Christopher Tozzi


I study the history and culture of technology. My most recent book, For Fun and Profit: A History of the Free and Open Source Software Revolution (MIT Press, 2017), explores the history of software whose source code is freely shared, and the cultural and economic impact of such software.

I am also interested in "new" military history. My first book, Nationalizing France's Army: Foreign, Black and Jewish Troops in the French Military, 1715-1831 (University of Virginia Press, 2016), used military service by outsiders to France's national community as a lens for analyzing the formulation of national identity, nationality and xenophobia in Europe's first major modern democratic society.

My current book project, which I am coauthoring with an industry practitioner and which is under contract with Springer, examines the trend of developer advocacy and its role in shaping the experience of software development practices.

My teaching centers on the history and culture of technology via courses such as "IT and Society" and "History of Science and Technology." I also offer some courses that focus less narrowly on technology, including RPI's American history survey and a local history course that focuses on the history of RPI and Troy.

In addition to my scholarly work, I write frequently on a freelance basis for a variety of media outlets on topics such as software development, open source and the IT industry. I am also an adjunct analyst with IDC, where I contribute to reports on IT industry trends, and I serve on the board of the Hudson Mohawk Industrial Gateway, which preserves and promotes the industrial history of Troy and the Capital Region.

Other affililations: Information Technology and Web Science
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