Integrate is a new weekly, hour-long podcast about something consistently relevant in the lives of many students: technology. In each episode hosts A.J. Feather and Mikah Sargent discuss everything from rumored Apple products to net neutrality, all the while informing listeners of how to utilize available technologies to make life more efficient.
Feather and Sargent are relatively new to the podcasting world – neither of them had worked on a podcast before Integrate, which debuted Sunday, February 15. However, what they lack in experience they make up for in genuine passion and awe-inspiring technological knowhow. In fact, their relentless zeal about technology is what inspired them to join forces and create Integrate in the first place.
“I’ve been interested in technology and how I can use it to streamline my life since middle school. It started out [with] rewiring my game consoles so that I could hit as few buttons as possible to turn everything on,” Feather said. “This podcast was a way to do something productive with that obsession.”
Productive, indeed – the first two episodes of Integrate, intriguingly titled “My Money is Ephemeral” and “Put Your Bose Speakers in the Shower” respectively, cover a wide range of topics in recent technological news. The Integrate team ensures that there is a talking point in each episode for everyone. Curious about RadioShack’s recent bankruptcy? Integrate will fill you in. Wondering if the rumors about Apple building an electric car are true? The hosts will join you in gleefully cynical speculation. Enjoy making snide remarks about the Microsoft Zune with your friends? Integrate has that covered, too. The show encompasses all facets of the technological world, from economics to everyday gadgets.
However, the podcast doesn’t focus on simply relaying news stories. The essence of Integrate lies not in the technological information given, but in the way that information is synthesized and how it can be used to make the daily lives of listeners more organized and effective.
“The whole idea behind Integrate is using technology to better your life — be that efficiency, enjoyment, etc. We’re going to talk about timely tech topics, but we’re also going to ponder the ways those timely tech topics can be a benefit or a detriment to our tech-centric lives,” Sargent said. “We’ll always round out the show with recommendations for our listeners: things people should integrate (zing) into their lives.”
Some of these recommendations include the money sending and requesting application Cash by Square, ShowerTunes waterproof speakers and organizational program OmniFocus. These plugs aren’t advertisements, either. All suggestions are based on the Feather and Sargent’s personal preferences, and with each endorsement they describe their experiences with the product as well as how interested listeners should best utilize it.
Though there are numerous outstanding aspects that make Integrate shine, the characteristic that many agree sets it apart from other technological podcasts is its relaxed, conversational tone. Feather and Sargent are likable, relatable and charming, which makes the show accessible to anyone – not just technology buffs.
Ultimately, Integrate is a podcast worth listening to whether you know a great deal about technology or not. Acquiring information is never the wrong decision – especially if you’re learning from people who love what they do – and rest assured, Feather and Sargent are two of the most devoted individuals in the podcasting field. Though fame and glory would be nice, Sargent explained that it isn’t their end goal.
“We’re hoping the ideas we share and the awful jokes we make will resonate. And if they don’t, that’s fine, too. There’s something magical about putting stuff out into the world; even if no one ever discovers what you’ve made, it just feels good to know you’ve contributed to the ever-growing mass of creativity out there.”
Integrate is available on iTunes at https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/integrate/id967723289 and on Stitcher at http://www.stitcher.com/podcast/integrate.