The KIT ─ Knowledge & Information Technology
No. 260 - 16 March 2020
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In This Issue
COVID-19 Visualization
European Regulators Seeking to Catch up with Risks
Digital Twin for Industrial Applications
CAD It App
Drones for Agriculture in China
Gartner Advice on COVID-19
Seen Recently
Claude Baudoin

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Reader Comment: COVID-19 Visualization
Following the comments in the last issue about the inadequacies of the World Health Organization's "situation reports" website, David McCormick wrote:

"Regarding COVID-19 visualization, what about the Johns Hopkins site? They are up to the minute, back-calculate all changes in reporting, provide a GIS-based representation (with proper scaling of cases by location), and have a mobile version. They also publish all the data they are using on github."
Catching up with the Risks
European regulators are seeking to catch up with the safety and liability implications of artificial intelligence, the Internet of Things, and robotics. This 18-page report identifies risk factors that may be addressed by EU legislation in the near term.

(Thanks to Erik Walenza of IoT ONE)
Digital Twin for Industrial Applications
The Industrial Internet Consortium recently published a white paper, freely available, on the use of digital twins in industry. The paper defines a digital twin as "a digital replica of a physical or logical object" used to "describe, simulate and predict the state and behavior of its real world twin based on analytics on historical and real-time data."
CAD It App
CAD It App is a combination of a mechanical computer-aided design app with a service that takes the CAD design file produced by the app and takes the project through the manufacturing phase. It is primarily designed for consumer electronics startups that need prototypes or small quantities before they have real manufacturing capabilities.
Drones for Agriculture in China
It is clear that the COVID-19 pandemic will cause many changes in our personal and professional habits. Sadly, we're probably only seeing the beginning of this change. Certain critical activities that require on-site human labor will be transformed, perhaps forever. See for example a March 9 CNBC article entitled
"Chinese Agriculture Drone Makers See Demand Rise Amid Coronavirus Outbreak." After the current crisis is over, we may find that it will have accelerated a move toward automation that would have been necessary in the longer term in aging societies.

(Source: ACM TechNews) 
Gartner Advice on COVID-19
That Gartner has advice about what CIOs should do in a pandemic situation is not surprising. But there is not much in their advice that is not obvious. One piece of advice is even strange: "Organisations can offer curated content, drawn from internal and external sources, to provide actionable guidance to employees." Sorry, but employees stuck at home will probably go directly to the Internet or to TV news before they check their company's website. Moreover, the news changes every few minutes, so a company website has no chance of keeping up.

Let's pass on setting up teleconference facilities (doh!) and list a couple of ideas:
  • Use AI to automate some tasks, particularly basic customer service protocols and candidate screenings.
  • Use digital channels, including social media, in order to compensate for some of the demand loss.
Seen Recently...
"When you're at home 24/7, I'm finding out all of my kids pet peeves. Including that I send texts with punctuation. I said well, that's good, because my pet peeve with them is they are grammatically incorrect in texting. This month is going to be fun."
-- Dan Schwartz, lawyer and blogger (in a grammatically incorrect tweet, btw)

"It's important that you lean lightly on the hyphen key, because the hyphen key is going through a lot right now, OK?"
-- Ryan Maxwell, photographer and director