About Alex Taylor

This is a blog mostly about my work.


Since 2004, I’ve worked at the Microsoft Research Cam­bridge Lab as a mem­ber of the Human Exper­i­ences & Design Group (HXD).

In the not so dis­tant past, I’ve put time into invest­ig­at­ing the routines of every­day life — with a par­tic­u­lar emphas­is on life at home. Troub­lingly, per­haps, I’ve shown an unhealthy pre­oc­cu­pa­tion with hoard­ing, dirt, clut­ter and sim­il­ar seem­ingly banal sub­ject mat­ter.

More recently, I’ve begun obsess­ing over the entan­gle­ments of com­pu­ta­tion and social life. My mean­der­ings here have taken me from the intel­li­gence found in robots and oth­er curi­ous ‘think­ing’ machines, to DIY­bio and more broadly the role of algorithms in the sci­ences and in ordin­ary life.

Caroline and Salim
Alex Taylor
Marianne and Bertie

Where pos­sible, I’ve con­sidered these worldly things along­side the design of the human-machine inter­face. Rather than inform­ing design dir­ectly, though, I’ve sought with vary­ing suc­cess to open up the pos­sib­il­it­ies for dif­fer­ent and hope­fully new ways of being with tech­no­logy. A fur­ther aim has been to reflect on the ever emer­gent rela­tions between humans and machines, and to won­der what the unceas­ing devel­op­ments in sci­ence and tech­no­logy might mean for being human (and being machines).

My work amounts to a strug­gling through, not to pro­duce defin­it­ive answers but with an eye for the troubles and find­ing some­thing vaguely use­ful to get on with.

I live in Lon­don with my beloved part­ner, two chil­dren and eru­dite can­ine com­pan­ion.

* Yes, a less than subtle allu­sion to Don­na Har­away in this blog. She is a guid­ing light.

* All opin­ions are my own.