Posts Tagged ‘introduction’

Starting an obsession with the Rubik’s Cube, from Quartz

Saturday, February 24th, 2018

Always nice to see someone go a little bit deeper into the world of Cube’ing. It;s more than Rubik, but Quartz’s Weekend Obsession post is a good starting piece:

The breakout story of this year’s Super Bowl—for some—wasn’t which quarterback had the best hands, or which call was the most controversial, but who could solve a Rubik’s Cube the fastest.

Was it back-up Eagles wide receiver and special team standout Mack Hollins? Or Patriots starting guard Joe Thuney?

This charming diversion was proof of something we probably didn’t actually need to justify: Nearly 40 years after its invention, the world’s most confounding cube of colors is still going strong.

Read the full piece here.

The Edinburgh Fringe Is Nearly Here

Monday, August 3rd, 2015

Back in August 2005 I started a podcast around the Edinburgh Fringe. It’s now August 2015, and I’m still doing it. The Edinburgh Fringe Show is coming up to the boil, with blog posts, preview podcasts, and diary entries, before the daily on-ehour show kicks off next week on Monday 10th.

Head over to to keep up to date with all the fun of the Fringe.

Get the most from SXSW with my introductory podcasts

Thursday, March 12th, 2015

SXSW is here, and that means I’m in Austin, Texas for the usual jamboree of music, film, and interactive bits and pieces. As always I’ll be blogging, interviewing, and podcasting, over at As part of that, there’s a series of podcasts on how to get the most out of SXSW. You could subscribe to the podcast (here’s the RSS feed), but to get you started, here’s the three ‘primers’ for the two weeks in sunny Austin.

The Beginner’s Podcast

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The Intermediate Podcast

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The Ninja Podcast

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And I’ll have more from Austin and SXSW every day at SXSW Baby!

Support for this year’s podcasts comes from HipChat. Bring your team to life, with group and private chat, file sharing, and integrations, all at

Eurovision 2010 Podcast: An Introduction to Eurovision

Monday, April 26th, 2010

An Introduction to the Eurovision Song Contest (MP3 3.9 mb 4 minutes 9 seconds)
DOWNLOAD the podcast by right clicking on this link, or press play and listen in your browser.


And so it begins.

Here’s the first podcast for this year’s Eurovision Song Contest. It is unofficial, and if you want to get the official Eurovision line, then head over to , but I hope you’ll subscribe to this podcast for your regular hit of Eurovision throughout May, leading up to the Grand Final on May 29th.

In this episode, I take a quick overview of what the Eurovision Song Contest is all about – for fans of the contest this is old ground, but it’s a perfect primer if you want to know what it’s all about.

There’ll be more short guides to Eurovision this week, and next Monday will see the first “Juke Box Jury” of Eurovision as I invite fans and journalists to judge every single song in the contest. After that, live from the floor of Oslo, and anything could happen then!

The Unofficial Eurovision Podcast

Welcome to your window on this year’s Eurovision Song Contest

Monday, April 26th, 2010

In summary, if you are one of the few people who cannot stand Eurovision, then please remember normal service will resume at the end of May.

For everyone else, it’s almost May, and that means it’s time to gear up for coverage of the Eurovision Song Contest for 2010. Just like last year, I’ll be flying out to the stadium to provide live coverage from the heart of Eurovision. This year it’s in Oslo, Norway, which is thankfully a lot easier to get to than Moscow. The flight out (ash willing) is on May 21st, and I’ll be in the Eurovision world till May 30th.

This year, I’ve created a landing page that will guide you through all my Eurovision coverage – you can find it at – although if you regularly follow the blog then it will all be appearing in the regular RSS feed and pages.

I’ll be doing four main strands of coverage, all of which will be linked from here.


Let’s be honest, for the few hours that the live show is on, I turn into a whirling dervish of texts as i provide a full running commentary from the stadium floor. If you’ve never experienced Eurovision this way, then you should follow me (@ewan) and keep the page open on the night with F5 at the ready. Lots of trivia and information on the acts, the show, and anything else that crops up.

