AUTHOR ARCHIVES

Alexis Madrigal

Alexis Madrigal Alexis Madrigal is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where he oversees the Technology channel. He's the author of Powering the Dream: The History and Promise of Green Technology. The New York Observer calls Madrigal "for all intents and purposes, the perfect modern reporter." He co-founded Longshot magazine, a high-speed media experiment that garnered attention from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the BBC. While at Wired.com, he built Wired Science into one of the most popular blogs in the world. The site was nominated for best magazine blog by the MPA and best science Web site in the 2009 Webby Awards. He also co-founded Haiti ReWired, a groundbreaking community dedicated to the discussion of technology, infrastructure, and the future of Haiti. He's spoken at Stanford, CalTech, Berkeley, SXSW, E3, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory, and his writing was anthologized in Best Technology Writing 2010 (Yale University Press). Madrigal is a visiting scholar at the University of California at Berkeley's Office for the History of Science and Technology. Born in Mexico City, he grew up in the exurbs north of Portland, Oregon, and now lives in Oakland.
Results 1-10 of 108

Google's Mass-Shooting Misinformation Problem

November 6, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow It happened again. After a horrifying mass shooting, searching for the shooter’s name on Google surfaced an editor of the conspiracy site InfoWars, Julian Assange claiming the shooter had converted to Islam, and a “news” Twitter feed that’s tweeted a few dozen times since it was created last month. All...

15 Things We Learned from the Internet Giants

November 4, 2017 During three Congressional hearings spread over two days, we heard a lot of bluster from senators and pat answers from tech-company lawyers about the role their firms played in the 2016 election. Scattered among all the questions, some new facts entered the public record. Here we attempt to catalog the...

15 Things We Learned From the Tech Giants at the Senate Hearings

November 3, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow During three Congressional hearings spread over two days, we heard a lot of bluster from senators and pat answers from tech-company lawyers about the role their firms played in the 2016 election. Scattered among all the questions, some new facts entered the public record. Here we attempt to catalog the...

Are Facebook, Twitter, and Google American Companies?

November 2, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow On Tuesday’s technology-executive hearings before the Senate Intelligence Committee, a key tension at the heart of the internet emerged: Do American tech companies, such as Twitter, Facebook, and Google, operate as American companies? Or are they in some other global realm, maybe in some place called cyberspace? In response to...

Facebook’s Evidence of Russian Electoral Meddling Is Only ‘the Tip of the Iceberg’

October 23, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow If Congress regulates social networks in new ways following the 2016 election, no single person will have been more responsible than Senator Mark Warner of Virginia. In the aftermath of the election, it was Warner who pushed Silicon Valley executives to delve more deeply into their data, looking for signs...

The Computer That Predicted the U.S. Would Win the Vietnam War

October 6, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow At just about the halfway point of Lynn Novick and Ken Burns’s monumental documentary on the Vietnam War, an army advisor tells an anecdote that seems to sum up the relationship between the military and computers during the mid-1960s. “There’s the old apocryphal story that in 1967, they went to...

What, Exactly, Were Russians Trying to Do With Those Facebook Ads?

September 26, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Many questions remain about the ads purchased by Russian-linked accounts during the 2016 presidential election. Earlier this month, the company announced that Russian-linked accounts had purchased $100,000 worth of advertising. The scale of this advertising buy is mysterious. In an election where billions of dollars were spent, why even bother...

Facebook's New 'AI Camera' Team Wants to Add a Layer to the World

September 21, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Take a video of a birthday cake’s candles sparkling in an Instagram story, then tap the sticker button. Near the top of the list you’ll see a slice of birthday cake. It’s a little thing. This simple trick is not breathtaking nor magical. But it is the beginning of something...

Why the New iPhone Is So Important

September 12, 2017 FROM NEXTGOV arrow The iPhone is the single most successful consumer product of all time. It’s generated $762 billion of revenue for Apple, the most valuable company listed on the American stock exchanges. It has made Apple, more or less, the iPhone company. And the model that the iPhone established—phone-on-glass, apps-on-phone—is “eating the...

More Than 10 Million People Lost Power in Florida

September 11, 2017 Hurricane Irma slammed the west coast of Florida on Sunday, making landfall first in the Keys and then at Marco Island, 15 miles south of Naples. Since then, it’s been making its way northward, visiting destruction on the state as it weakens. As the storm progressed through Florida, it knocked...