The “theme” for this week in Blaugust is “Creators Appreciation Week” or something along those lines. I’m not really great at this sort of thing, I can’t really say I particularly have any sort of “idols” or anything and I follow a zillion people on various platforms, I could never really properly pick even a handful to ever spotlight. Plus it always just feels weird to me to put anyone on a pedestal, though maybe I shouldn’t feel that way, people appreciate being appreciated usually.
Instead, I guess, I wanted to talk a bit about Leo Laporte, “The Tech Guy,” though I am not sure he really goes by that anymore since his syndicated radio show ended.
Because of all the content creators out there that I do follow, I’ve possibly followed Leo the longest. Leo currently runs the TWIT Podcast network, or at least, hosts most of the shows, I think his wife actually “runs” things. He created it, however. It’s a collection of tech-themed podcasts on a variety of topics.
I’ve followed Leo since before that time though. I actually have a bit of a funny history there. Back when I was in High School, I think probably at the tail end, around 1997 or 1998, while living in Indiana, our cable added a channel, ZDTV. The whole channel had this great almost cable-access feel to it. I don’t remember a ton of the other shows, but I always would watch The Screen Savers, with Leo Laporte and Kate Botello as the hosts. They would just, talk about all sorts of computer and techy stuff. The content was perfect, and the production quality was a bit dodgy, it was the best show I had ever seen.
After High School, I briefly attended school at IUPUI for one semester. During that time, my dad transferred his job and my parents moved back to Illinois. I lived with my aunt and uncle for a bit attending school. After that one semester, I moved back in with my parents in Illinois.
Which meant no more ZDTV, no more Screen Savers, the cable we had in Illinois didn’t carry ZDTV.
Which is where the “funny part” comes in. From what I gather, a lot of Leo’s followers and fans came from his time on TechTV, and later G4, which ZDTV transformed into. I am not sure I’ve ever had access to or watched G4 TV at all. I just caught him early on with it was still ZDTV.
A good while later, and I have no idea how I discovered it, but it was very very early on in the life of it, I discovered TWIT. I should probably sidestep here to mention, TWIT stands for “This Week in Tech”. It may have been the only show at the time, and Leo was doing it out of his house or maybe just the original Cottage (hell it may have been the same thing), but there he was, Leo Laporte, still talking tech. On a weekly basis, in a podcast.
So I picked it up. I had to download each episode manually to put on my music player but I started listening every week. In fact, I’m not sure I have missed an episode in all that time, not of TWIT at least.
Eventually, TWIT became the TWIT Network and added more shows. I picked up Windows Weekly very early on. I used to listen to Net@Nite with Amber Weekly until it turned into This Week in Google, which I listened to for a while but don’t currently. Occasionally I pick up episodes of Security Now. I mostly stick to Windows Weekly and TWIT, I am a big fan of Paul Thurrott, who can get a little repetitive in his rants but I sympathize with a lot of his grievances so much.
Ever present in these shows is Leo though, who hosts most of them. I also really enjoy the rotating menagerie of interesting people each week on TWIT. I’ve picked up so many blogs and other accounts to follow through TWIT. It’s one of the things I look forward to the most each week honestly and it’s always entertaining.