The KIT ─ Knowledge & Information Technology
No. 257 - 3 February 2020
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In This Issue
Forum on AI Advances and Standards
Blockchain and IoT
LASER 2020 Summer School
Impact of AI on Cybersecurity
Cloud Control: Why Is It So Hard?
Seen Recently
Claude Baudoin

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Call for Presentations -- AI Advances & Standards
REMINDER -- The Artificial Intelligence Platform Task Force of the Object Management Group will hold a one-day forum in Reston, Va., on March 26. We are soliciting presentations from government, industry, and academia that outline advances in AI and areas where the development of standards can accelerate progress.

Learn more about the OMG AI Task Force's work on the OMG wiki, please look at the Call for Papers, and follow the instructions to propose a paper or presentation.
Blockchain and the Internet of Things
In the last issue, we invited you to attend a webinar on interoperability between multiple blockchain systems, especially in the context of supply chain integration.

On a related topic, Gartner surveyed 500 companies and found that "three-quarters of companies implementing IoT have already adopted blockchain or plan to use it by the end of 2020" (IoT Integration is a Sweet Spot for Blockchain). As the preceding title indicates, Gartner sees a strong correlation between the two technologies, but this may be an example of the "correlation vs. causation" fallacy: it may simply be that the more innovative companies are trying to apply both technologies, while conservative ones are trying neither.

The "farm-to-table" traceability example provided on the Gartner blog page is good, but is not new (see "Blockchain and... Chickens?" in The KIT No. 212 of March 16, 2018). And the survey respondents' identification of "increased security and trust in shared multiparty transactions and data" as the top benefit tells us exactly nothing we didn't already know.
LASER Foundation 2020 Summer School
The program of the LASER Foundation's 16th Summer School on Software Engineering has been published. As usual, the event will take place at the Hotel del Golfo on Elba Island, Italy; the dates are May 31-June 7, 2020.

This edition will be devoted to "continuous development, web services, DevOps, and new paradigms of software production and deployment." Program, speakers and registration here.
The Impact of AI on Cybersecurity
In 10 Charts That Will Change Your Perspective of AI in Security, which appeared in a publication called "Business 2 Community" two months ago, author Louis Columbus illustrates the often underestimated role that AI has come to play in detecting and responding to security threats. The key points are that (a) it is becoming impossible, at least for a large organization, to effectively respond to cybersecurity threats without AI, and (b) this business case is driving a lot of investment in the technology.
Cloud Control: Why Is It So Hard?
In Cloud Control: Why Is It So Hard?, also published in Business 2 Community, Mor Cohen provides an interesting glimpse into the puzzle of correctly allocating resources in the cloud in order to match supply to demand as closely as possible. She explains how for "a simple application running a front end and a back end on Amazon Web Services (AWS) EC2 in the Ohio region," there are 70 instance types available with different characteristics, which combine with 5 tiers of Elastic Block Store (EBS) and 5 different availability zones (AZs) to provide a total of 1750 possible configurations. The author concludes that "assuring application performance while maintaining efficiency is more difficult than ever."
Seen Recently...
"My latest for @WiredUK looks at some of the horrifically private and personal stuff people put in public Trello boards (including bank details, passwords and opinions on named employees)."
-- Chris Stokel-Walker, in You really need to lock down your Trello boards",
about the Trello shared task management application in the cloud
"[T]he current social media landscape [...] allows for the easy multiplication of inauthentic individuals, personas, and accounts through the use of bots or other forms of automation."
-- Christopher Paul and Marek Posard, in a Rand Corporation blog entry,
Artificial Intelligence and the Manufacturing of Reality