I recently recorded a podcast with Richard Adams of TECHnique. Technology for Sceptics is episode number 27 (February 2019), available on iTunes.

We discuss my work going back two decades, and then touch on questions about digital art and meaning, about Surrealism, and my ‘For Sceptics’ approach to technology.

I’ve given talks and blogged on AI for ScepticsBlockchain for Sceptics, and Facebook for Sceptics. The idea behind the ‘For Sceptics’ format is to:

  • make complex technologies accessible and ask: what can the technology actually do (whatever the hype)?
  • empower people to be critical, from whatever standpoint they choose, of technology, the issues surrounding its use, and the agendas of those behind it
  • encourage a creative response e.g. new artistic practice, or an alternative agenda that would yield greater societal value

For Sceptics argues that technology should not be considered in isolation from the powers (corporations and governments) that deploy it and the agendas behind its development and use. For Sceptics is against ‘tech solutionism’: the idea that technology can magically solve problems even when they are clearly not technological in nature but are political, social, environmental, etc.

For Sceptics ranges itself against the ‘For Dummies’ culture of swallowing whatever ‘big tech’ (and other popular ideologies) throw at us.

Our world is not short of topics to be sceptical about. Along with AI, Blockchain and Facebook we could add Brexit, vaccinations (what is the science, who is questioning the science and why?), the internet of things, virtual reality and mundane things like coffee, which pervade our lives backed by very large corporate wealth.

We need to take back the term ‘sceptic’ from people who are simply deniers, like ‘climate change sceptics’. And get creative and respectful about persuading one another – not even more polarised.