Posted by & filed under Healthcare.

Moodbeam

At first glance the silicone wristband could be mistaken for one that tracks your heart rate when you are doing exercise.

However, the wearable technology, called a Moodbeam, isn’t here to monitor your physical health. Instead it allows your employer to track your emotional state.

The gadget, which links to a mobile phone app and web interface, has two buttons, one yellow and one blue. The idea is that you press the yellow one if you are feeling happy, and the blue one if you are sad.

Aimed at companies who wish to monitor the wellbeing of staff who are working from home, the idea is that employees are encouraged to wear the wristband (they can say no), and press the relevant button as they see fit throughout the working week.

Managers can then view an online dashboard to see how workers are feeling and coping. With bosses no longer able to check in physically with their team, Moodbeam hopes to bridge the gap.

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: January 21st, 2021

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/business-55637328

Discussion

  1. What do you think about this idea?
  2. ” In San Francisco, mental wellness app Modern Health aims to help employers more easily connect their workers with a variety of mental health resources, such as sessions with therapists. ” What do you think about technology that links to your employer about your mental health?

Posted by & filed under IT and Politics, Politics, Privacy.

Canadian legislators in the House of Commons recently introduced Bill C-11 to enact the Consumer Privacy Protection Act. Bill C-11 embodies the principles of Canada’s Digital Charter, which envisions the internet as a tool for both innovation and the public good. 

Over the past year, Canadians — just like much of the world — have increasingly lived their lives online. The pandemic pushed us to use the internet in new ways: digital doctor visits, first dates and family dinners over Zoom, grocery shopping via apps.

The pandemic has not only magnified the value of the internet, but also what’s wrong with it. Newsfeeds that spread misinformation. Digital ads that track and target us. Algorithms that make opaque decisions about our credit ratings or our dating lives. Smart speakers that listen to — and store — our every word. 

In short: the internet is indispensable — and imperfect.

At this fraught moment in our digital society, Canada has a major opportunity to address much of what’s wrong online. Several weeks ago, Canadian legislators in the House of Commons introduced Bill C-11 to enact the Consumer Privacy Protection Act.

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: January 14th, 2021

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/opinion-digital-privacy-bill-c11-1.5863117

Discussion

  1. ” grocery or retail points programs often tailor rewards to match the foods and products that members of the program purchase most often, meaning that different people receive different discounts based on the data that has been collected. While this might seem more efficient, it also creates inequality as people that do not use a program’s app cannot access the same modest discounts on everyday essentials available to a member. ” Should there be a law to protect against this?
  2. ” Imagine if your Amazon shopping history and habits lived not on Amazon, but in something like a co-op or credit union that you belonged to. You could decide how much of that data Amazon gets to see — and how much you want to hold back. ” How would this be useful, and would it work?

Posted by & filed under AI/Artificial Intelligence, Future of Work.

OVER the past few years, artificial intelligence has matured into a collection of powerful technologies that are delivering competitive advantage to businesses across industries. Global AI adoption and investment are soaring. By one account, 37 percent of organizations have deployed AI solutions—up 270 percent from four years ago.1 Analysts forecast global AI spending will more than double over the next three years, topping US$79 billion by 2022

Source: Deloitte

Date: January 14th, 2021

Link: https://www2.deloitte.com/us/en/insights/focus/cognitive-technologies/ai-adoption-in-the-workforce.html

Discussion

  1. ” leaders see AI rapidly transforming their businesses and industries. Fifty-seven percent predict that AI will “substantially transform” their company within the next three years; two-thirds believe that their industry’s transformation will happen within five years. ” How is AI going to impact your major, be it MIS, finance, accounting, marketing…?
  2. ” the effect AI will ultimately have on jobs is uncertain: Are we staring at a dim future in which AI-driven automation has made most jobs obsolete, or is AI ushering in a new age characterized by humans working in collaboration with the technologies—augmented by AI capabilities rather than displaced by them? ” This is worth a class discussion to see what students think and why.

Posted by & filed under COVID-19, Digital Transformation.

“If AI (Artificial Intelligence is the engine, data is the fuel”. This video from technology consulting firm Cognizant does a very nice job of overviewing the digital transformation that companies need to get on board with.

Source: Cognizant

Date: January 14th, 2021

Link to 5 minute video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KaV15TrfC_o&feature=youtu.be

Discussion

  1. The move to digital, digital transformation, is impacting every business, and every major on campus, let alone every major in the business school. It would be worth having a discussion about how students think digital transformation is going to change marketing, finance, accounting, and any other majors you have in your school
  2. This video highlights that “the great Covid-19 reset” has brought forward the digital transformation. Why is this?

Posted by & filed under Career, Systems Development.

Ellen and Rafael Robles tried to have everything in order for Monday morning when their son, Bento, started school virtually after the holiday break rather than in person: a good desk, chair, headphones and an iPad.

Still, the morning got off to a rocky start for the family in Woodbridge, a suburb of Vaughan, Ont., north of Toronto.

