The ‘West’ is losing. How could it not?

I’m pretty sure that February 24th, 2022 is going to be found in the history books of the future; if those books ever get written and we don’t end up witnessing how a nuclear winter really looks like. The predictability of a Europe, and later United States-dominated world, where the ‘West’ ruled and enjoyed unprecedented levels of comfort, material wealth and peace and the rest of the world either suffered or very gradually developed, feeding from the leftovers of Western consumption and interests, is no more. Like an engine whose gears are slowly becoming loose, one by one the basic…

Regression 11

Months before Windows 95 came out in late August 1995, a number of screenshots from β versions of the much touted and eagerly awaited operating environment had circulated both on the, then nascent World Wide Web, and the computing press. Among the most profound changes from earlier incarnations of Windows was the introduction of the ‘Start’ button and accompanying menu, that replaced the earlier ‘Program Manager’ and provided easy access to documents, applications, settings and system features from a single place, conveniently accessed through an obvious button located at the bottom left of the computer screen. The significance of the…

Oh that’s bad!

– How many of you are from consulting? Oh, that’s bad! Yeah. A mind is too important to waste. You should do something! – Why is it bad to be in consulting? – The only consultants I’ve seen that I think are truly useful as the ones that help us sell our computers, but other than that, seriously, I don’t think there’s anything inherently evil in consulting; I think that without owning something, over an extended period of time, like a few years, where one has a chance to take responsibility for one’s recommendations, where one has to see one’s…

EVs – For the Few.

For several decades, automobiles have been synonymous with the democratization of mobility both within and beyond the city, for billions of people across the globe. You would think that by switching to Electric Vehicles (EVs) en masse, we’d be replacing ‘traditional’ cars with something better, cleaner, faster and cheaper to run, but also easier to operate and maintain. But, as countries, manufacturers, universities, associations of all kinds and the press alike, tout, support, subsidize and extol the virtues of Electric Vehicles, I struggle to see how exactly EVs, by themselves, will help anyone, but the top single percentiles of the society,…

Re-clamping the 52/10

Thirty years ago my mother bought me a (now vintage) Faber Castell 52/10 ‘Sharpening Machine’. To the 10 year old me this was a very welcome gift, that has adorned all of my desks ever since and helped sharpen hundreds of pencils throughout my life.

On Remote Working

My interest in remote working dates from the early 2000s, when I got my first broadband connection at home, or rather at what was my “home“ at the time, Imperial College London’s postgraduate accommodation at Clayponds Village located next to Gunnersbury Park in west London. Clayponds was a very interesting place, with a great atmosphere and facilities. The tenants there were mostly Masters and Ph.D students. Before my time there, people used to get open-ended leases, that is they could stay for as long as they needed to. This wasn’t the case with most other Imperial halls of residence at…