Do we really own the rights to Privacy and Security relating to the data stored about us?

PrivacyThe surge in data growth through the convergence of technologies is mind blowing. The enablement of Wi-Fi, mobility services, online digital social interaction, cloud services, and information in general being created digitally instead of paper has knock on effects in our physical world around privacy and security of the data stored about us.  (Mellink 2013

  • Some figures predict a 10 to 50 fold growth of the digital data world from 2010 until 2020 this is driven by the transformation of our lives and the world we live in. (EMC Corp 2014)

Privacy and Security concerns come hand in hand with the explosion of the new information age and the availability of data. Some of the areas that have particular focus are: medical records, credit and financial, consumer and our personal or social information such as photos. Medical Industry and Medical Records:

  • The medical industry collects information at every interaction this information about you can now be captured and stored in an Electronic Medical Record (EMR). The privacy and security comes about how that data is stored, used, is it given to insurance companies, do family members have access to the information, what happens if a screen with a patients information is visible to others and what if diagnoses are incorrectly recorded and communicated and how does this information get changed. (NitroSecuirty FairWarning)
  • You might be surprised that once in the EMR system the Doctor or Organisation becomes the custodian of the data.  (Potarazu 2013)

Financial and Credit Information:

  • The safeguarding of you privacy and security of your data in the USA as an example is regulated by the Gramm-Leach-Bliley Act (GLB) but this is limited to the ability to opt out of sharing information onward with other 3rd parties or outside companies. (Privacy Rights Clearinghouse 2013)
  • Privacy is dependent on the privacy notice sent to the customer and has to be sent out at least once a year. The data belongs to the financial organisation and you have rights to object to in accurate information. The GLB act only applies to individual consumers and does not cover business accounts or information. (Privacy Rights Clearinghouse 2013)


  • Store loyalty cards might seem a great idea but you sign the rights away for the profile information that is collected to the organisation running the card. These companies are entitled to use that information as there business possibly selling it on to 3rd parties our using it to sell you other products and services. (Beckett 2014)

Personal, Cloud and Social Media:

  • Google, Twitter, Microsoft and Facebook have all come under fire for allowing data to be viewed or accessed by 3rd parties. (Sangani 2010)Privacy policies have not been tight enough in the past. The data for example on Facebook is also owned jointly by you and Facebook, Facebook owns any IP you give it because you gave it permission via the Facebook statement of rights and responsibilities. (Facebook 2013). Security is focused around the user protecting the data and access as much as possible themselves.

Summary / Conclusions

proswpika_dedomena_437899392Analysts IDC estimate that only 20% of the digital world has protections around privacy and security and the level of protection varies globally, there is also much less protection in emerging markets. (Gantz and Reinsel 2012). The data and information is always owned solely by yourself when it is under your control and until you let it out to a third party. In the new digital world data privacy and security understanding is lagging behind the adoption and use. Information on how companies protect your privacy and security is varied and tends to be in the small print of privacy and security statements. When you have given over your data to a 3rd party in most instances the data is now owned by the 3rd party that is custodian of the data, you might have the rights to obtain a copy of what they hold and adjust in accuracies but not the rights for them to copy or use the data for their business purposes. (Pentland 2014). There is only one way to keep your information private and secure and that is not to share it in the first place, but is that really possible in the connected world we live in today, realistically probably not but could we change the model now?


BECKETT, Louis (2014). Everything We Know About What Data Brokers Know About You. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: EMC CORP (2014). EMC Digital Universe Study. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: FACEBOOK (2013). Statement of Rights and Responsibilities. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: GANTZ, John and REINSEL, David (2012). THE DIGITAL UNIVERSE IN 2020: Big Data, Bigger Digital Shadows, and Biggest Growth in the Far East. Analysts Report, IDC. GANTZ, John and REINSEL, David (2012). THE DIGITAL UNIVERSE IN 2020: Big Data, Bigger Digital Shadows, and Biggest Growth in the Far East. Analyst Report , IDC. MELLINK, Bart (2013). The Nexus of Forces. Analysts Point of View, Gartner Group Point of View. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: O’CONNELL, Nick (2012). Data Protection and Privacy Issues in the Middle East. [online]. Last accessed 20 06 2014 at: PENTLAND, Alex Sandy (2014). Should social media users retain ownership of their personal data? [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: POTARAZU, Dr. Sreedhar (2013). Who owns your health data? You may be surprised. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: PRIVACY RIGHTS CLEARINGHOUSE (2013). Financial Privacy FAQ. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: PRIVACY RIGHTS CLEARINGHOUSE (2014). Medical Privacy. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: PRIVACY RIGHTS CLEARINGHOUSE (2014). Online Privacy & Technology. [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: RIZZO, Mario (2011). Consumer Data: Who Owns It? [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: SANGANI, Kris (2010). Who owns your personal data? [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: SCHAFFER.JONATHAN, L. and RYAN, Jackie (2010). Who owns the data? [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: STAFFORD, Nancy (2010). Who owns the data in an Electronic Health Record? [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at: TROTTER, Fred (2012). Who owns patient data? [online]. Last accessed 22 06 2014 at:

Autonomous (intelligent) software agents

Artificial Intelligence (AI) that incorporates Autonomous (Intelligent) Software Agents are being exploited more and more to resolve complicated challenges. The applicability of these solutions bring some benefits however, based on current focussed research trends and limitations associated, the opportunity and possibilities that this technology brings has not yet been fully realised. To look at this further we need to break down and understand the basic definition of what AI autonomous intelligent software agents are.

