Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Data is beautiful

I like to call this chart, The Product of A/C Proliferation....

This shows the population ranks of various states over the past 117 years.  Note the sudden uptick of various states that were previously almost uninhabitable (Nevada, Arizona) as retirees discovered the beauty of central air conditioning.

Okay, so I'm already bending the rules of the blog where I hope to focus on "Uplifting posts" by including this article, but it's my blog and I'll post if I want to.

Chinese transit police are using "google glasses-like" sunglasses to scan the crowd for criminals or people using false id's. While, I generally applaud the advances in technology like google glass (or their Chinese knockoffs), but this seems to be crossing a line of privacy that could get blurry very quickly.  China is moving incredibly fast on technology issues like AI/facial recognition because they are not burdened by having to follow privacy laws that we hold dear (or at least, we used to hold dear).  I worry that without proper checks in place this could go down a dark path very quickly. 

Exactly how?  I'm glad you asked.

Imagine a day in 2038 when you are unfortunately diagnosed with lung cancer despite being a non-smoker who has lived in a radon-free & smoke-free home.  Your insurer searches the database for your work travel and finds that you spent on average 30 days per year in Beijing for work which was previously undisclosed.  Your insurer views that as non-disclosure of a material risk and they deny coverage of your treatment.

Yeah, big data!

On a more positive note - Chocolate Beer is here.  As @Eric_VPSales will remember, I was the first proponent of this trend way back in the fall of 1992 on West 4th Street in NYC in a hole in the wall bar called "Down the Hatch".


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