Penelope Rance

My UX research & design ramblings


For my current job I get to commute for about 3hr a day in my car. People often ask me what I do with this time. Driving home, I have to admit I like to think about my day and daydream a bit - some of my best ideas come about this way.

However in the morning I am not really up for thinking too hard and so I find a podcast a good way to spend the time. I like to listen to people having a little chat.

I did try audio books but when you are driving you have to stop listening every so often as you focus more on the road so I kept missing bits and it was impossible to rewind and re-listen to them.

So what do I listen to?

I like to listen to something inspiring, and I did start by listening to things with a tech focus, but as I have gone along I have widened this focus. Here are the main podcasts I listen to, although there are others I sometimes catch.

Tech for Good - This is a British podcast based in Manchester. Although it is focused on the Charity sector they cover tech news and how these things are good or bad. They also tend to have a rant of the week and a good news story. But best of all they have a great sense of humor and make me laugh - a good way to start the day.

VOD - Voice of Design - this is the podcast of Mule Design, the agency run by Mike Montaria and Erica Hall. They tend to speak to American designers about what is good design and ethics. It can be interesting, but sometimes I get lost with what they are talking about - not knowing how American business or politics work.

Boag World - This is Paul Boags podcast which he hosts with Marcus from Headscape and normally a guest of some sort. He tends to do seasons based round a different tech subject, for instance last season was round project management. They quite often go off subject and normally end with a dreadful ‘dad’ joke.

Dumbo Feather - this is an Australian podcast which goes with the Dumbo Feather magazine. They speak to really inspiring people from all over the world and from all walks of life including; A TV presenter who had overcome alcoholism and depression, an organic farmer who started a new movement of food growing, an illustrator who inspired a generation, a monk who helps people to be more mindful and so many more. I do not tend to bother reading the description now, coming to the conversation with an open mind and ready to be inspired.

The Do Lectures - Every year the Do Lectures have an event in Wales. People speak on many subjects but mostly on how they created and grew their business. The podcast is recordings of these talks. Seeing as I am unlikely to ever make it to the event in Wales (much as I would like to) this is the next best thing and so inspiring.

Hidden Brain - another American podcast, this one looking at the unconscious patterns behind human behaviour. It could be really dull, but the use of science and storytelling mean I learn something new with every episode.

I am sure there are many more fine podcasts out there to listen to, but these are the ones I do not mind spending an hour of my mornings with. Have a listen and see what you think.

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