Iain P. Watts

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Software engineer based in Seattle, working on search, data pipelines, and machine learning. Tech lead on the Marketplace team at Rover.com.

iain.watts@gmail.com

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History of Science / STS Scholarship

I had a previous career in academia, where I taught courses in the History of Science, European history, and Science and Technology Studies. My research focused on the history of information and scientific communication, with the aim being to use the experience of the communications revolution unleashed by the Internet to ask fresh questions about how people communicated with one another in the past.

I did my PhD in the History of Science program at Princeton University, where I wrote a dissertation on how people doing science during the Napoleonic Wars (c. 1800) shared information with one another. Along the way, I also wrote a couple of research articles, which you can find in the publications section below.

Research Articles

“Philosophical Intelligence: Letters, Print and Experiment during Napoleon’s Continental Blockade,” Isis 106, no. 4 (December 2015): 749-770. (doi: 10.1086/684807). Winner of the 2014 Nathan Reingold Prize from the History of Science Society.

“‘We Want No Authors’: William Nicholson and the Contested Role of the Scientific Journal in Britain, 1797-1813.” British Journal for the History of Science 47 (2014): 397-419. (doi: 10.1017/S0007087413000964). Winner of the Singer Prize, the British Society for the History of Science’s biennial award for an essay by an early career scholar.

Essay Reviews

Essay Review of Aileen Fyfe, Steam-Powered Knowledge: William Chambers and the Business of Publishing, 1820-1860, Reviews in History, 2013.