99% Invisible is a podcast about design in it’s myriad forms. Created and hosted by Roman Mars, it is a weekly podcast containing anything from an exploration of an intriguing architectural design to investigation of Chindogu (the Japanese art of inventing silly and useless gadgets).
As you could infer from a podcast about design, the audio quality and post production of every episode is the gold standard for podcasts. It showcases superb journalism and presents fascinating stories in a way that is engaging, easy to listen to and informative without being pretentious.
I’ve always thought that you can tell when the creator of any piece of media is having fun and that is certainly true of 99% Invisible. Everyone involved in the creation of an episode is excited about what they are discussing and it shines through.
They also have a beautifully designed website with a host of fantastic articles that provide more detail about podcast topics or other explorations of design. You can filter the podcast episodes and articles by a number of categories and build up a playlist of what you find most interesting.
You can pick up the podcast on any episode, their website can help you find something that is particularly resonant with you and you can also find lists of the producer’s favorite episodes.
If I were making a suggestion about where to start: I would point you towards Episode 189 – The Landlord’s Game, an investigation into the history and impact of the board game Monopoly.
This is certainly one of my all time favorite podcasts. It provides a ray of sunshine and happiness when a new installment arrives on my phone every week.