Skip to main content
Communications at the Speed of Clay

One of my Web 'Blogs' has either been hacked or the domain has been hijacked. But can I tell anyone about the problem here at Blogger.Com? Of course not.

I've been comparing notes with a friend today. He's also been in IT longer than we both care to remember and we both agree that communication isn't what it used to be.



It's official then, the average speed of London traffic is under 20 mph and email is even slower at two replies per month. I'm not joking. It's increasingly harder to do business with anyone these days. Email exchanges can take weeks and decisions months in gestation. People everywhere are seemingly hiding behind their voice mail and their email and I really couldn't tell you what they're doing anymore.

You see, as my friend points out, IT used to be an industry where success was a factor under the control of market forces. It didn't matter too much if you weren't very good at your job because the world wanted to buy your hardware or your software and double digit growth shielded the under-performers or the inept. Today, its a different story. Growth is barely above 5% in most sectors and people everywhere appear to have 'Dug-in' behind their voicemail until the storm is over.

Decisions, you see are risky. You make the wrong one and you might lose your job and so perhaps it's better to keep rearranging the paper on your desk until such a time as the world becomes a friendlier place.

Am I cynical? You're damn right I am and I'm not alone either. After twenty years in this business I have to admit that I have never seen technology used so effectively as a barrier, preventing communications and business development rather than facilitating it. It's a modern sickness, much like the canker of political correctness. The more communications bandwidth available to a business, the more difficult communications becomes. As resistance grows at the square of demand, there comes a point when comunications of any kind ceases altogether and your'e left with something that looks much like local government.

Don't try sending me an email. I'm 'Out of Office' until further notice or at least until business comes to its senses.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Civilisational Data Mining

It’s a new expression I haven’t heard before. ‘Civilisational data mining.’

Let me start by putting it in some context. Every character, you or I have typed into the Google search engine or Facebook over the last decade, means something, to someone or perhaps ‘something,’ if it’s an algorithm.


In May 2014, journalists revealed that the United States National Security Agency, the NSA, was recording and archiving every single cell-phone conversation that took place in the Bahamas. In the process they managed to transform a significant proportion of a society’s day to day interactions into unstructured data; valuable information which can of course be analysed, correlated and transformed for whatever purpose the intelligence agency deems fit.

And today, I read that a GOP-hired data company in the United States has ‘leaked’ personal information, preferences and voting intentions on… wait for it… 198 million US citizens.

Within another decade or so, the cost of sequencing the human genome …

The Nature of Nurture?

Recently, I found myself in a fascinating four-way Twitter exchange, with Professor Adam Rutherford and two other science-minded friends The subject, frequently regarded as a delicate one, genetics and whether there could exist an unknown but contributory genetic factor(s) or influences in determining what we broadly understand or misunderstand as human intelligence.

I won’t discuss this subject in any great detail here, being completely unqualified to do so, but I’ll point you at the document we were discussing, and Rutherford’s excellent new book, ‘A Brief History of Everyone.”

What had sparked my own interest was the story of my own grandfather, Edmond Greville; unless you are an expert on the history of French cinema, you are unlikely to have ever hear of him but he still enjoys an almost cult-like following for his work, half a century after his death.

I've been enjoying the series "Genius" on National Geographic about the life of Albert Einstein. The four of us ha…
The Mandate of Heaven

eGov Monitor Version

“Parliament”, said my distinguished friend “has always leaked like a sieve”.

I’m researching the thorny issue of ‘Confidence in Public Sector Computing’ and we were discussing the dangers presented by the Internet. In his opinion, information security is an oxymoron, which has no place being discussed in a Parliament built upon the uninterrupted flow of information of every kind, from the politically sensitive to the most salacious and mundane.

With the threat of war hanging over us, I asked if MPs should be more aware of the risks that surround this new communications medium? More importantly, shouldn’t the same policies and precautions that any business might use to protect itself and its staff, be available to MPs?

What concerns me is that my well-respected friend mostly considers security in terms of guns, gates and guards. He now uses the Internet almost as much as he uses the telephone and the Fax machine and yet the growing collective t…