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Gartner VP Claims Researching “Ethical Programming” Necessary for Future of Smart Machines

April 17, 2015

The article on TweakTown titled Gartner: Smart Machines Must Include Ethical Programming Protocols briefly delves into the necessity of developing ethical programming in order to avoid some sort of Terminator/ I,Robot situation that culminates in the rise of the machines and the end of humanity. Gartner is one of the world’s leading technology research and advisory companies, but it hardly sounds like the company stance. The article quotes Frank Buytendijk, a Gartner research VP,

“Clearly, people must trust smart machines if they are to accept and use them…The ability to earn trust must be part of any plan to implement artificial intelligence (AI) or smart machines, and will be an important selling point when marketing this technology.”

If you’re thinking, sounds like another mid-tier consultant is divining the future, you aren’t wrong. Researching ethical programming for the hypothetical self-aware machines that haven’t been built yet might just be someone’s idea of a good time. The article concludes with the statement that “experts are split on the topic, arguing whether or not humans truly have something to worry about.” While the experts figure out how we humans will cause the end of the human reign over earth, some of us are just waiting for the end of another in a line of increasingly violent winters.

Chelsea Kerwin, April 17, 2014

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

Improving the Preservica Preservation Process

April 17, 2015

Preservica is a leading program for use in digital preservation, consulting, and research, and now it is compatible with Microsoft SharePointECM Connection has the scoop on the “New Version Of Preservica Aligns Records Management And Digital Preservation.”  The upgrade to Preservica will allow SharePoint managers to preserve content from SharePoint as well as Microsoft Outlook, a necessary task as most companies these days rely on the Internet for business and need to archive transactions.

Preservica wants to become a bigger part of enterprise system strategies such as enterprise content management and information governance.  One of their big selling points is that Preservica will archive information and keep it in a usable format, as obsoleteness becomes a bigger problem as technology advances.

“Jon Tilbury, CEO Preservica adds: ‘The growing volume and diversity of digital content and records along with rapid technology and IT refresh rates is fuelling the need for Records and Compliance managers to properly safe-guard their long-term and permanent digital records by incorporating Digital Preservation into their overall information governance lifecycle. The developing consensus is that organizations should consider digital preservation from the outset – especially if they hold important digital records for more than 10 years or already have records that are older than 10 years. Our vision is to make this a pluggable technology so it can be quickly and seamlessly integrated into the corporate information landscape.’ ”

Digital preservation with a compliant format is one of the most overlooked problems companies deal with.  They may have stored their records on a storage device, but if they do not retain the technology to access them, then the records are useless.  Keeping files in a readable format not only keeps them useful, but it also makes the employee’s life who has to recall them all the easier.

Whitney Grace, April 17, 2015
Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

Mobile Office 365 Usage on the Rise

April 16, 2015

A recent study by harmon.ie has found that Mobile Office 365 is growing quickly among its users. Mobile is a huge consideration for all software companies, and now the data is proving that mobile is the go-to for even heavy-hitting work and enterprise applications. Read more in the AppsTechNews article, “The state of mobile Office 365 usage in the workplace – and what it means for SharePoint.”

The article begins with the research:

“24% of harmon.ie mobile users are now using mobile Office 365 in the cloud, compared to 18% six months ago. Not surprisingly, the most popular activity conducted by business users on mobile devices was online and offline document access, according to 81% of the vote. 7% most frequently use their mobile devices to add a SharePoint site, while 4% prefer to favourite documents for later offline access.”

Retrieval is still proven to be the most common mobile function, as devices are still not designed well for efficient input. To keep up with future developments regarding mobile use in the enterprise, stay tuned to ArnoldIT.com. Stephen E. Arnold has made a career out of following all things search, and his SharePoint feed is an accessible place to stay tuned in to the latest SharePoint developments.

Emily Rae Aldridge, April 16, 2015

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

NSF Makes Plan for Public Access to Scientific Research

April 16, 2015

The press release on the National Science Foundation titled National Science Foundation Announces Plan for Comprehensive Public Access to Research Results speaks to the NSF’s interest in increasing communications on federally funded research. The NSF is an independent federal agency with a 7 billion dollar annual budget that is dispersed around the country in the form of grants to fund research and education in science and engineering. The article states,

“Scientific progress depends on the responsible communication of research findings,” said NSF Director France A. Córdova…Today’s announcement follows a request from the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy last year, directing science-funding agencies to develop plans to increase access to the results of federally funded research. NSF submitted its proposal to improve the management of digital data and received approval to implement the plan.”

