For the longest time I assumed that web development podcasts were something of an oxymoron: a purely auditory discussion of an intensely visual medium didn’t seem to make a lot of sense. I also thought that any talk about a medium that undergoes a revolution every six months would be rapidly outdated.

How wrong I was: web development podcasts have proved to be a great learning resource, and something I listen to every day. My top five on web development podcasts on Downcast are currently:

ShopTalk

ShoptalkProbably the most practical of all the shows listed here, as hosts Chris Coiyer (of CSS Tricks) and Dave Rupert alternate between answering web development queries (sometimes in “rapidfire” episodes devoted to questions) and interviewing guests, with input from an online audience. Episodes are fast - about 30 ~ 50 minutes - and updated weekly.

The Non-Breaking Space Show

NBSPThe newest of the podcasts listed here (along with ShopTalk), part of the Unmatched Style web design showcase, and probbaly the most professional and formal in presentation. Each episode runs an hour long and features an extended Q & A with a leading personality from the design/development community.

The Web Ahead

The Web AheadPart of the 5 by 5 online broadcast community, The Web Ahead is a look at current web trends, projected into the future. It’s also the only show in the list hosted by a woman, or with a regular emphasis on female guests. Discussion tends to be technical, long (an hour, sometimes two) and technically in-depth, with topics ranging from HTML5 APIs to Content Strategy.

Talentopoly

The hosts start off by comparing what they’re drinking. They swear. They’re totally willing – even eager – to call each other on BS. Calling Talentopoly a “frank and earnest exchange of views” might be an understatement. “Talentopoly” is a web-centric employment site, but the emphasis of the podcast is far broader in scope, covering web development practices, technological evolution, business news and tips for startups.

The Big Web Show

The Big Web ShowAnother show that is part of the 5 by 5 network. Hosted by Jeffrey Zeldman, one of the prime movers and motizators behind web standards and A List Apart. Each episode takes a big-picture look at web technologies and runs about an hour long, usually as a discussion with a personality in the industry. The first few seasons of the series were video, but episodes are now audio only.

Also of note, and on high rotation in my iPhone: Read Between The Leading, a podcast on typography, Let’s Make Mistakes, an ongoing conversation on design, and Dev1.tv, a podcast on entry-level web development with coverage of some advanced topics.