Blurred Boundaries Between Big Tech and Government Amazon has been in the news lately due to its nearly finalized cloud contract with the government. Amazon Web Services, Amazon's cloud hosting service, has been a huge revenue driver for the conglomerate. The Department of Defense favors Amazon Web Services over the competition to host its data for military missions. Amazon could make $10 billion on this contract alone. The partnership with the DoD, though, isn't the extent of Amazon's relationship with the government. Amazon also released a product called Ring, a home security system that acts as a private surveillance network. Ring footage is being shared with local police forces to … [Read more...] about Four Areas to Watch As Big Tech and Government Work Together
Failing to Bring the World Closer Together A little over two years ago, Facebook updated its mission statement to, "Give people the power to build community and bring the world closer together." Since the update, though, Facebook has pushed the world further apart. The data they've collected on their users have been exploited to the extent they've influenced multiple elections across the globe. Most notably, a data analytics firm called Cambridge Analytica used Facebook's data to create a profile of voters that were susceptible to advertisements. The Cambridge Analytica scandal was covered at length in Netflix's latest hit, The Great Hack. I highly recommend you watch it. Facebook … [Read more...] about What Would a World Without Facebook Look Like?
Poor Prioritization Creates Riches The rapid rise of Silicon Valley technology companies inspired a new capitalist paradigm. Software no longer needed to be mature or devoid of bugs before ending up in the hands of consumers. With venture capital to burn and dreams of exponential returns, founding technology teams raced as fast as they could to grow their customer bases. The “Internet 2.0” business model seemed perfect. Technology teams focus on growth at all costs with the ultimate goal of monetizing their users. Monetization is primarily done through targeted advertising. In exchange for the use of a company’s products and services, users are subjected to advertisements. The … [Read more...] about Technology Companies Will Become More Transparent Over Time
The Battle for World Supremacy China's rapid growth over the past few decades has positioned it as a global economic and technology leader. As the world's second largest economic power, China has the capital to invest in its technology sector. These investments have proven to come at a cost to China's homegrown companies. Huawei, a Chinese telecommunications firm, provides the Chinese government with "backdoors" to its networks. These backdoors provide China with intelligence about the countries in which the networks are operational. While it's easy to point the finger at China for these practices, Eric Snowden showed that the US has been engaged in similar practices as well. The US has … [Read more...] about How to Keep the US-China Cold War From Getting Hot
What's Real Anymore? Ninety percent of the world's data was generated in the last two years. That's an insane fact! Internet searches, news publications, text messages, phone calls, social media posts, and millions of other types of content are produced every single second. With all of this content out in the world, competition for our attention has become fierce. Clickbait headlines like "Cuba Claims Justin Trudeau is Fidel Castro's Son" are now common on the Internet. FYI, Cuba made no such claim. Stories like this are then shared on Facebook and other social media platforms, ultimately helping them go viral. Efforts to stop the distribution of fake news are being thwarted by … [Read more...] about How to Survive Fake News