Saturday, July 11th, 2020
Tuesday, June 19th, 2018
Reading Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly.
Thursday, February 9th, 2017
Wednesday, September 28th, 2016
Wednesday, August 5th, 2015
Monday, June 23rd, 2014
Friday, March 28th, 2014
dConstruct 2013 videos
All the videos from last year’s dConstruct have been posted on Vimeo (with a backup on the Internet Archive). If you were there, you can re-live the fun all over again. And if you weren’t there, you can see just what you missed:
- Amber Case
- Luke Wroblewski
- Nicole Sullivan
- Simone Rebaudengo
- Sarah Angliss
- Keren Elazari
- Maciej Cegłowski
- Dan Williams
- Adam Buxton
Revisiting the brilliance of last year’s dConstruct should get you in the mood for this year’s event. Put the date in your calendar: Friday, September 5th. Last year was all about Communicating With Machines. This year will be all about Living With The Network.
More details will be unveiled soon (he said, hoping to cultivate a feeling of mystery and invoke a sense of anticipation).
Tuesday, January 7th, 2014
The annual round-up.
Thursday, January 2nd, 2014
At the start of 2013, I wrote:
Let’s see what this year brings.
Well, it brought much the same as the year before. Here’s what I wrote about 2012:
Nothing particularly earth-shattering happened, and that’s just fine with me. I made some websites. I did some travelling. It was grand.
That’s also true of 2013.
The travelling was particularly nice. Work—specifically conference speaking—brought me to some beautiful locations: Porto, Dubrovnik, and Nürnberg to name just three. And not all of my travelling was work-related. Jessica and I went to the wonderful San Sebastián to celebrate her fortieth birthday. “I’ll take to you to any restaurant in the world for your birthday”, I said. She chose Etxebarri. Good choice.
Conference-speaking took me back to some old favourites too: Freiburg, New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Amsterdam. I’m very lucky (and privileged) to have the opportunity to travel to interesting places, meet my peers, and get up on a stage to geek out to a captive audience. I enjoy the public speaking anyway, but it’s always an extra bonus when it takes me to a nice location. In fact, between you and me, that’s often the biggest criterion for me when it comes to speaking at an event …so if you want me to speak at an event you’re organising in some exotic location, give me a shout.
Mind you, two of my event highlights in 2013 didn’t involve any travelling at all: Responsive Day Out at the start of March, and dConstruct at the start of September, both of them right here in Brighton. I’m really, really pleased with how both of those events turned out. Everyone had a splendid time. I’m already starting to plan the next dConstruct: put Friday, September 5th 2014 in your calendar now. And who knows? …maybe there’ll even be a reprise of the Responsive Day Out in 2014.
It was a big year for Clearleft. We moved into our lovely new building and hired quite a few new lovely people. So much change in such a short period of time was quite nerve-wracking, to be honest, but it’s all turning out just fine (touch wood).
Last year, I wrote:
Both projects continue to be immensely rewarding, although I probably neglected Huffduffer a bit; I definitely spent more time working on The Session. In 2014 I should really devote more time to adactio.com, because I also said:
I’m also hoping to have time to do some more writing.
I suppose I did a fair amount of wordsmithing here in my journal but perhaps in 2014 I might get my teeth stuck into something more bookish again. We’ll see.
So, all in all, a perfectly fine year for me personally and professionally. Like I said, it was grand.
Looking beyond my own personal sphere, 2013 was far from grand. The worst fears of even the most paranoid conspiracy theorist turned out to be nothing compared to what we found out about GCHQ and the NSA. It would be very easy to become despondent and fatalistic about the dystopian cyberpunk reality that we found ourselves living in.
Or we can look on the bright side, like Bruce Schneier, Glenn Greenwald, and Aral are doing. Schneier points out that the crypto works (it was routed around), Greenwald points to the Pinkerian positive overall trend in human history, and Aral reminds us that we have the power to build the kind of technologies we want to see in the world.
Whatever your reaction—despair, hope, or everything in between—we all owe Edward Snowden an enormous debt for his actions. I’m not sure that I would have had his courage were I in his situation. The year—perhaps the decade—belongs to Edward Snowden.
Thursday, December 26th, 2013
That was my jam
Looking back through my jams, I thought that they made for nice little snapshots of the year.
- : Meat Abstract by Therapy? …because apparently I had a dream about Therapy?
