8 Podcasts for Computer Science Students

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Date of Publication: 11 August 2021

Over the past decade, podcasts have become a popular form of media for those looking to learn more about their areas of interest, stay on top of current affairs, and hear exclusively from industry experts. 

In fact, podcasts have become so popular that in the past year alone, there were over 15 million podcast listeners in the UK, with over half of them under the age of 30 – meaning they’re popular amongst young learners, and mainly, students. 

For those with an interest in Computer Science, podcasts on the subject field are an excellent way to stay current with all of today’s latest trends and developments, while building your knowledge on the fundamentals of the subject. 

Below, you’ll find eight of the best podcasts about Computer Science that are sure to get you feeling inspired. Each of them have either been curated, hosted by, or featured the industry’s leading thinkers, offering accurate but exclusive insights into the subject. Take a look, plug in, and get ready to immerse yourself in this deeply intriguing subject. 

 

Spark with Nora Young

Hosted by tech-guru, writer and speaker Nora Young, Spark is one of the best computer science podcasts for students and quite rightly, features at the very top of our list.

Having featured tech expert guests like Adam Killick and Kent Hoffman, the show is one of the leading features in the world of computer science. Covering a wide-range of topics from the basics of programming to advanced concepts and applications of artificial intelligence, the podcast encompasses everything you could ever want to know about the subject. 

In addition to simply providing a core set of information for the listener, each episode also takes its subject matter and applies it to a wider socio-economic perspective, examining developments and their potential impact for society. As a listener, you gain unique yet rounded perspectives on the most interesting debate in modern life – which can provide plenty of interesting talking points in any interviews you may have upcoming for jobs or university admissions.

 

Rabbit Hole

What is the internet doing to us? It’s a question we probably never really stop to consider, but also, is something which we should probably take more time to think about. After all, the internet really has changed the way we carry out even our most innate behaviours: communication, doing calculations, and even ordering food.

In this intriguing eight-part podcast series, The New York Times’ tech columnist, Kevin Roose, explores exactly how the internet has come to dominate much of our daily lives, and where it could be headed in the future. 

Roose argues how the internet is “profoundly changing who we are,” sharing extreme stories of individuals who have been influenced by misinformation which has been presented to them through the internet and its predetermined algorithms. Obviously, some of these tales really do depict the unintended consequences of the internet, but they do also highlight the extent of the influence that these algorithms can have on us.

For Computer Science students looking to gain a deeper understanding of the ethics that come with the developments of software engineering, this podcast is certainly one to get you to think more about the implications that coding could have on the wider society in years to come. 

 

Security Now

Co-hosted by Steve Gibson – the creator of the very first anti-spyware programs, Spinrite and ShieldsUP – and Leo Laporte – founder of the TWiT Podcast Network, Security Now is a weekly discussion on all the current topics in modern cyber security.

From important software developments to expert analysis and cyber security advice, this podcast gives budding Computer Scientists some great insight into security knowledge, practice and development – definitely a great one to get clued up on before attending an important interview!

Even if you have no interest in pursuing a career in Computer Science, it’s still a great podcast to learn more about cybersecurity and how to remain safe when online. 

 

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Twit: This Week in Tech

In addition to the aforementioned Security Now podcast, host Leo Laporte is also involved in hosting the weekly Twit: This Week in Tech show. This ‘roundtable’ discussion (featuring a panel of experts) offers insight into all the trends in high tech, keeping you up to date with all the latest news relevant to your field.

Focused primarily on Microsoft products and developments, listeners can expect to hear about all the latest advances in Windows hardware and software, Xbox, Office, Bing, and more recently, LinkedIn

As a brand as ingrained as Microsoft is in our modern world, a podcast devoted to the company’s constant developments makes quite a lot of sense. Expect to learn about current technologies, updates, security and more!

 

Software Engineering Radio

One of the most valuable podcasts for Computer Science students, especially those with a keen interest in software engineering, is – as the name suggests –  Software Engineering Radio.

Devoted to giving extensive and in-depth knowledge on the most cutting-edge developments in the technology industry, prepare for exclusive interviews, analysis, and even quick-fire and easy breakdowns of some of the newer technologies. It’s a great one for those short on time but keen to learn lots! 

After having firmly established itself as a market leader in the Computer Science podcast world, the show has gone on to create over 450 episodes so far (all available to listen to on their website) and is now the go-to hub for students and professionals looking for outstanding content related to the tech world. Definitely not one to miss!

 

Programming Throwdown

Need a general introduction to the world of programming? Look no further than computer science podcast, Programming Throwdown. 

Offering a general introduction to the world of programming, the early episodes focus on providing an overview of the different languages of programming and all its levels. As the later episodes progress, the series moves through explorations of broader programming-related concepts, such as Design Patterns and Unit Testing. It really is great at building your knowledge from the bare bones to far more complex matters.

In addition to making this podcast series as successful as it has been, the hosts take the show from simply being another IT lesson to one that’s bright and breezy. Taking recent news and applying it to the concepts they’re teaching in each episode, it makes learning the content far more engaging and easier to memorise.

 

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This Developer’s Life

If you pursue a career as a developer, what types of hurdles do you think you could face? From questions around ethics to sheer practicality, you’d be surprised at how many ‘problems’ can arise during projects. 

Based on the highly popular podcast series, This American Life, this podcast features first-hand experiences from programmers about the very many aspects of their roles: motivations, dealing with pressure, how to disconnect at the end of a long sprint and more.

It’s highly insightful and a great listen for students who aren’t necessarily sure what aspect of Computer Science they may be interested in pursuing. You’ll open your eyes to the wide-ranging concerns that developers can face each day, as well as the very real highs that come with major breakthroughs in programming.

 

The Changelog

‘Conversations with the hackers, leaders, and innovators of the software world.’ That’s how hosts Adam Stacoviak and Jerod Santo describe their podcast, The Changelog.

Each week, the two co-hosts interview some of the industry’s leading developers, who are in charge of building the software of tomorrow. Covering a wide range of development-related news and tools, the pair also draw interesting tips and hints from their interviewees to help budding programmers and aspiring Computer Scientists. 

With a heavy focus on web development, from JavaScript and CSS to node.js, it also covers a broad range of tools and their applications, ranging from Git to npm. It’s a great all-rounder to help you learn more about the resources available to development professionals, while also giving unprecedented insight into the thinking behind companies and the processes they take to develop new software and technologies. 

 

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Summary

Today, the podcast industry is leading the way as one of the most creative and innovative ways for people to learn more about the topics they love, quickly, and from the very best experts. 

There’s certainly no shortage of Computer Science podcasts available to budding students or even those that just want to learn more about the subject – and we’ve highlighted just eight of our favourites.  

Take some time to listen to the trailers of each of the podcasts on the list, hit save on your favourites, and get ready to feel inspired.

 

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Whether you choose to study on our Oxford Computer Science or Cambridge Computer Science summer courses, outside of class you’ll have the opportunity to explore a vibrant student city that’s steeped in history, and inspired some of the world’s most influential thinkers. Are you ready to join them?

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