Category: Technology

  • The hate factory

    In news that’ll surprise nobody, Elon Musk’s Twitter has become a hate factory. Hate speech on Twitter has existed for a long time, but it was previously considered a problem; now, it’s a feature. A new report shows that if you pay for a Twitter Blue subscription, you get a free pass for hate speech. […]

  • The Girl Who Lost Her Glasses

    Thanks to my friend and colleague Craig Grannell, I’ve been reminded of a short story I wrote for tech site in (I think) 2016. I can’t find it online any more so I’m reposting it here. It’s called The Girl Who Lost Her Glasses. Kara didn’t notice at first. The apartment temperature was just […]

  • “Stop talking to each other and start hurting each other.”

    This, by Cat Valente, is a superb piece about the inevitable ruin of social media – a pattern that repeats again and again. I’m so tired of just harmlessly getting together with other weird geeks and going to what amounts to a digital pub after work and waking up one day to find every pint […]

  • Overshared

    Following on from my last post about “disruptive” tech firms, this excellent Jen Sorensen cartoon was published on The Nib (click <– for full strip).

  • Uber is running out of road

    I’m deeply cynical about so-called disruptive businesses: the AirBnbs, the Deliveroos, the Ubers. I don’t think there’s anything particularly admirable about using VC money to undercut and destroy the competition or trying to evade the regulations designed to protect the people who use the service or the people who do the work. But I was […]

  • Stick your rainbow

    I wrote a piece for T3 about Pride Month and the way some tech firms’ support for the LGBT+ community doesn’t go beyond putting a rainbow on their social media logo. Earlier this year, a damning study by GLAAD confirmed what marginalised people already know: every single major social networking platform is “categorically unsafe” for […]

  • Doing it for the kids

    My son and daughter go to different schools but right now they’re getting their education in the same location: my home. They’re both learning remotely, joining their classmates and teachers on Microsoft Teams and using things like my phone to take pictures of their work and upload it to the school. What’s really striking about […]

  • Adam Banks RIP

    Sad news today: Adam Banks has died. Adam was the guiding light of MacUser magazine, one of the UK’s very best magazines, and while I never worked for him I was a great admirer not just of his magazine but of the love his contributors clearly had for him. He and I were friends on […]

  • Facebook: fighting fascism is bad for business

    There’s a damning section in this NYT piece about Facebook’s ongoing refusal to deal with misinformation and hate speech. The company had surveyed users about whether certain posts they had seen were “good for the world” or “bad for the world.” They found that high-reach posts — posts seen by many users — were more […]

  • An overdue apology

    The history of computing has its shameful parts. For example, you’ve probably read about how Alan Turing, the father of modern computing, was persecuted, lost his job and was ultimately driven to suicide for being gay. But you might not know about Lynn Conway, a hugely significant figure in modern computing who’s life was destroyed […]