The power of classification to make “the narrowing”

“Capitalism survives by forcing the majority, who it exploits, to define their own interests as narrowly as possible. This was once achieved by extensive deprivation. Today in the developed countries it is being achieved by imposing a false standard of what is and what is not desirable.”

Ways of Seeing, John Berger, 1972 pp. 148

Image © Caroline Hummels courtesy Pixabay

The media’s metaphor for digital innovation seems to be grounded in the hero worship of the solo genius in a garage inventing cool new things that change the world for the better. …


SimSimi, Meena, Mitsuku and the need for virtuous machine learning.

Psy and Co. © YouTube

‘Don’t Panic!’

We in Australia learnt a new and strange lesson this week. We learnt about what is most important and that which is not; what is more precious than diamonds, more valuable than gold and rarer than platinum. You’d never guess?

Toilet paper.

Driven by unreason and herd logic, the general public has focussed on the one ‘essential’ that they believe they cannot do without if we’re all required to quarantine indoors due to Covid-19. Not food or water, toilet paper.


The potential impact of chatbots on human identity.

© geralt courtesy Pixabay

Chatbots as a conduit for language.

Networks of resources encircle and empower us to achieve outcomes daily. Global supply-chains establish networks of flows of goods and services, from education, loans, food distribution, entertainment or transportation. Each of us in that network is, at least from the perspective of the network owners, a node, a participant across the multiple layers of networks, primarily because of our identification and membership with a segment or sub-part of that network as a customer or other mode of participation.

TCP/IP and HTTP protocols enable the technical networking that is the foundation of the Internet. The Internet, or Inter-networking, the communications network…


A potential lesson in virtue for technologists and scientists.

Uma Preman © BBC News

“”Everyone wants to change the world but no-one is ready to change themselves,” Uma says. “I changed my attitude and I donated one kidney, but I also got a brother in return.”” Uma Preman, Feb 2020.

In 2020 we may generally think the Medieval period was a generally bleak time scarred by the Plague and was without culture and organised society; marred by knights killing to collect taxes, puritanical clergy speaking in non-understood latin and torturous punishments for misdemeanours.

The iron maiden, for example, is a fiendish torture device that supposedly enclosed and pierced a body unless the person stood…


A highest-stakes game.

© Elsiever

“…we envisage high-density immune privileged interfaces rapidly expanding our ability to study the brain unlike ever before, building the foundation of understanding necessary to unlock the potential for seamless neural-electronic systems…mandates that these efforts should proceed vigorously…”

Nature BioTech, Vol 37, 1007–1012, Patel and Lieber, Sep 2019

Dr. Charles Lieber

Dr. Charles Lieber’s on-campus arrest by the FBI this week regarding allegedly false statements he made with respect to payments and arrangements regarding participation in China’s thousand Talents Plan since 2012 was extensively reported by most media outlets.

His CV is quite simply remarkable. #1 cited author in Chemistry for the decade 2000–2010…


Applying a mental discipline of self-doubt to AI development

Black Hornet Nano UAV © Flir systems

In science and engineering, the hypothesis method of research has taken humanity a long way toward technological advancements that only ten years ago would seem unreal.

A recent example of this kind of ‘sci-fi-like’ AI research is a plan being pursued by the University of Buffalo’s A/Prof. Chowdhury, whose team has recently received a $0.316M grant from DARPA to copy data from gamers’ minds to seed training an AI that can control up to 250 automated military robots.

‘The team will use the data to create artificial intelligence algorithms that guide the behavior of autonomous air and ground robots.

“We…


Identity and difference

© 15226 courtesy Pixabay

“What would have happened if Einstein had advanced something equally new [relativity] in the sphere of religion or politics?…He [Einstein], meantime, would have captured the Government of some backward country, where it would have become illegal to teach anything except his doctrine, which would have grown into a mysterious dogma not understood by anybody. ”

Free Thought and Official Propaganda, by Bertrand Russell, 1922; courtesy Project Gutenberg

Speech, written, and videographic acts (statements) propagated on social media leave a trail of evidence that can be used to hold people to account in a future context after the…


How data science can help stem the projected $50B merchant losses that increase costs for all of us.

© TheDigitalWay courtesy Pixabay

When a customer is not your customer…

The notion of a credit card was apparently first thought of when the author Edward Bellamy in his novel ‘Looking Backward: 2000–1887’, where all citizens got an equal amount of credit stored on the modern day equivalent of a debit card.

There was only one credit card originally introduced in 1974 in Australia, the Bankcard. Now there are a multiplicity of payment methods from the likes of global card networks like Visa or MasterCard; incentivising loyalty schemes attached to those, like the very profitable Qantas Frequent Flyer or Coles Flybuys; and mobile wallet payments.

Initially, the Bankcard’s purpose was to…


Quarantine camp 2nd May 1919 © State Library of Queensland

Unique health identifiers predate the coronavirus

Fourteen years ago I and my team specified and architected a system of personal and practitioner unique health identifiers (IHI/HPI) that now serves as the basis for the australian government’s life time shared electronic health record — MyHealth Record.

More that ten years of delay between design and deployment as a result of the legal changes required to remove privacy hurdles and in-fact made this an opt-out scheme up until 1/31/2019. New citizens will infact be automatically enrolled from birth and may delete it if they choose. [1]

Core to the original ‘official’ Council of Australian Governments (COAG) business case…


© Geralt courtesy Pixabay

A Brief History of ‘Calendar’

There are a preponderance of human rituals that revolve around luck, traits and calendric events: lunar new years associated with animal traits like Horse, Goat and Tiger; new, blue and super moons; auspicious dates for weddings; astrological readings using your birthdate.

Solar-based calendars may be older than writing itself. The ancient greeks were apparently keen on the 12 month lunar calendar, which is a more visible sign of the passage of time than the Solar calendar. Yet, the manner of construction of the ~3000 BC Stonehenge [1] to mark the summer solstice sunrise and winter solstice sunset was likely to…

Dr. Adam Hart

phd epistemology | 30 years corptech

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