Blog entries from February, 2016

Listening to podcasts

Monday, February 22nd, 2016 at 09:05pm

For the past year and a bit I have been listening to podcasts, either while commuting to and from work on the train, or while out for walks. I have known about podcasts for a long time, but it was the combination of having suitable idle time and the suggestion of two comedy podcasts that finally made me give them a go.

The list of podcasts I listen to has grown (and occasionally shrunk) over time, and there are some that I prioritise over others. Right now this is the list of podcasts in the app on my phone: (in roughly priority order)

  • I Love Green Guide Letters
    One of the two comedy podcasts that were suggested to me, great to hear stories from comedians, and there is also commentary about the letters.
  • The Little Dum Dum Club
    The other of the comedy podcasts that was suggested, some of the conversations can be quite serious and thought provoking, while others are hilarious.
  • The Skeptics Guide to the Universe
    A very popular podcast that covers a wide range of science/skeptic topics, recent news through to historical events/figures.
  • Geologic Podcast
    Usually a skeptical topic or two, but what I am really enjoying is the other topics such as music as that is something I wouldn’t normally be interested in
  • The Dollop
    Despite this being two comedians (one telling the other about something from American history), I was surprised by how much I was liking the historical aspect of this. The live shows in Australia where they covered some Australian history stories really showed how you don’t learn the horrible details at school.
  • Comedy Film Nerds
    This is now my preferred source of movie information, I find myself agreeing with their reviews. Plus the spoiler episodes either make a movie I have seen better or mean I don’t have to see it at all.
  • Probably Science
    Interesting discussion between the hosts and the guest, but also coverage of recent science news that is weird or interesting.
  • Don’t You Know Who I Am?
    This one is just fun, some unexepcted stories from the guest comedians.
  • Filthy Casuals
    I haven’t played games for a long time and only started listening because of The Little Dum Dum Club, but it also can be interesting (as well as funny)
  • Oh No Ross and Carrie
    Another skeptic podcast, Ross and Carrie go do the crazy woo things and report back on what they were like.
  • The Infinite Monkey Cage
    Funny and informative at the same time about some quite serious scientific topics.
  • Penn’s Sunday School
    Started listening because I am a fan of Penn and Teller, as well as Penn’s skeptical position. Interesting stories, sometimes science sometimes (US) politics.
  • Can you take this photo, please?
    Open discussion between Justin Hamilton and (usually) a guest, interesting hearing the background and experiences of these comedians.
  • TOFOP/FOFOP/Wilosphy
    I’m lumping together three Wil Anderson podcasts here, there are a lot I haven’t listened to, I pick out the ones that look interesting.
  • Still Untitled: The Adam Savage Project
    I’ve been a fan of MythBusters for a long time, but it is only recently that a few of the topics caught my eye…
  • Steele Wars
    Another one I am selective about, while I like Star Wars, I’m not obsessed, so will check the description before listening. But the live reaction podcast after the midnight screening of Force Awakens (with Comedy Film Nerds) was worth it.
  • Stuff You Should Know
    I have a number of these in the backlog, for when I want to learn something but don’t need to be amused…

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Three weeks in Kansas

Sunday, February 7th, 2016 at 11:19pm

The place I have been working for the past eighteen months is part of a larger company based out of Kansas City. One of the biggest direct impacts this has on me is working 7am-4pm so that the start of our day overlaps with the end of their day, but I have come to appreciate avoiding the crowds on the train or on the bike path.

The other possibility is travelling to Kansas City for work, which has just happened for me. A few of us went over, my reason for going was to be there to support the first US based team that is using the tools we have build to upgrade their application for the new servers.

This was my second trip to the US, and only my third trip overseas. This was quite different as I didn’t pay for the flights or hotel, and I received a per diem, but of course most of the time was spent doing work. During the two weekends I was there I managed to squeeze in some sightseeing with my camera, I went to places that other people (who have made the trip multiple times before) had not even considered going to. As I ended up having one of the cars to myself, I headed out over a couple of lunchtimes to some nearby areas.

Of the photos I took, my final selection of 60 is in a Flickr album, with my favourites including:

Museum entrance Shaft Three In the afternoon Path
Arched over Hydrant Heading home Touchdown Frozen outflow

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