The “big data” presidency transcends intelligence-gathering and surveillance, encompassing the White House’s approach on matters from health care to reelection (The Washington Post)
How Darrell Issa became web advocates’ closest, and most perplexing, ally (Reuters)
Can New York City really engineer an innovation economy? (Next City)
Why our tweets seem to be falling into a black hole (Reuters)
One man’s quest to liberate government information — with or without its help (The American Prospect)
Inside Kansas City’s Google Fiber experiment (Next City)
I’m a New York City-based journalist whose work has been published by Reuters, New York, The American Prospect, Salon, Seed, Next City, Capital New York, and The Atlantic, where I’m a correspondent on technology and politics. I’ve talked politics on the BBC, CNN.com, NY1, American Public Media’s “Marketplace,” MSNBC, WNYC’s “The Brian Lehrer Show,” and elsewhere.
For three years, until the summer of 2011, I was the associate editor and lead writer at techPresident, a widely-read daily online publication of the Personal Democracy Forum. techPresident covers the intersection of politics and technology, and is packaged into The Daily Digest, a five-day-a-week email newsletter popular among political observers and practitioners. Topics closely covered at techPresident include the art and science of campaigning, the 2008 Obama presidential effort, the political uses of data, fundraising, political and social organizing, tech policy, modern activism, digital rights, the mechanics of elections, the political engagement of the U.S. tech industry, and the on-going evolution of political communications.
As a writer, my interest is in reporting out and then explaining the confusing, with a focus on understanding how systems — and the people who work in, out, or around them — come to produce the results that they do. My secondary obsession is with turning ‘boring’ stories into quite readable pieces. An archive of pieces resulting from that approach is here.
I came to journalism after years spent in politics. From 2001 to 2005, I served on the staff of well-known Government Oversight Committee in the U.S. House of Representatives, which was then headed on the Democratic side by Rep. Henry Waxman of California (a.k.a. the bearer of “The Mustache of Justice.”) For the committee, I handled online communications and, later, the information policy portfolio. After leaving the Hill, I worked for former Virginia Governor Mark Warner as he put together a possible presidential run for 2008. But my days as a “doer” of politics are now firmly behind me.
I have degrees in anthropology from The George Washington University (B.A., with a minor in Africana studies) and Boston University (M.A.). I spent a wonderful summer post-grad school studying Swahili at Yale University. Born in northern New Jersey, I spent more than a decade living in Washington DC, and now make my home in Brooklyn, NY.
Passions include women’s soccer, New York City history, cheese, copyright law, the genius that is Lauryn Hill, New York State politics, long-form non-fiction, amateur radio, sharks and bears, political boundaries, magazines, maritime culture and waterfronts, how institutions work, typography, the African continent, and public parks.