Monday, April 14, 2014

DEBS 2014 tentative program was published

DEBS 2014 will take place in Mumbai, India at the last week of May.   
The tentative program of the conference was published recently on the conference's website
My tutorial on the "Internet of Everything" will be delivered on Monday, May 26th, between 10am - 1pm.
Hope to meet old and new friends there (I'll probably arrive couple of days earlier to tour around).    

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Digital life in 2025

I came across a report entitled "Digital life in 2025", that was produced in Elon University. 

Some of the predictions are:
  1. Information sharing over the Internet will be so effortlessly interwoven into daily life that it will become invisible, flowing like electricity, often through machine intermediaries.
  2.  The spread of the Internet will enhance global connectivity that fosters more planetary relationships and less ignorance.
  3. The Internet of Things, artificial intelligence, and big data will make people more aware of their world and their own behavior. 
  4. Augmented reality and wearable devices will be implemented to monitor and give quick feedback on daily life, especially tied to personal health.
  5. Political awareness and action will be facilitated and more peaceful change and public uprisings like the Arab Spring will emerge. 
  6.  The spread of the ‘Ubernet’ will diminish the meaning of borders, and new ‘nations’ of those with shared interests may emerge and exist beyond the capacity of current nation-states to control. 
  7.  The Internet will become “the Internets” as access, systems, and principles are renegotiated
  8. An Internet-enabled revolution in education will spread more opportunities, with less money spent on real estate and teachers.
  9.  Dangerous divides between haves and have-nots may expand, resulting in resentment and possible violence.
  10.   Abuses and abusers will ‘evolve and scale.’ Human nature isn’t changing; there’s laziness, bullying, stalking, stupidity, pornography, dirty tricks, crime, and those who practice them have new capacity to make life miserable for others.
  11.  Pressured by these changes, governments and corporations will try to assert power -- and at times succeed – as they invoke security and cultural norms. 
  12.  People will continue – sometimes grudgingly -- to make tradeoffs favoring convenience and perceived immediate gains over privacy; and privacy will be something only the upscale will enjoy.
  13.  Humans and their current organizations may not respond quickly enough to challenges presented by complex networks.
  14.  Most people are not yet noticing the profound changes today’s communications networks are already bringing about; these networks will be even more disruptive in the future. 
  15.  Foresight and accurate predictions can make a difference; ‘The best way to predict the future is to invent it.’

I like the last one.  I think that the rest are also thought provoking.   Details about each of these predictions can be found in the full report - enjoy!

Monday, April 7, 2014

On latent data

I came across a post by EwanD from Microsoft entitled: “Latent Data” – the secret sauce of the Internet of Things. Since I am interested in both secret sauces and IoT, I was curious to understand what is this sauce. 
It seems that the term latent data refers to data that is typically not available, and also data that does not have any meaning on its own, and need to be aggregated, or joined with other data to be useful.  

Indeed IoT brings to the picture a lot of data that has not been available previously, and in my terminology, much of this data is about event that occur.   Sometimes the raw events are of interest, sometimes the interest is on derived events that are aggregation, transformation, or function that involve multiple events, and possibly also historical data and state information.   Note that when latent data becomes available it is not latent anymore,  and also that latent is a relative term, some piece of data can be available to somebody, and concealed from somebody else.     From this post one can learn what Microsoft sees its role in the IoT era, what I understood is that the role is twofold: both provider of OS for embedded systems, and as a cloud provider.   I am now trying to understand roles of different players in the IoT world, looking for sponsors for my recent activity.  

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Big data - are we making a big mistake

I came across an interesting article by Tim Harford in FT Magazine.   This article in in line of several posts I have made on this Blog, which express some skeptics on the ability of merely looking at statistical correlation in the past to create "big insights". Harford brings some examples for that and concludes that there are some naive believes around the big data hypes.   I'll keep writing more insights about this topic. 

Saturday, March 29, 2014

The Technological Empowerment Institute -- first exposure

I have written a month ago about moving on, I still need to post  a summary of my IBM time, but it will have to wait as I am quite busy in my new role.  The role is an attempt to establish (from scratch) an applied research institute called "The Technological  Empowerment Institute (TEI)".   This is a first of a series of posts about the institute's plan.    

The slide below shows the idea in a nutshell:

The domain that we are looking at is in general, exploiting Internet of Things for societal purposes. 
The mission is to help developing areas, first in the Israeli periphery, in this case, the concentration will be on the northern part of Israel, and developing countries over the world.  

The idea is to create partnership with:

1. Multidisciplinary researchers dealing with technology, the human aspect of creating and consuming smart systems (a topic that anybody  following this blog realized I have been focused in the last couple of years), and the domain oriented research (agriculture, gerontology, healthcare and more). The affiliated researchers will be international.

2. Partnership with high-tech companies for using their platforms and products for the implementation projects (see below).

3. Using students projects and internship program to carry out concrete implementation projects that fit the institute's mission.

4. Partnership with academic institutes in developing countries to collaborate on the above.

In the next series of posts I'll write about each of these items.  I am now spending much of my time in creating all these partnership -- a big challenge, and also fun. 

Friday, March 28, 2014

More from the Big Data workshop -- crowd wisdom vs. expert wisdom

Yesterday I spent all day in the second day of the Technion Computer Engineering center workshop on big data.  There were a few interesting talks, and the organizers promised to put the slides of all talks on their website (eventually).   I chose to write about an interesting talk given by Tova Milo, from Tel-Aviv University.  Tova talked about her work on crowd wisdom,  and also presented a video in which a contestant in a TV show who did not know an answer used the option of - ask the audience, and followed the audience to the wrong result, and out.   The talk discussed some means of knowledge acquisition, how to phrase questions.   The examples she gave were: what to do when I have headache,  and I am looking for a place to go for children attraction in NYC and a nearby restaurant which is children friendly.  

I asked her whether in the case of constant headache it is not better to ask an expert physician, and her answer was that people trust the crowd wisdom more than they trust their physicians, well I think it is a function of who the person is, and who the physician is.  When we planned the trip to New Zealand ,    We could use crowd wisdom, there is a lot of material on the web, of course, but we chose to go to an expert travel advisor and ask for a trip plan (including all travel arrangements), it certainly saved us time, but if one has enough time,  getting advices from the crowd is useful.   I wonder if somebody researched the trade-offs between expert wisdom and crowd wisdom, and classified the cases in which each should be used. 

Thursday, March 27, 2014

My talk in the Technion Big Data workshop

Yesterday, I gave a talk in the Technion Computer Engineering Big Data days --  the talk dealt with three topics:  why  the Internet of things did not happen yet,  very brief introduction to "The Event Model", and a new introduction of the Technological Empowerment Institute.  I'll write more about the institute soon.