Information & Technology

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    Marc DaCosta: “Define your problem, then look at the data, not the other way around”

Marc DaCosta: “Define your problem, then look at the data, not the other way around”

As co-founder and Chairman of Enigma, a firm specialising in collecting, integrating and analysing data, Marc DaCosta is not your typical technology entrepreneur. He began his career as an intellectual property strategy consultant to technology companies, but maintained close ties to academia, receiving a PhD in cultural anthropology from the University of California. Mark is also a fellow at […]

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    Robert Scoble: ‘The coming wave of technology will really change human life’

Robert Scoble: ‘The coming wave of technology will really change human life’

It’s hard to talk with Robert Scoble and not feel like you were left behind in a pre-historical era and have a lot of catching-up to do. He moves around with glasses for augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). In his new book, The Fourth Transformation, he describes the glasses as the fourth user interface since the start of […]

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    Torbjörn Holmström: ‘We add automation when it helps our customers’ bottom line’

Torbjörn Holmström: ‘We add automation when it helps our customers’ bottom line’

Volvo has been integrating computer systems in its trucks since the 1970’s, when the Swedish carmaker began to hire software engineers. If fully operational autonomous cars represent level 5 of the degree of automation, we’re still in level 2 or 3, says Torbjörn Holmström, Senior Advisor to the CEO of Volvo, who until last October was the chief technology […]

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    Kate Brodock: ‘Some Silicon Valley firms are leaders in parental leave’

Kate Brodock: ‘Some Silicon Valley firms are leaders in parental leave’

Women 2.0 is a for-profit company founded in 2006 as a hub where women in the technology field could network and help each other professionally. Today it has expanded into a media company whose goal is “to close the gender gaps in founding, investing, the workplace and leadership.” LSE Business Review managing editor Helena Vieira spoke with CEO Kate Brodock […]

Surviving the global information security war  

Lessons from the fate of the NHS Trusts:

You will not survive a war on more than one front

Over the past week many NHS Patients became collateral damage as the ten-year arms race between online predators and the vendors of information security products and services escalated into global warfare after a new ransomware variant produced by a supposedly […]

Cindy Cohn: ‘They have our lives in their hands’

The US non-profit Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) champions user privacy, free expression and innovation, which they see as civil liberties. The EFF fights cases in court, publishes papers and develops privacy technology. An LSE and University of Michigan alumna, Executive Director Cindy Cohn was named one of the 100 most influential lawyers in America in 2013, and has received a number […]

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    William Murphy: ‘We need change management to help people with new technology’

William Murphy: ‘We need change management to help people with new technology’

William (Bill) Murphy is a senior managing director and the Chief Technology Officer at Blackstone, one of the world’s largest investment firms, which manages assets such as private equity and real estate. Prior to joining Blackstone in 2011, he was founding Chief Technology Officer for Capital IQ, a technology and financial services company that was acquired by Standard & Poor’s in […]

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    Melonee Wise: ‘Robot adoption will grow faster in semi-structured environments’

Melonee Wise: ‘Robot adoption will grow faster in semi-structured environments’

Melonee Wise has two decades of experience designing, building and programming robots. She is the CEO of California-based Fetch Robotics, which works mainly with the logistics industry. The company introduced their robot system in 2015. “There’s a lot of bad PR around robots and jobs,” says Melonee. Robots actually make people’s work days much better, she says. Melonee spoke with […]

Your next social network could pay you for posting

You may well have found this article through Facebook. An algorithm programmed by one of the world’s biggest companies now partially controls what news reaches 1.8 billion people. And this algorithm has come under attack for censorship, political bias and for creating bubbles that prevent people from encountering ideas they don’t already agree with.

Now a new kind of social network is emerging that has no centralised […]

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    Nicole Eagan: “Cybersecurity is very fast becoming an all-out arms race”

Nicole Eagan: “Cybersecurity is very fast becoming an all-out arms race”

A major cyberattack this Friday (12 May) disrupted services at hospitals and doctors’ surgeries in England, and a number of other targets throughout the world. The UK’s National Health Service, Spain’s Telefonica and the American logistics firm FedEx were the first organisations to confirm they had been targeted. Cyberattacks have intensified in the past few months and companies, governments and all […]

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    Despite major cyberattacks, businesses have been slow to react

Despite major cyberattacks, businesses have been slow to react

If you think you know cybercrime, think again. The modern-day scammer isn’t averse to changing the rules of play and, increasingly, businesses of all shapes and sizes are finding themselves exposed.