- : Jubilee Street by Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds …because I had just been to the gig/rehearsal that Jessica earned us tickets to. That evening was definitely a musical highlight of the year.
- : Atlanta Lie Low by Robert Forster …because I was in Atlanta for An Event Apart.
- : Larsen B by British Sea Power …because I had just seen them play a gig (on their Brighton home turf) and this was the song they left us with.
- : Tramp The Dirt Down by Elvis Costello …because it was either this or Ding Dong, The Witch Is Dead! (or maybe Margaret In A Guillotine). I had previously “jammed” it in August 2012, saying “Elvis Costello (Davy Spillane, Donal Lunny, and Steve Wickham) in 1989. Still waiting.”
- : It’s A Shame About Ray by The Lemonheads …because Ray Harryhausen died.
- : Summertime In England by Van Morrison …because it was a glorious Summer’s day and this was playing on the stereo in the coffee shop I popped into for my morning flat white.
- : Spaceteam by 100 Robots …because Jim borrowed my space helmet for the video.
- : Higgs Boson Blues by Nick Cave And The Bad Seeds …because this was stuck in my head the whole time I was at hacking at CERN (most definitely a highlight of 2013).
- : Hey, Manhattan by Prefab Sprout …because I was in New York.
- : Pulsar by Vangelis …because I was writing about Jocelyn Bell Burnell.
- : Romeo Had Juliette by Lou Reed …because Lou Reed died, and also: this song is pure poetry.
I like This Is My Jam. On the one hand, it’s a low-maintenance little snippet of what’s happening right now. On the other hand, it makes for a lovely collage over time.
Or, as Matt put it back in 2010:
We’ve all been so distracted by The Now that we’ve hardly noticed the beautiful comet tails of personal history trailing in our wake.
Without deliberate planning, we have created amazing new tools for remembering. The real-time web might just be the most elaborate and widely-adopted architecture for self-archival ever created.
Sunday, December 8th, 2013
Ant—the latest super-smart addition to the Clearleft team—describes this year’s Hackfarm, which happened a couple of weeks ago.
It was Ant’s first week. Or, as he described it when we were wrapping up all the hacking, “Best first week at a job ever!”
Monday, October 14th, 2013
Listen to dConstruct 2013
If you didn’t make it to this year’s dConstruct, at least your ears can catch up. If you did make it to this year’s dConstruct, your ears can experience the fun all over again.
The audio is available, is what I’m saying here.
- Amber Case: Ambient Location and the Future of the Interface
- Luke Wroblewski: Infinite Inputs
- Nicole Sullivan: Don’t Feed the Trolls
- Simone Rebaudengo: Great; things are connected, but what will they actually talk about?
- Sarah Angliss: Tech and the Uncanny
- Keren Elazari: The Heroes and Anti-heroes of the Information Age
- Maciej Cegłowski: Fan is a Tool-Using Animal
- Dan Williams: Unexpected Item In The Bagging Area
- Adam Buxton: Is My Laptop Ruining My Life?
While you’re at it, this might be a nice opportunity to go back and explore the dConstruct archive where you can find every talk from every dConstruct from 2005 to 2013. That’s 70 talks, or about 46 hours of listening pleasure.
Share and enjoy!
Wednesday, September 18th, 2013
I’ll even go so far as to say that the line-up both this year and last constituted the best I’ve ever seen at a conference.
Friday, September 13th, 2013
I couldn’t keep up with the processing my brain was doing with the stuff it was seeing and hearing.
dConstruct represents everything that is great and wonderful about humans: our creativity, initiative, collaboration and ability to approach some challenges in slightly leftfield yet genius ways.
Thursday, September 12th, 2013
- Novia En Venus by The Satellite
- Melting Sky by Kaminishi
- Safe and Sound (Loon Calls) by Daughters and Orchids
- Fabula by Ghost Orchid
- …I No Longer Know What I Say by ANOA
- A-5 by Elipsys
- Sorrow by Salter Cane
Yes, that last one is from my band—a little bit of audio nepotism.
There are only a select, in my opinion, beautifully crafted conferences and dConstruct is definitely one of them.
Wednesday, September 11th, 2013
Another round-up of this year’s dConstruct.
Another great write-up of this year’s dConstruct.
Inspired by dConstruct, Ellen is going to start exploring the world of smart objects.