The plan is called Today’s Data, Tomorrow’s Discoveries and promotes the importance of science without creating an undue burden on scientists. All manuscripts that appear in peer-reviewed scholarly journals and the like will be made available for free download within a year of the initial publication. In a time when scientists are less trusted and science itself is deeply misunderstood, public access may be more important than ever.

 

Chelsea Kerwin, April 16, 2014

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

Informed Millennials

April 15, 2015

With the fall of traditional newspapers and aging TV News audiences, just where are today’s 20- and young 30- somethings turning for news coverage?  Science 2.0  tells us “How Millennials Get News,” reporting on a recent survey from the American Press Institute and the Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. The joint effort comes from a collaboration arrangement the organizations call the Media Insight Project. Conducted at the beginning of 2015, the survey asked Millennials about their news-consumption habits. The article tells us:

“People ages 18-34 consume news and information in strikingly different ways than did previous generations, they keep up with ‘traditional’ news as well as stories that connect them to hobbies, culture, jobs, and entertainment, they just do it in ways that corporations can’t figure out how to monetize well….

“‘For many Millennials, news is part of their social flow, with most seeing it as an enjoyable or entertaining experience,’ said Trevor Tompson, director of the AP-NORC Center. ‘It is possible that consuming news at specific times of the day for defined periods will soon be a thing of the past given that news is now woven into many Millennials’ connected lives.’”

Soon? Even many of us Gen Xers and (a few intrepid Baby Boomers) now take our news in small doses at varying hours. The survey also found that most respondents look at the news at least once a day, and many several times per day. Also, contrary to warnings from worrywarts (yes, including me), personalized news feeds may not be creating a confirmation-bias crisis, after all. Most of these Millennials insist their social-media feeds are well balanced; the write-up explains:

“70 percent of Millennials say that their social media feeds are comprised of a diverse mix of viewpoints evenly mixed between those similar to and different from their own. An additional 16 percent say their feeds contain mostly viewpoints different from their own. And nearly three-quarters of those exposed to different views (73 percent) report they investigate others’ opinions at least some of the time–with a quarter saying they do it always or often.”

Well, that’s encouraging. Another finding might surprise some of us: Though a vast 90 percent of Millennials have smart phones, only half report being online most of all of the day. See the article for more, or navigate to the report itself; the study’s methodology is detailed at the end of the report.

Cynthia Murrell, April 15, 2015

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

Visual Data Mapper Quid Raises $39M

April 14, 2015

The article on TechCrunch titled Quid Raises $39M More to Visualize Complex Ideas explains the current direction of Quid. Quid, the business analytics company interested in the work of processing vast amounts of data to build visual maps as well as branding and search, has been developing new paths to funding. The article states,

“When we wrote about the company back in 2010, it was focused on tracking emerging technologies, but it seems to have broadened its scope since then. Quid now says it has signed up 80 clients since launching the current platform at the beginning of last year.The new funding was led by Liberty Interactive Corporation, with participation from ARTIS Ventures, Buchanan Investments, Subtraction Capital, Tiger Partners, Thomas H. Lee Limited Family Partnership II, Quid board member Michael Patsalos-Fox…”

Quid also works with such brands as Hyundai, Samsung and Microsoft, and is considered to be unique in its approach to the big picture of tech trends. The article does not provide much information as to what the money is to be used for, unless it is to do with the changes to the website, which was once called the most pretentious of startup websites for its detailed explanation of its primary and secondary typefaces and array of titular allusions.

Chelsea Kerwin, April 14, 2014

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

The Evolution of SharePoint Online Collaboration

April 14, 2015

SharePoint Online is quickly playing catch up to the on-premises version, but the fact that they weren’t identical from the start is still perplexing. Tech Target explores the topic further in their article, “Following the SharePoint Online Collaboration Evolution.”

The article sums up the current situation:

“To an outsider, it would appear that SharePoint would have been the perfect one-to-one on-premises and cloud server option, considering it’s a Web-based option. However, it’s more complex than a move in data center location that’s local to Microsoft. And in terms of development, much of the effort has gone into the option that will drive the migration to Office 365 and the revenue from such a move, which is Exchange Online.”

Hybrid enablement is one area that SharePoint 2016 watchers are keeping a close eye on, as part of an overall focus on bringing more Office 365 experiences to on-premises customers. On the other side of the coin, certain online features are being strengthened by their reliance on SharePoint on-site under the hood. Look for Delva, Office 365, and OneDrive for Business among others. Overall, the future of SharePoint is exciting but still coming into focus. Keep an eye on ArnoldIT.com, a Web service run by a longtime search expert Stephen E. Arnold. His SharePoint feed will make additional SharePoint news accessible as it becomes available.

