It’s finally May 25th – happy GDPR d-day!

Tech Team

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Panic on the GDPR dancefloor [The Guardian]

We’ve had two years to get ready for May 25, but many organisations are woefully unprepared for the arrival of GDPR. In panic mode, some websites have simply decided to block access to their servers to all users based in Europe. Although the boundaries of non-compliance are still a bit vague, these are drastic steps – and hardly what policymakers had in mind when they acted to give Europeans more control over their personal data. Over time, this approach could impede the free access to information provided by the internet and put many businesses at risk.

AI taking on UK healthcare system [The Guardian]

The UK is making a big leap towards rolling out AI in the healthcare sector. This week one of the country’s biggest hospitals announced sweeping plans to use AI for tasks currently performed by doctors and nurses. From better hospital management of appointments and treatment times to partnering with doctors to diagnose disease, AI’s potential impact is huge and this case study should show if it can whip the NHS’s systems into shape. On the D-day for GDPR however, concerns about privacy and security will surely be at the fore.

An AI decongestant? [Fast Company]

Here’s an AI angle that Brussels bubble dwellers will certainly appreciate. Driving in the heart of Europe means wasting dozens of hours in traffic every year but IBM, with the power of AI, promises to solve this. The company developed an AI traffic management system that controls traffic lights and changes their sequence based on information gathered by cameras on how many cars and pedestrians are at a particular intersection.

Widening the narrow scope of AI [New York Times]

So AI is making such great strides that it’s soon going to deliver all sorts of benefits to society, from healthcare to enhanced job satisfaction? Wait a minute. Two eminent scientists at New York University have launched a wake-up call on the hype surrounding AI. Their point? The current focus is way too narrow to realise the true potential of AI. In their view, if the best AI can do so far is book a haircut or a restaurant, then maybe it’s time for a rethink. Food for thought for the Competition Council’s working lunch on Monday when ministers will chew over Europe’s approach to AI.

What EP? [Bloomberg]

This week’s Brussels media moment was the “Zuckerberg hearing” in the European Parliament. Yet, after (or because of) all the hyped build-up, it turned out to be a non-event. The exercise gave visibility to some MEPs. The Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg apologised and dodged questions. The impact on politics and society of this year’s biggest internet-related scandal so far? It’s hard to say since we don’t all work on data analytics. (By the way, it’s not easy, but we do comply with GDPR.)

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