In the past year, more than half (57 per cent) of businesses surveyed in The Hiscox Cyber Readiness Report 2017 said they experienced an attack. Two in five (42 […]

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    Naveen Jain: ‘If we can learn to live on the moon we can live anywhere in space’

Naveen Jain: ‘If we can learn to live on the moon we can live anywhere in space’

Naveen Jain is the co-founder and executive chairman of Moon Express, one of the four enterprises vying for the Google Lunar XPRIZE. The project, also called Moon 2.0, offers a $20 million prize for the first privately-developed spacecraft to land on the moon, travel at least 500 meters across its surface, and transmit photos and video. Moon Express bought three launches […]

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    Ad-blockers and the road to consumers controlling their private data

Ad-blockers and the road to consumers controlling their private data

Despite the sheer abundance of content on the web today, the online publishing industry is going through something of a crisis. In 2016, the global use of ad blockers witnessed a 30% increase, with 615 million desktop and mobile devices now running some form of software that prevents the industry from displaying ads to their readership. It’s forecast that such a […]

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    Claims that the Internet damages our memory and cognition may be unfounded

Claims that the Internet damages our memory and cognition may be unfounded

Why store information in biological memory when it is reliably available on the Internet? Some argue that relying on the Internet is adaptive because it frees up internal resources which can then be used for other cognitive tasks, whereas others argue that this is maladaptive because it makes us less knowledgeable. In this blog post, I first look at […]

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    Geekland: STEM knowledge is needed to apply for 1 in 6 non-tech UK jobs

Geekland: STEM knowledge is needed to apply for 1 in 6 non-tech UK jobs

In the UK, less than half of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) graduates work in so-called ‘STEM occupations’ (such as scientists or engineers). If, as is often thought, all recruiters in ‘non-STEM’ occupations (for example, graphic designers or economists) neither require nor value science and technology skills, and simply like hiring science graduates for their problem solving and […]

The hidden human labour behind search engine algorithms

Billions of people worldwide use search engines without understanding the inner workings and processes providing the information that they are looking for. Despite widespread use, the background mechanics of search are not fully visible and are often hidden behind technical decisions and trade secrets. Web search is a highly profitable business, from which Google secured 74.9 billion US dollars of […]

Online exploration, content choice, and echo chambers

Just as sound reverberates in an enclosed space, so do opinions and information in our social circles. Since ‘birds of a feather flock together,’ these social circles consist mostly of like-minded individuals, making it harder for dissenting views to permeate our discourse, and creating an echo of our own information and views. This is the echo chamber phenomenon that […]

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    Disrupting the digital giants – advertisers and traditional media push back

Disrupting the digital giants – advertisers and traditional media push back

The downside of digital giants like Facebook and Google includes the increase in fake news, political polarisation, the dumbing down of debate and the long-term decline in print journalism as newspapers lose readers and advertising to these platforms. But a combination of problems with digital advertising – fraud, mismeasurement, and programmatic ad placement on undesirable sites – means that […]

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    Heavy industries may become the next frontier for the platform revolution

Heavy industries may become the next frontier for the platform revolution

Several sectors have already been disrupted by platforms: think of telecommunications, media and entertainment and more recently hospitality and mobility. From Uber to Airbnb, platforms appear the business model revolution of choice for the B2C and service industries.

Little wonder perhaps that if you talk to executives in B2B companies in heavy industries they tend to think that platform business […]

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    Cybersecurity is the defining business challenge of the 21st century

Cybersecurity is the defining business challenge of the 21st century

Speaking in 1941, a renowned businessman said “I believe that every right implies a responsibility; every opportunity, an obligation; every possession, a duty.” While John D Rockefeller was speaking at a time when the likes of drones, driverless cars and virtual reality were distant dreams and works of fiction – the central tenet of the quote is firmly applicable […]