From The Editor
“In any given month, one in eight Australians aged 14 and over will look up government information and services online, totalling around 324 million transactions a year. Of these people, more than half will experience a problem.”
So says Dan Pulham, Head of Delivery at the Digital Transformation Office (DTO), explaining why the DTO was created “to work closely with government agencies, users and private sector partners to create public services that are simpler, clearer and faster.”
Sadly, many Australians will be unable to benefit from the DTO’s improvements. “ In 2016, almost three million Australians are not online, and are at risk of missing out on the advantages and assistance that digital technology can offer.” This is one of the findings in Measuring Australia’s Digital Divide The Australian Digital Inclusion Index 2016.
Digital transformation was also a hot topic in Canberra during August, with a range of strategic advice from the public service mandarins. See below, The Digital Transformation Debate.
“A team of researchers are applying network science and dynamical systems to understand how health policies spread.”
The above quote is from a 22 August 2016 Science Daily article contributed by the American Institute of Physics. Researchers“collaborated on merging the domains of health policy with network science and dynamical systems to help understand the mechanisms of policy diffusion.” See below, The science of diffusion and the spread of public policy.
“ Nobody said computer programming was easy. But maybe in the future, it could be.”
So says a 15 August 2016 Science Daily article from the National Science Foundation, reporting on a project called Expeditions in Computer Augmented Program Engineering (ExCAPE). The project is developing technology that provides human operators with automated assistance. See below, Computer programming made easier.
But is it all becoming too easy? “Our increasing reliance on the Internet and the ease of access to the vast resource available online is affecting our thought processes for problem solving, recall and learning”, warns a 15 August 2016 Science Daily article from Taylor & Francis. See below Cognitive offloading: How the Internet is increasingly taking over human memory
Articles in the current Issue cover:
“Agency annual reports are filled with output metrics that give weight to the lie that government is a self-licking ice cream cone. Timid government services, without aspiration to improve quality, risk being outsourced.”
“Ultimately, we hope policymakers will use network science/dynamical systems approaches to make decisions on health policies that could benefit our society at large.”
“ExCAPE aims to change programming from a purely manual task to one in which a programmer and an automated program synthesis tool can collaborate to generate software that meets its specification.”
“Memory is changing. Our research shows that as we use the Internet to support and extend our memory we become more reliant on it.”
One of the ACOSM16 attendees was the ProGalore Australia CEO, Jitendra Verma, representing the ACS Startups & Small Business (NSW) SIG. Jitendra has kindly offered to host a QESP/ ACS NSW evening networking event, 6 to 7.30 pm at their Clarence St Office , with a follow-up at their Parramatta Office for members working in or near Parramatta. We are working on this with Jitendra and ACS NSW. For further details, see http://qesp.org/blog.
A further joint QESP/ ACS NSW evening networking event is now being planned, see QESP Blog above.
Quote of the Day
“I don’t spend my time pontificating about high-concept things; I spend my time solving engineering and manufacturing problems.” ? Elon Musk
Quote from Yesteryear
“At that time (1909) the chief engineer was almost always the chief test pilot as well. That had the fortunate result of eliminating poor engineering early in aviation.” ? Igor Sikorsky