  • An AI autonomous intelligent software agents is anything that humans create that is capable of executing an activity based on information it perceives, (Carnegie Mellon University 2012) based on previous experiences and lastly is has to be autonomous to perform functions and make decisions how to execute the tasks it is asked to perform on its own.  (Brookshear, Smith and Brylow 2012)

AI                        (Terziyan) Some of the current trend areas of focus and applicability for AI autonomous intelligent software agents are:

  • Simulation of interaction’s and flows: Simulating environment usage, Film making, Digital animation or Video Gaming – Multi Agent Simulation System in Virtual Environment (MASSIVE) is the ability to use intelligent agents as crowds, oppositions, or movement simulations around buildings or roads. (MASSIVE Simulating Life 2011) such films as iRobot, Avatar have used (MASSIVE Simulaing Life 2013)  (Georgge 2009)
  • Interaction, Information retrieval, management and diagnosis: Agents that can communicate and create natural language speech responses, hypothesis generation, and evidence-based learning outcomes such as IBM Watson that is being used in healthcare diagnoses (Shacklett 2014)
  • E-Commerce platforms: Agents can be used in auction or buying sites such as amazon, ebay. Consumers can also use agents to shop for them, automated negotiations and decision-making. (Dignum et al. 2002)
  • Business process function management and planning: Planning or managing functions based on patterns of information such as scheduling on mass transportation systems. Scheduling or route planning of trains on the London Underground or analysis station patterns of movement. (Basra et al. 2005) (Skobelev 2011)

Some benefits of AI autonomous intelligent software agents based on the focus areas above can include:

  • Decentralisation of the tasks to agents allows each agent to execute tasks at their most reliable manner as they are able to. The agents are not tied to centralised system that will allocate and execute tasks as needed.
  • The capability to interact and connect to multiple systems and take feeds and react to information
  • Agents can become part of a large problem solving model by interacting with other agents

Some limitations of AI autonomous intelligent software agents:

  • Agents as stated are artificial creations that execute tasks assigned to them without doing anything greater than or less than the predefined task assigned.
  • Agents require input sensors to gather data, the more inputs the better the action can be defined and generate better outcomes. If inputs were limited the tasks can only be carried out based on simplest logic of the sensors available this could be limiting factor and could create errors. I.e. not creating enough complexity of the problem results in less complex answers. (Carnegie Mellon University 2012)

Example would be using IBM Watson as a doctor and only allowing it take inputs via speech. In this case if a patient had a chest infection and the patient said to IBM Watson “I have a temperature”, IBM Watson doesn’t have the ability to check the breathing of the patient’s chest that a regular doctor might have the result therefore from IBM Watson could be a wrong diagnosis to the patient “you have flu” instead of the a chest infection. (Shacklett 2014)

Developing technology such as Intelligent Software Agents isn’t easy and not that cheap to do, but over the past years this industry has grown significantly. Once they have been created though training an agent or creating groups of agents doesn’t need a very high level of skill. (MASSIVE Simulaing Life 2013) Therefore because of this companies have to see a business reason for using the technology to get a return on their investment. Software agents are in are actually more normal than we really think about.

  • Personal Assistants: Self-Contained systems that really look after that scheduling, organising and optimize people’s tasks. (Moraitakis 1997) (Salden 2013)
  • Visitor Hosting Systems: Carnegie Mellon University has a Visitor Hosting System. This system looks after events participated in by visitors at a site, and are organizes and coordinates through the cooperation of local agents with the visitors’ personal agents. (SYCARA and ZENG 1998)
  • Data Mining: This field is one of the fastest-evolving (as we read about Google and Facebook buying in to this technology) ones at the moment given the explosive growth of the amount of accessible information transmitted and received via networks and digital communications. (Bose 1998) (Yasemin 1999)
  • Network Management: Collaborative agents collect and exchange information on network statistics in order to achieve automation and optimization of network administration tasks these could be routing, access, service provisions, monitoring and statistical evaluation, within a global view or cloud platform. (Hermans 1996)
  • Air/Land Traffic Control: Multi-agent systems are installed in both controlling sites and travelling vehicles to help resolve control decisions in routing and scheduling. (Pinedo 1995)
  • Mobile technology: Agents to help with selecting and helping with finding frequently used functions or doing tasks (Mills and Stufflebeam 2005) (Intelligent and Mobile Agents Research Group)

Summary / Conclusions There are some outstanding use cases for AI autonomous intelligent software agents today and there is ongoing development and need to solve more and more complex challengers. This continuation and ongoing development of this technology in to new applications to support human lives, are being created all the time from mobile phones to films this also in turn sparks even more possibilities or ideas for this technology. The dream by some is to one day model human biology into a computing device thus no longer having a computing device be static logical thing but instead making a device that has “Intelligent and have the ability to think” and can even make decisions. One day this all might become reality and taking to a robot or system might become normal. (Brookshear, Smith and Brylow 2012)  


