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Alexander Howard
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Entries by Alexander Howard

Embracing the Internet of Things Means Managing Privacy Risks With Care

(0) Comments | Posted July 2, 2015 | 12:55 PM

An Australian librarian who read my article about the "potential economic of Internet of Things" felt the article didn't empower or educate the public. Instead, Hugh Rundle said that I made the false equivalence between privacy and security. It's a fair criticism. While I didn't

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On Independence Day, Remember That The Meta Data Matters

(2) Comments | Posted July 1, 2015 | 4:05 PM

President Barack Obama's 2014 speech on surveillance reform began with a reference to the "The Sons of Liberty" in Boston. If the spymasters of King George III had access to modern surveillance and network analysis techniques in 1776, they might have been able to tell his...

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How Data From Wearable Tech Can Be Used Against You In A Court Of Law

(119) Comments | Posted June 30, 2015 | 2:08 PM

When wearable computers can disprove what someone told police, you know you're living in a future that has arrived sooner than expected.

According to LancasterOnline, a woman in Pennsylvania has been charged with knowingly filing a false report after forensic evidence and the

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Cracking the Code: U.S. House of Representatives Allows Use Of Open Source Software

(11) Comments | Posted June 29, 2015 | 7:59 PM

As the executive branch of the United States government quietly works on creating an official open source policy, the legislative branch is also moving into the 21st century: Open source software is now officially permitted in the U.S. House of Representatives. That means software developed in the People's...

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This Social Network You've Never Heard Of Has Nearly 1 Million Users, Its CEO Says

(6) Comments | Posted June 29, 2015 | 4:58 PM

A new social network that uses a points-based system to encourage people to interact with content is closing in on 1 million registered users since it launched earlier this month, according to the company's CEO.

"We've been around for a week. We are already serving significant impressions," said Bill Ottman,...

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Even Ralph Nader And Grover Norquist Agree That Government Should Be More Open

(27) Comments | Posted June 27, 2015 | 7:30 AM

By most measures, the 113th Congress of the United States was one of the least productive in history, failing to pass major legislation for most of its two years. One exception was the Digital Accountability and Transparency Act, a historic open-government law that passed last year...

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Plataforma brasileira de dados dá vida aos números e pretende tornar os relatórios tradicionais "obsoletos"

(0) Comments | Posted June 26, 2015 | 4:43 PM

Governos em todo o mundo divulgaram mais de um milhão de conjuntos de dados abertos na última década. Essa informação ajudou a estimular a criação de empregos e a realização de algumas mudanças na sociedade, incluindo o aumento da responsabilidade governamental e...

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In a Few Years, the Doctor May Prescribe You a Google Wristband to Call Him in the Morning

(75) Comments | Posted June 26, 2015 | 1:50 PM

Google revealed to Bloomberg News Tuesday that its X division is developing an experimental wrist band with sensors that "can measure pulse, heart rhythm and skin temperature, and also environmental information like light exposure and noise levels."

Andy Conrad, the head of the life sciences team at Google,...

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Digitizing The World Through The Internet of Things Could Be Worth $11 Trillion By 2025

(16) Comments | Posted June 26, 2015 | 12:46 PM

internet of things

Creating the "Internet of Things" by connecting everyday objects like factory machines, vehicles and buildings to the web could be worth between $3.9 trillion and $11.1 trillion by 2025, according to a new report from the McKinsey Global Institute.

McKinsey's research...

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Brazilian Data Visualization Platform Brings Numbers To Life, Aims To Make Traditional Reports 'Obsolete'

(0) Comments | Posted June 18, 2015 | 1:39 PM

Governments around the world have released more than a million open data sets over the last decade. This information has helped fuel job creation and some societal changes, including increased government accountability and consumer protection, more transparent health care costs and more resilience...

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Brigade Seeks To Reboot Political Engagement In America With Civic Social Media

(1) Comments | Posted June 17, 2015 | 6:02 PM

In June 2014, tech billionaire Sean Parker, the co-founder of Napster and former president of Facebook, announced he would invest $9.3 million dollars in Brigade, a new company that aims to "use social media to transform politics" and reignite civic engagement and activism in American life.

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Why You Shouldn't Freak Out About The Wired Play Date On The New Yorker Cover

(22) Comments | Posted June 15, 2015 | 9:23 PM

The latest cover of The New Yorker captures a scene familiar to many parents.

It's an evocative image of...

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Obama Says He 'Should Have Anticipated' IT Issues With Here's How He's Avoiding A Repeat.

(42) Comments | Posted June 15, 2015 | 8:33 PM

President Barack Obama said he "should have caught" the technology procurement issues that would bedevil, the federal health insurance marketplace, for months after its launch in October 2013.

Obama's statement, in an interview with Fast Company published online Monday, wasn't...

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Behind The Scenes Of Bloomberg Businessweek's Epic Explanation Of Code

(7) Comments | Posted June 14, 2015 | 1:22 PM

Fifty-one years after Marshall McLuhan first wrote "The Medium is the Message," Paul Ford's 38,000-word magnum opus on programming embodies that vision. The print version of the story, which covers 72 pages in a special issue of Bloomberg Businessweek, strains the definition of "article." It's really a...

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Documentary Project On Black Women In Tech Smashes Kickstarter Goal

(10) Comments | Posted June 11, 2015 | 4:00 PM

The press has documented Silicon Valley's problems with racism and lack of diversity for years now, but challenges remain. Simply reporting that black tech entrepreneurs face institutional bias has not made tech companies more diverse, and women are continuing to leave...

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Nobody Fixed These Potholes Until The Potholes Asked For It Themselves

(4) Comments | Posted June 10, 2015 | 9:29 AM

For years, frustrated citizens have been tweeting about potholes in their communities in an attempt to call attention to crumbling roads. Now, potholes in Panama City are tweeting about themselves, thanks to a connected device created by an ad agency and publicized by the local news -- and the potholes...

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White House Mandates HTTPS By Default For Federal Websites

(30) Comments | Posted June 8, 2015 | 9:36 PM

Massive data breaches and identity theft show that security and privacy are intrinsically linked online.

President Barack Obama's chief information officer, Tony Scott, issued a memorandum on Monday requiring that "all publicly accessible federal websites and web services only provide service through a secure connection."...

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At #PDF15, Hope and Fear About an Increasingly Connected World

(1) Comments | Posted June 5, 2015 | 4:57 PM

More than a decade after the first time the Personal Democracy Forum was convened, its colorful community of digital activists, campaigners, advocates and civic technologists is still capturing and coding the zeitgeist, hoping to create the change they wish to see in the world. In the face of continued apathy,...

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Obama Administration Wants To Make It A Lot Easier To Find Doctors Who Take Your Insurance

(73) Comments | Posted June 2, 2015 | 7:49 PM

For millions of Americans, choosing health insurance that will cover the care they need at a cost they can afford boils down to one simple question: Which doctors take this plan?

Unfortunately, shopping for health insurance online can still be more painful than an actual trip to a clinic....

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Meet The Woman In Charge Of Making The U.S. Health Department Smarter

(78) Comments | Posted May 29, 2015 | 3:31 PM

Susannah Fox, an expert on how the Internet affects Americans’ health, is now in charge of improving how the United States government uses technology to deliver and improve health care.

On Thursday, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell named Susannah Fox, an entrepreneur-in-residence at at the...

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