Click here to close now.




















Welcome!

Related Topics: Agile Computing, Java IoT, Linux Containers, Containers Expo Blog, @CloudExpo, @BigDataExpo, @ThingsExpo

Agile Computing: Article

Can the Internet of Things (IoT) End Violence?

A Minor Revelation in Discussing Uganda with Google's Eric Brewer

Violence is the great disruptor, the great destroyer of people, nations, and hope.

Some places on earth, say Somalia, are simply off-limits to outsiders and practically uninhabitable to those having to live there. Others, say Democratic Congo or Iraq, are perilous enough to defy rational investment. Others, say Syria or Ukraine or perhaps Egypt, are being disrupted enough by violence to make investors and certainly visitors back away.

The spectrum continues; through a wide variety of developing nations, then through the "safe" developed world. Although the largest of the developed nations, the United States, certainly has its own serious issues with violence, bad news from developing nations such as Kenya and the Philippines, as magnified by television and reverberated through the Web's echo chamber, often make things seem worse than they are.

Unlikely, or Inevitable?
Getting people to consider all options is a prime drive of our research at the Tau Institute, which has data and rankings on the ICT infrastructures and dynamics of 102 nations. The research ties into my continual study of the IoT as part of my duties as Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo, coming up again Nov 4-6 in Santa Clara.

But it can be difficult to get companies and individuals seeking new markets, sources, locations, and investments to consider more "dangerous" places.

How stunned was I, then, a few months ago when I was discussing with Google VP of Infrastructure Eric Brewer the presence of a company Project Link center center in Kampala, Uganda. This nation comes up in our research as the most dynamic of African nations-not the most developed, certainly, but the one that has the potential to change for the better the most quickly.

How prescient of Google to see this as well. How inevitable great technological strides may be for all the nations of the world.

Meanwhile...
A continent away, I've found serious ICT development activity in Ukraine. If things continue the way they've been going, the country will likely fall steeply in our rankings. But with our current rankings, Ukraine is among the most dynamic countries in the world, and certainly far more dynamic than its bellicose neighbor Russia. (Another country in this region that does very well is Georgia. Take note, Vlad.)

In Asia, Thailand continues to do relatively well, despite its ongoing spasms of violence, and the Philippines is quite dynamic, the occasional disturbing headline be damned.

In Latin America, Honduras was among the more dynamic countries in 2012, but has been falling off. Mexico has been a steady underperformer, although I think a deep analysis of the data will show longstanding structural problems more than violence as a cause for its mediocre performance.

The United States steadily underperforms as well, perhaps partly skewed by its militaristic nature, while peaceful Canada, with low violence but a lot of political ennui, is hanging tough as a global leader overall.

Measurements
We haven't built a measurement of violence into our algorithms. Statistics can truly be misleading in this area, especially in an era of random horrific events sometimes occurring in the safest of countries. We're sure anyone looking for global locations has already factored their tolerance for violence into their calculations.

We also believe that the effect of violence on a society's growth and its investment potential shows up in the factors that we do measure. A nation's existing and growing ICT infrastructure will suffer if ugly violence is impinging significantly on it.

On the Wane, Not Gone
Harvard Professor Steven Pinker is the best-known proponent of the idea that violence is on the wane, pointing out in The Better Angels of our Nature and other works that day-to-day violence has declined stupendously over the last several hundred years. Technological progress is one of the reasons, he writes, and in my opinion he underrates this aspect of it.

Yet violence continues to plague mankind in all corners of the world. Lowered perhaps from olden dayes, but still a carbuncle on societal growth and the potential for a peaceable world.

So how can the IoT lower violence and change perceptions? The key is turning massive data capture into actionable information and wisdom in a transparent way. When everyone can see what's going on, civil behavior increases and violence declines.

More on this thought in a later article. Please send me your thoughts.

Contact Me on Twitter

Follow @ThingsExpo on Twitter

More Stories By Roger Strukhoff

Roger Strukhoff (@IoT2040) is Executive Director of the Tau Institute for Global ICT Research, with offices in Illinois and Manila. He is Conference Chair of @CloudExpo & @ThingsExpo, and Editor of SYS-CON Media's CloudComputing BigData & IoT Journals. He holds a BA from Knox College & conducted MBA studies at CSU-East Bay.

Comments (0)

Share your thoughts on this story.

Add your comment
You must be signed in to add a comment. Sign-in | Register

In accordance with our Comment Policy, we encourage comments that are on topic, relevant and to-the-point. We will remove comments that include profanity, personal attacks, racial slurs, threats of violence, or other inappropriate material that violates our Terms and Conditions, and will block users who make repeated violations. We ask all readers to expect diversity of opinion and to treat one another with dignity and respect.


