights stitched together each week from the various technology segments on NPR, primarily covers general consumer tech and social/legal issues related to IT. [RSS link]
  • Engadget Podcast: mostly consumer tech, along with some enterprise IT. Fun.¬†[RSS link]
  • Your Website Engineer with Dustin Hartzler: good listening for anyone who does stuff with WordPress.¬†[RSS link]
  • SQLDownUnder¬†with Greg Low: episodes are sporadically released, but excellent listening for anyone who even occasionally has to deal with SQL Server, with bonus Aussie accent and detailed show transcripts for the bits . ¬†The one about SQL Server Reporting Services¬†with Jessica Moss helped me out a TON when I was getting started with reports.¬†[RSS link]
  • Quirks and Quarks: the CBC’s (Canadian Broadcasting Corporation) weekly science radio show, focusing on Canadians scientists and institutions, but reaching out for the week’s big stories. Bob McDonald, the longtime host, is possibly the best science interviewer in the business.¬†[RSS link]

Any podcasts I’m missing? Anyone ready to start that ActiveRoles Server podcast?

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