the white heat of technology seems to be alive again

In July 1969 when I was in primary school they rigged a TV in the assembly hall and we watched the Apollo 11 Moon landing sometime in the afternoon ISTR, so it must have been a replay rather than live. Harold Wilson was the prime minister, mouthing off about the white heat of technology, though that must have been as reported since I can’t have heard his original speech.

It was an exciting time to be into science, and some of that rubbed off which is how I got to get into engineering – all sorts of exciting things were possible. This was a time when there no downsides and you could solve things by throwing technology at them, I also recall a school trip to the newfangled Thames Barrier. There had been a couple of years where London had flooded and you had water four foot deep in the High Street – the Thames Barrier fixed that as it never happened again.

There’s a feeling of deja vu around as all sorts of things seem to be happening that are solutions to age-old dreams. This last week I’ve read about

It all stirs the inner schoolboy in me, and I’m jingoistically chuffed that all these innovations seem to be originated in our burnt-out and decadent West rather than the fiery intellectual cauldrons of the East. It’s as if there’s the glimmer of life in the old dog yet…