open the past, create the future

Sun, surf and the network


My regular office and sometime office companion

On Christmas Day I got on a plane at London’s Heathrow and took off for Sydney. The plan was to enjoy some of the Southern Summer, see my brother and his wonderful family and catch up with a dear old friend. I was booked to return by the end of January so I was fairly confident that my Violet would survive in the soaking tray I had left.

Funny how things turn out.

It is June now. And I am still in Sydney. To my great surprise I have fallen in love with Australia all over again. It of course helps that the sun is still shining…mostly… and everyday I am reminded how much I love (and missed) my brother and his family. But the real change was my realisation that I could now do what I wanted to do from Australia.

For the last 15 years, whenever I was asked, mainly by London Cabbies, why I wasn’t heading back to Australia as fast as my arms could flap, I would always say, “I love Australia. I love the life, the humour, the light, the weather, the food and on and on…But, there just isn’t the scale of impact that I am interested in”. Which was my way of saying that I thought Australia was just too small and too far away from everything else.

But here is the thing. I have travelled to every continent bar Antarctica, and lived in one of the world’s great super cities – London – for the last 15 years.  I have been fortunate to have been involved in some of the most interesting, large scale projects and movements  of the network era thus far. Many of them have genuinely changed the way a very large number of people think about how we live our lives today. And yet it simply didn’t occur to me that the very thing I was doing meant that Australia was neither small nor too far away anymore – if it ever was. The network has fundamentally changed my sense of geography, scale and access.

So I find myself back in Australia, setting up a new company that combines making experiences that are inherently networked, with my business partner’s experience in making things that move (real things that you can touch!). It is called and we will make things that move in your home, your office and your industry starting with our old stomping ground – the entertainment industry.

I will be back in London again soon. There will be drinks and proper goodbyes. But most important of all – I have to rescue my Violet.








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Mozilla and I

I am an employee of the Mozilla Foundation. My colleagues at the Foundation and the broader community we support are an extraordinary group of people aligned around a mission for an open and inclusive web. We work tirelessly to create the conditions for everyone to thrive in an age defined by the web. My colleagues spend their lives actively and vocally advocating for open, inclusive societies through the web.

I can’t walk away from these people nor the cause I share with them nor the potential for Mozilla to once again be known as the champion to all but neither can I continue to earn my living from Mozilla while it is seen to exclude and alienate anyone. So as of today, I am on unpaid leave. Hardly a brave act but one that I can take that doesn’t break my heart at the thought of permanently severing my connection to an organisation that I hope will very soon find its way back to the core values that I hold so dear. I will continue to work next to my colleagues for an open, inclusive web, continue to help Mozilla through these difficult days but I will do so as a volunteer for as long as I can.


Update: 28th March 2014

Under UK employment law I am not able to take unpaid leave and continue to work substantively for Mozilla. Given that, I have elected to stay in a paid role but will be donating my salary to Mozilla’s Webmaker programme –


Update: 30th March 2014

I am delighted that Mozilla has issued such a strong, positive statement on our position on equality


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