Bio

I am a Historian of Computing, Technology, and 20th Century America in the Department of the History of Science at Harvard. 

My dissertation "Computing's Economy: The Making of Finance Capitalism in America" tells three intertwined stories about the interaction of computers and the economy that emerged in america in the late 20th century:

First, my story narrates the political and material history of the computerization of the financial industry, when computers first came to operate and be trusted with the management of data about things like stock markets, bank accounts, and credit scores in the 1960s.

Second, it shows how the sciences of finance and econometrics emerged around the statistical, computing, data-gathering, and mathematical problems of analyzing stock market behavior.

Third, it shows how markets for consumer data first emerged in the wake of the automation of credit scoring in the 1950s when algorithms and computers for evaluating consumer creditworthiness proliferated. This early use of computers in evaluating consumer credit prompted the an early generation of consumer data protection laws, including the 1970 Fair Credit Reporting Act.

For 2015-2016, I was the Wheatland Curatorial Fellow at the Collection of Historical Scientific Instruments, where I was the co-curator for the exhibit "Radio Contact", on the social, cultural, and technological history of radio. 

I received my A.B. from Princeton in Comparative Literature in 2011, where I completed two research projects: one a senior thesis on the use of prosthetic and media technologies in the practice of two performance artists; and a second, a junior paper on the situationist intellectual and filmmaker Guy Debord. I teach on the history of computing, science, and technology, and I am also interested in the relationship between computing and other screen media, in particular film and TV.