Podcasts and Commentary Tracks

Last year I debuted my audio commentary track for those of you watching on the internet stream ( or who just wanted something a little different to the regular TV commentators. I’ll be doing the same again this year, but building up the audio a little bit more with a series of podcasts in the run up to the competition.

This week you’ll have a number of short podcasts introducing Eurovision, the rules, songs, scoring and other quirks in these Short Guides to Eurovision. After that, the second wave of podcasts will look at each Eurovision Song entered this year over eight episodes of Eurovision Juke Box Jury.

I’ll then hop on a plane to get to Oslo to be there for Eurovision Week with a mix of the Commentary Tracks and a series of Q&A’s from Eurovision with whatever pundits and guest I can find.


I’m going to keep this new web service in my mind, where people can ask questions and I get to give full answers. As well as giving you a route to ask me about Eurovision issues, it’s probably going to contribute to the Q&A podcasts.

Writing a lot

Should be obvious, but I’ll be doing a fair amount of blogging and analysis from Oslo – some of it will be here on this blog, some articles will be for other publications. I’ll link to anything that gets published.

Russian Eurovision Opening Act, 2009

Russia’s warm-up for the 2009 show

And for those of you who have a secret love of Eurovision and aren’t quite ready to come out, I won’t tell anyone if you do get in touch or secretly follow the coverage online – the internet’s good for that sort of thing.

Eight weeks till Eurovision 2010

Monday, April 5th, 2010

In eight weeks time, this year’s Eurovision Song Contest will be over, and I’ll be back from Oslo in Edinburgh.

Just as last year, I’ll be covering the event online from inside the stadium not just on the night of the Grand Final (May 29th) but also the two semi finals (May 25th and 27th), but also in the run up to the ‘Eurovision Week’ of staging, rehearsals, backstage fun and everything else that goes into one of the world’s most popular TV show in the world.

The easiest way to follow me is going to be on Twitter (follow @Ewan), where I’ve been providing the ever popular live textual commentary to the Song Contests for the last four years worth of contests. Here’s last year’s Top Ten tweets, as voted for by readers of the site

Other than that, keep popping back here,as I’ll be linking out to articles, features and interviews that I’m doing for a number of sites and publications – more on those as we get closer to the date – plus I’ll be offering as much opportunity to get your questions answered, the return of the Beginners Guide to Eurovision, and there’s a couple of new bits of Web 2.0 stuff that could work well in Oslo!

Moscow's Eurovision Warmup

Remember, Eurovision is more than just the show on the Saturday night, there’s more than enough fun to keep a smile on your face for all of May!

A Beginners Guide to Eurovision, Part 2

Tuesday, May 5th, 2009

Following on from yesterday’s introduction, this Beginners Guide to the Eurovision Song Contest looks at the major element – the song.

The die-hard Eurovision fan should already know these rules and regulations about the song, but they do crop up frequently with people who are new to the contest – especially when you invite them to your Eurovision Party to watch the Song Contest! So pass these videos around when you send out your invitations!

Part three can be found here.

A Beginners Guide To Eurovision, Part 1

Monday, May 4th, 2009

As promised last week, part of my online coverage of this year’s Eurovision Song Contest is a series of short videos introducing the song contest to people new to the yearly spectacular.

There’s nothing here that a Eurovision fan will not already know, but be clear, you;re not quite the target audience for these videos. They’re for you to pass round your office, to your friends, and link to from your site to spread the word about the contest – especially to those outside Europe who have the opportunity to watch the show online for free (via the official site but might have never heard of it, or are aware of it as some nebulous ‘thing’ that happens in May.

There are five guides in total, one for each day this week. And once everyone is up to speed, I’ll jump on a flight to Moscow and start reporting from the show floor.

If you’d like to be in one of the shows from Moscow (I’m looking at a mix of chat show and interviews) then do get in touch by mail ( You’ll also find me covering the show via Twitter (@ewanspence).

Part Two (The Songs of Eurovision) can be found here