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Podcast: The Computer Weekly Downtime Upload – Episode 11

In this week’s episode of The Computer Weekly Downtime Upload podcast, the team discuss Google’s forthcoming cloud conference, how tech can be used to boost social inclusion, while data analytics is being hailed as a means of assisting MI5 with with its terrorism detection work

In this week’s episode of the Computer Weekly Downtime Upload podcast, Brian McKenna and Caroline Donnelly are joined by Computer Weekly networking editor Alex Scroxton to help them pick over some of the week’s biggest tech stories and trends.

  • Caroline kicks off the discussion by referring back to a question posed on last week’s podcast about HP’s court case against ex-Autonomy CEO Mike Lynch, and whether or not the tech giant embarked on any due diligence before signing off on its doomed $11.7bn acquisition of Lynch’s former company. It has since emerged that due diligence did take place, but ex-HP CEO Leo Apotheker confirmed in court this week that he never read it. 
  • The discussion then moves on to an aviation case study Caroline recently wrote for the Computer Weekly ezine about the iterative approach pan-European aviation group ASL Airlines takes to honing and evolving its data protection strategy to ensure its planes can keep flying despite regular attempts by hackers to infiltrate its IT systems. 
  • Alex runs us through the details of a launch event he attended earlier this month for a new social inclusion initiative being embarked upon by London startup hub Plexal in conjunction with the youth charity My Life My Say that seeks to broaden the conversation around diversity in technology to include a wider range of groups. These include immigrants, refugees, disabled people and inner city teenagers.
  • In keeping with Alex’s previous guest appearances on the podcast, he also shares some updates on how Huawei is faring in the face of the US government’s allegations about its technology facilitating state surveillance, and reveals – despite some of the negative press it appears to be garnering – that its latest financial results show the firm to be in rude health at the moment. 
  • Brian shares a roundup of his recent trip to Infor’s Inspire conference in Amsterdam, and what he learned about where the cloud ERP software supplier’s business might be heading, with speculation that the privately-held company could undergo an IPO or possibly be acquired in the years to come. 
  • The role of data analytics in the detection and tracking of potential terrorist suspects is picked over by the team following a pledge made by the Metropolitan Police and MI5 to ramp up their use of the technology as part of their combined terrorism prevention efforts. This leads on to a discussion about a startup accelerator programme being run by GCHQ as it looks for new and emerging technologies with the potential to change the way it carries out its intelligence work.
  • Caroline closes the discussion with some forward-looking statements about her trip to Google Cloud Next in San Francisco this week, where the new CEO of the search giant’s cloud arm is expected to flesh out details of how he intends to help the firm grab a larger slice of the enterprise market’s IT spend.  

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