Latest Stories
Public Cloud IaaS started its life in the developer and startup communities and has grown rapidly to a $20B+ industry, but it still pales in comparison to how much is spent worldwide on IT: $3.6 trillion. In fact, there are 8.6 million data centers worldwide, the reality is many small and medium sized business have server closets and colocation footprints filled with servers and storage gear. While on-premise environment virtualization may have peaked at 75%, the Public Cloud has lagged in adop...
The Internet of Everything (IoE) brings together people, process, data and things to make networked connections more relevant and valuable than ever before – transforming information into knowledge and knowledge into wisdom. IoE creates new capabilities, richer experiences, and unprecedented opportunities to improve business and government operations, decision making and mission support capabilities.
How do you securely enable access to your applications in AWS without exposing any attack surfaces? The answer is usually very complicated because application environments morph over time in response to growing requirements from your employee base, your partners and your customers. In his session at @DevOpsSummit, Haseeb Budhani, CEO and Co-founder of Soha, shared five common approaches that DevOps teams follow to secure access to applications deployed in AWS, Azure, etc., and the friction an...
SYS-CON Events announced today that MobiDev, a software development company, will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. MobiDev is a software development company with representative offices in Atlanta (US), Sheffield (UK) and Würzburg (Germany); and development centers in Ukraine. Since 2009 it has grown from a small group of passionate engineers and business managers to a full-scale mobi...
Digital Transformation is the ultimate goal of cloud computing and related initiatives. The phrase is certainly not a precise one, and as subject to hand-waving and distortion as any high-falutin' terminology in the world of information technology. Yet it is an excellent choice of words to describe what enterprise IT—and by extension, organizations in general—should be working to achieve. Digital Transformation means: handling all the data types being found and created in the organizat...
The Software Defined Data Center (SDDC), which enables organizations to seamlessly run in a hybrid cloud model (public + private cloud), is here to stay. IDC estimates that the software-defined networking market will be valued at $3.7 billion by 2016. Security is a key component and benefit of the SDDC, and offers an opportunity to build security 'from the ground up' and weave it into the environment from day one. In his session at 16th Cloud Expo, Reuven Harrison, CTO and Co-Founder of Tufin,...
The Internet of Things is not only adding billions of sensors and billions of terabytes to the Internet. It is also forcing a fundamental change in the way we envision Information Technology. For the first time, more data is being created by devices at the edge of the Internet rather than from centralized systems. What does this mean for today's IT professional? In this Power Panel at @ThingsExpo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists addressed this very serious issue of pro...
Discussions about cloud computing are evolving into discussions about enterprise IT in general. As enterprises increasingly migrate toward their own unique clouds, new issues such as the use of containers and microservices emerge to keep things interesting. In this Power Panel at 16th Cloud Expo, moderated by Conference Chair Roger Strukhoff, panelists addressed the state of cloud computing today, and what enterprise IT professionals need to know about how the latest topics and trends affect t...
The essence of cloud computing is that all consumable IT resources are delivered as services. In his session at 15th Cloud Expo, Yung Chou, Technology Evangelist at Microsoft, demonstrated the concepts and implementations of two important cloud computing deliveries: Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS). He discussed from business and technical viewpoints what exactly they are, why we care, how they are different and in what ways, and the strategies for IT to tran...
Containers are changing the security landscape for software development and deployment. As with any security solutions, security approaches that work for developers, operations personnel and security professionals is a requirement. In his session at DevOps Summit, Kevin Gilpin, CTO and Co-Founder of Conjur, will discuss various security considerations for container-based infrastructure and related DevOps workflows.
Countless business models have spawned from the IaaS industry. Resell Web hosting, blogs, public cloud, and on and on. With the overwhelming amount of tools available to us, it's sometimes easy to overlook that many of them are just new skins of resources we've had for a long time. In his General Session at 16th Cloud Expo, Phil Jackson, Lead Technology Evangelist at SoftLayer, broke down what we've got to work with and discuss the benefits and pitfalls to discover how we can best use them to d...
Puppet Labs has announced the next major update to its flagship product: Puppet Enterprise 2015.2. This release includes new features providing DevOps teams with clarity, simplicity and additional management capabilities, including an all-new user interface, an interactive graph for visualizing infrastructure code, a new unified agent and broader infrastructure support.
SYS-CON Events announced today that HPM Networks will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. For 20 years, HPM Networks has been integrating technology solutions that solve complex business challenges. HPM Networks has designed solutions for both SMB and enterprise customers throughout the San Francisco Bay Area.
SYS-CON Events announced today that Agema Systems will exhibit at the 17th International Cloud Expo®, which will take place on November 3–5, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center in Santa Clara, CA. Agema Systems is the leading provider of critical white-box rack solutions to data centers through the major integrators and value added distribution channels.
For IoT to grow as quickly as analyst firms’ project, a lot is going to fall on developers to quickly bring applications to market. But the lack of a standard development platform threatens to slow growth and make application development more time consuming and costly, much like we’ve seen in the mobile space. In his session at @ThingsExpo, Mike Weiner, Product Manager of the Omega DevCloud with KORE Telematics Inc., discussed the evolving requirements for developers as IoT matures and conducte...