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In this week’s episode of the Computer Weekly Downtime Upload podcast, Brian McKenna, Caroline Donnelly and Clare McDonald are joined by a very special guest, in the form of senior sub-editor and chief Downtime Blog scribe, Ryan Priest, to help them pick over some of the week’s biggest tech stories and trends.
- Ryan kicks off the discussion with an alternative take on what the EU Copyright Directive’s clampdown on the widespread use of memes and gifs on the web could mean for internet users, which is a topic he covered over on the Downtime blog last month.
- He also shares details of how one of his earlier submissions for the blog, related to the recurring calls for Twitter to introduce an “edit” button for its users, caught the attention of the comedian David Baddiel, whose online spat with left-wing political activist Owen Jones formed the basis of the piece.
- The legal spat between the tech firm formerly known as HP and Autonomy founder Mike Lynch is picked over by Caroline, who attempts to succinctly sum up the ins and outs of (what seems like) one of the tech world’s longest-running legal actions. Lynch stands accused of misrepresenting the finances of his former firm, ahead of its acquisition by HP back in 2011, in a new court case playing out in the UK at the moment, which has been billed as the UK’s biggest fraud trial.
- Brian shares details of a recent briefing he had with Ultromics CEO Ross Upton, whose company is using machine learning to help healthcare professionals improve the accuracy of echocardiography tests, and – in turn – patient outcomes.
- Clare shares details of how online fashion brand Asos is using technology to help make the buying and returns process easier for its customers, and increase the number of products its customers buy through new sizing and recommendation tools. Her insights, gleaned from an interview she did with the firm’s former digital product director, also detail how the firm is leaning on machine learning and artificial intelligence tools to ensure the needs of its customers are met, while benefiting the wider business.
- Caroline previews a feature she’s written ahead of G-Cloud 11, the latest version of the government’s all-conquering public sector cloud purchasing frameworking, going live in July 2019. The article looks at how the public sector’s use of the framework is evolving, in the face of new threats to its dominance, and how its promises to give small firms greater access to government IT deals are holding up seven years on from its initial launch.