BASRA, Rajveer, et al. (2005). Resolving Schduling Issues of the London Underground using a Multi-agent system. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
BOSE, R. (1998). IDM: an intelligent software agent based data mining environment. [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at:
BROOKSHEAR, J Gleen, SMITH, David T and BRYLOW, Dennis (2012). Chapter 11: Artificial Intelligence. In: HORTON, Marcia (ed.). Computer Science – An Overview. 11th ed., Addison-Wesley – Pearson, 461-500.
CARNEGIE MELLON UNIVERSITY (2012). Multi-Agent Systems. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at: DIGNUM,
Frank, et al. (2002). Software Agents Theory and Practice. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at: [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at: GEORGGE, Matthew (2009). Massive What Is Massive. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
HERMANS, Björn (1996). Applications of Intelligent Agents. [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at:
HERMANS, Björn (1997). Intelligent Software Agents on the Internet. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at: [online]. Last accessed 28 05 2014 at:
MASSIVE SIMULAING LIFE (2013). Films Gallery. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
MASSIVE SIMULATING LIFE (2011). Applications – What is Massive? [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
MILLS, Frederick and STUFFLEBEAM, Robert (2005). Introduction to Intelligent Agents. [online]. Last accessed 28 05 2014 at:
MORAITAKIS, Nick (1997). Intelligent Software Agents Application and Classification. [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at:
PINEDO, Michael (1995). OASIS (Optimal Aircraft Sequencing using Intelligent Scheduling). [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at:
SALDEN, Alfons (2013). PERSONAL SOFTWARE AGENTS. [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at:
SHACKLETT, Mary (2014). IBM Watson’s impressive healthcare analytics capabilities continue to evolve. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
SKOBELEV, Petr (2011). Bio-Inspired Multi-Agent Technology for Industrial Applications. [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
SYCARA, KATIA and ZENG, DAJUN (1998). COORDINATION OF MULTIPLE INTELLIGENT SOFTWARE AGENTS. [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at: [online]. Last accessed 24 05 2014 at:
YASEMIN, Ayse (1999). INTELLIGENT AGENTS: A DATA MINING PERSPECTIVE. [online]. Last accessed 27 05 2014 at:

If Hugh in Memory (RAM) Computing Systems were available.

41RS6bm3zPL._SX300_If Random Access Memory (RAM) in computing systems was almost unlimited as it might be in the future, this would have a significant affect the way data or files are accessed, stored from a performance, structure, availability and longevity perspective.

RAM is available in two types, Dynamic (DRAM) and Static (SRAM). DRAM most common in computers today. DRAM is required to be refreshed with data every few milliseconds whereas SRAM is used as cache memory due to it begin a lot faster than DRAM, secondly SRAM does need the data refreshing like DRAM does. RAM is a volatile type of data storage effectively data is only available while the memory is powered.

File structure is the definition how data is structured, organised and stored in secondary memory. These file structures are usually created and organised to minimise the impact on I/O from disk access.

Benefits of a RAM in memory computing systems:

  • RAM is very quick at reading and writing date to run applications. (Trivedi 2013).
  • Accessing data with RAM is possible in any order thus the need for organising and structure data for time saving to increase I/O performance of external storage would no longer be required. (Paredes and Scoutapp 2011)
  • The need for programs or algorithms to guess what data or files might be needed to be accessed ahead of time i.e. pre-reading or queuing (Brookshear, Smith and Brylow 2012) ahead information from disk to increase performance would also no longer be required instead all the data would be longed in to RAM at one time. (McQuain 2004)
  • In memory computing becomes reality applications no longer load or query parts of data stored on secondary storage instead the application code access the data loaded as whole into memory. (Savitz 2013)
  • There would be no need in a RAM only system to create data indexing caches or files that are periodically updated as files or data structure changes. Instead more complex querying algorithms and multiple dimensional complex analytics can used on large data or file sets in memory with near immediate responsiveness. (Janssen 2014) (Elliot 2013)

A drawback of a pure RAM based system would be relating directly to the fundamentals of RAM itself:

  • Due to RAM’s defined volatility the system would have to have ways of loading an exporting data very quickly to secondary storage so not to be lost in case of restart or power loss. (Trivedi 2013)

Storage devices would be significantly be impacted by the change in methodology with the availability of more in memory type computing systems.

  • Storage devices would have to continue to store more and more data and files but moreover the devices would have to be able to act as back up devices instead of tape type devices. With the volatility of RAM memory secondary storage devices to load from offload from will still be critical and needed. Where we have tape, CD-ROMS and hard drives with disk platters today (McQuain 2004) in the future these will be to slow and not big enough to store the data. New types of storage will have to store large amounts of data in smaller physical space such flash or crystal storage 360 TB/disc data capacity and read at light speed such. (University of Southampton 2013)
  • Storage will change tape will relatively disappear, disk will become the archive method or old tape, flash Memory or new storage types will become the secondary storage and memory will become primary storage. (Candan 2011)
  • In memory or RAM systems effectively that are not using the disk secondary storage types that are available today would have effect of reducing power and cooling requirements in a system environment.  IBM showed that memory is 99% less power that spinning hard drives. (Elliot 2013)

In the future new storage methods or even more advanced technologies might be used to support the move to RAM based computing systems:

These technologies might include:

  • Memristors

Memristors work by remembering a previously-applied charge in the form of a resistance when a charge in the circuit is reversed.

  • Magneto-resistive random-access memory (MRAM)

Magneto-resistive random-access memory (MRAM) has been under development since the 1990s and uses magnetism to store data.

  • Phase-change memory (PRAM)

Phase-change memory (PRAM) uses heat to exploit the unique behaviour of chalcogenide glass to switch between an amorphous and a crystalline state, thereby storing binary data.

  • Racetrack memory or domain-wall memory (DWM)

Racetrack memory or domain-wall memory (DWM) offers higher densities than flash and performance similar to that of DRAM.

  • Atomic memory

Atomic memory  Atomic scale memory uses a scanning tunnelling microscope to perform this feat – and one would be needed in order to read the memory.

(Dubash 2014)

Summary / Conclusions

In memory computing will happen it is happening today but will become more prolific over the coming years as great performance for all types of data and file access is required. Significant rethinking and use of algorithms and complex querying will be enabled. Persistence of data and retrieving data in to memory is an issue today but is being overcome by the change of traditional storage devices to flash or new types of storage based devices and more this type of storage becomes mainstream and standard the more performance at the computing level will be require thus more in memory computing systems will be used.



BROOKSHEAR, J Gleen, SMITH, David T and BRYLOW, Dennis (2012). Chapter 8: Data Abstractions – Lists, Stacks and Queues. In: HORTON, Marcia (ed.). Computer Science – An Overview. 11th ed., Addison-Wesley – Pearson, 341-345.

