WEEK ENDING: 27th August – A ROUNDUP IN I.T. & TECH NEWS
Where has summer gone? Luckily, we have the long bank holiday weekend to look forward to, and our Weekly Roundup of course!
This week’s round-up covers everything from AI being used to monitor social care patients, SMBs turning to the cloud now hybrid working becomes the norm, and how cookie pop-ups could disappear with post-Brexit data rule changes.
Let’s get you up to speed.
Sensors and AI to monitor Dorset social care patients
It has been announced this week that a three-month pilot scheme using artificial intelligence (AI) will be starting for one hundred social care patients in Dorset. Patients will be monitored by sensors installed in homes to track behaviour and electricity usage which the AI will analyse in order to spot potential health problems.
Lilli, the UK based company behind the technology used in the scheme, believe this new way of monitoring care patients will cut costs and the number of care visits required. As patients discharged from hospital often need care and support during their recovery, this new trial will show how far technology can really help.
Each participant will have an average of six to nine sensors installed in their home, with the devices monitoring movement, temperature and the use of specific appliances. The devices themselves have no cameras, protecting the privacy of the patients.
Nick Weston, Chief Commercial Officer at Lilli commented,
“We’ll look at how often they put the kettle on, how often they open the fridge, because we’re monitoring on an individual level, we would see small changes in behaviour. The idea is to automatically register improvements in personal independence within the home or, conversely, flag up activity that might indicate a problem.”
It is believed that the programme could reduce the number of support visits patients need by 780 hours each year and could save £250,000 per year in costs for Dorset Council. However, although the technology promotes independence, some are concerned the downside to this method of care is a potential increase in loneliness. If physical care visits are to be replaced by technology, social interaction levels for patients may drop significantly.
Read more here.
SMBs turn to cloud as hybrid working becomes the norm
The pandemic has brought much change within the workplace, with many companies still opting for a remote working setup or a hybrid option. Some SMBs have needed to downsize their offices, leading to the migration of infrastructures from on-premise solutions into the cloud.
According to a recent report from data center specialists, ServerChoice, 42% of SMBs are thinking about changing their office space, with the majority of those considering downsizing. On average, office space for SMBs could be 38% smaller than before the pandemic, while 7% plan on having no physical presence whatsoever.
But what does this all have to do with cloud migration? By decentralising the workforce, SMB leaders have been made to rethink their I.T. strategies. In the report, cloud came out on top as the technology of choice but, most of those surveyed preferred the idea of colocation or private clouds over public ones. 72% of respondents were interested in making the move to private clouds while 19% were interested in colocation.
The interest in upgrading I.T. infrastructure is inevitably followed by concerns; 38% of the SMB leaders surveyed worried about the cost involved when moving servers, while 33% worry more about downtime during the move and 18% are concerned about possible technical issues as they migrate.
If your business is looking to swich to the cloud, get in touch at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange a call, our specialists will be able to support.
Explore more here.
Data protection 'shake-up' takes aim at cookie pop-ups
The government has announced a post-Brexit shake-up of the Information Commissioner’s Office which will include a new Information Commissioner and plans to change data protection rules. Could this mean cookie pop-ups will become a thing of the past?
As the government’s preferred candidate, John Edwards has recently been named as the next head of data regulator, the ICO. In his new position, Mr Edwards, who is currently New Zealand’s Privacy Commissioner,
“will be empowered to go beyond the regulator’s traditional role of focusing only on protecting data rights, with a clear mandate to take a balanced approach that promotes further innovation and economic growth.”
Mr Edward’s predecessor, the current Commissioner, Elizabeth Denham, has said that Mr Edwards will take on a roll that has “never been more important or more relevant to people’s lives.”
Further to the announcement of a new Commissioner, in an interview with The Telegraph, Digital Secretary, Oliver Dowden said the planned shake-up will also include a reform of data protection rules, which he described as “one of the big prizes of leaving” the EU. Mr Dowden said one of the first targets would be to get rid of “endless” cookie pop-ups which are a common feature on most sites, asking for permission to store a user’s personal information. This is widely used as a tool for compliance with GDPR, the EU data law. Although he pointed out that some “high risk” sites would still need such notices, Mr Dowden admitted that many are “pointless.”
“There’s an awful lot of needless bureaucracy and box ticking and actually we should be looking at how we can focus on protecting people’s privacy but in as light a touch way as possible.”
Some data protection specialists have warned that, although it’s easy to generate headlines about changes to regulations, it is much harder to actually implement new laws that differ to those that apply across the English Channel.
Find out more here.
Those were some of this week’s biggest stories in I.T. and tech, but if you want more content, follow us across our four social media channels.