There are a lot of decisions made when you are making a website. When you design and develop a site from scratch, you ask a lot of questions:

  • Who is my target audience?
  • What fonts should I use for the headings?
  • Why do I need a favicon?

These are a few (out of hundreds) questions a web designer asks while creating a website. Most users never stop and think about these questions, but all of the answers help make up the story of your site. A good design has a reason why. Your designer/developer can also explain how.

Jim Hill: The Best Disney History Storyteller

Jim Hill explains the how’s and why’s for one of my favorite subjects – Disney Theme Parks. Although many people wouldn’t make the connection, I often think of websites like theme park attractions. Both are perfect blends of art and functionality. Finding out why a designer decided to make the bottom-border #000000 is the same as finding out why the shop windows on Main Street USA are slightly lower to the ground.

Main Street USA in Walt Disney World (Confectionery)
Sitting on a curb, watching people exit the Magic Kingdom.

I discovered Jim Hill and the Disney Dish Podcast during my 2014 (Disney) addiction tour. After I realized that I wasn’t going to be able to quit Walt Disney World after just one visit, I dove into the rabbit hole and started consuming content. I found Jim and Len Testa’s Podcast and soon realized they were the enablers that would never let me exit.

Jim Hill is an entertainment writer that seems to know everything. His stories about the past and present park makes me wonder if he is actually running the company. Not only does he seem to know everything about the history, he tells the stories in an entertaining fashion.

His partner, Len Testa, is equally impressive. Len is the owner of the popular website and app TouringPlans. He is a computer scientist that created a program to help optimize your trip to Disney. Yes, the computer tells you what time to ride the attractions. It (and he) is genius. Best of all, he also is funny, entertaining, and seems like a genuine human being.

Besides The Disney Dish, Jim Hill has paired up with other amazing co-hosts to discuss other entertainment properties (that I love).

The Many Jim Hill Media Podcasts

At first, there was one podcast: The Disney Dish. Since Jim has launched many wonderful podcasts that scratch my nerd itch. I will cheat a bit and just steal their descriptions from iTunes. I’m sure they can explain the podcast better than I can.

The Disney Dish with Jim Hill

Take a walk through Walt Disney World with TouringPlans’s Len Testa and Jim Hill from as they talk about upcoming projects and rumored happenings from all around the “World”.

Marvel Us Disney

Jim Hill and Aaron Adams explore the Marvel corner of the Walt Disney company, providing unique insights to the inner workings of Marvel Entertainment.

Looking at Lucasfilm

Jim Hill and Dan Z cut through Lucasfilm info like a lightsaber cuts through a tauntaun. (results may vary on whether the hosts smell better on the outside) We ask our listeners to walk in single file, to hide your true numbers.

The Universal Joint

Jim and Dustin sit and rap about the groovier elements at Universal that make you say, “I can dig it” But it’s not just islands of adventure that await you, because there is the whole Universal movie and TV division that goes under the microscope, as well. Get ready for a Universally good time.

I Want That

A Podcast about Toys, and Collectibles.

Why Did I Pick a Podcast featuring Jim Hill?

Lauren, Miles, Eric Hersey meeting Jim Hill at Disney Indy Meet in 2018
Lauren, Eric, and Miles Hersey meeting Jim Hill at Disney Indy Meet in 2018

Even if you are not a Disney theme park, Star Wars, or Marvel fan – you can appreciate good storytelling. Whether it is Jim explaining the executive decision-making process for a new movie or reviewing never-built resorts, you can certainly come away with insights on storytelling.

As a designer, I try to tell a good story through the decisions I made on the website. I use techniques for good user experience and try and tell a story for the brand or company. The goal of a good website is to navigate you to the information you need and do this seamlessly. It should never be a difficult or burdensome task. Hopefully, you are even slightly entertained along the way – much like most of the topics Jim covers in his podcasts.

Sampling a Jim Hill Media Podcast

My personal favorite is The Disney Dish and they have many (many) fabulous episodes. I decided this episode because it showcases quality banter, explains a bit about Len and his job, and also great stories about a common question (FastPass+).