Category: Essays

  • Internet amnesia: Clive James & his website

    Clive James

    The writer and cultural critic Clive James died last November, at the age of 80. His website,, lives on. James viewed his website as a way to preserve his work, and even in a sense live forever. What he didn’t realise is that the Web forgets the past all too easily, and sometimes erases it entirely.

  • The internet’s impact on culture

    The advent of streaming, from Spotify and others, was the first sign that the internet might no longer be just a distribution channel for music. In fact, Spotify ended up fundamentally changing how we consume music.

  • The Case For Humanism In Tech

    blue robot

    At the end of 2016, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) issued the first draft of a handbook entitled Ethically Aligned Design. The 138-page document provides guidelines for “prioritizing human wellbeing” in the development and implementation of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Autonomous Systems (AS). I’m sure we all agree that a people-centred approach […]

  • Isolation

    I was at a reception last week at the home of the US Ambassador to New Zealand, Mark Gilbert. The event was in celebration of innovation in New Zealand. “We share an ocean,” joked Ambassador Gilbert, as he listed some things America has in common with New Zealand. He meant the Pacific Ocean. New Zealand’s Minister […]