In early May, our world was reinvigorated with the fledging hope of “returning to normalcy.” Pundits and public health experts alike billed vaccines as a panacea, a painless way to revive tourism, education, and most fundamentally, in-person social interaction. Very quickly, this refresh hit a roadblock with the onslaught of variants and public opposition to the vaccine. Our burst of momentum had seemingly run out.
Rewired’s fourth issue, Refresh, seeks to explore both the bold, dynamic changes coming to technology and the tensions that these changes may yield. In each piece, you’ll see varying degrees of cautious optimism, balancing the excitement of innovation with careful pragmatism. Our writers in this issue run the gamut, addressing a novel approach to misinformation using blockchain, the efforts to revive native languages using artificial intelligence, and the challenges of implementing machine learning models in clinical medical settings.
Most importantly, though, we embodied the spirit of “refresh” through our writing and design staff. This summer, we had the privilege of welcoming fifteen students from five universities to contribute to Rewired’s fall issue through the first iteration of the Sparkplug Fellowship. These students brought incredible energy, focus, and care to their creative work this summer, and their contributions this summer reaffirmed the importance of student voice in technology journalism.
The quarter ahead will undoubtedly be filled with both exciting technological innovations and demoralizing obstacles. We hope, however, that Refresh will offer readers the much-needed burst of energy to once again think boldly about technology.
— the Editors, Fall 2021
Editors: Christopher Maximos (Lead), Tanvi Dutta Gupta, Enya Lu, Rayan Krishnan
Design: Crystal Nattoo (Lead), Ji Hong Ni, Cameron Linhares-Huang
Technology: Anne Li (Lead)
Sparkplug Writing Fellows: Vedant Khanna (Stanford University), Elle Baez (Cal Poly San Luis Obispo), Ashna Khetan (Stanford University), Keona Blanks (Stanford University), Anshika Agarwal (Stanford University), Jacqueline Munis (Stanford University), Christy Wang (Stanford University), Raina Talwar Bhatia (Stanford University), Muhammad Dhafer (Stanford University), Mauricio Baker (Stanford University), Angela Mao (Stanford University), Jennie Ebihara (Wesleyan University)
Sparkplug Design Fellows: Megan Chen (Stanford University), Rachael Quan (Virginia Tech), Isabelle Qiu (Rochester Institute of Technology)