Technically, Heisenberg's Uncertainty Principle applies only to objects in the quantum realm. But sometimes it feels like a pretty good description of real life. I often don't know which direction I'll be going or which hat I'll be wearing until the moment arrives. I can be fairly described as:

  • The host and producer of Soonish, a podcast about technology, culture, curiosity, and the future.

  • A co-founder of Hub & Spoke, a Boston-centric collective of smart, independent, story-driven podcasts.

  • A consultant for startups and venture capital firms, leading in-depth storytelling projects aimed at key audiences.

  • A freelance audio editor and producer.

  • A freelance reporter for print, online, and radio outlets such as MIT Technology Review, Xconomy, WBUR, and WHYY.

  • The editor of the 2018 edition of Twelve Tomorrows, a hard science fiction anthology series created by MIT Technology Review. It's the fifth volume in the series and the first to be published in coooperation with the MIT Press. Release date: May 25, 2018. Pre-order now!

  • A co-organizer of the Sonic Soirée, a Boston-area listening group for audio producers and audiophiles.

  • A performer at Story Collider, purveyors of fine on-stage stories about science and medicine.

  • The chair of the alumni board of The Harvard Independent, the non-profit college newspaper where I first contracted the journalism bug.

  •  A curious enthusiast excited by art, architecture, food systems, graphic design, history, photography, space, science fiction, startups, typography, travel, urban planning, old stereoscopes...

  • Proud owner of an Australian Shepherd named Gryphon.

Enough bullet points, let's switch to narrative. I spend a lot of time thinking about how technology and science are advancing; how people find out about these advances; and how they use that knowledge in their decisions as consumers, citizens, and voters.

As a journalist with graduate training in the history of technology, I find that those questions contain a lifetime's worth of stories. I've spent more than 20 years exploring them as a reporter and editor at news organizations in the non-profit, government, academic, and startup sectors. Now I'm working independently.

Until recently I identified as a text-only journalist—mostly longform. But now I claim dual citizenship in the land of radio and audio production.

I launched Soonish in January 2017. The show's guiding belief is that the future is shaped by technology, but technology is shaped by us. I'm now making Season 2 of the show, and you can hear the season premiere and the whole first season at soonishpodcast.org or on any podcasting app. I also invite you to join the Soonish email list, follow the show on Twitter and Facebook, and consider supporting the show on Patreon.

In October 2017 I teamed up with the hosts and producers of two other podcasts, Tamar Avishai of The Lonely Palette and Zachary Davis and Nick Andersen of Ministry of Ideas, to form a new network of high-quality, longform, narrative shows called Hub & Spoke. Our mission is to provide one another with mutual support, share insights about the podcasting business, and grow the listenership for each member show through co-promotion. We started from a Boston-centric "hub" and we're recruiting more shows (the "spokes") from inside and outside Boston; the newest addition to the collective is Hi-Phi Nation from producer Barry Lam. You can read more about the thinking behind Hub & Spoke here.

In early 2017 I was invited by Jason Pontin, the former editor-in-chief of MIT Technology Review, to edit the 2018 edition of Twelve Tomorrows, an anthology of hard science fiction stories. That volume, published by The MIT Press, features terrific stories by Elizabeth Bear, SL Huang, Clifford V. Johnson, J. M. Ledgard, Liu Cixin, Ken Liu, Paul McAuley, Nnedi Okorafor, Malka Older, Sarah Pinsker, Alastair Reynolds, as well as an interview with renowned science fiction author Samuel R. Delany by Jason Pontin and Mark Pontin. It will be released on May 25, 2018, but is available for pre-order now. (Between now and June 30, 2018, you can receive a special 30% discount on the book's list price when ordering it directly through the MIT Press. Call 800-405-1619 or write to orders@triliteral.org and mention the code MROUSH30.)

