Prosume wins the Blockchains for Social Good Prize

Prosume wins the Blockchains for Social Good Prize

You know I am a blockchain-hype skeptic, but last year I had the chance to collaborate with a company active in the energy industry, Prosume, which makes reasonable use of blockchain. Its objective is facilitating the transition to renewables, as well as the prosumers...

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Police do not prevent crime

Police do not prevent crime

One of the best kept secrets of modern life (…) is that police do not prevent crime. The quote is from Police for the Future by the expert in criminal justice and policing David Bayley. The book was written more than 20 years ago, in 1996, but it is still of great...

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Divide et impera

Divide et impera

It is a great temptation to picture the digital divide as somebody walking hours to load Internet Explorer on Window 95 in a remote hut. Unfortunately, the digital divide takes also the shape of your aunt forwarding pseudo-science on Whatsapp. Last year I worked on...

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The EU Digital Policy package: a recap

The EU Digital Policy package: a recap

Today was the day. The European Commission presented its digital policy package.   The first meta-component is an overarching strategy for the digital society, which has three objectives: tech should work for people; fair and competitive economy; open, democratic and...

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A European approach to Artificial Intelligence

A European approach to Artificial Intelligence

Politico leaked a draft white paper sketching a European approach to artificial intelligence. The document is meant to support the European Parliament promise of initiating regulation of AI within 100 days of office. The Politico’s headline and other...

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4 Things to watch out for in 2020

4 Things to watch out for in 2020

#1 Big corps making themselves the default option in further fields. Amazon Braket provides a single environment to design, test, and run quantum algorithms without having to setup and manage infrastructure and code. Amazon is also working on Sidewalk, a new wireless...

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Environmental Intelligence and Deep Adaptation

Environmental Intelligence and Deep Adaptation

What if an AI acting as “environmental manager” were to transform the planet regardless of human interest? “A central argument made by those encouraging the uptake of AI, is that data-driven systems can depoliticize or neutralize decision making. Extended to the...

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Everyday geopolitics: cloud, IoT and smart spaces

Everyday geopolitics: cloud, IoT and smart spaces

A while ago I organised a panel discussion around the working concept of “spaces in-between”, an attempt to put a name on what is left out of the pure binary logic of algorithms and pretentiously “objective” data-driven inferences. At the time I was mainly thinking of...

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The broadcasting internet

The broadcasting internet

June 2019 has been defined as a milestone in Google’s evolution from search engine to walled-garden. Data from 40 million US browser-based searches show that roughly half of Google searches does not lead to any click. This means that half of organic search (“googling”...

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Into the wild privacy

Into the wild privacy

I’d like to think of privacy as an experience, taking place in a free off-the-record space where we can just do and be. An experience implies a range of experience, a range of possibility where experience can actually take place. A range of possibilities welcomes in...

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The banality of #FemTech

The banality of #FemTech

FemTech reached a 1bn$ in funding between 2015 and 2018, and projections see a raise to $50bn in 2025. FemTech targets women, but instead of pink-coloured products it provides solutions to female health (with a strong focus on fertility). We have quickly...

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The devil wears optimisation

The devil wears optimisation

I have to admit that in the increasing appropriation and marketing of the “tech for good” debate by big tech, “tech for evil” approaches become very appealing. For instance, we can look into a desirable evolution of the technology presence in our life by speculating...

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The other way around

The other way around

A recent paper about cognition constraints in digital and physical spaces shows that it is not so straightforward to accuse technology of downgrading our nature. Researchers found that individuals exhibit a conserved capacity that limits the number of applications...

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Blockchain for journalism beyond the hype

Blockchain for journalism beyond the hype

The media sector is not exempt from the blockchain fascination: in constant seek of a monolith model that will “save the industry”, newsrooms are intrigued by blockchain promises of novel currencies and transparency. But just like a 30k € bike won’t make you a Tour de...

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Electric Flanerie

Electric Flanerie

What are your feelings with presence and traceability? I am not talking about mere privacy matters, but a sense of agency, self-awareness, liberty. Disappearing is becoming a fine art, an act of freedom. In our Millennials workshops, it keeps coming up. In order to...

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Re-decentralising the internet: panel at Future Fest 2018

Re-decentralising the internet: panel at Future Fest 2018

Last summer I had the pleasure of being on the panel re-decentralising internet at Futurefest. We had a wonderful discussion with Manon den Dunnen (strategic specialist at the Dutch National Police) and Ian Forrester (Chief Firestarter at BBC R&D),...

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Can diversity save Europe in the Artificial Intelligence run?

Can diversity save Europe in the Artificial Intelligence run?

Europe is losing the AI train. While Brussels dispenses politically correct statements about human-centric AI, other zones of the world are headed undisturbed towards supremacy in Artificial (non-human, by the way) Intelligence. China is leading the race: its AI plan...

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All things optimal: beyond machines

In his recent contribution to the Pervasive Labour Union special issue about Entreprecariat, "All things optimal", Michael Dieter elaborates the concept with respect to optimisation dominant paradigm. In his view, "optimization links the axiomatic neo-classical actor...

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