BROOKSHER, J Gleen, SMITH, David T and BRYLOW, Dennis (2012). The Concept of an Algorithm. In: Computer Science – An Overview. 11th ed., Addison-Wesley – Pearson, 189-200.

CANDAN, Ugur (2011). Why SAP Hana. [online]. Last accessed 14 05 2014 at:

ELLIOT, Timo (2013). Why In-Memory Computing Is Cheaper And Changes Everything. [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:

JANSSEN, Cory (2014). In-Memory Computing. [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:

MCQUAIN, Bill (2004). File Processing and External Sorting – CS2604: Data Structures and File Processing. [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:

PAREDES, Christian and SCOUTAPP, Derek of (2011). Understanding Disk I/O – when should you be worried? [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:

SAVITZ, Eric (2013). IT Revolution: How In Memory Computing Changes Everything. [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:

TRIVEDI, Chintan (2013). Why does RAM have to be volatile? [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:

UNIVERSITY OF SOUTHAMPTON (2013). 5D ‘Superman memory’ crystal could lead to unlimited lifetime data storage. [online]. Last accessed 18 05 2014 at:



Benefits and Possible Dangers or side effects of Artificial Intelligence to Mankind

botThe rise of the artificial intelligence brings technological breakthrough benefits as well and a negative drawbacks and possibly dangerous side effects to how mankind lives our lives today and how we might exist and operate in the world of tomorrow.

Technology advances have driven the world to continually adapt or change more and more, this has changed the way humans live our lives. The example of the simplest communication tools such as the fixed line telephone has now become fully mobile computing device that also doubles as a telephone that we can use anywhere. (Rodriguez 2011)

Artificial Intelligence or (AI) can be described as a field of science making computing devices do activities that require understanding and intelligence when otherwise actioned by a human.  (Copeland 2000) There are many different branches of AI some physical such as robotic, some representing logic or programming tasks. (McCarthy 2007) Most however are trying to mimic or create human traits in computing systems such as knowledge, problem solving, learning, and planning. (Brookshear, Smith and Brylow 2012)

Some benefits of Artificial Intelligent Devices:

  • Robotic devices with intelligence are able to go and execute adaptive activities in places where it might not be safe for human beings to go. Such locations could be deep space, deep sea, military warzones, or contaminated areas. The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA 2014) are currently running a robotic challenge to find devices to go in to such areas as disaster zones or military war zones as support platform. (DARPA 2014)
  • AI devices in theory don’t need to sleep or take a lunch and coffee break they can work until the activity is completed. (There are acceptations to this for maintenance, recharge if battery operated) Hyundai Motors has reduced delivery times on vehicle production by 20% by using robots. ( 2014)
  • There is an ability to mimic or reproduce copies of AI devices to do the same tasks which is not possible with humans without cost. When devices have become efficient and correct at executing a task the device can be duplicated or copied, therefore in the human sense forgoing the need of training & development and loss when the employee leaves which is equal to higher cost.
  • AI devices work on logic and are not prone to human errors or misunderstanding this would be good in tasks such as operating a vehicle.  Such jobs as pilotless cargo aircraft that travel from point A to point B and could run 24 hours a day. (Platform Unmanned Cargo Aircraft 2014) (FAA 2014)

Some possible drawbacks or dangers of Artificial Intelligent Devices:

  • Ethical dangers or drawbacks from trying to create AI devices into human like devices. If humans give intelligence and understanding to an artificial device then will the machine want to work for human benefit and can the device be switched off if needed. Who gets the right to choose to switch off the device and what happens if the device becomes more intelligent than humans by creating new algorithms or adapting it’s programing through learning. (McCarthy 2007) (Barber 2014)
  • An effect of the continued replacement of activities in companies or industries by some level of AI machine or device could be on the need for a work force. AI devices taking over jobs could create unemployment for both skilled and unskilled workers as companies want more efficiency and great profits.   (Turner 2013)
  • Lack of emotional understand or judgement leaves the AI machinery not able judge all the possible outcomes as a human might be able for such jobs as, nursing, security or military devices. The reason being the AI device answers are based on logic questions and not emotional values.  (Berkeley 1997)

Summary / Conclusions

There are many reasons to use and look at artificial intelligent devices or machines as well as there are many reason we should not. These reasons however mainly focus and play on the fundamental human conscious and ethical morals of most of us. Over the coming years governments, companies and people will all try to debate the pro’s suggesting life will be better and the con’s that humans are worried about technical armies and the thought the world could be taken over by AI devices.

There is a thought in place at the moment which is we are quite a way already on this journey. The car industry in point has already reduced work forces globally replacing them with robotic devices on efficiency based reasons / gains and selling it’s to us the consumer that it’s better us based on quality, reliability and cost, but to the workers they lost their job possibilities. In the early days on this change there was uproar but today it’s taken for granted but do we really understand the long term ethical or economical global because most companies and governments think for current business or political agendas one thing for certain right now there are people for and against artificial intelligence debate

Please complete the Poll below on your thoughts:

by Charles Aunger 05/06/2014



BARBER, Nigel (2014). Must We Worry About Artificial Intelligence? [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

BERKELEY, István S. N. (1997). What is Artificial Intelligence? [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

BROOKSHEAR, J Gleen, SMITH, David T and BRYLOW, Dennis (2012). Chapter 11: Artificial Intelligence. In: HORTON, Marcia (ed.). Computer Science – An Overview. 11th ed., Addison-Wesley – Pearson, 462-500.

