Edie Lush

The Peculiar Charms (and Perils) of Electronic Voting

TECHONOMY- April 2015

(Image via Shutterstock)

It’s remarkable that in a world where it seems everything is becoming more digitized most of the globe still elects their political leaders with pencil and paper. Only a peculiarly-diverse handful of countries—including Belgium, Brazil, India, and Venezuela—use electronic voting machines nationwide. (The U.S. and other countries use them in some areas.) What these countries have discovered is that when you have a robust system the cost of elections falls, people’s votes count more, fraud is cut, and the results are known faster. And, rather extraordinarily, replacing paper with machines can change societies in ways that save lives. (For more, see below.)

So why

Posted on Apr 28, 2015, in the Articles section

This was written for Techonomy

Virtual doctors: easier to talk to than the real thing


At USC's Institute of Creative Technologies in LA, the future is here – and it's virtual

After writing about Google Cardboard and its predecessor - a device made by the University of Southern California’s Institute of Creative Technologies - last week, I realised I had a layover of several hours in Los Angeles. Seeing as the Institute lies only a 15-minute drive from the airport, I couldn’t resist a visit.  What I found strolling around the Institute’s Mixed Reality Research Lab was a view of the future I’d seen before only in books.

In one room I donned a set of Virtual Reality goggles and entered a military training exercise in

Posted on Jul 14, 2014, in the Articles section

This was written for THE WEEK

Google Cardboard: tech giant staffers think outside the box


Blurring the distinction between the real and virtual worlds: Google takes another step down the road

One of the things I’ve admired most about Google as an employer is its 20 per cent rule: it allows and encourages its employees to spend 20 per cent of their time on projects that don’t align with their normal job spec.

Sometimes these projects end up in commercial and industry success. Gmail started out as a 20 per cent project when Google was known more as a search engine than a global technology giant.

The latest poster child of the 20 per cent rule is Google Cardboard – a Virtual Reality (VR) headset made out of – yes – cardboard.

Google gave a $2 cardboard VR

Posted on Jul 1, 2014, in the Articles section

This was written for THE WEEK

A 3D printer for every school would encourage innovation


Launch of a $500 printer from California boosts UK campaign to get schoolchildren making things

After last month’s dismal news from Santa Barbara, it was heartening to see something a great deal more inspiring come out of the Southern California city.

Start-up company Mission St. Manufacturing announced they were raising money on Kickstarter for a 3D Printer for kids and schools called Printeer.

Since they’d nearly reached half of their $50,000 goal only two days after launching the campaign, and at last glance they were $3,000 away from hitting their goal with 21 days left,

Posted on Jun 19, 2014, in the Articles section

This was written for THE WEEK

Rainbow Loom: the craze that makes the internet look good


The rubber-band bracelet craze: ‘somehow digital feels better when it produces something real’

I was delighted to see the Duchess of Cornwall wearing a Rainbow Loom bracelet on her Canadian tour (pictured below). Since Camilla is the grandmother of a seven-year-old girl, my suspicions are that this was a present from her.

As the owner of approximately 40 of these bracelets, I am very familiar with the particular weave Camilla is sporting - it can be done on a loom, a fork, and if neither of these are to hand, your fingers. 

The Rainbow Loom concept is pretty basic - two plastic boards, a crochet hook, and as many coloured rubber bands as you can get hold of.  With it you can make bracelets,

Posted on Jun 4, 2014, in the Articles section

This was written for THE WEEK

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