Latest Posts

Book reviews: Holiday reading

"I came for the crack," a woman once said to me reproachfully at a party. She was miffed that I and the third person in the conversation had embarked on an impassioned discussion of…cryptography.

December 16, 2011 by Book Reviews


Book review: The Future of Looking Back

You probably have an old family photo album with pictures of relatives you may or may not recognise. Perhaps you inherited knickknacks or heirlooms, holiday souvenirs, or bundles of old love letters.

December 2, 2011 by Book Reviews


Book review: Steve Jobs

"All progress depends on the unreasonable man," George Bernard Shaw wrote in 'Maxims for Revolutionists', part of the preface to his play Man and Superman. No-one who's read anything about Steve Jobs over the last 40 years is likely to need Walter Isaacson's 600-plus pages to convince them that Steve Jobs was a very unreasonable man.

November 7, 2011 by Book Reviews


Wikileaks books roundup

In The Revolution Will Be Digitised, Heather Brooke criticises Julian Assange for allowing himself and Wikileaks to become the media story rather than the materials Wikileaks uncovered and published.

October 3, 2011 by Book Reviews


Book Review: The Filter Bubble

Ever since about 1995, when Nicholas Negroponte, then head of the MIT Media Lab, began talking about The Daily Me, a newspaper that would be built entirely of articles that interested you, the internet's potential to become an echo chamber has been obvious. In The Filter Bubble Eli Pariser — echoing a growing cry among those old enough to remember the early days — says this is not what the internet pioneers promised.

September 27, 2011 by Book Reviews


Book review: My Beautiful Genome

To my mother, there were two kinds of people: blood relatives and strangers. It's hard to imagine what she would have made of today's genetic testing, which shows, among other things, the complex and convoluted ways an African-American may be descended from a white Scot, and that all the many Cohens in the world may be related.

September 19, 2011 by Book Reviews


Book review: Location-Aware Applications

Location, location, location: it's not just for estate agents any more. As smartphones take a larger share of both the phone and the computing market, where we are (or where we want to be) becomes ever more important.

September 7, 2011 by Book Reviews