Week 12: The Internet of Health

Everyday objects are seemingly finding their way into our digital realm, where companies are discovering new and innovative ways to make products more modern and enticing. We all agree that is it easier when things are connected, such as our iPads, iPhones and MacBook’s, where firms are becoming more creative in flawlessly slipping everyday household devices into our ever-expanding Wi-Fi devoted lives.

image

With objects making carrying out daily tasks easier, what does this pose to the future of our health? Let’s take a look at Nike…

The release of the Nike FuelBand in (2012) took the world by storm when it became the new product on the market to monitor fitness related performance including pace, calories, steps and time (Nike, 2015). What this gave society, was an efficient and ground-breaking method for people to record their habits and health-related metrics as an attempt to self-reflect and self-improve (Lupton, D 2013). Funnily enough, much of this reflection was carried out whilst sitting at the computer whilst the data was uploaded.

Studies have shown that technology has stripped our manual labour in which our increasingly sedimentary lifestyle and decreased energy expenditure has resulted in increased obesity (Verify Recruitment, 2014). With the increasing release of the internet of things, including the self-lacing ‘Back to the Future’ Nike shoes, what will happen to future health of society?

szy3h

Week 11: Cyber-Warries

Computers as weapons of mass destruction? If you can’t believe it, you will soon understand.

The rise of the cyber-war is upon us and it is only getting stronger where each day hackers are discovering new ways to observe us, attack us and boycott us by owning and functioning off our personal information. Hacking has seen a shift from exposing social problems and humorous antics to operating as a gargantuan surveillance system, where anyone can be monitored no matter their location (Mitew, T 2015).

We all spend a considerable amount of time creating personal brands for ourselves online, whether it be searching, uploading or following content specific to our interests. In today’s society our sexual, religious and political views place great emphasis on the career path we plan to take, with any wrong connotation on the internet carrying great detriments into our ‘real life’. What is scary is that society will never forget, the internet will not be erased or deleted, one wrong move and that is the end of our lives. But what if others could shape our identity? In extreme cases, this has observed in extremist countries where groups such as the ‘Syrian Electronic Army’ have attacked and overloaded social networking profiles with pro-Assad messages (Keller, J 2011).

szuh0

Not only are individuals affected…whole nations are utilising computers as weapons of mass destruction in gaining control over the world, where recently the Prime Minister of Paris expressed concerns over not having access to society’s Snapchat and iMessage content in an attempt to monitor and ‘spy’ on popular chat communications (Griffin, A 2015). Similar events have seen the Thailand government come under attack by hacktivists, by attempting to implement a single internet gateway to monitor information from abroad (Samuth, N 2015). What I initially thought of as fun ways to connect with my friends has now become excess weight put on my shoulders, where I am continuously second guessing every move I make online. This isn’t living, this is prison.

szubo

Computers are weapons of mass destruction. Do you believe it?

Week 10: Stealing from the Rich and Giving to the Poor

“The secretiveness stems from the belief that a populist intelligence operation with virtually no resources, designed to publicise information that powerful institutions do not want public, will have serious adversaries'” (Katchadouriah, R 2010).

fexjxhapo2shrioikuez

Arguably today’s modern day pirates, hacktivists are increasingly exerting control over large cooperation’s, where they are finding new ways to gather secret information and in a sense ‘steal from the rich and give to the poor’. What I find incredibly interesting is the rise of corporate social responsibility in modern day business operations, where monopoly firms have come under fire by society to contribute to social welfare, beyond what is required for profit maximisation (Williams, A 2000).

Funnily enough, the last few years have seen hacktivists succeed in accessing and releasing viable information from conglomerate organisations, some including Fortune 500 companies. This identifying a negative relationship between increased social responsibility and their lack of transparency in the eyes of consumers. What is also visible is the amount of young individuals around the world exposing a greater skill set of hacking, where in the past hacking relied on older talented individuals or those working within a group.

1 2

Yes, hackers may be criminals but they keep these powerful institutions on their toes for the good of society, as they can remove themselves from the state and engage in the free flow of information (Mitew, T 2015). By exposing us to the truth, they are giving us (the end nodes) the ability to make our own decisions and allowing us not to be blinded by centralised institutions (Julian Assange, 2013). We must ask ourselves; do these firms sugar-coat their actions by pleasing society with a few good deeds?