Alan Brown is Professor in Digital Economy at the University of Exeter’s Business School. Alan’s research is focused on agile approaches to business transformation, and the relationship between technology innovation and business innovation in today’s rapidly-evolving digital economy. He is a long standing adviser to the Notbinary board and clients.

I was interested to read this quote from Cao Xudong, the founder of Momena…the Chinese autonomous vehicle startup:

“Say you operate 10,000 autonomous cars to reap data. That could easily cost you $1 billion a year. 100,000 cars would cost $10 billion, which is a terrifying number for any tech giant”

It is a stark reminder that moving to data-driven solutions (or data as the solution) is not free. And many of the on-going discussions on big data, AI, innovation, and digital transformation rarely pick up the critical disadvantages of large data sources and their costs:

  • Data is always biased
  • Data contains errors
  • Data is out of data
  • Data requires physical storage (somewhere, somehow)
  • Data has to be backed up
  • Data has to be available when needed where needed
  • Data has to be transmitted reliably
  • Data has to comply to many laws that change
  • Data may be taxable as an asset
  • Data provenance may need to be auditable
  • Data needs to be deletable
  • Data can be leaked, hacked, faked, deleted, hijacked

…I’m sure I could think of a few more if I tried. Perhaps this is why we’re seeing more and more organizations asking questions about how to give back data they own, or “forget” things they have learned from what they record!

For more, see:

Here is a very nice overview of hybrid cloud written by an old mate of mine, Claus Jensen. A good summary of cloud technology and cloud delivery architectures for those looking for a primer….

Facebook’s announcement of Libra has certainly increased the volume of discussions on the future of money. It will be a while until we really know what it means for payment systems and digital currency. In the meantime, here is the best overview on some of the key questions that I have seen recently…..

But, of course, if you want the full story you need to listen to a talk by Dave Birch….highly recommended! And if you can’t do that…at least read his book!

A new NAO report just released discussing the status and direction for data management across the UK Government. I am not sure it will surprise anyone to read the conclusion that:

…despite years of effort and many well-documented failures, government has lacked clear and sustained strategic leadership on data. This has led to departments under-prioritising their own efforts to manage and improve data. There are some early signs that the situation is improving, but unless government uses the data strategy to push a sea change in strategy and leadership, it will not get the right processes, systems and conditions in place to succeed, and this strategy will be yet another missed opportunity.


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