Wintery Knight

…integrating Christian faith and knowledge in the public square

How to subscribe to and download the Wintery Knight’s favorite podcasts

I thought it might be a good idea to explain podcasts and RSS feeds to my readers and then list out the podcasts I like best.

So here is a quick introduction to RSS feeds:

RSS stands for “Really Simple Syndication”. It is a way to easily distribute a list of headlines, update notices, and sometimes content to a wide number of people. It is used by computer programs that organize those headlines and notices for easy reading.

Most people are interested in many websites whose content changes on an unpredictable schedule. Examples of such websites are news sites, community and religious organization information pages, product information pages, medical websites, and weblogs. Repeatedly checking each website to see if there is any new content can be very tedious.

Email notification of changes was an early solution to this problem. Unfortunately, when you receive email notifications from multiple websites they are usually disorganized and can get overwhelming, and are often mistaken for spam.

RSS is a better way to be notified of new and changed content. Notifications of changes to multiple websites are handled easily, and the results are presented to you well organized and distinct from email.
RSS works by having the website author maintain a list of notifications on their website in a standard way. This list of notifications is called an “RSS Feed”. People who are interested in finding out the latest headlines or changes can check this list. Special computer programs called “RSS aggregators” have been developed that automatically access the RSS feeds of websites you care about on your behalf and organize the results for you.

(RSS feeds and aggregators are also sometimes called “RSS Channels” and “RSS Readers”.)

For the more technical people, RSS is an implementation of the Observer design pattern. When used in a distributed or enterprise environment, it is called Publish/Subscribe design pattern. You can implement it with technologies like message queues, and that’s one of the things I do at work (sometimes).

So, if you look at the front page of my blog right now, you can see some little item lists from sources like Reasonable Faith and Investors Business Daily. Those are RSS feeds supplied by those people. My blog is subscribing to those feeds and display the last 5 items from each feed. And whenever those sources publish something new, then the content of what is displayed on my blog’s front page changes to show the new item.

On my home computer, I subscribe to lots of RSS news feeds, which is one way of finding news stories for my blog. The software I use for this at home is my Chrome browser pointed to the Feedly RSS aggregator web site. You have to have a gMail account to use Feedly. You can read about how to add RSS feeds to Feedly here. If you don’t want to have a gMail account, then you can use a desktop application like RSS Owl and add feeds to that. On my Android phone, I use a application called gReader and add feeds to that.

I also have RSS feeds for podcasts so that I can see the new ones that people make and then download them and listen to them. I use an Android application called Podkicker for subscribing to podcasts. It also downloads them and plays them. Usually, I download them when I am at home and listen to them on the road.

Anyway, without further ado, here is my list of favorite podcasts:

NEWS

Name: Weekly Standard Podcast
URL: http://dailystandardpodcast.weeklystandard.libsynpro.com/rss

Name: FRC – Washington Watch Weekly – Tony Perkins
URL: http://www.frc.org/rss/pod_WR.xml

Name: FRC – Daily Commentary – Tony Perkins
URL: http://www.frc.org/rss/pod_CM.xml

Name: The Briefing – Al Mohler
URL: http://feeds.feedburner.com/AlbertMohlerTheBriefing

POLICY

Name: Banter: American Enterprise Institute
URL: http://media.aei.org/category/banter-podcast/feed/rss/

Name: Uncommon Knowledge – Hoover Institute – Peter Robinson
URL: http://feeds.podtrac.com/raBAhhrHEQY$

Name: Ruth Institute Podcast – Jennifer Roback Morse
URL: http://ruthinstitute.libsyn.com/rss

SCIENCE

Name: Intelligent Design: The Future – Various
URL: http://intelligentdesign.podomatic.com/rss2.xml

Name: Reasons to Believe – Science News Flash
URL: http://c450913.r13.cf2.rackcdn.com/podcast.xml

APOLOGETICS

Name: Reasonable Faith Podcast – Kevin Harris and WLC
URL: http://feeds.feedburner.com/ReasonableFaithPodcast

Name: Apologetics 315 Interviews – Brian Auten
URL: http://feeds.feedburner.com/apologetics315interviews

Name: Please Convince Me Podcast – J. Warner Wallace
URL: http://thepleaseconvincemeradioshowpodcast.libsyn.com/rss

Name: Stand to Reason Please Convince Me Podcast – J. Warner Wallace
URL: http://pleaseconvinceme.libsyn.com/rss

So, if you’re looking from some good podcasts, those are the ones I recommend. Please don’t feel badly if your favorite podcast is not listed here. You can leave a comment and tell us all what it is.

Filed under: Mentoring, , , , , , , ,

2 Responses

  1. Josh says:

    Thanks for the lists! I’ll be checking out some of the podcasts.

    I second your choice of Feedly. After Google Reader was shut down, I joined the site, only to find that I actually liked it better and wished I had switched sooner (it is easier for me to easily flag articles to record into OneNote, where I keep a database of information on a variety of topics).

    As for podcasts, I’ve found the Reformed Theological Seminary (http://itunes.rts.edu/) to be awesome, particularly in church history. While not podcasts in the sense of regularly updated weekly or daily shows, they have added a lot of content and classes since I started listening.

    The history classes remain my favorite, though. They are great, portable ways to know more about Christian heritage than “there was Jesus, then the Apostles, then some other stuff, then the Reformation, then today”. A lot more.

  2. Rachel P. says:

    Being able to listen to podcasts or audio messages helps me so much, becauase it is easier to make time for listening to things than sitting down and reading a book. At the beginning of summer I had high hopes of reading several books during the summer, because I am able to get through my books for school quickly, but it took me all of summer just to read one because I went slowly and took notes (and I was also using a lot of my time available for reading to read more heavily into the Bible). I read Cold-Case Christianity. I had known about Cold-Case Christianity before I saw you mention it on this blog, but seeing you mention it helped me think more seriously about reading it. Also, even though I am not necessarily able at this time to read many books, it helps still to recognize books. Over the summer, I borrowed “Is God Just a Human Invention?” from a friend because I recongized the title from seeing it on this blog, though I know I won’t have time to read it just yet.

    Anything that helps me increase my understanding of the Lord and how to serve Him (that is Scripturally accurate), I am so grateful for. I have a weakness in understanding politics and the way it works, so seeing the different news items and the commentaries helps me make sense of it.

    It doesn’t seem right to me to take something from someone, and yet do nothing in return for them, especially if they are a Christian. So, in return I have kept you in my prayers. I hope that you continue in your growth and understanding of the Lord and of what it means to love Him. I am curius to hear what you learn about when you grow even more in your understanding.

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