Tech Policy & Governance

For a bird’s eye view of how technology and journalism are co-evolving, it’s hard to find a better vantage point than Susan McGregor. As Assistant Director of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism (established in 2010) and Assistant Professor at Columbia Journalism School, McGregor helps supervise the dual-degree program in Journalism & Computer Science. Though she teaches primarily in thee areas of data journalism & information visualization, her research extends to information security, privacy, and alternative forms of digital distribution. 

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ENTER: I recently heard that millennials are staying at home now, which is actually cutting down very slightly on CO2 emissions. But might VR technology impact people’s general health, in terms of indoor VR experiences replacing outdoor hiking, skiing, running, biking, climbing?

ENTER: How might virtual experiences impact climate issues favorably? I know you’ve been asked this before, but I’d like to get this from your own mouth.

JB: Well let me give you a new answer. I’ll give you an older answer if you’d like, but I’m really excited for this work we just did, in Palau.

A special consultant to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Cory Doctorow is also known for his compelling science fiction novels—including Homeland, Little Brother, and the recently released Walkaway. An activist and journalist, he co-edits the popular Boing Boing blog.

It was, of course, a publicity stunt. And it was a good one: Within days, media outlets across the world posted the announcement that the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, during an economic conference in Riyadh, had declared Sophia—a humanoid robot created by Hanson Robotics and loaded with impressive AI—a citizen of their country.