It's been a long time since I cared about what new features are being release to the SE network, not because I don't care but because it's such a mature and useful product that it's just part of normal life now. However; I await every episode of the podcast with bated breath and I pray there'll be less real content and hours upon hours of Joel and the gang talking utter rubbish about nothing in particular (Air Miles). They (the editors of the podcast) leave a substantial amount of this drivel in the podcast, so I wonder, is there a secondary (primary?) goal of the podcast to be some kind of massive in-joke comedy show?

Bonus question: Does anyone else listen to it purely for comedic value?

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    Are you not entertained?
    – random
    Jun 18, 2015 at 14:05
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    Q. What is Stack Exchange Podcast? A. Hosted by Joel Spolsky with Jay Hanlon and David Fullerton, the Stack Exchange podcast provides an inside look into how a startup is built and a community is nurtured. Source (from Description meta tag): blog.stackoverflow.com/?feed=podcast Don't know was it supposed to be strictly for the original intent as described. Did something got changed? BTW, I do enjoy listening these podcasts. Jun 18, 2015 at 14:34
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    The podcasts are made purely for educational purposes. No rational person would sit down and listen to them for comedic value. At all. Not one single person ever. Never. Never ever. No one would keep going if there was pointless drivel. Not in a podcast, and definitely not in a comment. If you made it this far you are probably immune to drivel, and should add this rss feed: blog.stackoverflow.com/feed . Don't forget to tune into the tavern while listening for bonus drivel.
    – Travis J
    Jun 18, 2015 at 23:39

2 Answers 2


If the mythical they (the editors of the podcast) existed, they might gesture vaguely towards an implied substantial pile of drivel that has been removed from any given podcast recording.

They might indicate that all potential drivel is graded on a complex scale which takes many factors into account including, but not limited to:

  • Was removal of said drivel specifically requested.
  • Who will be embarrassed by said drivel1.
  • How long said drivel drivels on for.
  • How much context does said drivel provide for other sections of the podcast (both so called real and other potential drivel).
  • How much of the podcast would actually remain if said drivel and, optionally, related segments were removed.
  • How interesting is said drivel.
  • How funny is said drivel.
  • How dry the so called real content of the episode in question might be if said drivel was removed.
  • Did the recording of the episode in question accidentally end in a premature fashion requiring major reconstructive surgery, a subtle re-write of history, and an outlandish conspiracy theory designed to obscure the truth.
  • What mood the mythical they (the editors of the podcast) are in.

They (the editors of the podcast) might point out that they strive to strike a healthy balance between interest and entertainment, between information and amusement, between so called real content and drivel. Removing as much as is arbitrarily deemed necessary to achieve this balance, while erring toward removing as little so called real material as possible.

Ultimately, they (the editors of the podcast) would remind you that they (the editors of the podcast) can only work with the material they are provided.2

However, since they (the editors of the podcast) do not exist, what you hear must be exactly how the team sounds when they huddle around a single laptop in a noisy office and talk for approximately 58 minutes and 21.03 seconds about whatever drivel is in their heads at that time.

1See Grading Scale 2b: How to determine if this host has said nice things about the mythical they (the editors of the podcast) recently, and Formulae JF which attempts to determine the likelihood of Joel firing someone because of said drivel (or it's removal) and how likely that is to be an audio editor.

2Or can they?

TMD;DR (Too much drivel; didn't read): As the editor of the podcast I consider it my job to keep what's relevant and remove what's boring, while maintaining and polishing the flow and continuity of a dynamic conversation. Hopefully to the point where it seems as though I didn't have to touch the recording in the first place.

Outside of specific segments which are occasionally marked for removal, editing is generally left to my judgement and I am not given a specific goal of taking the final content in any particular direction. Although, obviously, the initial conversation dictates how much of any given type of material is available for the episode.

Also, as someone who isn't deeply involved in the site, I tend to listen to the podcast for comedic value; this may have helped to shape the symbiotic relationship.

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    If they (the editors of the podcast) existed, I'd be able to tell you that our esteemed podcast hosts have been very happy with the editing they (the editors of the podcast) do, and so they (the editors of the podcast) pretty much have carte blanche to make it work however they can. But they (the editors of the podcast) don't exist. To my knowledge.
    – hairboat
    Jul 6, 2015 at 16:21

The ultimate goal of the podcast is to try to determine whether or not Adnan Syed killed Hae, or whether he was wrongfully convicted. And imma be honest, there's not as much closure there as any of us would like there to be. (I mean, it's like, really clear that Adnan's friend Jay is lying, right? But why?!?)

Failing that, we try to to use it to give listeners some perspective on how we build software and (try to) run a company. Our hope is that it's:

  • At least a tad entertaining
  • Occasionally useful (mostly when we talk about our mistakes)
  • Offers some perspective on the why or the challenges behind the decisisons we make or things we ship (or don't ship)

Ultimately, we're interested in using it as forum anything we think might interest or entertain our community, devs in general, or members of the Joel Spolsky Fan Fiction Society.

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    Is there a Jay fan club we can join? Joel shouldn't be the only one with a society!
    – hichris123
    Jun 18, 2015 at 16:22
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    @hichris123 There is a fan club, but in this fan club mostly we just make fun of Jay. It's our way of telling him we love him. See also twitter.com/df07/status/606880819270057984 Jun 18, 2015 at 17:49

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