A List of API Podcasts to Follow in 2021 Posted in Strategy Bill Doerrfeld August 3, 2021 Podcasts are a great way to quickly consume information. You can throw your favorite podcast on in the background as you work, while you eat, or while you exercise. But podcasts are not only for entertainment; they can be an excellent way for an industry to exchange ideas. With in-person events muted, the pandemic years saw a swell in new digital thought leadership avenues within most industries. Naturally, the number of API-related podcasts out there grew exponentially. I took the liberty of listening to and reviewing all the new API podcasts I could find. These talk shows are led by some of the most notable figures in the API industry and sponsored by some of the most-loved developer communities. 9 Great API Podcasts Check out these podcasts below for recurring audio-based API knowledge. I’ve included an embedded player on each, as well as other podcast streaming links so you can listen and subscribe from your platform of choice. 1. API Intersection Hosts: Jason Harmon, Adam DuVander Organizer: Stoplight Listen: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Amazon, Stitcher, Overcast, Transistor, Youtube API Intersection is a well-crafted podcast that brings in experienced API practitioners to discuss all types of strategies around designing, building, and maintaining world-class APIs. The podcast also accepts listener questions and answers them within Q&A episodes on specific topics, such as GraphQL. “Building great APIs is about a lot more than just writing code,” says Jason Harmon, host of API Intersection. Harmon, a distinguished API thought leader, has previously headed API design at PayPal and API initiatives at Typeform and Expedia. Adam DuVander also participates as a co-host, bringing his wealth of knowledge on API marketing. Listen to API Intersection for a distillation of insights covering developer experience, API-first, security, governance, tooling, and other strategies. 2. Breaking Changes Host: Kin Lane Organizer: Postman Listen: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Amazon, YouTube How do you write a good API? What does API-first mean? Breaking Changes is a new weekly podcast hosted by Kin Lane, the legendary API Evangelist now taking the mic for Postman to answer these questions. Just as a developer must be aware of breaking changes in the APIs they consume, Breaking Changes, the podcast, helps you spot new trends throughout the industry. Breaking Changes brings in guests from across the API universe to “discuss, debate, and solve the latest topics around APIs and API-first.” To date, the show has featured Mike Amundsen, Lorinda Brandon, James Higginbotham, Alex Reynolds, and others to discuss areas like API-led digital business transformation, navigating the API industry, creating SaaS management platforms, and other topics. Those with API stories can also submit to be a guest on Breaking Changes here. 3. API Resilience Hosts: Kristof Van Tomme, Mark Winberry Organizer: Pronovix Listen: Spotify, YouTube, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Anchor API Resilience began in mid–2020 and already has nearly 30 episodes under its belt at the time of writing. The podcast aims to share knowledge to help folks weave their way into crafting resilient APIs that guide digital transformation and drive business success. The show is led by the Pronovix team, who offer a solid perspective on building usable developer portals. The show brings in figures at the helm of significant API programs and API-related communities, balancing EU and US-based speakers. To date, the show has covered themes such as open banking APIs, developer experience, developer advocacy, developer marketing, building API centers of excellence, and other areas. Industry experts featured on API Resilience include Mark Boyd, Jeannie Hawrysz, Mehdi Medjaoui, Mike Amundsen, and John Musser. Pronovix also supports the API The Docs community and podcast, noted below. 4. APIs You Won’t Hate Hosts: Phil Sturgeon, Matt Trask, Mike Bifulco Organizer: APIs You Won’t Hate Listen: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts The APIs You Won’t Hate podcast describes itself as “a no-nonsense podcast about API design and development.” And, the show lives up to this creed. APIs You Won’t Hate is less polished and more community-centric, being the first podcast on this list not directly tied to a specific tool vendor. Instead, the core maintainer is a consultant in the API field. This helps the show deliver a broad perspective and honest take on the industry. Started in June 2019, the APIs You Won’t Hate podcast is named after the community of the same name, which began as a book authored by Phil Sturgeon. “APIs You Won’t Hate is dedicated to learning, writing, sharing ideas and bettering understanding of API practices,” describes the community mission. To date, the podcast has brought in many luminaries from the API space, including Marc-Andre Giroux, Arnaud Lauret, Taylor Barnett, and others. The APIs You Won’t Hate team of co-hosts, Matt Trask, Mike Bifulco, and Phil Sturgeon, deliver a ton of advice on API practice. They’ve highlighted areas like Swagger vs. OpenAPI, API gateways, GraphQL, sunsetting your API, and more, all while peppering in a bit of bicycle nerdiness and climate awareness. 5. Coding Over Cocktails Hosts: David Brown, Kevin Montalbo Organizer: Toro Cloud Listen: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, Soundcloud, Listen Notes Don’t let its name fool you; Coding over Cocktails is quite sober in its coverage of the cloud and API space. Regardless, why not grab a post–5PM drink as you dawn your headphones for this one? As the introduction describes, the show takes on digital transformation, application integration, low-code application development, data management, and business process automation. Coding Over Cocktails is led by David Brown and assembled by the pro team at Toro Cloud, churning out weekly episodes since September 2020. So far, the show has interviewed many great names in the field of APIs, including figures we’ve featured at Nordic APIs, like Zdenek Nemec, Matthias Biehl, James Higginbotham, and many others. As many of these topics intersect with API integration, Coding Over Cocktails is yet another great podcast for API enthusiasts. It’s wider focus on covering the evolving cloud technology sector may appeal to those looking for broader insights into ancillary areas, including cloud business, containerization, and GitOps. 