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One of the criticisms made of the IT discipline is the obscurity of our jargon and the proliferation of TLAs. The truth is that all disciplines and professions have their jargon words and phrases. Jargon is very useful and within a community can be very effective.
It may well be true that we live in a society which is more open than ever before and where privacy is ever harder to find. I would however argue that there are good reasons for limiting openness. In a fully connected world, there are times to switch off.
For a decade or more now the IT Industry has talked about agility as a benefit of advances in networked IT. It’s one of those awkward ideas that everyone can grasp reasonably easily but is quite hard to measure and evaluate. What is an investment in £1m of agility worth in terms of value?
‘A trend is a trend until it bends,’ is a wonderful quote from Ged Davis of Shell.
For me, after the NHS, the Open University has been the greatest social innovation in the UK since WWII. Founded in 1969, in its 25th year it has as many students (circa 150,000) as HE had in the year it was founded.
Few people in or around the computer industry would be surprised at the scale and reach of outsourcing in the UK economy and the part played by the outsourcing of IT.
Does no-one test IT systems anymore? In chip design or in cyber security, there is a strong discipline of testing. Some of the smartest people I’ve met in the IT community have worked in cyber security.
Autonomous robots are back in the media. A bunch of smart and creative folk have been considering the possibilities and risks of a world in which autonomous robots exceed the capacity of us carbon-based life-forms.
At this time of year it’s interesting to look back at the year so far and see what themes have dominated or been significant in 2014. What has struck me is that directly and indirectly much of my time has been spent this year on the future of work.
It is often observed that there is a gap between what IT could deliver and the experience of what actually happens. For me the trouble is that this is often put down to ‘IT problems’ when it is often due to other factors.

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