In June 2017 I worked with my friends and former co-workers at Xconomy to introduce Xconomy Voices, a limited-run podcast featuring easily digestible (15-minute) conversations with startup founders, inventors, investors, and other innovators. I interviewed the guests and produced the episodes. The goal of the show was to tap into Xconomy's large network of sources in innovation hubs across the country and ask key innovators to explain what they're passionate about and how their ideas or companies might change the world. 

In 2014-15, I was Acting Director of the Knight Science Journalism at MIT, the world's leading mid-career fellowship program for journalists covering science, technology, health, and the environment. Founded by veteran science journalist Victor McElheny and endowed by the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the fellowship brings about a dozen distinguished science and technology journalists to MIT each year. I managed the program's budget, staff, and curriculum and arranged a year of rewarding experiences for the 2014-15 Knight Fellows. It was a fantastic experience that gave me a lot of time to think about the state of science journalism. The journalists I worked with will be friends for life. 

As part of the KSJ job, I was the producer and chief fundraiser for ScienceWriters2015, held at MIT October 9-13, 2015. I spent the rest of the 2015-16 academic year as a research associate in MIT's Program in Science, Technology, and Society, working with a group of colleagues to study ways to encourage deeper engagement between scientists, engineers, and the public. I have a continuing appointment at MIT as a research affiliate in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences.

I've been writing about science and technology professionally since 1994. Before my two-year MIT gig, I was Editor at Large at Xconomy, a national news publication about the startup culture and innovation, and managing editor of Xperience, Xconomy's consumer section. Before that I was the editor of Xconomy San Francisco and Xconomy Boston. In addition to my regular news stories, I wrote an opinion/review column every Friday called VOX: The Voice of Xperience. (The column was formerly known as World Wide Wade.) I'm still affiliated with Xconomy as a contributing editor.

Before joining Xconomy in 2007, I was a staff member at MIT’s Technology Review from 2001 to 2006, serving as senior editor, San Francisco bureau chief, and executive editor of TechnologyReview.com. Before that, I was the Boston bureau reporter for Science, managing editor of supercomputing publications at NASA Ames Research Center, and Web editor at e-book pioneer NuvoMedia, creator of the Rocket eBook (a precursor to the Amazon Kindle).

I have a B.A. in the history of science from Harvard College, and I was the first person to complete the PhD program in the history and social study of science and technology at MIT's Program in Science, Technology, and Society, to which I returned for the aforementioned two-year stint in 2014-16. I've published articles in ScienceTechnology ReviewIEEE SpectrumEncyclopaedia BrittanicaTechnology and CultureAlaska Airlines MagazineWorld BusinessXconomyNieman Storyboard, and WBUR's Cognoscenti, and my radio pieces have been broadcast on WBUR and WHYY. In the talking-head department, I've been a guest of NPR, CNN, CNBC, NECN, WGBH, the PBS NewsHour, PRI's To the Best of Our Knowledge, and Climate Desk's Inquiring Minds podcast. In 2014-16 I was the host of the MIT Alumni Association's Faculty Forum Online: Alumni Edition webcast series.

In May 2013 I delivered a talk at Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) called Stories About Storytelling: A Personal Journey in Technology. It was an autobiographical walk through my awakening as a science and technology journalist, and also touched on the revolution in digital self-publishing and some of the media tools I was excited about at that time.

I got my start in journalism at the Harvard Independent, the weekly alternative student newspaper at Harvard College, where I was news editor, executive news editor, and eventually editor-in-chief. I'm currently chair of the Indy's graduate board, which handles fundraising and oversees the newspaper's endowment. We also try to ensure cultural continuity and provide current Independent staffers with advice on journalism and business.


Curriculum Vitae


Journalist, editor, storyteller, audio producer, startup entrepreneur, educator, and consultant helping media consumers understand the changes wrought by rapid advances in science and technology.


Producer and Host, Soonish, Cambridge, MA — September, 2016-present

I'm the reporter, editor, producer, and host of this story-driven podcast about technology, culture, curiosity, and the future.

Producer and Host, Xconomy Voices, Boston, MA — June, 2017-present

I make this show about innovators and their ideas on contract for Xconomy, the leading online source for news and commentary about the innovation economy.

