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Restart Podcast Ep 12: A natural history of our gadgets

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We’ve all heard that our gadgets contain valuable minerals, and that they have toxic components. But what do we really know about what is inside our gadgets, how they are made, and their afterlives?

We talked to Goldsmiths researcher Jennifer Gabrys, whose book Digital Rubbish: A Natural History of Electronics, changed our perceptions. Exploring the environmental legacy of chip making in Silicon Valley, and the toxicity in plastics and other materials, Gabrys challenges us to understand our gadgets as not separate from “nature” but instead as “future fossils”.

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