The KIT ─ Knowledge & Information Technology
No. 226 - 16 October 2018
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In This Issue
Data Governance Heats Up: a Paper, a Webinar, a Forum
Security Incident Response
CIKM 2018 in Turin
SC18 in Dallas
IoT Breakdowns
Seen Recently
Claude Baudoin

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Data Governance Heats Up: Read, Listen, Attend<
We asked at the beginning of 2018 whether this was the "year of data governance" and the subject is certainly getting more and more attention.

The Cutter Consortium's latest issue of its Business Technology Journal is entitled "The Critical Need for Data Governance" and starts with an editorial by Claude Baudoin. This is followed by five articles, including an overview of challenges, a paper on data residency issues (using the new term of "geo-jurisdictions" preferred in ISO/IEC standards circles), one arguing the benefits of decentralized data governance in large organizations, one about the role of the Chief Data Officer (CDO), and one about the challenges of moving to open data policies at public service administrations. If you are not a Cutter subscriber and would like a copy, contact us.

Next, you are invited to a free webinar on Data Governance offered by the Object Management Group on November 1 at 11 a.m. Eastern US time (8:00 a.m. Pacific, 1500 BST, 16:00 CEST -- because Europe switches to winter time a week before the USA). The speakers will be Claude Baudoin on data residency, John Butler on data provenance and pedigree, and Mike Abramson on data tagging and labeling and OMG's Information Exchange Framework (IEF).

If that whets your appetite, then come to Seattle on December 12 for an OMG half-day Data Governance Forum where these topics will be explored in more depth. The all- afternoon event will end with an industry panel, and you will be able to meet and mingle with OMG members during the ensuing reception.
Security Incident Response: Preparation is Key
Such is the title of an Executive Update written by our ex-colleague Aurobindo "Robin" Sundaram and just published by the Cutter Consortium. In this paper, Robin "outline[s] a multipronged approach for best practice organizations that focuses on continuous process improvement." One of the key points is that you need to define in advance who will have the authority to decide what to do, and when to do it (including contacting the authorities, your clients, or the media) when -- not if -- an incident occurs.
Nothing on Next Week's Calendar? Turin Beckons
The ACM International Conference on Information and Knowledge Management (CIKM 2018), October 22-26, covers information retrieval, data management, and knowledge management. This year CIKM's theme is "From Big Data and Big Information to Big Knowledge." Keynote speakers are Amazon Research Scientist and ACM Fellow Yoelle Maarek; DeepMind Research Scientist Edward Grefenstette; and University of Amsterdam professor Maarten de Rijke.
SC 18 in Dallas
You have (a little) more time to add to your calendar the International Conference for High Performance Computing, Networking, Storage and Analysis, to be held on Nov. 11-16 in Dallas. If this title sounds unfamiliar and awfully convoluted, this is because we used to know this series as "Supercomputing 'YY", and it is still being abbreviated "SC18" this year. We understand the urge to have more inclusive titles to attract a larger audience, but do the marketeers seriously think that the new name will stick?

This will be the 30th anniversary of the series, with special events looking back at the history of high-performance computing and peering into its future. The keynote speaker is Erik Brynjolfsson, Director of the MIT Initiative on the Digital Economy, and 12 Invited Talks will also take place. You can also just tour the (always amazing) exhibits on Nov. 13-15 (10-6 on the 13th and 14th, 10-3 on the 15th).

IoT Breakdowns
Most systems have breakdowns sooner or later. But IoT systems may impact very large populations everywhere. This was evident in two recent, well publicized issues (thanks to ReadWrite Labs for spotting them):
  • Honeywell's Total Connect Comfort app failed in late September, allowing the smart thermostats to operate only in manual mode. As often, the technical issue was amplified by communication failures. Honeywell did not notify users in a timely manner, and seems to have incorrectly claimed that the issue only occurred on one particular day
  • On September 26, it was Amazon's turn when Alexa servers for Europe failed, making Echo devices unresponsive. Probably not a life-threatening issue, but certainly something bound to be noticed.

Beyond the specific incidents, this raises the question of "what if this happens to a smart road control system, to the elevator bank in a high-rise building, or to a utility network?" "Dumb" systems can also fail, but the impact is often localized and the repair may be easier. Reliability and recovery will need extra attention as the degree of automation increases.  

Seen Recently...
"1. Autonomous Things - 2. Augmented Analytics - 3. AI-Driven Development - 4. Digital Twin - 5. Empowered Edge - 6. Immersive Experience - 7. Blockchain - 8. Smart Spaces - 9. Digital Ethics and Privacy - 10. Quantum Computing."
-- Gartner's "Top Ten Strategic Technology Trends for 2019," announced
at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo, taking place right now in Orlando