Advocating for a .leeds domain

In late June, I wrote to the CEO and CIO of Leeds City Council, advocating that the city should invest in the creation of a top-level domain for Leeds. There’s nothing particularly sensitive or confidential, so I thought I’d share the letter publicly and whether it’s an idea that resonates with the city’s other residents… […]

Textual Healing & Meaning Mining

What could you do with an archive of every text and photo message you'd sent or received between April 2008 and December 2010? This is the question I've been asking myself since O2 closed its Bluebook service, allowing users to export their data for posterity. The data is a prosaic 2.6MB package of XML documents, […]


I rarely watch much TV, but last Thursday I serendipitously flipped on the chattering cyclops to see a heartwarming episode of BBC's DIY SOS, focussing on the renovation of a young family's home in Haydock. What was striking this family's surrounding community, was not simply the degree to which neighbours, tradesmen and acquaintances freely contributed their […]

Ideas for Cities

In establishing CARBON:imagineering, a little over three years ago, one of our goals was to reinvigorate the technology ecosphere in Leeds and more broadly, Northern England. In the course of this journey, I've come to believe that cities, and our understanding of the concept of a city, are critical to this, and other wider projects. […]

Save To… the Cloud?

A couple of years ago, my good friend Ian Pringle wrote about the anachronistic persistence of a floppy disc icon to indicate a save command. Ian noted that the notion of ‘saving’ in an age of web applications is itself an absurd notion and that state is perhaps more appropriate – recording a temporal snapshot […]

Fuzzy Inside

There's been an interesting confluence of commentary recently on why precision is not only unnecessary, but perhaps undesirable, in the formulation of communication services… Dopplr's Matt Jones reflects on Google's Latitude location-sharing service, noting that designing Dopplr to be 'nothing more granular than cities-as-place and days-as-time' is enough to fulfill the goal of surfacing serendipity. […]


A pair of recent articles – Scott Brown's Facebook Friendonomics and Mashable's 12 Great Tales of De-Friending – have raised some interesting questions on the longevity and sustainability of relationships established within social networks. Brown speculates around the problematic notion of never losing touch with anyone in environments such as Facebook. Most notably losing the […]

We Can Remember It For You Wholesale

Last week the UK’s Home Office, began to considering plans to archive all email and telephony communication as part of the forthcoming Communications Data Bill and ongoing national security operations. As both the BBC and the Times have noted, the proposals originate from an administration that has a comically appalling record of data loss. Like […]

1-Click Data Portability

I used to be Freeserve+Wanadoo’s digital identity futures guy – providing technology intel on Hailstorm, Liberty Alliance, Sxip and LID; eventually some of our work contributed to the adoption of  OpenID across Orange. Throughout this work, no initiative ever seemed to begin with a simple exploration, storyboarding or visualisation of a user’s journey or experience […]

Mixed Reality & Exploring Deep Place

In recent weeks I’ve been thinking that a confluence of innovations could begin to usher in an era of mixed reality and augmented reality applications… Together, Google’s APIs for mobile maps and mobile search provide a ubiquitous substrate for locative media. Phones & cell networks  are now capable of multiple methods of locating themselves – […]