CBS (2014). “Killer robots” could threaten basic human rights, activists warn. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

CNET (2004). Smart systems will erase jobs, report warns. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:,-report-warns/2100-1022_3-5247644.html

COPELAND, Jack (2000). What is Artificial Intelligence? [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

DARPA (2014). About DARPA. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

DARPA (2014). Darpa Robotics Challenge. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

HEALTHRESEARCHFUNDING.ORG (2014). Pros and Cons of Artificial Intelligence. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

HOWELL, Elizabeth (2014). Future of US Warfare: Drone Deliveries & Vertical-Flight Planes. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

LINKS999 (2007). Ethical and moral issues regarding AI. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

MCCARTHY, John (2007). Basic Questions on Artificial Intelligence. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

MCCARTHY, John (2007). Branches of AI. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

PLATFORM UNMANNED CARGO AIRCRAFT (2014). Civil unmanned cargo aircraft. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

RODRIGUEZ, Armando (2011). Then and now: How technology has changed our lives. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

TECHOPEDIA (2014). Artificial Intelligence (AI). [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

THE ILOVEINDIA (204). ros And Cons Of Artificial Intelligence. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

TURNER, Bambi (2013). ROBOTICS AND ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE. [online]. Last accessed 23 05 2014 at:

Two Computing Systems from over 5 years ago – Trip back down memory lane

Two Computing Systems from over 5 years ago Trip back down memory lane

I was showing my daughter what I used to use as a computer many years ago (showing my age) and she was amazed more astonished so I thought I would share with you all a brief trip down memory lane.

Commodore 64

First of all if you can remember the Commodore 64 (C64) a 1Mhz, 8 bit, 64k RAM (Commodore Computers, 1983) computer created by Metal Oxide Semiconductor Technology (MOS Technology) also known as Commodore Business Machines (Veit, 1999) should be listed as one of the most symbolic and state of the art personal computing systems of the 1980’s. The C64 was focussed to provide a great video game machining experience, outstanding performance and value for money compared to the other market players of the time.

· In January ‘1981 engineers decided to produce a state-of-the-art video and sound chip. The VIC-II 6567 video chip and the SID 6581 sound chip were created to be the most powerful chips of their time. The C64 equipped with these chips was able to display 16 colours and be reproduce a human voice without additional peripherals. (Matthews, 2010). Personally the game I enjoyed was a flight simulation called Ace of Aces (Personal Computer Museum, 2006) Ace of Aces very simple compared today’s 32bit graphics and millions of colours in say Flightgear (Flightgear Flight Simulator Project, 2010 – 2014)

· Initially called the VIC 30 the C64 design started 1981 and main production ran from 1982 through to 1989 (Matthews, 2010) (Bagnall, 2005) even today not many machines can say they have lasted that long in production the Apple iMac G3 lasted 1998-2001. (Edwards, 2008)

· The C64 made it into the Guinness Book of World Records in 2007. As of 2006 the C64 was the “Greatest selling single computer of all time”. Sources count units sold between 12 and 17 million (Peggy Mihelich – CNN, 2007).

· The C64 priced at $595 was less than half the price of the Apple II at $1395. (Commodore Computers Canada, 1983) and establish an estimated dollar value market share in the US of 43%. (Personal Computer Museum, n.d.)

· 20 Games That Defined the Commodore 64

Click for more on the references below or

Apple iMac G3

Apple iMac G3 computing system should be badged as the system that ignited the drove colour into the personal computer industry and enable internet experience. What also made the iMac a focus was it marked the return of Steve Jobs as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) role.

· The iMac G3 design was led by Jonathan Ive (Arlidge, 2014) and Steve Jobs. Steve jobs launched and marketed the iMac in 1998 at Macworld (Channel, 2006). The marketing line most generally associated with the iMac G3 was it wasn’t another ‘beige box’. (Edwards, 2008) Still today you don’t see many beige box computers mainly grey black or coloured. (Lohr, 2002)

· The iMac G3 was launched 1998 and discontinued in 2003. The G3 name came from the PowerPC 750 G3 processor, and coupled with an ATI Rage graphics card creating excellent rendering performance. The newest generations have replaced the PowerPC chip in favour for Intel chip sets. (Simon, 2009)

· The main case colour was “bondi blue” but later thirteen colours became available. Today nearly all Apple Mac products are White, Silver no more bright colours but still no beige (Simon, 2009)

· Making iMac G3 more user-friendly, with attractive design translucent back and at the time of i for internet, built in browser and modem enabling internet access brought Apple in to the future, on this Steve Jobs interim CEO 1997 (Stone, 2011) started to rebuild the company. The built in speakers and internet access was personally a simple and easy to use experience.

Click for more on the references below or

References locations you can find out more


Apple, 2013. Apple Reports Fourth Quarter Results. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Arlidge, J., 2014. Jonathan Ive Designs Tomorrow. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Bagnall, B., 2005. On the Edge: the Spectacular Rise and Fall of Commodore. First ed. s.l.:Variant Press.

Channel, T. A. H., 2006. Steve Jobs introducing The First iMac 1998. [Sound Recording].

Commodore Computers Canada, 1983. Commodore Computers. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Commodore Computers, 1983. Commodore 64 Brochure (USA). [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Edwards, B., 2008. Eight Ways the IMac Changed Computing. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Flightgear Flight Simulator Project, 2010 – 2014. FlightGear Flight Simulator Gallery V2.10. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Lohr, S., 2002. The Beige Box Fades to Black. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Matthews, I., 2002. Commodore Innovations. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Matthews, I., 2010. Commodore 64 – The Best Selling Computer in History. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Peggy Mihelich – CNN, 2007. CNN -. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Personal Computer Museum, 2006. Personal Computer Museum – Software – Ace of Aces. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 17 04 2014].