6. APIs Unplugged Hosts: Matt McLarty, Mike Amundsen Organizer: Mulesoft Listen: Spotify, Soundcloud, Apple Podcasts, Listen Notes Running under the MuleSoft colors, APIs Unplugged is hosted by Matt McLarty and Mike Amundsen. Together, the duo produces new episodes about once a month. “We’re seeing APIs in all walks of life,” reminds Matt McLarty in the inaugural APIs Unplugged episode. It’s a pretty exciting time for APIs, and APIs Unplugged is another resource for staying ahead of your overall strategy. The series covers many facets of enterprise integration and API business ecosystems thinking — put simply: “Connect anything. Change everything.” Some APIs Unplugged episodes simply record a thoughtful discussion between Amundsen and Matt McLarty on a specific theme. But most episodes feature a guest from the API community, such as Ronnie Mitra, Irakli Nadareishvili, Fara Ashiru Jituboh, or David Berlind. One interesting episode digs into API myths and legends, such as Conway’s Law, the Bezos Mandate, “smart endpoints and dumb pipes,” “software is eating the world,” and other theories that affect API platform architecture. 7. API The Docs Hosts: Laura Vass, Anett Pozsár Organizer: API The Docs, Pronovix Listen: Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Breaker, Castbox, Google Podcasts, Overcast, API the Docs is a conference series about API documentation that supports a podcast of the same name. The show is hosted by Laura Vass and Anett Pozsár, who are both from Pronovix. Since this podcast focuses on API documentation, roles like technical writers, developer relations engineers, and API advocates and evangelists should find this one particularly helpful. With the rise of external-facing API products, the public interaction point is becoming more critical to optimize. Thus, it’s a good idea to stay on top of knowledge around API documentation and developer portals. 8. API Storytelling Hosts: Kin Lane, Aidan Cunniffe, Mike Amundsen Listen: Spotify, YouTube, Anchor, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts Storytelling is pivotal to advancing an industry. If you believe stories carry survival lessons, then the art of storytelling is quite important for sharing case studies and forming standard practices. As such, API Storytelling has entered the API podcast realm with a weekly Friday episode. The hosts describe the podcast as “a gathering of API storytellers, exploring what is going on around us each day, using API technology to make sense of who we are.” Featuring Kin Lane, Aidan Cunniffe, and Mike Amundsen (who by now you probably realize gets around quite a bit), API Storytelling is a niche podcast that will resonate with the more hardcore API community members. Listen in for lessons garnered while imparting technical ideas. Plus, there’s the occasional behind-the-scenes dirt on the API space. The words we use matter — thus, discovering the art and impact of stories could be a substantial creative bonus for any API technologist. 9. Traffic and Weather (Discontinued) Hosts: John Sheehan, Steve Marx Sponsors: Sendgrid, Runscope Listen: Listen Notes For a while, APIs were pretty straightforward tools relegated to GET-ing data like geolocation, traffic, and weather. In that era of programming, Traffic and Weather provided a weekly news commentary on the latest API and cloud tools, news, and technologies. Hosted by John Sheehan and Steve Marx, Traffic and Weather produced 34 episodes throughout its reign from 2012 to mid–2015, covering such ground as versioning, SDKs, the rise of real-time APIs, and other topics. Some of the foundational knowledge described in Traffic Weather is still valid today. Though the episodes have since been removed from Apple Podcasts and Soundcloud, the recordings can still be found floating about distant parts of the webosphere — now living on as a fun discovery for internet archeologists and a reminder of the web’s first recurring API podcast. Honorable Mentions Did I miss any API podcasts? Let me know in the comments below, and I’ll consider adding them here! API Leaders Podcast, APIdays APIs over IPAs, Moesif API Academy Podcast APIs Uncensored API: Aiden and Peter Integration Podcast InfoQ Podcast The API Podcast Era Podcasts are all the rage — everyone seems to be creating one. And in 2020, the API space was not immune to the podcast takeover. Podcasts are a digestible, hand-free way to take in case studies, thoughtful debate, and fireside chats. Recurring podcasts can help practitioners stay on top of new undercurrents — important knowledge-sharing for a quickly evolving tech sector. It should be noted that nearly all of these API business podcasts are, at the end of the day, marketing tools driven by the organizers and their vendor agendas. As with any marketing tool, sponsored podcasts will inevitably carry a bit of inherent bias. As such, to get a full spectrum of API knowledge, I recommend subscribing to at least a few of these mentioned above. Also, podcasts are quite demanding to maintain on a regular basis (some such events have already come and gone in our industry). And, as pandemic fears subside, it remains to be seen how long organizers will continue to support these shows along with their other content production endeavors. API podcasts are making remarkable inroads to continue the online discussion and widen the spectrum of who is involved in the API economy. Regardless, I believe there will always be a need for long-form articles, as well as events and conferences, whether digital or in-person, to showcase deep presentations that expand on the complexities of API practice. Personal note: You can check out my appearances on Coding Over Cocktails as well as API Storytelling here and here, respectively.