I am Professor of Philosophy at the University of Waikato, New Zealand.
I've been busy over the past almost thirty years exploring the ethical implications of technological change, and the ways in which genetic and cybernetic technologies may alter us. Recently I've been very busy writing about the coronavirus pandemic.
A piece for the ABC that recounts an embarrassing and expensive error with digital tech and uses it to highlight a very profitable digital tech business model that exploits human cognitive frailty.
A piece for the ABC that calls out the suborning of the philosophy of human enhancement by tech and money.
A piece on the ABC that explores a conjecture about increasing levels of time-poverty and the rise of conspiracy thinking.
A piece with the ABC that calls out the politicians' habit of always trying to look on the bright side of advice about the pandemic. Boris Johnson is the worst offender. Australia can put its recent disappointments about Omicron down do political bright-siding of scientific advice.
Achieving herd immunity against COVID-19 requires more than vaccines. It requires cognitive herd immunity.
A piece on Project Syndicate. With policymakers intent on privileging technical “job-ready” majors, it is becoming more difficult for liberal arts departments to attract students. But these fields of study are as important as ever, and with a few modest reforms, they should be an easy sell for today’s “purpose-driven” young people.
This piece on the ABC uses ideas from the behavioural economist Dan Ariely to point to a threat for the in-depth understanding characteristic of the humanities from Wikipedia's knowledge-for-free business model.
A follow up to this piece on the vice of philosophical shit-stirring. And a bit of a mea culpa for past shit-stirring.
A piece on the ABC that suggests we focus more on the knowledge that most of us have acquired about vaccines than on the angry minority who haven't been paying attention.
Piece on the ABC in which I discuss the difficult choices about whether and how to vaccinate against COVID-19 that Australians confront. I offer a warning about the future of ‘flu vaccination.
A piece in the Los Angeles Review of Books written with Stuart Whatley that challenges popular beliefs about exponential improvement as the solution to pretty much everything.
A piece in the Los Angeles Review of Books written with Stuart Whatley that deflates some of the hype that turns tech visionaries into multibillionaires.
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