Personal Computer Museum, n.d. World of Commodore. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Shaw, D., 2012. Commodore 64 turns 30: What do today’s kids make of it?. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Simon, M., 2009. The Complete iMac History — Bondi to Aluminum. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Steil, M. & Biallas, S., 2011. How many Commodore 64 computers were really sold?. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Stone, B., 2011. Steve Jobs: The Return, 1997-2011. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 08 04 2014].

Veit, S., 1999. PC – History COMMODORE 64. [Online]
Available at:
[Accessed 07 04 2014].

Information Technology Service Providers use of Service Delivery Methodologies as a Trend in delivering successful IT Project.

Information Technology Service Providers use of Service Delivery Methodologies as a Trend in delivering successful IT Project.


Information Technology (IT) Service Providers Service Providers are companies that provide other organisations with augmented ranges of IT services to enhance or supplement the organisation internal staff, IT technology delivery or IT technology needs. The services provided can range from delivering simple services such as IT desktop support through to more complex technical consulting, application development, or datacentre solutions.

The IT service provider’s capability to successfully deliver these simple or complex IT projects to the organisation they are employed by can be aligned to two distinct items.

1) The use of the correct IT service delivery methodology:

  • An IT Service Delivery Methodology is a repeatable and extensible framework used to rapidly design, deliver, measure and improve your IT services. (Smith, 2010)

The service delivery methodologies that the IT service providers use are varied and can be made up of parts from many methodologies as well as industry standards. Key methodologies in use in IT service providers and IT departments are Rapid Application Development (RAD), SCRUM, Waterfall development, Prototyping, ITIL, TOGAF, Prince 2, Six Sigma, ISO 27000 Series (International Organization for Standardization, 2005). (ABC-Groep, 2011).

2) Correctly defining the key success criteria for the IT project and thus the IT Service Providers goals and objectives:

  • Defining a success criteria and what makes up what success is for the IT project and therefore the success of the IT service provider can usually be split into standard categories the main ones being “Business, Project Management and Technical Success” (SYMONDS, 2012). As well as these standard categories reporting on Key performance indicators (KPIs) are common (Suchan, 2003), an example of a KPI would be in an IT project “Reduce infrastructure costs by 10%” or “Increase application performance by 15%”

Delivering an IT project by identifying or not the correct service delivery methodologies and the success criteria’s can lead to a success or failure of the IT project. Identifying and aligning all parties involved in the IT project with the IT service provider’s service delivery methodology chosen and success criteria from the start of a project to an end of a project can streamline and drive toward having successful outcome.

Three summary areas or questions that can benefit and help to identify the correct service delivery methodology and success criteria’s

Three summary areas or questions that have worked toward streamlining and assisting identify the correct methodology and success criteria’s thus creating a framework for success and reducing miss-understandings are:

  • WHY are we:
    • Wanting to do the IT project?
    • Why should we use a specific methodology?
  • HOW are we going to:
    • Identify the correct methodology?
    • Align everyone and stay aligned to this methodology?
    • Execute on this project?
    • Measure we are succeeding?
    • Manage miss-alignment and change?
  • WHAT
    • Methodology are we going to use and stick to?
    • Are we going to report on?

With so many methodologies and criteria’s used there can be misunderstanding based on lack of knowledge or disagreements based on miss alignment. Once alignment has been created on these two distinct items Methodology and Success Criteria IT Projects and IT Service Providers can be focussed more on the delivery and execution of the project and successful outcome.


ABC-Groep, 2011. IT Buzzword Bingo, Ekeren,Antwerpen, : s.n.

International Organization for Standardization, 2005. ISO 27000 Series, Geneva: International Organization for Standardization.

Smith, D., 2010. itsmf – Service Excellence using an Integrated Service Delivery Methodology. [Online]

Available at:

[Accessed 28 03 2014].

Suchan, J., 2003. Define your project goals and success criteria, Seattle: Microsoft.



Understanding the fine print on contracts for data center space

Key issues: awareness will help speed the deal

If you are involved in data center projects, an understanding of the key issues which arise from the underlying contractual documentation can assist you to execute deals faster, keep costs lower, reduce liability and future-proof your business. Data center deals vary in scale and complexity and have different legal structures. The issues raised below envisage a customer contracting with a data center operator for the delivery and use of data center space.

1. Basis of the customer’s occupation. This will vary between jurisdictions and it is important to understand the implications. In the UK, for example, occupation will be on the basis of a lease or a licence and there are fundamental differences between the two, with a lease giving the customer greater control, security of occupation and protection in the event of operator insolvency (important factors when infrastructure is supporting mission -critical data) but involving additional cost, including property tax. Flexibility will also be important – including the customer’s ability to install/remove equipment, make other alterations or assign or terminate the contract – and the parties may have competing interests which need to be balanced.

2. Design and delivery. Control over design and specification changes can cause great debate and the parties’ rights and responsibilities need to be clearly stated. Timing and measurement will also be critical and the customer may look for specific damages and ultimately the right to terminate if targets are missed. The ‘when/how/who’ of commissioning and sign-off of works needs to be addressed, with a well-advised customer wanting input into these processes.

3. Construction documentation. The underlying building contract and the professional appointments are key when significant works are involved, with greater importance being attached to the mechanical and electrical installations than on other construction projects. The operator will want to ensure its design/construction obligations to customers are passed down to its construction team wherever possible. A customer should consider requiring the ability to approve the identity of that team and obtaining duties of care from them.

4. Site specifics. Site due diligence is important to establish fundamentals such as rights of access, availability of power and requisite planning consents. Connectivity is also key and customers should ensure they have sufficient rights (and obligations on the operator) to bring in new telecommunications providers.

5. Environmental liability and taxes. The parties need to consider and address risk of potential environmental liability in respect of the site. Consider also relevant carbon emissions trading schemes under which the operator could be primarily responsible for the customer’s emissions, and how associated costs should be re-charged in this situation.

