Welcome to this piece of internet I bought
This is my 'best of me' page. It's a portfolio, not a blog; a collection of the work that I've done over the years of which I am most proud. This is why, in one or two cases (ahem), some of the pieces are getting a little bit dusty. I keep them here because I still think each of them is important - and that as a whole, they give you a very quick scrapbook-view of what is important to me.
I find the future fascinating and (in most cases) I am unapologetically hopeful about what science and technology will offer us. This does not make an evangelist: I am a bioethicist by training and believe that technology is only as good as the people in control of it. This is what I like most to investigate: who is promising what and why, and who the winners and losers of the next great scientific and technological upheavals will be.
It's easy to be sensationalist about the future: holding up a cancer cure one moment and screaming that the nanobots are coming the next. I don't do that. I like days of reading academic papers, in preparation for interviews with people who are the best in their fields. I like talking to people who know more than I do. I like taking everything I know, every paper I've read and every interview I've conducted and turning that into an article that (I hope), everyone will finish feeling informed.
If you'd like to get in touch, or commission me to write for you, here's my contact page.
Russia Has Turned Ukraine Into a Giant Minefield - An urgent, underreported catastrophe: Russian soldiers have contaminated an area more than twice the size of Austria with antipersonnel mines that will kill Ukrainians indiscriminately for decades.
Mark Hiznay, Human Rights Watch; Ruth Bottomley, consultant and landmine researcher; Olesia Fesenko, The HALO Trust
Could We Fall In Love With Robots? - What does a human being need for companionship? And can that be replicated by an app, an amourous Alexa or a built-for-purpose robot?
Dr. Diana Fleischman, Dr. John Danaher, Dr. Kate Devlin
What To Do With Pandemic Flu - A two-month investigation into pandemic disease planning and prevention written within weeks of the first reports of Covid-19.
Professor Derek Smith; Ellen Fragaszy, senior research fellow, University College London Institute of Health Informatics
What Will Tomorrow's Kids Make of Robot Pets? - Exploring how and why children cherish smart toys, and how the distinction between synthetic and natural is closing.
Dr. Fangwu Tung; Mark Palatucci, co-founder and head of cloud AI & machine learning, Anki.
How to Live When Nobody Dies - Examining the science, ethics (and likelihood) of an ageless society.
Professor John Harris
What's Wrong With Eating People? - "Extolling the virtues of cannibalism." - A US blogger who did not read the article but really livened up my Twitter for a week.
Dr. Bill Schutt, Dr. Koert Van Mensvoort, Dr. John Loike
A Shortage of Legitimate Donors Is Fuelling the Black Market Organ Trade - In a free market, who's to say what a person does with their 'spare' kidney?
Professor Nancy Scheper-Hughes, Professor Monir Moniruzzaman
Brainjacking: are medical implants the next target for hackers? - We protect phones and laptops better than pacemakers and DBS implants. For all our sakes this must change.
Dr. Laurie Pycroft
Why Some Parents Choose to Have a Deaf Baby - Is deafness a culture, or a disability? And should couples be allowed to choose it for their children?
Paul Redfern; Anna Tsekouras British Deaf Association
In the future, there will be a pill for falling in love - What would it mean to choose the people we love? Or have others choose for us?
Dr. Brian Earp
Could 3D-printed organs be medicine’s next black market? - A cheaply grown replacement organ is better than no organ at all, right?
Dr. Bertalan Mesko