Interesting elsewhere – 2 April 2014

Things which caught my eye elsewhere on the web

    Why it is not possible to regulate robots | Technology | theguardian.com
    We really only know how to make one kind of computer: the "general purpose computer" that can execute every instruction that can be expressed in symbolic logic. Put more simply: we only know how to make a computer that can run every programme.

    Thirty Percent Feedback
    When you meet someone who is hungry for tough feedback, the effect is powerful.  You can just tell that they’re going to be successful because they are so hungry for information.  Their pace of learning is so much quicker than anyone else who toils alone.  They don’t take criticism of their work personally, and because of this, they exude a deep sense of confidence.  I’m always inspired when I see that in its purest form.

    danah boyd | apophenia » Why Snapchat is Valuable: It’s All About Attention
    Snapchat is a reminder that constraints have a social purpose, that there is beauty in simplicity, and that the ephemeral is valuable.

    It’s not about making a comment. It’s about making a difference | Patient Opinion
    Patient Opinion is nothing like Tripadvisor. This isn’t about “reviewing” a service or comparing “top-rated” services. It is about an effective, scalable collaboration between patients and staff, right across the NHS, to make care better.

    Digital public management – Jerry Fishenden
    While technology remains an enabler of new opportunities in the design of our public services, digital is not primarily about technology. At its core are new organisational values and practices: successful digital organisations have user-centric operating models clustered around speed and adaptability.

    Sound of success: finding perfect acoustics for a productive office
    "We need architects to start designing offices that are fit for the ears as well as the eyes," says Treasure. "We really need to start designing for all the senses and end up with offices that are truly fit for purpose."

    But what would you do instead?
    We’ve always done it this way. Yep. That’s probably the biggest barrier to any change. Someone has to make a decision to do something differently. Yes, that involves some risk. Yes, that means you’ll be vulnerable.

    Instead – don’t go it alone. Find others in your organisation willing to share the risk with you. Find collaborators from outside who can bring in new ideas.

    We Don’t Sell Saddles Here — Medium, Long — Medium
    When you want something really bad, you will put up with a lot of flaws. But if you do not yet know you want something, your tolerance will be much lower. That’s why it is especially important for us to build a beautiful, elegant and considerate piece of software. Every bit of grace, refinement, and thoughtfulness on our part will pull people along. Every petty irritation will stop them and give the impression that it is not worth it.

    Schneier on Security: The Insecurity of Secret IT Systems
    I used to decry secret security systems as "security by obscurity." I now say it more strongly: "obscurity means insecurity."

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