Independent Multimedia Journalist and Editorial Consultant, Cambridge, MA — July 1, 2016-present

I'm working on a range of freelance stories, independent productions, and client projects.

Research Affiliate, MIT Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Sciences, Cambridge, MA — July 2, 2016-present.  

Outreach Officer, MIT Program in Science, Technology, and Society (STS); Cambridge, MA — July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016

STS is the home of the Knight Science Journalism program and part of MIT's School of Humanities, Arts, and Social Sciences (SHASS). I worked with colleagues in STS and SHASS to study new ways to promote public engagement in technology and science.

Acting Director, Knight Science Journalism at MIT; Cambridge, MA — July 1, 2014-June 30, 2015

My job at MIT for the 2014-15 academic year was threefold: Lead the Knight Science Journalism program and make sure the Knight Fellows had the most productive and educational year possible; plan and launch a new lab or center promoting greater understanding of public engagement in technology and science; and help organize ScienceWriters2015, the annual joint conference of the National Association of Science Writers and the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing, to be held at MIT in October 2015.

Chief Correspondent, Boston Editor, San Francisco Editor, and Editor at Large, Xconomy; Boston, MA, and San Francisco, CA — 2007-2014

As the third employee and the first writer hired at Xconomy, I helped establish the startup in its home city of Boston as a fresh source of online news, analysis, and events focused on the mechanics of high-tech innovation in information technology, the life sciences, energy, healthcare, and education. In the San Francisco Editor position I managed Xconomy's expansion into its fifth hyperlocal market and became the face of the company in Silicon Valley. For our business readers, I aimed to show how technology ideas emerge at high-growth startups and how they succeed or fail in the market. For general consumers, I created a sister publication, Xperience, that explores technology's impact on work and home life and guides readers to the best technologies and tools for their lifestyles. For in-person audiences, I conceived and hosted numerous live events. I have an ongoing affiliation with Xconomy as a contributing editor.

Senior Editor, MIT Technology Review; San Francisco, CA — 2001-2006

As the magazine's eyes and ears in the San Francisco Bay Area, I recruited and edited numerous feature stories and commentaries, and wrote scores of news and feature articles on trends in information technology, including cover stories on search, AI, robotics, digital mapping, and social computing.

Managing Editor, NuvoMedia; Mountain View, CA — 1999-2001

NuvoMedia created the Rocket eBook, a precursor to Amazon's Kindle and other successful e-book reading devices. I edited and wrote for a NuvoMedia-owned website, eBookNet, that served as a news and community hub for the nascent community of e-book buyers and e-publishing enthusiasts.

Managing Editor, NASA Ames Research Center; Mountain View, CA — 1998-1999

NASA contractor Sterling Software ran most R&D and support operations at the Numerical Aerospace Simulation (NAS) Facility, one of NASA's main supercomputing centers. Sterling hired me to write and edit a monthly print newsletter that chronicled the center's scientific activities. While at NAS I killed the newsletter and developed a new quarterly magazine called Gridpoints.

Reporter/Writer, Science (AAAS); Boston, MA — 1994-1997

For Science, I covered the Boston-area research community, and wrote weekly articles on topics such as population, ecology, scientific ethics, drug research, mind-body medicine, and alternatives to animal testing. I also became Science's beat reporter covering developmental biology.


Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, MA — PhD, History and Social Study of Science and Technology (Program in Science, Technology, and Society), 1994

Harvard College, Cambridge, MA — BA, magna cum laude, History and Science, 1989


Reporting, interviewing, writing, and editing for text, audio, and video production. Audio, video, and photo capture and editing (Audition, Audacity, Final Cut Pro, Photoshop, After Effects). Editorial and organizational consulting for non-profit and for-profit organizations. Event planning, marketing, and execution. Public speaking. Editorial, management, and budget oversight of staff writers and freelance contributors. Basic Web design (HTML) and content management systems (WordPress, Squarespace).

Member: Association of Independents in Radio; National Association of Science Writers; New England Science Writers.