An unhappy reality has plagued my career: that I disagree with most everything that goes on within my field. That is true whether I am thinking of my field narrowly, as cryptography, or broadly, as computer science (CS). In this talk I own up to my grumpy discontent. I describe what I understand to be its principle cause: a rejection of the “Standard Technological Narrative” (STN). I call the negation of this view, as it applies to computer science, radical CS. I try to imagine what a program of radical CS might look like. I provide a post-mortem on three pieces of my prior work that were, in retrospect, attempts at radical CS: writing about technopolitics in The Moral Character of Cryptographic Work (2015); redefining secret sharing in Reimagining Secret Sharing (2020); and replacing much of my teaching with a disturbing course on ethics-and-technology (2004–2023). While I find none of these efforts to have been particularly successful, I express hope that others might do better.

Phillip Rogaway, “Radical CS”