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"POPLORICA is "the perfect book for those who feel as if their attention spans have become as fractured as a bad MTV video."-- USA Today, 2004 

 Now available again in KINDLE edition

Buy “OOPs: 20 Life Lessons from the Fiascoes that Shaped America,” also available again in KINDLE edition

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Listen to my interview on NPR...
I'm a frequent contributor at Urban Land magazine, where I focus upon the convergence of technological and social change, and how it is changing the places in which we live and work. Here's my article,  "Imagining the Driverless City," which looked at how autonomous vehicles and drones will alter streets, buildings and urban existence. I've also written for Urban Land on an architectural competition intended to protect New York against another Sandy-like disasterthe growth of coworking and how robots, 3D printing and other innovations will change how cities are built.(Photo credit: U. of Michigan)
Here's the once-prolific Thunnus thynnus, a majestic creature that can reach over 10 feet in length and a ton in weight, and had been swimming in the Atlantic for 40 million years. But some fear the species' days are numbered, due to human craving for its fatty, succulent raw flesh. Read my piece on  "The Fate of the Bluefin Tuna" from the National Geographic Channel website.   (Photo credit: Daniel Cedrone/UNFAO, via Wikimedia Commons)
I've also written a lot about the fault line between science and culture. Back in 2015, the news broke that Disneyland, of all places, had been the epicenter of a major measles outbreak. From Orange Coast magazine, here's "The Breeding Ground," my exploration of southern California's strident cadre of parents who resist vaccinating their children, and the growing rift between them, public health experts and the rest of the populace. In another Orange Coast article, "Knee Deep in Doubt," I wrote about affluent Balboa Island's struggle to come to grips with the threat of rising waters from climate change. "Stem Cell Rock Star" tells the story of a biomedical researcher playing for high stakes in both academia and business, as he searches for a cure for paralysis. (Photo gredit: CDC)
"Buzz Kill," my 2015 article for Sierra magazine, probes the controversy over neonicotinoid pesticides and their effect on bees, birds and other creatures. (Photo credit: Luc Viatour via Wikimedia Commons)
As a compulsive researcher, I also like writing about history. Read about J.D. Salinger's visit to Washington, D.C. in 1955 to consult with a Hindu mystic, the time that Ringo Starr got his hair clipped at the British Embassy, the actual demonic possession that inspired The Exorcist, the repurposing of JFK's death car, reggae superstar Bob Marley's 1973 concert at the U.S. Naval Academy, and how the nation's capital once was entertained by organ grinders and their monkeys in my posts for public broadasting station WETA's Boundary Stones blog. (Photo credit: Library of Congress)
Journalist, author, blogger, researcher, web content creator
I spent several years as a reporter and blogger for Discovery News (now I wrote about a wide range of topics, from the trend of analyzing your own Big Data to fine-tune your life, to how terrorism alters our brain chemistry, and the rise of "living architecture" that turns buildings into vertical forests. (Photo credit: Christos Barbalis via Wikimedia Commons.)
Coal companies' practice of mountaintop removal turned much of rural Kentucky into a wasteland. That's why an enteprising Catholic priest turned environmental activist made the sites into an unlikely sort of tourist attraction. Read my 2006 article "Unnatural Wonders" from Mother Jones magazine. (Photo credit: Roston via Wikimedia Commons.)
 My AARP blog posts celebrating the lives of the recently departed have included Billy Jack auteur Tom Laughlin, Edsel designerRoy Brown, apocalyptic prophet Howard Camping, sitar virtuoso Ravi Shankar, Etch-A-Sketch inventor Andre Cassagnes, George "Shadow" Morton (producer of the Shangri-La's "Leader of the Pack"), enigmatic songwriting genius ("Along Comes Mary") Tandyn Almer, Marilyn Monroe paramour Hal Schaefer, and Willard Conrow, who took the very cool photograph at left.
I've long been a fan of the trippy genius of sci-fi author Philip K. Dick. That's why it was so surprising to discover that the author of "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep" and "Man in the High Castle" spent his last decade living in conservative Orange County, where he was a member of a condominum owners association and shopped at Trader Joe's. Here's the story from Orange Coast. The photo is one that I took of the talking android version of Philip K. Dick, which was built by robotics researchers a few years back.
I've done a lot of business reporting too. Here's an article I wrote for Fast Company back in 2010 about the strange phenomenon of job interviews via webcam. I've also profiled corporate leaders such as publicity-shy In-N-Out Burger heiress Lynsi Snyder, who in a rare interview revealed for the first time that she had survived two kidnapping attempts.  (Photo credit: Sam Howzit, via Wikimedia Commons.)


"The problem is not so much to see what nobody has yet seen, but to rather to think concerning that which everybody sees, what nobody has yet thought."
-- Arthur Schopenhauer, "Appendices and Omissions," 1851