Enigmas. Things that cannot be understood; things that must be unravelled and unriddled. Things that are not what they seem.

This series is, in many ways, about enigmas, but here we’re talking about a literal one: the Enigma machine. This is the story of the codebreakers of Bletchley Park, including Alan Turing, who broke the German cypher and helped to end the war. But it is also the story of what we can and cannot know, and how little secrets beget bigger ones…

Bletchley Park combines my interest in British intelligence with my interest in Milton Keynes (about which I…


The Devil’s Chimney, pictured from up on Leckhampton Hill

This is an episode about a limestone pillar left standing like a single, spindly finger in an abandoned quarry on Leckhampton Hill. Locals say it’s the chimney the devil uses to funnel his pipe fumes after locals buried him in a pile of stones (though, in reality, it’s only a couple of hundred years old).

The Devil’s Chimney says a lot about the town it overlooks, Cheltenham. It tells of a folklore and a sense of right and wrong. It is a story which lies as metaphor and underpins this episode, which ranges from the fogs of pre-history through…


The interview subject, caught by surprise by the Photobooth app

London is associated with many things. The titular ‘great fire’ of 1666, for example, or the movie Wimbledon, starring Kirsten Dunst and Paul Bettany. But it is not usually associated with cutting-edge technological breakthroughs. It’s not usually associated with thehot new medium breaking out across the world: podcasts.

Tucked away in the ground-floor flat of a house in the sleepy neighbourhood of ‘Brixton’, podcaster Nick Hilton, 28, lives with his partner, age tbc, and dog, Tub, 3. …


A whole new raft of product ;)

For most of my life, I believed, naively, that I understood the meaning of the word ‘product’. It’s a thing you make, and maybe sell. Right?

But then I began to see ‘product’ taking on a more nebulous role, in job titles, industrial press releases, inspirational wannabe-CEO YouTube videos. And the meaning seem to expand beyond ‘a thing you make, and maybe sell’ (which was pretty broad to begin with) to mean basically anything the user wants it to mean. If the word ‘product’ were a product, it would be the Swiss army knife of product.

As regular readers of…


BuriedTreasureCoin™ alongside some of our closest competitors

Hi guys. I’ve got an idea for a new “cryptocurrency” and I’m looking for some cult-like supporters of the concept.

The idea is simple: I will bury some treasure. Only I — and one executive witness, preferably Ken Jennings, but, failing that, I would accept Austin Rogers or James Holzhauer — will know where that treasure has been buried and what it comprises of. It will contain something that could loosely be defined as treasure but could equally be defined as art, and the one thing we all know about art is that its value is not correlated to any…


Is Heroes still a relevant cultural touchstone?

I hope that podcasters’ therapists are getting paid overtime this week. All the tectonic plates of podcasting have shifted at once, and many of us have been left with more questions, and more anxieties, than we had before.

So this is just a quick blog to remind everyone that podcasting needs its indie podcasters. Yes, it needs its Gimlets, its Earwolfs; its iHeartRadios and its 99% Invisibles. But it also needs Joe and Jane Podcaster, and here’s why…

20 years ago, when podcasting was just a glint in the milkman’s eye, anyone and everyone had the same opportunity. Apple were…


The great Apple in the sky has spoken! Podcasting is saved! Long live our fruit-based overlords!

As I anticipated in my article 5 Predictions for Podcasting in 2021 (indeed it was prediction №1), Apple has awoken. At an event where they launched a new iPad Pro and a range of iMacs so skinny they finally understand how Kate Moss felt, Tim Cook delivered a bit of a bombshell for podcasters — a totally redesigned Apple Podcasts app, new Podcasts Connect interface, and, crucially, a subscription service to help podcasters paywall their content.

If you want to better understand the…


PodCnut turns back the YouTube tide

For my sins, I watch a lot of YouTube. I watch enough that, at this point, the algorithm is perfectly capable of serving me up a homepage buffet where I would willingly gorge myself on every item. Take now, for example, when I go onto YouTube.com I’m offered: Aliens in Fornite, extended highlights of the 2013 Wimbledon final, live World Poker Tour action, Europa League clips, and, perhaps best of all, a gorilla facing off against naturalist Steve Backshall.


Graphic design is my passion.

Here in the UK, media watchers are obsessed by one thing: the launch of GB News.

GB News — when it hits screens at some point in the coming weeks/months — will be a news channel with a right-of-centre tilt, taking its playbook from the success of Fox News in the US and focusing on “original news, opinion and debate”. It’s funded by a variety of mass media companies, private investment firms, and Paul Marshall, who previously funded UnHerd, another sub-Spectator, free-speech obsessed right-of-centre outfit. Their big coup has been signing up Andrew Neil as a presenter and chairman. …


This is a low-resolution screenshot from The Simpsons — enjoy!

I’m always wary when people talk about a ‘new tool’ that will ‘change podcasting’, because, let’s face it, very few (maybe even none) have had any impact in the past decade. But I’m extra wary when the product that’s going to ‘change podcasting forever’ isn’t even a podcasting product.

I’ve been on Clubhouse, the new audio hangout app, for a couple of days now, which makes me an expert. It’s currently in some sort of mysterious invite only beta (thank you Bethany!) and is only for iPhone, so it’s hardly a pluralist tool. But it’s getting a lot of attention…

Nick Hilton

Writer. Podcast entrepreneur. London. Interested in politics and the media. Co-founder podotpods.com Email: nick@podotpods.com.

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