Richard Pendavingh

Photographer, designer and weekend historian. Editor of The Unravel. Writes about design, tech, history and anthropology.


Jan
27
2024
The Demons of Macquarie Island Richard Pendavingh 27.01.24

Today on The Unravel we ask the question; Did 19th century sealers suffer from post-traumatic stress syndrome?

May
18
2023
The Road to Hell: Conclusions Richard Pendavingh 18.05.23

Given this litany of disastrous invasions and bloody occupations, why do politicians continue to insist that their armies will be welcomed with open arms?

May
01
2023
The Road to Hell: Part IV Richard Pendavingh 01.05.23

Despite the long history of ‘humanitarian interventions’ the idea that nations have an obligation to defend the rights of those beyond their own borders has only recently begun to gain acceptance.

Apr
13
2023
The Road to Hell: Part III Richard Pendavingh 13.04.23

The fallacy of liberation played a major part in inciting conflicts during the Cold War but realism's hindsight makes it hard to appreciate the initial idealism that accompanied these conflicts.

Apr
05
2023
The Road to Hell: Part II Richard Pendavingh 05.04.23

Case studies in strategic optimism from the Greco-Turkish War to the end of the World War II.

Mar
24
2023
The Road To Hell: Part I Richard Pendavingh 24.03.23

A brief history of the fallacy of liberation from the wars of the French Revolution to the end of the long 19th century.

Feb
22
2023
Chatbot Chernobyl Richard Pendavingh 22.02.23

The public release of ChatGPT has permanently contaminated the Web. Welcome to the world of Average Garbage Forever.

Oct
06
2022
Putin's Doctrine of Maskirovka
Unmasking Maskirovka Richard Pendavingh 06.10.22

Putin's disastrous invasion of Ukraine has revealed the indiscriminate nature of Russian propaganda.

Oct
05
2021
This Field is Required Richard Pendavingh 05.10.21

Tracing the origins of 'life admin' from sacrificial servants, to human computers, chatbots and Potemkin AI.

Feb
04
2021
The Digital Swamp Richard Pendavingh 04.02.21

How our metaphors for the internet determine success and failure in the messy world of software design.

Jan
16
2021
Old-Fashioned Chromium Richard Pendavingh 16.01.21

In this edition of ‘do as Richard says, not as Richard does’ we look at Morocco’s traditional leather industry and I’ll explain why you shouldn’t accept invites to medieval sweatshops.

Sep
15
2020
Nonessential Workers of the World Unite! Richard Pendavingh 15.09.20

One of the first things I did after finishing my undergraduate degree in media studies was watch the whole industry of journalism collapse in on itself like a rotting shack held together by ivy.

Aug
29
2020
The Endless Winter Richard Pendavingh 29.08.20

When Amy and I visited Hawaii we discovered that, even on an island, surf is never guaranteed.

Aug
09
2020
Part 1: Sacred Diseases Richard Pendavingh 09.08.20

As the Covid infections have ticked upwards and lockdowns have dragged on there’s been plenty of time to dwell on our current situation.

Aug
09
2020
A Glib History of Ancient Pandemics Richard Pendavingh 09.08.20

Wherein I draw tenuous connections between the current Coronavirus shemozzle and the great pandemics of the ancient world.

Jun
23
2020
How Georgia Abolished its Police Richard Pendavingh 23.06.20

The police were the first Georgians I met. Arriving in the capital, Tbilisi, at ten to midnight there were police officers waiting on the tarmac.

Jun
03
2020
American Stormtroopers Richard Pendavingh 03.06.20

Back in 2015 Amazon unveiled a promotional campaign for their TV adaptation of Philip K. Dick's famous novel The Man in the High Castle.

May
10
2020
Part 2: Replicants of the Reef Richard Pendavingh 10.05.20

On a rocky stretch of coastline on Hawaii’s Big Island a group of marine biologists are studying the lifecycle of the octopus - a creature that lives fast and dies young.

May
10
2020
Part 1: The Acheulean Sleep Richard Pendavingh 10.05.20

In the closing act of Blade Runner it’s a game of chess that allows the replicant Roy Batty to finally meet his maker.

Apr
14
2020
Welcome to the Elephit House Richard Pendavingh 14.04.20

I knew it was going to be bad. I'd read all the one and two star reviews and looked at the pictures of weird murals and overgrown gardens but I kept circling back to the listing every time I looked for accommodation on Kauai.

Apr
13
2020
Violence in the Aloha State Richard Pendavingh 13.04.20

I knew that Hawaii was part of America but I still didn't expect it to be so American.