Addicted to books, BlackBerries and baiting Kevin McCloud, architect Robert Adam courts controversy online as well as off, as Charlotte Matheson found out

What’s your favourite bookmark?

eBay. I am an addicted collector of small bronze and ceramic sculpture and a particular kind of antique china. This virtual flea market has changed my whole outlook on collecting and I get a great thrill from bidding in the last 10 seconds.

What do you buy online?

Other than household goods, flights, hotels and so on, probably books, books and more books. Amazon and AbeBooks ( are my second-favourite bookmarks. I have a very structured reading programme and I can get almost anything I want from these two sites.

What’s your favourite online meeting place?

TradArch ( – the traditional architects’ discussion group. It keeps me in contact with a vigorous but widely dispersed community of traditional architects and urbanists. I do like to throw a very big stone in the pond from time to time and see how it ripples out!

What’s in your digital holster?

I love my BlackBerry and feel naked without it. I’ve developed a nervous click-on-to-email reflex in all spare moments and the middle of meetings (very rude). It’s a great boon all round as I’m so often away and on the move and hate being loaded down with my laptop. I’m developing very strong thumbs.

What’s your TV choice?

Recently I’ve taken to the new national sport – Gordon Brown at prime minister’s question time. If I’ve missed a good one I find it and watch it online.

Are you a blogger?

I did think of starting my own to further my thirst for debate and controversy – maybe I’ll do it sometime if I can get people to read it and join in. I did venture into the HAB blog (Kevin McCloud’s development company), just to cause trouble, but they closed it without responding. I then tried his Channel 4 blog but you had to go through a registration process (silly), so I didn’t bother. This brief episode has put me off the idea.