Thursday, January 23, 2020

Huawei as ritual scapegoat

Thinking about the mythological resonances of two recent op-eds about US posturing regarding 5G (h/t Dale Hatfield) took me to an ancient ritual: scapegoating.

Monday, January 06, 2020

Tech is just a cool tool, folks. Move along now.

For my sins, I occasionally look at corporate PR to see how companies talk about tech. This post by Satya Nadella would certainly win a bunch of Cringe Awards. I was struck (but not surprised) that tech is portrayed as a tool – and not at all as something, as Heidegger argues, that changes everything into stuff-ready-to-be-used (cf. section 2.1 of this SEP entry).

Sunday, January 05, 2020

The T Prize

Someone in Washington DC asked me how the government's R&D agenda could re-invigorate the US wireless manufacturing sector.

Thursday, January 02, 2020


My discovery of a performance of Corelli's La Follia on recorder and harpsichord (Michala Petri and Mahan Esfahani) led me to recordings of follias by Jordi Savall and Hespèrion XXI: La Folia, 1490-1701, and Altre Follie, 1500-1750. What I thought was one composer's set of variations turned out to be a tradition more than two hundred years long.

Though everyone improvised over pretty much the same bass line, each composer brought their own quirks. It was a wonderful reminder that there is great value in saying the same old thing, even just slightly differently.