Public policy

The government failed U.S. workers on global trade. It must do better on technology.

Co-authored with Edward Alden of Council on Foreign Affairs Global trade and investment have been great engines of progress for much of the world.  Over the past two decades, poorer countries reduced the gap between themselves and their richer counterparts for the first time…

MarketWatch: An Indian immigrant asks where Trump’s bigotry will leave America

I still can’t get over the surprise — or should I say shock — of hearing a Sikh woman implore other Sikhs to vote for Donald Trump. This was at Gurudwara, a Sikh temple, in San Jose, Calif. The woman was a white American…

Robots could eventually replace soldiers in warfare. Is that a good thing?

Coauthored with Aaron Johnson, who is an Assistant Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics at Carnegie Mellon University and writes about the moral implications of technology. The United States has on its Aegis-class cruisers a defense system that can track and destroy anti-ship missiles and…

Why China won’t own next-generation manufacturing

After three decades of dramatic growth, China’s manufacturing engine has largely stalled. With rising salaries, labor unrest, environmental devastation, and intellectual property theft, China is no longer an attractive place for Western companies to move their manufacturing to. Technology has also eliminated the labor…

I already live in the future — and so should you

I live in the future. I drive a Tesla electric vehicle, which controls the steering wheel on highways. My house in Menlo Park, Calif., is a “passive” home that expends minimal energy on heating or cooling. With the solar panels on my roof, my energy bills…

After the fatal Tesla crash, I still feel safe in my self-driving car

At first, the thought of letting my car drive itself seemed rather frightening. But the highway was almost empty and the lanes were clearly marked, so I took the risk and engaged the autopilot function in my new Tesla Model X. Yet I couldn’t…

FORTUNE: It’s Right to Idolize the Entrepreneurs Striving to Make the World a Better Place

Theranos’ Elizabeth Holmes may have misguided the public, but real innovators do exist. Editor’s: The following post is a response to a Fortune article that outlines the dangers of putting founders such as Elizabeth Holmes on a pedestal. In his article After the Theranos Mess,…

The chilling effect Peter Thiel’s battle with Gawker could have on Silicon Valley journalism

Gawker infringes on privacy and publishes tabloid-like stories that damage reputations. It is one of the most sensationalist and objectionable media outlets in the country. It also has not been kind to me. So it’s not a company that I would expect to be defending. But I…

Theranos teaches Silicon Valley a hard lesson about accountability

By Jeffrey A. Sonnenfeld and Vivek Wadhwa The Theranos saga hit another low last week when the company informed regulators that it was voiding two years of tests from its Edison blood testing devices and sending of tens-of-thousands of revised tests results to doctors. This means that thousands of…

Trump’s demand that Apple must make iPhones in the U.S. actually isn’t that crazy

Donald Trump has promised that “we’re gonna get Apple to start building their damn computers and things in this country, instead of in other countries.” He said this at a speech at Virginia’s Liberty University and several other events. It is very likely that…

How open science can help solve Zika and prepare us for the next pandemic

With the advent of synthetic biology and gene editing tools, there are amazing breakthroughs being made in medicine, energy and food. Within a few years, we will see cures for debilitating diseases, new biofuels, and grains that can be grown in extreme climates. We…

Apple vs. FBI: The tip of the iceberg as laws can’t keep up with tech

The battle between the FBI and Apple over the unlocking of a terrorist’s iPhone will likely require Congress to create new legislation. That’s because there really aren’t any existing laws which encompass technologies such as these. The battle is between security and privacy, with…