Category: ICTD

  • Regulating Digital Platforms – IV

    Regulating Digital Platforms – IV

    That the EU is well ahead of the rest of the world regarding digital technology regulation is not under dispute . The recent agreement on AI regulation provides further evidence of its leadership . A more interesting question is why the Union has not been able to give birth to digital platforms and companies that…

  • Regulating Digital Platforms – III

    Regulating Digital Platforms – III

    Digital platforms are a particular case of the broader platform category and thus have distinct characteristics. At the same time, they come in different forms and shapes. Putting them into a single box is not a piece of cake. Indeed, the devil is in the details. That is undoubtedly a challenge for policymakers and regulators.…

  • Regulating Digital Platforms – II

    Regulating Digital Platforms – II

    As suggested in the first part of this post, not all platforms are digital. In fact, analog platforms are the older siblings. Its digital counterparts are undoubtedly distinct, their calling card usually being their multisided nature – operating in more than one two-sided market. However, analog multisided platforms have also existed for a long time…

  • Regulating Digital Platforms – I

    Regulating Digital Platforms – I

    By all accounts, the regulatory tide, constantly receding for so many years, is finally returning to the digital realm’s now extensive and arid shores . Indeed, digital platforms are now under the policy microscope, especially the well-known global giants whose names I do not need to echo here. These behemoths are carrying the day with…

  • AI Disinformation – II

    AI Disinformation – II

    AI’s astounding evolution in the last decade has been nothing less than spectacular, pace doomers. It has undoubtedly exceeded most expectations, bringing numerous benefits and generating new challenges and risks. The latter is crucial to understand as AI has a bi-polar personality. It is indeed friend and foe. It all depends on how humans (ab)use…

  • AI Disinformation – I

    AI Disinformation – I

    The idea of a technological singularity has been around for over 60 years. While initially confined to closed circles of experts, it has been gaining a lot of ground in the race to the future, which, according to its core tenets, will be devastating for us, poor dumb humans. I probably first heard about it…

  • Organized Disinformation – II

    Organized Disinformation – II

    Bubble inhabitants live in a world surrounded by an invisible yet effective firewall that protects them from allegedly vicious external sources, disinformation included. In such a paradise, harm is almost always pushed back if it attempts to cross it. And bliss emerges in a world of subtle, ample ignorance. While many might know they live…

  • Organized Disinformation – I

    Organized Disinformation – I

    I still remember the phone number of the line my parents somehow managed to get installed in their first-owned house, a three-story dwelling my father, a civil engineer, helped design and build for a family of seven. It had six digits, which seemed like one too many. When asked, my father said the reason was…

  • More on AI Programming

    More on AI Programming

    In the coldhearted realm of disinformation, deepfakes seem to reign supreme, bullying all others around along the way. The fact that they have multiple personalities makes them even more insidious. Voice, text, images and video content are some of the most common, with combinations among them being a frequent occurrence. Lip-syncing the voice of a…

  • Internet Metaphors in Practice – II

    Internet Metaphors in Practice – II

    A couple of years later, I installed our first Wi-Fi router, allowing us to connect our laptops to the network from almost any point in the house. But wireless connection speeds were limited to 11 Mbps while the good old ethernet wire could do 100 Mbps. Not even close. Wired connections were not only faster…

  • Internet Metaphors in Practice – I

    Internet Metaphors in Practice – I

    The first time I ever bought something over the Internet was in 1994. And it was not from Amazon, but from a now long-gone company called CDNow. As its name suggests, its core business was selling CDs online. Interestingly, one could also access the site via telnet which was not very user-friendly, certainly not for…

  • The Real Structures Sustaining the Cyberspace Imaginary – II

    The Real Structures Sustaining the Cyberspace Imaginary – II

    History Matters Following the historical evolution of the Internet and Cyberspace sheds light on the origins of the “superhighway” and “virtual” metaphors, depicted in the first part of this post. Useful summaries from a pure infrastructural perspective are available from the NFS and UCSD, the latter furnishing cool schematic diagrams of the overall network architecture.…

  • The Real Structures Sustaining the Cyberspace Imaginary – I

    The Real Structures Sustaining the Cyberspace Imaginary – I

    Recreating the Imaginary If I were to ask another human being (not ChatGPT) for directions on how to get to Cyberspace, most would probably think I am joking. Others might consider me an imbecile or conclude I must be flying high on drugs. Finally, a selected few might quickly flash their super smartphones and try…

  • AI’s Seemingly Elusive Infrastructure – II

    AI’s Seemingly Elusive Infrastructure – II

    Undoubtedly, the infrastructural requirements used to produce the 2020 175 billion GPT-3 model are hefty by most standards. But, of course, that just means that competitors now striving to generate their own creatures on the same genre must have access to similar infrastructure  – not to mention talent. And we can count their number with…

  • AI’s Seemingly Elusive Infrastructure – I

    AI’s Seemingly Elusive Infrastructure – I

    ChatGTP’s sudden and arguably premature success has yet again exposed the usually overlooked link between so-called “virtual” digital technologies and very tangible infrastructure. Indeed, early adopters of the latest incarnation of GTP-3-based bots directly experienced repeated network and login failures. That surely happened to me a few times back in December when I  first started…