Whether you’re just starting out or you’ve been in the field your entire professional life, data science can sometimes be a tough topic to digest. There are so many different perspectives and new developments to stay on top of, so it’s imperative that anyone interested in the field be constantly plugged in—and what better way to do that than through data science podcasts? They can be your companion during your commute or during a lazy weekend at home.
The Top Data Science Podcasts
There are many data science podcasts to choose from, so we’ve rounded up 15 that we think you should add to your queue:
One of the longest-running data science shows, this podcast has a little bit of everything, and it has wide appeal, whether you’re a complete beginner or already technically skilled. “Data Skeptic” host Kyle Polich, occasionally joined by Linh Da Tran, produces weekly podcasts split between short mini-episodes delving into high-level data science concepts and longer episodes featuring interviews with up-and-coming researchers and practitioners in the field. This is not to be missed.
Known as the father of all other data shows, “the O’Reilly Data Show” features Ben Lorica, O’Reilly Media’s chief data scientist. Lorica conducts interviews with other experts about big data and data science current affairs. While it does get technical and may not be the best place for a beginner to start, it provides interesting insights into the future of the data science industry.
Created by Dan Faggella, founder of TechMergence, this weekly podcast finds the host himself discussing some of the insights to be gleaned from the application and implications of artificial intelligence (AI), interviewing top dogs in the field, including investors and researchers from companies like Facebook, eBay, and Google.
While this podcast is relatively new compared to some of the more senior podcasts on this list, “This Week in Machine Learning & AI” can certainly hold its own. With new episodes every other week, each edition features Sam Charrington, founder of CloudPulse Strategies, an industry research firm, and a different machine learning or AI expert discussing a range of issues, from teaching machines empathy to productizing AI. The podcast is available in both audio and video formats.
This podcast takes a different approach to AI compared to the others on this list. Rather than dealing with the technical aspects of machine learning, “Concerning AI” focuses on the philosophical sphere of technology, as hosts Brandon Sanders and Ted Sarvata look into the social impact AI might have today and in the future. While it may not deal with the same issues as the other podcasts on this list, “Concerning AI” is endlessly thought-provoking.
While most data science podcasts in general appear to be concerned more with the world of complex machine learning and AI algorithms, “Data Stories” dives deep into the fundamentals—focusing on data visualization technologies. Every other week, hosts Enrico Bertini and Moritz Stefaner and guests go through a diverse range of topics, covering everything from data ethics to understanding data visualization methods.
If you’re looking for the latest news about data science, look no further. With a much more casual approach to breaking news, “Partially Derivative” finds hosts and experienced data scientists Chris Albon, Jonathon Morgan, and Vidya Spandana discussing the news over drinks. (It was described as “’Car Talk’ for the data community” by DJ Patil). Although the original format of the podcast has been retired, the hosts are working on bringing it back to life and there’s a rich library of episodes to enjoy.
This isn’t exactly a data science podcast, but “Freakonomics Radio” is one of the most interesting podcasts out there dealing with the puzzles of economics and statistics in the face of other global issues. While it may not deal directly with the technologies of data science, at its core, this weekly podcast deals with the “before” process of data science: the math and calculations and concepts behind the science.
The path to becoming a data scientist can be long and winding, and it can be difficult to find the motivation to keep going. Host Kirill Eremenko understands that, and in this podcast, he endeavors to generate that motivation through short episodes (5-10 minutes) as well as longer, inspiring interviews with data science experts, discussing not just the science behind data science, but also more casual topics like their lessons learned, mistakes made, and career development.
As the title would suggest, “Learning Machines 101” presents a back-to-basics view of machine learning and AI, bringing fun and accessibility to a sometimes dry and technical topic. By bringing in interesting and clever questions about how these smart machines impact our lives, this monthly podcast manages to go deep into technical topics without losing the audience.
This is a go-to channel to listen to deep insights into very complex topics with expert guests. Bringing in their own experiences and stories, this program’s technical depth makes it more suited to veterans in the data science industry. However, the weekly episodes deal with intriguing topics, like cybercrime and video analytics, that have the potential to keep even the layman interested and entertained.
“Talking Machines” is a window into the world of machine learning, as hosts Katherine Gorman and Neil Lawrence bring clarity into industry news and insights, answering listener questions every other Thursday. Rather than just focusing on data science news, “Talking Machines” also deals with best practices in machine learning, bringing up questions worth pondering.
Hosted by Lea Pica, this bi-weekly podcast brings in her own experiences and knowledge as a data scientist and presentation expert. Featuring mostly monologues, with occasional interviews with industry experts, “Present Beyond Measures” is focused on issues in the data analytics and visualization space, aiming to provide guidance and insight into the tools and skills required in the industry. Whether you’re a digital marketer, analyst, or business insight practitioner, you’ll find a lot to gain from this podcast.
While some of the applications of data analytics have been thoroughly explored and have become common knowledge in the field, certain applications of machine learning and the industry’s technology aren’t as well mined. “Linear Digressions” (great name, right?) looks under the hood and into the more unusual applications of machine learning with data scientist Katie Malone and user interface engineer Ben Jaffe. This weekly podcast also breaks down complex data science problems into digestible chunks that can be appreciated by casual listeners.
“Digital Analytics Power Hour” is run by three friends (Michael Helbling, Tim Wilson, and Moe Kiss) who meet up twice a month to drink and discuss their experiences in data, promoting open forum discussions on interesting topics. Light, witty, and fairly personal, this charming digital analytics podcast is a more casual listen than some of the other podcasts listed here, but it offers just as much technical detail.
When it comes to an industry as wide and complex as data science, extra help in understanding difficult concepts and staying aware of important breaking news is highly valuable. Even if you’ve only just started learning about the industry, these data science podcasts can help you build a strong foundation that will facilitate your learning journey. And complexity aside, the topic of data science involves some of the most interesting and thought-provoking problems, and listening to experts debate these issues can be a fun way to spend your commute.
(And if video is your medium of choice, check out these fascinating data science TED Talks.)
This post was written by Tammi Chng. Tammi is a freelance writer based in Singapore. Specializing in healthcare and technology, she’s never without her head stuck in a book and her mind on the run.