Analytics & Data Mobile Society

A Key Question of the Digital Era: How Much Information is Too Much?

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Mobile technology is rapidly changing the way we live. But it brings an explosion in data consumption. Last year the world consumed 4 petabytes of data a month on mobile phones. (A petabyte is a million gigabytes.) Within five years, the amount will likely grow to over 24 billion petabytes. Is there a limit to how much info we can healthily consume?   More

Analytics & Data Business Internet of Things

Balancing Privacy and User Experience: The Challenge of the Digital Age

Illustration for Techonomy by Clara Kirkpatrick

If companies fail to meet heightened data protection standards and other growing customer expectations around privacy and respect for their data, they may be fined, lose customer trust, and possibly put the entire company at risk. This is especially true in Europe. At the same time, companies that lose sight of the customer experience will not be successful long term. The conundrum is a kind of “digital Scylla and Charybdis”.   More

Analytics & Data Healthcare Internet of Things

How Mobile Tech Can Tame Diabetes

In Manila, commuting may be colorful but it can take forever. Inactive people are prone to diabetes, a growing scourge there. New apps can help. (photo Shutterstock)

Over three-quarters of the world’s diabetics live in low- and middle-income countries. It is one of the world’s leading causes of death and disability and afflicts over 400 million people. Many of the most promising new technologies being developed to address this global epidemic are low-cost mobile solutions especially suited for emerging markets. Their impact is likely to be felt strongly in coming years.   More

Analytics & Data Internet of Things Security & Privacy

How Good Guys Can Win the Cyberwars

Cybersecurity session at Techonomy 2015– moderator Michael Patsalos-Fox far right. Others, from left: Rowan Trollope of Cisco,
Victoria A. Espinel of the Business Software Alliance,
Nicole Eagan of Darktrace,
Special Agent David Johnson of the FB,I
Brian Kelly of Rackspace, and Elena Kvochko of Barclays.

When it comes to the cyberwars, are good guys or bad guys winning? I moderated a panel at Techonomy 2015 that explored this question. The answer isn’t a simple yes or no – and in light of the recent events in Paris, the question of our security feels even more critical. The industrialization of cybercrime is upon us. Today’s criminals are networked and well equipped. All organizations must prepare themselves for a series of battles.   More

Analytics & Data Finance

The Re-Humanizing Impact of Robo-Advice

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It’s not technology that’s dehumanizes us, but rather tedious tasks like personal finances themselves. And that's not just because working on them takes time out of our day. We’re simply not evolved to plan perfectly for the future. Automated advice is re-humanizing people. It’s giving them more time to spend what they want to be doing, and it’s based not just on their personal goals, but also on what fits into their lives.   More

Analytics & Data Business Jobs Society

Artificial Intelligence is Already Remaking Modern Businesses

We're all moving into a world where the key to success will be how people work with smart machines and artificial intelligence. (image courtesy Shutterstock)

Artificial intelligence (AI) technology heralds an opportunity and a challenge to business to harness new cognitive power. In an age of intelligent machines, effective executives must not only design organizations with the right metrics and interfaces between individuals and teams of people, but also between people and smart machines.   More

Analytics & Data Business Healthcare

Can Open Data Drive Innovative Healthcare?

Innovative Healthcare (image via Shutterstock)

As healthcare systems worldwide become increasingly digitized, medical scientists and health researchers have more data than ever. Yet much valuable health information remains locked in proprietary or hidden databases. A growing number of open data initiatives aim to change this, but it won’t be easy.   More

Analytics & Data Cities Society Techonomy Events

From Techonomy Detroit: How To Hack Our Way to Better Cities

Can We Hack Our Way Pic 915

As access to data and technology becomes democratized, a civic tech movement is burgeoning to help government make cities more responsive and livable. Detroit CIO Beth Niblock joined Techonomy CEO David Kirkpatrick for a discussion on "Hacking Our Way to the Cities We Need,” along with Danish architect and author Thomas Ermacora, investor and entrepreneur Jon Gosier, and Microsoft Technology and Civic Engagement leader Dan’l Lewin. Transparency and apps are making all the difference in Detroit, as well as in Barcelona, Chicago, Kampala, London, Nairobi, and Philadelphia. But too many cities still haven't gotten the memo.   More

Analytics & Data Cities Startup Culture

Civic Jazz in the New Maker Cities

San Francisco's Market Street Prototyping Festival was a breakthrough moment for civic innovation.

The civic innovation movement began when cities started opening up data. Citizens found new pathways to help generate local energy and growth. Now the movement is getting support from the White House and extending to cities around the country. Communities are getting engaged, and Maker Cities are the result.   More

Analytics & Data Business Cities Global Tech Transportation

A Less Congested Future: Technology for Moving People, Businesses, and Cities

Urban Engines so-called "space-time engine" can model cities like Sao Paulo, here, to analyze and optimize urban transportation.