“The camera was not working. We couldn’t see the teacher. We couldn’t see anything,” recounted Ellen Robles, describing it as “a little bit of a nightmare.”

After immediately checking through a parents’ group chat that fellow classmates weren’t experiencing the same issues, she rushed to swap desks with him.

“He’s working at her [home] office with her computer, and she’s working from his desk with his iPad,” said Rafael Robles.

He said the family is now looking at getting another computer for Bento so he can do his online classes.

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: January 6th, 2021

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/school-new-year-virtual-restart-1.5860964

Discussion

  1. How might you set up a service that would help parents prevent some of the issues arising in this article?
  2. What is it about the design of technology that means that, in 2021, we are still have some of these very basic issues?

Posted by & filed under Self-driving vehicles.

Nuro R2 vehicle

California has given the go-ahead for a commercial driverless delivery service for the first time.

Robotics start-up Nuro plans to start its driverless delivery operations as early as next year.

It previously tested its R2 vehicles in the state in April, but the permit will let it charge people for its service.

The firm’s vehicles will be limited to 35mph (56km/h), and will be restricted to operating in “fair weather” conditions.

“Issuing the first deployment permit is a significant milestone in the evolution of autonomous vehicles in California,” said California Department of Motor Vehicles director Steve Gordon.

“We will continue to keep the safety of the motoring public in mind as this technology develops.”

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: January 6th, 2021

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-55438969

Discussion

  1. This is incredibly significant, as the ability to charge people for a self-driving vehicle service is a world’s first. What sort of services could you build around this technology?
  2. What are some of the issues with self-driving technology that you would need to be careful about as you set up your new service?

Posted by & filed under Self-driving vehicles.

Source: YouTube

Date: January 5th, 2021

Link to 15 minute video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hKUOkiKHD8U

Discussion

  1. The first prediction is that self-driving cars will put Uber out of business, because there will be a platform (possible built by Tesla) that will allow you to let your Tesla go and make money for you by being a self-driving taxi. What are your thoughts on this?
  2. What are some changes that could happen in your city or town if car ownership essentially went away as you can just hail a self-driving car when you need one?

Posted by & filed under Environment, Green Technologies.

Canada Post is expecting a significant increase in holiday packages this year due to COVID-19. But that doesn’t have to mean a higher carbon footprint, according to logistics experts. 

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: December 14th, 2020

Link (includes 6 minute podcast as well as the article): https://www.cbc.ca/radio/costofliving/you-ve-got-mail-looking-at-delivery-from-shippers-to-drivers-to-receivers-1.5836658/how-to-make-your-online-shopping-less-of-an-environmental-or-carbon-footprint-mess-1.5836703

Discussion

  1. Why is important for digital companies to think about their carbon footprint?
  2. In what ways might digital companies “green wash”, which is where they say they are doing things that are environmentally friendly, but really they are not.

Posted by & filed under Cyber Security.

Learn how to recognize the precursors of the latest ransomware threat and protect your organization. The FBI recently released a Joint Cybersecurity Advisory warning of imminent ransomware attacks on healthcare and the public health sector. In this fast-paced, technical talk, we will show you real examples of the Ryuk ransomware, including indicators to watch for on your network. We will step through the warning, show you samples of a Trickbot infection which is one of the precursors to Ryuk, discuss the techniques of the cybercriminal gang behind the operation. Finally, learn tactics for detecting this stealthy threat, and effective ways to respond once you discover it.

Specific topics include:
* Identify early warning signs of the impending ransomware attack
* Understand how to properly contain the sophisticated malware off your network
* Learn tactics for preventing or mitigating ransomware attacks

* Identify early warning signs of the impending ransomware attack
* Understand how to properly contain the sophisticated malware off your network
* Learn tactics for preventing or mitigating ransomware attacks

Source: LMG Security

Date: December 15th, 2020

Link to video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YOsHIN8LMfg

Discussion

  1. LMG Security is a cyber security firm based in Missoula, Montana, with a global client base. What are you doing to understand basic issues of cyber security?
  2. How could you use videos like these to perform basic, paid work for clients?

Posted by & filed under Amazon, Automation, Business Analytics, Data Analytics, Electronic Surveillance, Ethical issues.

Workers with masks

Amazon plans to sell companies a way to detect when staff are not wearing face masks or socially distancing.

Beyond the pandemic, the system could also be used to track compliance of other workplace rules or to monitor the public – for example, to check the number of customers queuing in a store.

It involves retrofitting a box to existing security cameras that can then draw on off-the-shelf AI apps.

But privacy campaigners have raised concerns.

Remote working has already led to an increase in the use of software that checks up on employees, but Amazon’s new solution is focused on tracking people and products in factories, shops and other traditional workplaces.

Source: BBC Technology News

Date: December 14th, 2020

Link: https://www.bbc.com/news/technology-55158319

Discussion

  1. Amazon says that this technology can be put to tasks such as ” in a retail shop, it could count the number of customers, track their movements and check the length of queues/lines”. How else might this technology be used?
  2. If you installed this technology at a business you are running, would you need to tell your employees that you have installed it?