James Ball

The dirty war of Sefton Delmer

16 March 2024 9:00 am

Anything to break German morale was allowable in Delmer’s broadcasts from Wavendon Towers – which purported to come from a disgruntled character within Nazi Germany

What would life on Mars actually look like?

2 December 2023 9:00 am

It would need more than 100 million people to make it viable for a start – living in airlocked, subterranean bases, producing food and oxygen in artificially-lit greenhouses

The bored teenagers who can disrupt the world

24 June 2023 9:00 am

Scott Shapiro describes five major hacks – the most serious of which, the creation of the Mirai botnet, was the work of three young men hoping to make a few quick bucks

The descent of Mark Zuckerberg

22 October 2022 9:00 am

Is this the beginning of the end for Mark Zuckerberg?

What is the metaverse, actually?

16 July 2022 9:00 am

Big tech might tell us it’s what’s coming next but as yet there’s no real use for it, says James Ball

Will there ever be a reliable lie detector?

16 April 2022 9:00 am

For as long as we have been human we have looked for some way of telling when we are being…

Russia had nothing to do with Brexit

17 March 2022 2:20 am

In light of Russia’s abhorrent invasion of Ukraine, certain corners of the internet have become obsessed – yet again – with Russia’s supposed…

What motivates Peter Thiel apart from the desire for more wealth?

6 November 2021 9:00 am

If you’ve only heard one thing about Peter Thiel (and many have heard nothing at all) it is that he…

TikTok intifada: the role of new media in old conflicts

22 May 2021 9:00 am

The TikTokisation of global politics

Life on Earth is too tame for eccentric American billionaires

8 May 2021 9:00 am

For many of us, Elon Musk is a hard man to like. He’s the richest man in the world (or…

Cashing in on Covid: the traders who thrive on a crisis

13 March 2021 9:00 am

When we think of those lurching moments last spring when it became clear that much of the world, not just…

Facebook has called the Australian media’s bluff

19 February 2021 12:59 am

In 2021, it’s not uncommon to hope that everyone involved in an argument can lose, or to suspect that pretty…

The problem with ‘immunity passports’

5 December 2020 9:00 am

The many dangers of ‘immunity passports’

Were there any links between Cambridge Analytica, Russia and Brexit?

11 October 2020 8:45 pm

In July 2018, Elizabeth Denham – the woman in charge of enforcing the UK’s laws on data protection – appeared…

Unplugging Huawei will be harder than it looks

7 July 2020 10:05 pm

There is nothing some Conservatives like talking about more than Huawei. Each new development in global politics is a new…

How did the UK’s pandemic preparations go so wrong?

4 July 2020 9:00 am

How was Britain so ill-prepared for a pandemic?

The UK isn't taking the risk of contact tracing fraud seriously

3 June 2020 12:17 am

Experts have a get-out clause of which politicians can only dream when they are speaking from the podium at press briefings.…

The R-number – and the danger of false certainty

11 May 2020 5:48 am

Not much about Boris Johnson’s Sunday night television address was clear. The one definite new measure – one which will…

Can we trust Neil Ferguson’s computer code?

8 May 2020 10:34 pm

Newspapers aren’t the place to debate expert advice on a crisis. Advisors advise, ministers decide. We should keep politics out…

The price of oil just hit $0 a barrel. What’s going on?

21 April 2020 5:08 am

If you’ve ever wanted to own a barrel of oil, today might be your lucky day – for the first…

Who is monitoring the 200 million videos available daily on YouTube?

17 March 2018 9:00 am

On 25 April 2005, Jawed Karim sent an email to his friends announcing the launch of a new video site…