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A Podcast Confession

Last year I was working a jobby job instead of going to university and whilst procrastinating on getting work done I all of a sudden stumbled upon ATP or also known as the Accidental Tech Podcast. Back then the very first episode I listened to was episode 98: Landmines, Pitfalls and Bottomless Pits and I fell love right away. Marco was having issues with scaling his Podcast feed crawler for Overcast, which was written in PHP, and wanted to try another language. Casey talked him into Node.js since he wrote a blogging engine in Node and Marco then explained why Node.js wasn’t what he was looking for (Hint: JavaScript is terrible).
After that episode I went back one episode in order to understand where this discussion about languages came from and then listened to a few of the following ones. I think there were only 2 more available at the time. Once I had nothing else to listen to anymore, craving more episodes from ATP got even stronger. I decided to go all the way back to episode 1 and boy was everyone around me fed up with it quickly.
The second I had a little time to spare for myself after work or sitting in a car driving home or to work I was listening to ATP. At some point my sister gave up on commuting to her internship with me and preferred to take the train just so that she wouldn’t have to listen to it anymore. I remember vividly seeing a newly released episode and started listening to it immediately and once it finished I then jumped back to something like episode 61 and continued my journey through the archives. Around that time there were only so many episodes around and downloading it was annoying with Apples Podcast app. I had witnessed the launch of Overcast a couple weeks prior but looked at it on the App Store and decided that it wasn’t a fit for me. The built-in Podcasts app was good enough for me. Once I was running into more and more issues though I decided to finally throw money at my problem, downloaded Overcast and immediately bought the In App Purchase to unlock Smart Speed and Voice Boost. The sync engine was way better and I liked that I had heard Marco talk about launching Overcast on ATP.
It was only natural to buy it since I was basically brainwashed a little by hearing about it from time to time on ATP. Only a few weeks after I discovered ATP, had bought Overcast for my iPhone, transferred all my podcast subscriptions into it and then finishing onehundredandthree episodes of ATP in one go I hit a wall:

😱😭¡There was no more ATP 'til next weeks episode would be released! 😱😭😱😭

So I started to branch out into and and Hello Internet and Debug and Gimlet Media and as you might be able to guess by now it kind of escalated.

My Overcast feed

Yup, I’m subscribed to a lot of Podcasts (I think I’m the kind of edge case Marco talked about on Under the Radar episode 16:) and as you can see I have plenty of them that are unplayed at the moment. In order to keep up with all the podcasts I’ve developed a little system:

All Podcasts are part of one of 3 categories or tiers if you will.

1. Category

  1. Accidental Tech Podcast
  2. Debug
  3. Hello Internet
  4. Reconcilable Differences
  5. Cortex
  6. Reply All
  7. Top Four
  8. Bonanza

Category 1 lists all the Podcasts I love to listen to and look forward to every week sorted by favor. If I’m listening to one of the Podcasts of tier 2 or 3 I usually look how much of it is left and if it’s more than a couple of minutes I pause it and start the tier 1 one. Same goes for all the Podcasts within category 1. If I for example listen to Cortex and ATP is released I look how much there is left and maybe then switch over to ATP.

The same system applies further down the stack and within Category 2 but not in Category 3.

2. Category

  1. Analog(u)e
  2. Back to Work
  3. Core Intuition
  4. Liftoff
  5. The Talk Show With John Gruber
  6. Under the Radar
  7. Material

3. Category

Category 3 contains a random selection of Podcasts I like. I’m not super crazy about them but I still enjoy them. They aren’t listed in any particular order and therefore exceptions to all the other rules in the system apply randomly. This is mostly due to what kind of content these shows produce or how often they are released. Song Exploder for example is more of a rarity in my feed and I’m not musical in any way but I love the stories that are being told by the artists. The insight into how these incredibly creative people work is always a highlight and I really enjoy the show. Therefore it might happen that I rather play Song Exploder than ATP.