Writing and Speaking

I write and speak about technology, business, art, and making. I’m interested in new digital fabrication tools, maker startups and the creative use of technology. I’m also interested in critical approaches to technology, craft and manufacturing. I also love to talk – and ask questions – about all these things.

This blog is a scratchpad for current thinking; it’s where you’ll find hunches, notes and my attempts to work in public.

As part of the Maker Assembly project, I’m also doing some long-form critical writing and interviews, which you can find up on our Medium publication.

A couple of years ago, I did a series of maker profiles for Makezine. Those interviews are also archived below.

I try to keep a note of forthcoming and past talks here on the blog.

You should listen to my podcast, Looking Sideways, which is my excuse to speak with incredibly smart people from the worlds of design, making, technology and more.


Jane ni Dhulchaointigh

Jane ni Dhulchaointigh

Jane is the inventor of Sugru, a mouldable, self-curing rubber that fixes to almost anything. It’s an essential tool in any maker’s kit. The story of Sugru tells us a lot about the stuff around us, and how we can improve our relationship with the designed world.

Fixperts

I spoke to James Carrigan and Daniel Charney, who started Fixperts as a way of teaching design through fixing. We talked about fixing as a way of thinking, and also as a route to agency – the ability to have an impact on the world.

Natalia Buckley

Natalia is a creative technologist, hacker and designer. This is a special extended version of our interview, in which we talked about making and problem-solving, made objects as research probes, and the use of technology as a tool for social investigation.

Chris Thorpe

Chris Thorpe is chief boffin at The Flexiscale Company, a startup that laser-scans historic trains and turns them into 3d-printed models. We talked about the future of manufacturing, what we can learn from the Victorians about innovation and collaboration.

Brendan Dawes

This week, I interviewed the designer and maker Brendan Dawes for my podcast, Looking Sideways. We talked about simplicity in art and design, publishing early and the nice things that happen when you get your work out there for the world to see.

Fab Lab Manchester

Fab Lab Manchester

On a recent visit to Manchester I checked out the UK’s first fab lab, housed in a striking, slab-like building in the waterside district of one of Britain’s great industrial cities.I spoke to Eddie Kirkby (of the Manufacturing Institute) and Haydn Insley (fab lab manager) to find out how the fab lab movement is spreading into the UK.

Alex Deschamps-Sonsino

Alexandra is the designer of Good Night Lamps, a family of net-connected lamps that let you communicate with loved ones remotely. We talked about moving from casual prototyping to commercial manufacturing, and the barriers facing maker-entrepreneurs.

Alice Taylor

Alice is co-founder and CEO of 3D printing startup, Makielab, who make personalised action dolls. We talked about co-designing with alpha geeks, sewing and casual labour, and proving that mass-customisation is possible with physical goods.

Seb Lee-Delisle

Seb is a digital artist and creative coder. He’s exploring the ground where coding and art meet, and creating interactive digital experiences that invite participation.