One of the predicted consequences of the global village was the fading importance of place.  After all, if everyone can talk to and look in on everyone else regardless of location, through the miracle of telephones and TV and Internet, then location would become irrelevant.

We do not yet live in that world.  Many people continue to commute to work, for example, to be in the same building with their colleagues.

Monday, September 26, 2016

Electronic voting

With election day approaching in the US, issues around the mechanics of the voting itself have returned to the limelight.  Voters in many states will use a variety of electronic machines—many connected to the Internet—to cast their ballots.  In this day when government and private information have been leaking (or leaked) like sieves, this fact gives rise to some trepidation.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

In search of wrongdoing

One important means for enforcing rules of conduct is to allow police to search for evidence of violations.  Search can take many forms, as recent examples illustrate.

In the upcoming Rio Summer Olympics, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) will be searching for evidence of gene doping.  Gene doping is the insertion of genes into a body's cells in order to modify their behavior for the purpose of enhancement (as opposed to gene therapy, which is done to restore health).