What playing football taught me about hacking – Part 2

by @edent | # # | 2 comments

As part of my MSc, I’m reading MoneyBall. OK, I just watched the film! Cut me some slack! The basic thesis of the book is this: Our baseball team doesn’t have much money to buy new players Which baseball players have the best Statistic X for the lowest price? Buy undervalued players which increase your…

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What’s the origin of the phrase “Big Data Doesn’t Fit In Excel”?

by @edent | # # # | 5 comments | Read ~5,971 times.
Slide saying "It Doesn't fit in Excel".

Welcome to Yak Shaving School! As part of my MSc I’m reading a book about Data Analytics. So I’ve been chasing down quotes to find their origin. One paper had this popular quote in it (emphasis added): As with many rapidly emerging concepts, Big Data has been variously defined and operationalized, ranging from trite proclamations…

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Predicting The Future – What 1981 Got Wrong

by @edent | # # # # # | 1 comment | Read ~161 times.
A microchip with a British flag on it. Technology and the office of the future There is considerable scope for improving the productivity in offices. The major technological advances which will have an impact on this sector are the low-cost VDU, mass data storage, the digital network and voice command by B.W.Manley

As part of my MSc, I fell down a research rabbit-hole of 1980s “Office Of THE FUTURE!!” articles. Ultimately, I couldn’t find a way to include it in my research – so you’re getting my cast offs. So, I present to you some choice predictions from “Technology and the office of the future” by B.…

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Building a car which cannot speed

by @edent | # # # | 4 comments | Read ~142 times.
A pet cat typing on a computer keyboard.

As part of my MSc, I’m reading a lot of “Leadership” books. They’re all pretty bad – but they have one common thesis; it is essential to improve your company culture. I’m not sure if I agree. I feel completely divorced from most forms of company culture. I find the way that these books talk…

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When your game console becomes your bank

by @edent | # | Read ~113 times.
An Xbox controller.

Before GameStop became a memestock (what even is 2021) – it was the subject of another popular meme. The First National Bank of GameStop. This got me thinking. In the UK, retail banking is (mostly) free. Rather than pay interest to depositors, banks give away free ATM withdrawls, free Direct Debits, free transfers to other…

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Why is it so hard to give digital gifts?

by @edent | # # # | 1 comment | Read ~121 times.
An eReader with a pen.

I am reading The Digital Transformation Playbook for part of my MSc. It’s a good book, but I found this passage about eBooks a little confusing: what about gift giving? No one I have ever asked has thought that an e-book was an acceptable substitute for a printed book when giving a gift. I’ve received…

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The next disruption of the music industry?

by @edent | # # # # | 3 comments | Read ~131 times.

Another short – and probably incorrect – prediction about disruption. Spotify, for all its tech, isn’t magically disruptive. The business model is similar to a radio station. It pays music publishers based on what songs its listeners’ request. (This is grossly oversimplified. Stick with me.) Spotify buys a product wholesale and then sells it retail.…

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Disintermediate The State

by @edent | # # | 1 comment | Read ~101 times.
The "That's a paddling" meme - saying "Renew your goose tax? That's an API!"

As part of my MSc, I’m being asked to think about “digital disruption” – so here are some personal thoughts about the future of transactions with the state. The UK Government has a lot of APIs to let computers communicate with each other. Most of them are department-to-department. For example, the Ministry of Birds wants…

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What’s the point of a lecturer?

by @edent | # # # # | 7 comments | Read ~241 times.
A young, beardless Terry - wearing graduation robes.

Backstory – I’m doing a taught Masters course. It’s going OK. Mostly. But I’ve been thinking about the nature of university lecturers. This Tweet has been doing the rounds. HI EXCUSE ME, I just found out the the prof for this online course I’m taking *died in 2019* and he’s technically still giving classes since…

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What’s the “Uber” of the Civil Service?

by @edent | # # | 4 comments | Read ~225 times.

There’s a famous quote from Tom Goodwin about the way the world has changed recently: Uber, the world’s largest taxi company, owns no vehicles. Facebook, the world’s most popular media owner, creates no content. Alibaba, the most valuable retailer, has no inventory. And Airbnb, the world’s largest accommodation provider, owns no real estate. Something interesting…

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