119 years ago on January 10, 1901, on a saltdome hill called Spindletop, the carbon economy with all its complex tradeoffs was born. After Spindletop, liquid fuels became so cheap, and so easily transportable, that the new automotive industry quickly went over to gasoline, navies around the world switched from coal to oil, and railroadsContinue reading “A Texas Story”
Category Archives: technology
Context Is the Query: Rethinking Content and Search
By combining search and browsing history with geographic and other spatial information, mobile devices have greatly accelerated the ability of our favorite applications and websites to predict, suggest, and refine responses to a query–or respond even when no overt query has been made. In other words, context itself has become the new query.
Strange Bedfellows: Social Media And the National Security State
Perhaps the last two trends we’d ever imagine converging are the decades-long path to individual self-expression via technology with the rise of mass surveillance via the national security state. But, on this auspicious fifth of November, we do well to remember how all this came to be.
The Grammar of Google: From Keywords to Conversations
Google’s somewhat muted announcement of a major upgrade to its search algorithm, named “Hummingbird,” is a much bigger deal than it looks, and much more of a milestone in our relationship to computing than we might think. So what’s going on here?
Seven Branding Lessons from iOS 7
Now that the pixels have settled a bit on the iOS 7 release (which, despite some early detractors, is turning out to be one of the more successful releases in the company’s history), let’s look at what all this signifies about Apple as a brand, and what branding lessons we can take away from theContinue reading “Seven Branding Lessons from iOS 7”