Perhaps the morning side could, if I were awake. Although, on the afternoon commute, I read stuff such as on HN because I am mentally spent. (Though if it's too rigorous, like a deep CS paper, that might get passed over.)
Listening to audio books has allowed me to relax, enjoy the reading, and get to work excited about the day.
I treat the time as a chance to "read" those books which I wouldn't normally spend either my work hours nor my free time hours on. It's a chance to get informed on topics that are only slightly related to work, but expand your mind in ways that will make you a better thinker, and thus a better programmer.
The books I've found particularly good on audio are:
* Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
* Thinking, Fast and Slow
* How Not to be Wrong
* Ready Player One
Ask HN: What books have made the biggest impact on your mental models? | https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15155833
* The Hard Thing About Hard Things
* The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck
These books were amazing in audible format. (I have listened to a hundred or so).
* anything by & narrated by Bill Bryson
* The Phoenix Project
* We Are Legion (We are Bob)
* SPQR: A History of Ancient Rome
* The Adventure of English: The Biography of a Language
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I wouldn't recommend audiobooks, as they require more focus and context than podcasts and it's harder to find during the commute.
But, I just clicked to see the content of 'Talk Python' podcasts, and it seems that a lot of it is meta-talk... smart people talking about the fact that they're going to teach someone, _not_ teaching the postcast-listener stuff (besides perhaps the knowledge that some X and Y module exists?).
I think I'm just asking too much here... because creating instructional content takes _time_... to organize, think about, record, review, etc. Hm, maybe instead of complaining, I'll have a go at it...
I don't listen to every episode, however I feel it's technical breadth and depth is fairly decent.
A similar one would be: http://www.se-radio.net/
There are also some more tech-specific ones, such as Talk Python to Me, Under the Radar (iOS dev), etc.
I think it's partly because the latter has better production values, better pacing and attracts more prominent guests in the field(for instance, Martin Kleppmann, Neha Narkhede, etc.)
I find myself not being able to get through an episode of SE Radio.
My contribution would be FLOSS Weekly with Randal Schwartz (most of the time).
I like the format of the interviews. The host is not an expert in all the topics that are discussed, but he does a good job asking intelligent questions and making the conversation accessible for software folks with only a casual understanding of a particular topic, say like Bitcoins, containers, etc.
I feel the fact that the author is not an expert actually makes the show more interesting. It's kind of like an ELI5 podcast for practicing software engineers.
I often come away from each episode feeling like I have have learned something useful.
You are probably developing to/for a domain. (Healthcare, hardware, finance, etc...)
Part of being successful is having good domain knowledge and understanding.
If the technical aspects of your work don't translate well to an audio presentation, understanding of the domain(s) you are concentrating on might.
Then, when you're doing something, or in a meeting about it, you have a better understanding of the "why". And of whether the tactics and strategy under consideration make good sense, or of how they might be improved.
This is also a means of going past "pushing buttons" to becoming responsible for design decisions and the like.
What I do find useful is listening to books on practice or management. Something like The Pragmatic Programmer, The Practice of Programming, and Clean Code. These are high on substance but (relatively) low on examples, so I feel I can still benefit from their insights without having to be in front of a screen.
Oh... And it will greatly increase interconnectivity of your brains, especially if you would not just listen, but play it too.
It may be not just classical music, but modern styles a way simplier, they lack centuries of development by hundreds of musicians.
As someone willing to give this a try, where would you suggest one starts?
Also, spend some time trying different classical music from different periods / parts of the world. You might find you prefer Steve Reich (Music For 18 Musicians) more than you like Bach (Well-Tempered Clavier) or Shostakovich (10th Symphony) more than you like Schoenberg (... good luck).
Spend some time finding a favourite composer. Start with a composer you like, and then try other composers who were alive in the same time and place.
Also, beware of orchestral renditions of pop music. Some of it is good (Alarm Will Sound's album of Aphex Twin), but most of it is awful (Vitamin quartet).
Hope that helps.
My main issue with most classical music is that they feel too heavy and I feel physically sick.
Minimalist: Steve Reich, Henryk Gorecki, John Adams...
But it sounds more like you're asking for classical music that isn't overwhelming. In that case, go for chamber music - this is for any small ensemble. You might particularly like things like Mozart wind ensembles (quartets, quintets), Faure or Ravel trios or quartets (sometimes with piano), etc. There are a lot of Mozart cds "for children" that are good here too, since young children like smaller ensembles better than big orchestras.
However I find it very difficult not to listen intently to Bach. And I mean that in a good way, but disqualifies his work from being my "working background" music. My pick for programming music is the complete Mozart symphonies. They're also works of genius, but I can be in their presence without my mind being constantly drawn to them and away .
I also go for the Renaissance lute works of John Dowland. In many ways the pop music of the day (and noticeably less sophisticated than the baroque that immediately followed) this somehow puts me in the right mood for UI design.
Perhaps "serious" is the wrong term; maybe "methodical" or "mathematically inclined" is better.
Or how about Steve Reich's Music For 18 Musicians? That could be too much, or it could be just right, depending on what about the music makes you feel sick.
I also like LaMonte Young and Terry Riley, but they might be too spacious if you're looking for compelling melody.
Oh, and stay away from John Adams. (Other people reading this looking for heavy minimalist music: go for John Adams. Start with Short Ride In A Fast Machine, and then dig in to the operas.)
Specifically, stanford has some great cs material, and you could also look into andrew ng's machine learning course (i think that one was on coursera).
It's not in any way technical, but I think it might help with the "become a better developer" goal. It's also a good bit of light relief.
I've also installed mobile apps for pluralsight(paid by my employer), udemy, udacity -- which allow me to download content and watch it in the subway; but I stil have to re-visit the course material and type things on my computer if I actually want to learn anything, otherwise its just more junk food for the brain.
I don't think there are many text-only technical audiobooks, so if you actively drive that kind of sucks, because you can't watch videos, but then again, you're not missing much, I don't think there's anybody who aquired any technical skill by just listening to an audiobook.
* Software Engineering Daily
* Software Engineering Radio
* The Changelog
* DevZen (in Russian)
* Reversim Platforma (in Hebrew)
Look for previous shows, most of the great content is there!
PS: It takes about 5 minutes to drive to my new work, and I really miss them now.
If you're feeling spent and want something less taxing to listen to try Partially Derivative it's more of a chilled out conversation on AI. It's more of a guilty pleasure for me it does feel pretty stupid at times.
I try to maintain a good mix of topics and viewpoints (industry/application vs researcher), and to keep the conversation technically interesting.
Happy to answer any questions here.
other than that, I can only recommend more podcasts; on the systems side, bsdtalk or bsdnow are quite good (obviously bsd focused)
Stick with audiobooks about technical _concepts_ or managerial topics. I'd suggest start with either The Phoenix Project or The Ideal Team Player. From there, follow audible recommendations.
For instance, I've read a lot of about containerization and microservices, but actually listening to interviews with prominent people who work on building these types of things helped me learn much faster about the nuances, tricks and downsides that people don't normally talk about.
His playlist: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL864F807C0B279111
His channel: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtJVZjY6xsZUV-sYdcIFpZw
That + noise canceling headphones (I use Bose QuietComfort 20) = good commute.
My current favorite apps for that are Simple Habit and Kevin Rose's up and coming Oak which is in public beta now.
Passive learning is a overrated.
You need deliberate practice to get truly better.
- Talking Machines
- The O'Reilly Data Show
- Software Engineering Radio
- Software Engineering Daily
- AWS Re: Invent series
- Conversations with Tyler
- Waking Up with Sam Harris