Emily Rae Aldridge, April 14, 2015

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

CyberOSINT Update: No Fooling

April 1, 2015

Two quick items about cyber OSINT. These are not April Fool jokes and the information is available without nag screens, registration forms, or blinking ads.

First, we have posted a five minute video that explains what cyber OSINT means. I was interviewed by award winning tech journalist Ric Manning. You can view the video at this link.

Second, we have started a new interview series. Like the original Search Wizards Speak series of interviews, the Cyber Wizards Speak interviews provide more first-person information about cyber OSINT from those working in the field. The interviews are intended for those interested in law enforcement, intelligence, and security. The first interview in the series presents the viewpoints of Luca Scagliarini, one of the original developers of the Expert System Cogito system. You can find the interview at www.xenky.com/expert-system.

Watch for upcoming announcements about more cyber OSINT videos and interviews with the principals of BrightPlanet and Recorded Future.

Copies of my new study CyberOSINT: Next Generation Access are available at www.xenky.com/cyberosint.

Stephen E Arnold, April 1, 2015

Tweets Reveal Patterns of Support or Opposition for ISIL

March 31, 2015

Once again, data analysis is being put to good use. MIT Technology Review describes how “Twitter Data Mining Reveals the Origins of Support for the Islamic State.” A research team lead by one WalidMagdy at the Qatar Computing Research Institute studied tweets regarding the “Islamic State” (also known as ISIS, ISIL, or just IS) to discern any patterns that tell us which people choose to join such an organization and why.

See the article for a detailed description of the researchers’ methodology. Interesting observations involve use of the group’s name and tweet timing. Supporters tended to use the whole, official name (the “Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant” is perhaps the most accurate translation), while most opposing tweets didn’t bother, using the abbreviation. They also found that tweets criticizing ISIS surge right after the group has done something terrible, while supporters tended to tweet after a propaganda video was released or the group achieved a major military victory. Other indicators of sentiment were identified, and an algorithm created. The article reveals:

“Magdy and co trained a machine learning algorithm to spot users of both types and said it was able to classify other users as likely to become pro- or anti-ISIS with high accuracy. ‘We train a classifier that can predict future support or opposition of ISIS with 87 percent accuracy,’ they say….

“That is interesting research that reveals the complexity of the forces at work in determining support or opposition to movements like ISIS—why people like [Egypt’s] Ahmed Al-Darawy end up dying on the battlefield. A better understanding of these forces is surely a step forward in finding solutions to the tangled web that exists in this part of the world.

“However, it is worth ending on a note of caution. The ability to classify people as potential supporters of ISIS raises the dangerous prospect of a kind of thought police, like that depicted in films like Minority Report. Clearly, much thought must be given to the way this kind of information should be used.”

Clearly. (Though the writer seems unaware that the term “thought police” originated with Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, the reference to Minority Report shows he or she understands the concept. But I digress.) Still, trying to understand why people turn to violence and helping to mitigate their circumstances before they get there seems worth a try. Better than bombs, in my humble opinion, and perhaps longer-lasting.

Cynthia Murrell, March 31, 2015

Stephen E Arnold, Publisher of CyberOSINT at www.xenky.com

Is Google Net Neutral?

March 31, 2015

When the FCC passed laws that protect net neutrality, the Internet rejoiced that its crazy antics would be safeguarded and content would not be as regulated when it comes to search retrieval and indexing. Big technology companies that make the bulk of the revenue from Internet related services and products are beginning to voice their opinions on the matter, including Google. Drew Crawford wrote on his blog Sealed Abstract a very heated post about Google’s stance in the entire net neutrality argument: “Google, Our Patron Saint Of The Closed Web.” The blog points out the Google is net neutral with the Droid open market and its employees’ blogs, but apparently Google is also out to destroy the free Web too.

Google plans to take control of all .dev domain addresses and possible others in an effort to have these extensions solely related to Google products and services. In short, if you want to use any domains with this ending, like a blog, you will be forced to use a Google service. It is reminiscent of when Google forced people to sign-up for Google Plus if users wanted to continue using YouTube.

“My point is that if you think Google is some kind of Patron Saint of the Open Web, shit son. Tim Cook on his best day could not conceive of a dastardly plan like this. This is a methodical, coordinated, long-running and well-planned attack on the open web that comes from the highest levels of Google leadership.”

The news is not surprising when you assemble the pieces, but it is disheartening that there do not seem to be any big companies on the little guy’s side. And I thought Google was committed to not being evil.

Whitney Grace, March 31, 2015

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