6. Clarity of scope. The contract needs to set out clearly what the operator is obliged to provide in terms of services and how related obligations (such as replacing fuel in generators) work. It is also important that the documentation allows the level of flexibility required throughout the life of the contract.

7. Clarity of price. An obvious point, but the price the customer is paying needs to be clear. Where payments are based on actual power consumed then this is relatively simple, but where they are based on assumed power consumption – perhaps by reference to number of racks installed – then some detailed thinking is needed. Is a rack treated as live once installed or only once drawing power, for example? Is there to be flexibility for the customer to draw or reserve additional power, and how does this affect the operator’s cost and revenue projections?

8. Clarity of service levels. Operators typically commit to service levels around main KPIs such as power, humidity and temperature, which are tied to a service credit mechanism. Various ‘what if’ scenarios need to be considered, a good example being where one service level failure – for example power outage – naturally leads to other service level failures: should multiple service credits arise or should they be limited to the primary failure? And for how long does a service level need to be breached for a credit to arise? A short lived temperature spike may have no major impact, but from the customer’s perspective repeated failures caused by the same problem should not count only as a single failure as otherwise the operator has less direct incentive to fix the issue quickly.

9. Effectiveness of remedies. What if things go wrong? The customer needs the ability to control risk going forward, particularly where the operator has committed a number of minor failures that undermine confidence but don’t necessarily give the customer any significant leverage under the agreement. In these situations a customer may have the right to exercise a degree of management oversight. A more powerful remedy is for the customer to step in and actually perform the services, although this is not always achievable in practice, particularly where plant supports multiple customers.

10. Liability. The parties need to strike a bargain on liability that allocates risk appropriately. Typically the parties will agree exclusions of certain types of loss (e.g. loss of profits) and apply caps on liability that reflect the insurance cover available to the parties.

The extent to which any of these issues are relevant will depend on the circumstances and the nature of the deal, but whatever the circumstances the parties each need to consider the key risks (the ‘what if’ scenarios) and ensure they have measures in place to mitigate them.

Click for more at source



Why not wake up every day, forget yesterday and think about how I can make a difference for customers today and in the future. I have a strong passion and belief that each one of us is looking for a life experience every day. In an Information Technology (IT) driven world the focus of the experience relates to a physical technology, usage interaction and support personality experience, this is what can build confidence, enjoyment, relationships, support change and fuels the ability to deliver amazing results.

With this in mind, I believe that everyone is a consumer be it a college, other business user, a vendor, or everyone that we interact with. The way we think about and use IT and innovation, be it in business or personally, can be an amazing enabler as long as the vision, strategy, and technology are correctly executed. Delivering the right technology and innovation are the only methods that can truly support change or radically impact a company’s P&L, as well as improve our lives. I often say, to my team to think like the Chinese saying “From Crisis/ Issue becomes an opportunity”. Therefore we should stop highlighting the crisis and figure out why there is a crisis or issue existing and the work on solving this using the best basic principles of how do we deliver for the customer / user the right service in the best possible time with the best quality, keeping it simple and supportable.

The opportunity is that change is a given, we can’t stop change. Actually every day we enable change so instead of fighting change we need to embrace and work in an adaptive, agile manner to make change easier.

Question: Isn’t there something in life that we should have a passion about. I would ask myself why we aren’t all aligned on WHY’s not HOW’s and WHAT’s, why are we doing what we are doing and how do we make IT happen?

“IT isn’t easy but IT can be rewarding in lots of ways”`and the “Hope to make IT, better, simplier, faster and cheaper”

Software-defined networking (SDN), SDN is going to be as big as the Hypervisor was for x86

What is software defined network (SDN)

Wikipedia’s description:

Software-defined networking (SDN) is an approach to computer networking which evolved from work done at UC Berkeley and Stanford University around 2008.SDN allows network administrators to manage network services through abstraction of lower level functionality. This is done by decoupling the system that makes decisions about where traffic is sent (the control plane) from the underlying systems that forward traffic to the selected destination (the data plane). The inventors and vendors of these systems claim that this simplifies networking.

SDN requires some method for the control plane to communicate with the data plane. One such mechanism, OpenFlow, is often misunderstood to be equivalent to SDN, but other mechanisms could also fit into the concept. The Open Networking Foundation was founded to promote SDN and OpenFlow, marketing the use of the term cloud computing before it became popular.

Computing Trends are Driving Network Change

SDN addresses the fact that the static architecture of conventional networks is ill-suited to the dynamic computing and storage needs of today’s data centers, campuses, and carrier environments. The key computing trends driving the need for a new network paradigm include:

Changing traffic patterns: Applications that commonly access geographically distributed databases and servers through public and private clouds require extremely flexible traffic management and access to bandwidth on demand.

The “consumerization of IT”: The Bring Your Own Device (BYOD) trend requires networks that are both flexible and secure.

The rise of cloud services: Users expect on-demand access to applications, infrastructure, and other IT resources.

“Big data” means more bandwidth: Handling today’s mega datasets requires massive parallel processing that is fueling a constant demand for additional capacity and any-to-any connectivity.

In trying to meet the networking requirements posed by evolving computing trends, network designers find themselves constrained by the limitations of current networks:

Complexity that leads to stasis: Adding or moving devices and implementing network-wide policies are complex, time-consuming, and primarily manual endeavours that risk service disruption, discouraging network changes.

Inability to scale: The time-honoured approach of link oversubscription to provision scalability is not effective with the dynamic traffic patterns in virtualized networks—a problem that is even more pronounced in service provider networks with large-scale parallel processing algorithms and associated datasets across an entire computing pool.

Vendor dependence: Lengthy vendor equipment product cycles and a lack of standard, open interfaces limit the ability of network operators to tailor the network to their individual environments.

