New book publishing on May 6, 2021

My latest exploration into the history of 17th Century London is due out this May.

It is the exciting,and unexpected story of a young woman and the plot of land that came to determine her life. …


Robert Hooke, Thomas Tompion and the clockwork universe

The mechanical philosophy, a term first used by Henry More in 1659, a year after Fromanteel announced his pendulum timepieces, sought out the image of the clock’s complications as a means to understand the world. …


The craftsman’s signature sits at the bottom of the square dial: Samuel Knibb London feci: There is no date on the device but it it thought to be completed in 1665. We know so little about the maker, that we must interpret who this man was from fragmentary documents and…


I was invited to contribute an introduction to a new exhibition of 17th century clocks that is currently running here. This work is more connected to my work on the 17th century London. The subject, the invention of pendulum clocks in 1660’s London, was a revelation to me. The resulting…


This is a recorded version of my talk at Karlsruhe Dialogs on the problem with the Internet of Things, smart cities and the threat of platform urbanism to the future of democacy

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uywLMFNQgFQ


As Tim Berners Lee said recently: ‘We don’t have a technology problem, we have a social problem.’

Perhaps the most worrying image in recent days is the slow motion scene of Zuckerberg’s face as it dawns upon him that his dorm room invention is beyond his control, and beyond his…


It seems as if ‘for all’ is becoming the destination in many urbanist discussions of the moment.

In a recent publication, Saddiq Khan, the newly appointed mayor of London published his statement of intent: ‘A CITY FOR ALL LONDONERS’. …


The discussion of the future city, of how the internet of things [IoT] will have a huge impact on the economy of the city. How it will improve efficiency and productivity. …


At a recent event, I was asked by a number of people why I did what I did? Why was I so interested in cities? where did it all start? I tried to answer as plainly as I could. …


via Thomas Rousing

This October, in Quito, the most important group of thinkers in urbanism, sustainability, poverty activism and local politics will be coming together in a conference called Habitat III. You’ve probably never heard of Habitat III, and that’s a big problem. It is a vitally important event.

In the previous months…

Leo Hollis

The author of Inheritance, coming in May 2021, The Phoenix: The Men Who Made Modern London, and Stones of London, and the bestseller, Cities are Good for You.

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