Rhodri Marsden

Rhodri Marsden is the Technology Columnist for The Independent; he has also written about crumpets, Captain Beefheart, rude place names and string. He's also a musician who plays in the band Scritti Politti, and won the under-10 piano category at the 1980 Watford Music Festival by playing a piece called "Silver Trumpets" with verve and aplomb.

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'Prison Architect' players decide the fate of inmates

'Prison Architect': A clever way of exploring how the penal system is run or an ethical offence?

'Prison Architect' allows players to build and run their own jails. Rhodri Marsden reports.

Rhodri Marsden's interesting objects: General George Pickett's shad bake

Three Confederate generals enjoyed the local tradition in a secluded part of Virginia 150 years ago this week, while Pickett's troops were being annihilated in what became known as the "Waterloo" of the Confederacy

In recent months Twitter has been forced to recognise that bullied people walking away isn't good for its reputation

Twitter has introduced a quality filter, but can it keep the bullies out?

Twitter says the filter "aims to remove all tweets from your notifications timeline that contain threats, offensive or abusive language… or are sent from suspicious accounts"

Radio 1's rundown of the hit parade moves to a new slot

Top 40 moves from Sunday to Friday: A battle to preserve the relevance of the chart for a younger generation

For 48 years, Radio 1's rundown of the hit parade lifted teen spirits every Sunday night. As it moves to a new Friday teatime slot, Rhodri Marsden wonders if the kids will be all right

Rhodri Marsden's Interesting Objects: Pope Pius VII's paper crown

Pius VI's papal tiaras had been destroyed or looted, so the assembled throng came to a practical solution when Pope Pius VII was crowned...

The UN has pulled together a 'happiness playlist' featuring Pharrell Williams along with other artists

International Day Of Happiness: Our happiness is one of the most complex issues we'll ever wrestle with

27 per cent of UK adults rate their life satisfaction as "very high" – but what does that mean?
The Woolet - a bluetooth-powered, self-charging wallet

Woolet wallet: Leaving valuables behind could be a thing of the past if tech firms have their way

Woolet is a Bluetooth-powered, self-charging wallet that sends an alert to your phone to advise you that you've moved out of a specified catchment area

Sylvanian Families has had its share of ups and downs over the past 30 years

Sylvanian Families: How folksy ways and wholesome values captured a global audience

Dreamt up in Japan as an antidote to high-rise living, Sylvanian Families have sold over 40 million figures in the UK alone. Rhodri Marsden discovers some creature comforts in a pastoral, low-tech world.

Interesting Objects: The first pair of earmuffs

Ear muffs were invented by 18-year-old Chester Greenwood, whose own ears were, according to later testimony from his grandson, "big and cold"

'Point, shoot and hope': the WhiteAlbum app

WhiteAlbum app harks back to an era of terrible holiday photos

The app gives you 24 chances to take pictures, which you can't see after you've taken them. You then pay $20 (£13) to have the prints delivered to your door

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Day In a Page

John Palmer: 'Goldfinger' of British crime was murdered, say police

Murder of the Brink’s-MAT mastermind

'Goldfinger' of British crime's life ended in a blaze of bullets, say police
Forget little green men - aliens will look like humans, says Cambridge University evolution expert

Forget little green men

Leading evolutionary biologist says aliens will look like humans
The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: An Algerian scientist adjusts to life working in a kebab shop

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

An Algerian scientist struggles to adjust to her new life working in a Scottish kebab shop
Bodyworlds museum: Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy

Dying dream of Doctor Death

Dr Gunther von Hagens has battled legal threats, Parkinson's disease, and the threat of bankruptcy
UK heatwave: Temperature reaches 39.8 degrees on Central Line - the sweatiest place in London

39.8 degrees recorded on Tube

There's hot (London) and too damn hot (the Underground). Simon Usborne braved the Central line to discover what its passengers suffer
Kitchens go hi-tech: From robot chefs to recipe-shopping apps, computerised cooking is coming

Computerised cooking is coming

From apps that automatically make shopping lists from your recipe books to smart ovens and robot chefs, Kevin Maney rounds up innovations to make your mouth water
Jessie Cave interview: The Harry Potter star has published a feminist collection of cartoons

Jessie Cave's feminist cartoons

The Harry Potter star tells Alice Jones how a one-night stand changed her life
Football Beyond Borders: Even the most distruptive pupils score at homework club

Education: Football Beyond Borders

Add football to an after-school homework club, and even the naughtiest boys can score
10 best barbecue books

Fire up the barbie: 10 best barbecue books

We've got Bibles to get you grilling and smoking like a true south American pro
Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power

Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

Junk balls and chop and slice are only way 5ft 1in Kurumi Nara can live with Petra Kvitova’s power
Ron Dennis exclusive: ‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

‘This is one of the best McLaren teams ever – we are going to do it’

Ron Dennis shrugs off a poor start to the season in an exclusive interview, and says the glory days will come back
Seifeddine Rezgui: What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?

Making of a killer

What motivated a shy student to kill 38 holidaymakers in Tunisia?
UK Heatwave: Temperatures on the tube are going to exceed the legal limit for transporting cattle

Just when you thought your commute couldn't get any worse...

Heatwave will see temperatures on the Tube exceed legal limit for transporting cattle
Exclusive - The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Swapping Bucharest for London

The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

Meet the man who swapped Romania for the UK in a bid to provide for his family, only to discover that the home he left behind wasn't quite what it seemed
Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Cheaper energy on the way, but it's not all sunshine and rainbows

Solar power will help bring down electricity prices over the next five years, according to a new report. But it’s cheap imports of ‘dirty power’ that will lower them the most