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Entries Tagged as 'tech'

The Podcasting Software We Deserve

September 6th, 2014 · No Comments

As summer draws to a close and the evening appears ever nearer, a young man’s fancy naturally turns to the production and distribution of podcasts.
I listen to several podcasts and I co-host The Cultures podcast with Naomi Alderman and Andrea Phillips. As such, I feel I have the bare minimum amount of experience required to [...]

Tags: adrian · tech

The Illusion: Digital Commissioning #5

August 27th, 2014 · 1 Comment

In my previous post, Part 4: The Pull, I talked about why, given all of these issues, independent companies continue to pitch for digital commissions from the BBC. In this post I’ll explore some of the problems faced by digital indies including low pay, and lack of prestige, reach, and creative control.
I also realise that [...]

Tags: bbc · tech

We’re Smart People and We Mean Well

June 30th, 2014 · No Comments

By now, many of you will know about Facebook’s experimental study in which they attempted (successfully, they claim) to make their users sadder or happier by manipulating their News Feeds – without their informed consent. To call the study controversial would be an understatement. Unethical, arrogant, and bone-headed would be a little more accurate.
Beyond [...]

Tags: adrian · psych · tech

The Pull: Digital Commissioning #4

May 19th, 2014 · 1 Comment

In my previous post, Part 3: World Enough and Time, I talked about the problem of focusing on kids and educational digital projects; commissioners being too busy; not competing against the best; and being unduly influenced by big tech companies. In this post I’ll explore why, given all of these issues, independent companies continue to [...]

Tags: bbc · tech

World Enough and Time: Digital Commissioning #3

May 12th, 2014 · 1 Comment

In my previous post, Part 2: The Magic Roundabout, I talked about commissioners moving in and out of the BBC all the time; why there’s a strong incentive to mislead everyone on how awesome your commissions were; and why the BBC is so risk averse, particularly for digital projects. In this post I’ll explore the [...]

Tags: bbc · tech

The Magic Roundabout: Digital Commissioning #2

May 7th, 2014 · 1 Comment

In my previous post, Part 1: Setting the Scene, I talked about how it’s difficult to judge the success of any commission (digital or otherwise) particularly when the BBC’s many conflicting stakeholders mean that the definition of ’success’ is highly debatable. In this post I’ll be looking at commissioners moving in and out of the [...]

Tags: bbc · tech

The Public Service Internet

January 14th, 2014 · No Comments

When Google extends its grasp on our personal data by acquiring yet another company, there are three responses you can take:
1. Boycott Google services (Gmail, Google Maps, Google Search, Google Docs, Android, Chrome, etc.) and hope that if enough people follow, they’ll be forced to change their policies on advertising and retention. This may require [...]

Tags: tech

Why The Circle Won’t Happen

October 10th, 2013 · No Comments

(in which, yes, I discuss the plot of the book)
This week, Nest announced a ‘beautiful’ new smoke alarm that’s more advanced, more connected, more user-friendly, and more expensive than anything else on the market. Naturally, the press jumped on it like a Republican on a closed national monument.
It does a lot — it monitors both smoke [...]

Tags: book · future · tech

How do we make a friendly AI?

October 6th, 2013 · No Comments

How we do avoid creating a superhuman artificial intelligence (AI) that does not end up harming humanity? This is a question of great consequence to AI researchers and thinkers who believe that future AIs will have capabilities and will act in a way completely different and unfathomable to humans, just as our actions may seem [...]

Tags: science · tech

Could health insurers subsidise the iWatch?

October 5th, 2013 · 1 Comment

A major reason why Apple has sold so many iPhones in the US is due to the unusual way phones are subsidised by carriers over there. Very few people buy an iPhone for the full, off-contract $649+ price — instead, they get it for ‘only’ $99 or $199, with the rest of the phone’s cost [...]

Tags: apple · tech