The Wall Street Journal is close to hiring Quartz tech and science editor Christopher Mims as its newest tech columnist, said several sources. If completed, Mims will replace its last new tech columnist Farhad Manjoo, who decamped for the New York Times in January, just a few months after arriving from Slate.
The Journal talked to a range of writers about the high-profile slot — no, I am not going to tell you who they are, but they are easy to guess.
As described on Quartz — the online news magazine owned by Atlantic Media — Mims is a “former editor at Seed, Scientific American, Technology Review, Grist and Smithsonian, and in those roles launched blogs, redesigns, video series and other half-forgotten but otherwise influential experiments in new media.”
Mims is also one sassy dude, it seems, with a recent column titled, “Tech Companies Are Liars: The Samsung Edition.”
“Unless something is made explicit in a forum in which there are legal consequences for getting it wrong, you simply can’t trust the numbers coming out of most tech companies,” he wrote.
Say it ain’t so, Mims! Then again, I am always shocked that gambling goes on in this place, too.
Also, Amazon and Google are apparently cloud-rumbling, according to another recent Mims column:
“But whereas music players were a fragmented industry when the iPod appeared, in cloud computing Google is playing catch-up with a single market leader, Amazon, that has a track record of destroying incumbents in every industry it gets into. What Google has in its favor, besides a sheer technical expertise, is that it already runs the biggest cloud-computing operation in the world—just that it puts most of it to a different use. The resulting battle is likely to be epic, and its outcome determines nothing less than who will control the internet.”
(But let’s be honest, it’s still not quite as gripping as who gets to run B613 on “Scandal,” but probably more scary in the long run.)
I have asked for comment from all parties, but no one wants to talk to me tonight. I will update when and if they do.