Roundup: Our top five posts on technology and the future


Take a look at these five posts to better understand what the future holds (spoiler: robot overlords).

Deepnet: Is the ‘dark web’ good or evil? In this article, Mike Gillespie, director of cyber research and strategy at The Security Institute, looks at how the Deepweb is used by different groups.

Technologies have been used for good and evil ever since we have had technology. Deepweb is another technology, just like mobile phones, that is being used by criminals to stay off law enforcement radars and enable them to carry out their illegal activities with less risk than on the regular web. But as mentioned earlier many people use Deepweb tools. Sometimes this is in life and death situations and under terrible conflict situations, like those in Syria. The anonymity offered by Tor enables activists and campaigners to get their messages out of totalitarian regimes that threaten their lives every day and where the fear of arrest and torture are very real.

The rise and rise of ‘National Innovation Foundations’: Stephen Ezell, Frank Spring and Katarzyna Bitka look at ‘national innovation foundations’, agencies whose aim is to maximize countries’ economic innovation.

Indeed, an initial survey shows a wide spectrum of budgets and organizational mandates, suggesting that the construction and direction of a national innovation foundation may still be as much art as science. Nevertheless, the best national innovation foundations and strategies are lean and nimble, able to shift their operations and priorities at the speed at which modern innovation and technological development unfolds.

Chaos and complexity: Lagos and lessons for megacity management in the 21st century: Using Lagos as a case study, David Rubens looks at the rise of ‘megacities’ over the last fifteen years.

It is perhaps both a symptom and a cause of a modern global malaise that not only is the role and function of cities being questioned but also the viability of their very continued existence. Like anything in nature that aspires to gargantuatism, cities have moved beyond the bounds whereby the structures and frameworks that first allowed them to prosper and thrive can continue to support the monsters that they have become.

Cyber Insurance – An Emerging Market: Tom Allen explains how cyber insurance presents an opportunity as well as potentially a threat.

Different industries face different threats and regulation still has a substantial role to play in shaping risk profiles. In our view, the industry probably needs to stop trying to bundle so many disparate issues into a single product. The industry and its customers will all benefit from the evolution of specialist products. The risks cannot be effectively underwritten unless the data has been defined, protection policies understood, the consequences of breaches identified and employees trained in prevention procedure.

PS21 Report: The Future of Drones: Finally, check out our report on Drones from an event held this past June, with comments from Ryan Hagemann, Erik Lin-Greenburg and Lisa Ellman.

Lisa: Drones can represent anything from a toy, a model aircraft that you fly at the park, to a tool of industry… Now, as we’re seeing, to even a tool of war. Over the last several years, these consumer toys have gotten a lot more sophisticated, a lot smaller, more mobile, and able to do sophisticated things… They’re also cheaper. The technology has moved forward at a very rapid pace.

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