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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Rhodri Marsden buys his 'milibit' online

Get a piece of the Bitcoin action: How easy is it to lay your hands on the virtual currency?

'The process was like wagering cash on a dull greyhound race and then having to jump through hoops to claim the winnings'

Rhodri Marsden: Smartphone users moan about battery life but don't choose mobiles with the longest

My current phone has been my trusty companion, faithful friend and indispensable conduit to the outside world for 23 months now. In four weeks, I'll be urgently embarking on the biennial horror of the upgrade process – not because I'm desperate to experience the thrill of developments such as fingerprint readers, virtual surround sound or support for communicating in Swahili, but because my relationship with my phone's battery has reached breaking point. We're barely speaking. It's not putting in anywhere near the effort that it used to, and despite regular admonishment, it refuses to mend its ways. Only today, I cursed its uselessness as it counted down from 100 per cent to 0 per cent at record-breaking speed, and I vowed to consign it to an unecological landfill grave as soon as possible.

2013 - the year in review: There's a constantly moving feast of new technology - but who's listening in?

As gadgetry continues to evolve at breakneck speed, it’s harder than ever for people – and society – to keep up

The Codeacademy interface
The capability of computers to recognise emotion is gathering pace

Rhodri Marsden: Do we want our laptops to know when we're in a bad mood?

As an emotionally sensitive man who has formulated a grossly over-inflated estimate of his own emotional sensitivity, I want to assure you that if you're feeling bad, I can tell. It's etched into your face, it's detectable in the tone of your voice, and more than evident by the way you keep shouting "bollocks!" at loud volume.

Interesting object: The speech balloon

From 18th-century caricaturists to Desperate Dan, the art of talking in picture-form has a long and (mostly) distinguished history

Scream break: who hasn’t copied the wrong people into an insulting email, or credited a customer’s account with £3bn by mistake?

A funny thing happened on the way to the photocopier: Rhodri Marsden's Twitter followers share cringeworthy work screw-ups

That most esteemed resource for matters pertaining to etiquette, Debrett's, advises people who encounter the British to "downplay your attributes and resort wherever possible to understatement". You will surely win our affection and admiration by successfully suppressing your confident swagger and any sign of high self-esteem.

It was all the rage in the Seventies...now copycat game 'Simon' is making a comeback

Just after midnight on 15 May, 1978, toy manufacturer Milton Bradley unveiled its new game at legendary New York nightclub Studio 54, amid what you'd hope were unbridled scenes of rampant cocaine ingestion and promiscuous sexual activity. In a bizarrely incongruous display, a huge model of the toy hung suspended over the dancefloor directly above, you'd hope, Cher, Liza Minnelli and Andy Warhol. OK, let's be honest – details of that night are sketchy. But this four-button toy with the dispiritingly bland name of 'Simon' would end up being the biggest-selling toy of that year.

Day In a Page

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

Peace without magnanimity - the summit in a railway siding that ended the fighting
Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

Scottish independence: How the Commonwealth Games could swing the vote

In the final part of our series, Chris Green arrives in Glasgow - a host city struggling to keep the politics out of its celebration of sport
Out in the cold: A writer spends a night on the streets and hears the stories of the homeless

A writer spends a night on the streets

Rough sleepers - the homeless, the destitute and the drunk - exist in every city. Will Nicoll meets those whose luck has run out
Striking new stations, high-speed links and (whisper it) better services - the UK's railways are entering a new golden age

UK's railways are entering a new golden age

New stations are opening across the country and our railways appear to be entering an era not seen in Britain since the early 1950s
Conchita Wurst becomes a 'bride' on the Paris catwalk - and proves there is life after Eurovision

Conchita becomes a 'bride' on Paris catwalk

Alexander Fury salutes the Eurovision Song Contest winner's latest triumph
Pétanque World Championship in Marseilles hit by

Pétanque 'world cup' hit by death threats

This year's most acrimonious sporting event took place in France, not Brazil. How did pétanque get so passionate?
Whelks are healthy, versatile and sustainable - so why did we stop eating them in the UK?

Why did we stop eating whelks?

Whelks were the Victorian equivalent of the donor kebab and our stocks are abundant. So why do we now export them all to the Far East?
10 best women's sunglasses

In the shade: 10 best women's sunglasses

From luxury bespoke eyewear to fun festival sunnies, we round up the shades to be seen in this summer
Germany vs Argentina World Cup 2014: Lionel Messi? Javier Mascherano is key for Argentina...

World Cup final: Messi? Mascherano is key for Argentina...

No 10 is always centre of attention but Barça team-mate is just as crucial to finalists’ hopes
Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer knows she needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

Siobhan-Marie O’Connor: Swimmer needs Glasgow joy on road to Rio

18-year-old says this month’s Commonwealth Games are a key staging post in her career before time slips away
The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

The German people demand an end to the fighting
New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
Can scientists save the world's sea life from

Can scientists save our sea life?

By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
Richard III, Trafalgar Studios, review: Martin Freeman gives highly intelligent performance

Richard III review

Martin Freeman’s psychotic monarch is big on mockery but wanting in malice