Accelerating urbanization is leading to clogged transportation networks, but the clever use of data can smooth our city systems. Powerful tech tools—from the Internet of Moving Things to the computational and sensing capabilities of smartphones—can help reduce congestion. Modeling and data-driven systems will define the future of urban transport.   More

Analytics & Data Global Tech Society

Artificial Intelligence Catches Fire in Ethiopia

Young Ethiopian with robot whose AI software was created in his country. (courtesy iCog Labs)

Ethiopian artificial intelligence R&D is on fire. The driver for this unexpected sector is the government’s massive multi-billion dollar, industrial plan and fervent development of higher education. At the hub is an AI group, iCog Labs, co-founded in 2012 by a young Ethiopian roboticist, Getnet Aseffa Gezaw, and an American AI pioneer, Ben Goertzel. With twenty five Ethiopian software engineers, iCog pursues full-on ‘Strong Intelligence.’   More

Analytics & Data Healthcare

Why I’m So Excited About Watson, IBM’s Answer “Man”

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When Ginni Rometty recently explained to Charlie Rose that she and her team were “reinventing IBM using data, the cloud, and mobility,” it began to sound like clients would soon be able to subscribe to the company's much-promoted Watson artificial intelligence service for solutions to the world’s most difficult and complicated problems. Four thousand companies are now in line to subscribe to Watson Health, and it’s easy to understand why. Watson is said to have the power to learn about everything going on in the world about cancer and, based on all that knowledge, recommend customized treatments.   More

Analytics & Data Healthcare

How Big Data Can Make People Healthier in Emerging Markets

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In many emerging markets, reliable data on healthcare systems is limited or nonexistent. This makes it difficult to address urgent healthcare challenges in some of the world’s least developed countries. But a growing number of tech entrepreneurs and public health activists are finding ways to fill the data gaps. And as smartphones and other connected devices proliferate, fertile new sources of data are emerging.   More

Analytics & Data

The Hardest Thing to Do in Sport

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The human brain and big data; our understanding and application of both are growing in scope and impact thanks to the increasing potential and power of tech. One of the areas they’re increasingly coming together, however, might surprise you. Jordan Muraskin and Jason Sherwin are two of a growing group bringing the science of mental analytics to professional sports and, more precisely, baseball. Over the years, managers, players, and front-office personnel have collected reams of information on hitters and pitchers, trying to mix together the secret sauce that would solve this vexing conundrum.   More

Analytics & Data Security & Privacy

Say It Ain’t So, Joe: Has Hacking Come to the Nation’s Pastime?

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On Tuesday, The New York Times first reported that the FBI and the Justice Department are involved in a formal investigation of the St. Louis Cardinals’ front office, members of whom had been accused of hacking a Houston Astros’ internal database. The Cardinals (with 11 World Series titles, second only to the New York Yankees) are by most considered a model MLB franchise. The notion that they’d be involved in something as nefarious as cyberhacking an opponent to gain a competitive advantage seems unsavory to many; the notion they’d be hacking an opponent with as downtrodden a history as the Houston Astros seems ironic to many others. But times, as they say, are a-changing and baseball teams (and individuals) have long balanced the tightrope between bending the rules and breaking them.   More

Analytics & Data Techonomy Events

Data, Data Everywhere, But Not a Bit You Own

From left, Horacio Gutiérrez, Brad Burnham, Robert Quinn, and Julie Brill. (Photo by Rebecca Greenfield)

Who owns data? How should data privacy be defined and protected? And what is the potential for regulation to support or impede the growth of digital data businesses? Those were among the tough questions panelists at the Techonomy Policy 2015 event in Washington last week grappled with during a session headlined “Privacy Collides with Data in a Transparent World.” Federal Trade Commissioner Julie Brill offered a contrasting perspective to those of AT&Ts federal regulatory and chief privacy officer Robert Quinn and Microsoft’s deputy general counsel Horacio Gutierrez. And Brad Burnham, managing partner at Union Square Ventures, shared an investor’s point of view on data, which he said many view as “the asset that fuels the digital economy,” but fail to see what a huge liability it can be.   More

Analytics & Data Government Partner Insights

Washington Is Changing. Companies Have to Change with It

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Digital technology transformed business models for the media, manufacturing, and sports industries. Now shifts in how Washington works require that companies adopt new, technology-driven government affairs strategies. Here are some of the signs of the transformation underway in Washington: a decrease in Congressional action; increased complexity in regulations; the growing relevance of social media; and the proliferation of information services and access to new information. For businesses of all sizes in all industries, there has never been a more critical moment to recognize these changes and act on them.   More

Analytics & Data Government

Let’s Use Data and Tech to Create a Government that Works

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Breakthroughs in medicine, data science, online education, renewable energy, and satellite navigation have changed the world. From smartphones to PET scans, from pest-resistant seeds to asteroid landings, the list of extraordinary, ingenious, life-changing achievements is almost endless. But from a public policy perspective, the pace of improvement is harrowing. Governments around the world need to find mechanisms that simultaneously enable greater opportunity for their social entrepreneurs as well as better protection for citizens. The new structures will need to use data more wisely, make decisions more quickly, and regulate more fairly. They will also need to provide data to collaboratively achieve performance-measured outcomes, and better engage communities and civil society’s participation in the process.   More

Analytics & Data

Satellites, Helped by “the Crowd,” Aid Crises in Nepal and Elsewhere

DigitalGlobe's satellites take high definition photographs of areas hit hard by disaster like Nepal, and volunteers then help identify where roads are impassable, survivors' tarps are located, and determine where aid needs to be sent, and how. Other projects include identifying where farmers are starting dangerous and smoky fires in Indonesia in order to clear forest to plant palm oil trees. DigitalGlobe's Bert Turner spoke to Edie Lush of Techonomy partner Hub Culture during the WEF Latin America event in Mexico.   More