What I see the Software Defined Networking (SDN) as is the Hypervisor for the Network: “SDN is going to be as big as the Hypervisor was for x86”:

How I see software defined networking (SDN) is in a simpler way SDN is what hypervisor’s have done to the x86 platforms over the past 10 years, SDN to me should be looked at as the method to disconnect or decouple the physical network hardware layer for the network and the logical traffic and rules that run on that physical network. I.e. think of it as a SDN equals the Hypervisor for the Network (all of the network from the mobile client to the core cloud datacentre).

SDN doesn’t have to just be switching either it can be all the network from switching, load balancing, access control, firewalls, mobile connection, virus and IPS, SDN can be used for the whole network.

Networking of the future could be simple, configuring your network could be as easy as dragging and dropping icons on a desktop or installing an application from itunes, really could take seconds to create a network for 10 devices or 1 million devices. No need any more to worry about thinking about IP masking and routing and limits because of the physical limitations and cables.

What I would say today is everyone should be investigating SDN across their network infrastructures from the mobile network through to the cloud data center.
Using SDN to automate and deliver service will become the most cost efficient and simplest Maner without thinking physical limits having closely stack based physical / logical solution, no more top or rack or end or row.
Think of the physical cost saving also power, space, upgrades and redundancy. Can we afford to not look at SDN should be the question we are all asking ourselves?

Some interesting links and possible useful links to help in your research.

Check out all the normal vendors, such as Cisco, VMware, F5, Juniper Networks,

Open Networking Foundation

Butler, Brandon: 10 network virtualization, SDN and data center companies to watch, Feb 2013

Vance, Jeff: Ranking the Top 10 Software Defined Networking Startups, Sept 2013

Berndtson Chad: 25 Software-Defined Networking Players to Know, April 2012

King, Rachel: Incumbents Race to Define SDN Before it Defines, or Disrupts, Them, Nov 2013

Some of the Benefits of Online Learning

Some of the Benefits of Online Learning


The way we learn and have to adapt into methods of continuing educating ourselves in today’s new digital virtual / social world have changed from the way’s we used to interact with education media’s. One of these methods in heavy use today is online learning, be it basic cooking classes through to University Degrees. Some of the Benefits of Online learning are.




Accessible and Convenient:

Anyone can take classes anytime and from anywhere parents can take classes when children are in bed or at school. Fulltime employed workers can manage to take classes around there work patterns and their schedule. Business people or family members that travel for can still attend their classes from anywhere that has an internet connection. Students that live in remote areas such as the Australian outback can interact and learn as a group via online courses. Students can attend course classes when they not feeling tired after a long day at work or when they are feeling well enough.


Course Materials are always available 24hours 7days a week:

Instead of having limited access to class time or student advisors during working hours, the student can log online into their virtual class room course or modules any time to review instructions, assignments, working groups, library, or get access to additional resources that might be hard to access in a physical world.


Interactive and Collaborative:

In an online virtual world of learning students from all around the world can work together with lectures, student advisors, teachers, instructors and peers. Students are able to interact with people in different location with different experiences and knowledge that might not be able to happen as much in physical world.


Online Participation

The “anonymity” of online courses often makes it easier to students to participate in group discussion (or forums). They don’t feel all the eyes on them. Students also have time to compose their thoughts before responding. The conversation in real life might have long moved on, but online the student can still respond to a previous idea.


Variety of Content

Online courses often take advantage of the different types of resources available, such as videos, images, sounds/ music, and alternate viewpoints. While many classroom teachers try to keep up, technology in the classroom does not always facilitate this bonus material.


Lower Associated Costs:

Associated costs such as travel (vehicle, fuel, parking or even public transportation) may be reduced or even eliminated with the use of online learning versus physically attending classes on campus environment. Another reeducation for parents with young children can include child care costs as a babysitter, minder, crèche, or other full time childcare wouldn’t be needed.


Learning costs tend to be lower:

As you aren’t using a lectures, student advisors, teachers, instructors and peers time or any room or equipment, eLearning tends to be the much cheaper option than a physical one. People might have access to personal digital device capable of carrying out the training on be it a personal computer or tablet style device, then the savings can be even more considerable.






Carliner, Saul and Shank, Paul. The E-learning Handbook. 2008




International Journal of Education and Development using Information and Communication Technology

(IJEDICT), 2005, Vol. 1, Issue 2, pp. 94-104. Scholarly article about encouraging student participation through online debate



Other information sources

Kruse, Kevin. The Benefits and Drawbacks of E-Learning. 2004


What Every Student Should Know About Online Learning

John E. Reid, Jr. Ph.D.
Coordinator of Distance Education Technology
Kennesaw State University,
Kennesaw Georgia.


A Review of Learning, Culture and Community in Online Education: Research and Practice

Caroline Haythornthwaite and Michelle M. Kazmer, eds.
New York: Peter Lang, 2004





Journal of Online Learning and Teaching

Peer-reviewed, open-access online publication focused on exploring the use of multimedia in virtual learning settings.


Online Learning 101

Online degree programs available to them in geographical region and desired subject area.


Press Release about Dept. of Education 2009 Analysis of virtual and traditional education methods


Information site about Online Degree programs




Wilson, Alex. On the Benefits of Online Learning. January 21, 2014


Wagner-Tyack, Jane. Online Education. August 2008. This is an extremely subjective and biased blog objecting to many issues in higher education, virtual learning being one of them.


Drayton, Scott. The Advantages and Disadvantages of eLearning, August 2013


e-Learning solutions, August 2012




Alexander, Shirley. Teaching and Learning on the World Wide Web. AusWeb 97 Conference. 1997.


Kubala, Tom. Addressing Student Needs: Teaching and Learning on the Internet. THE Online Journal. March 1998.