Tuesday, May 04, 2010

"Killer" Apps...Humans to Blame

CIO.com editor Thomas Wailgum provides a few scenarios of the darker side of the use of our data in his recent post The Killer Apps of Capitalism.

As he states, "Now, millions of customer records and corporate interactions can be examined with ease; seemingly disconnected swaths of data points can be mined, categorized, analyzed and presented to executives and line of business managers; and new trends and patterns discovered can show profit and loss at both granular and enterprise levels....But there is often a powerful human downside."

Wailgum then details how an insurance company used patient data to determine potential fraud cases and then canceled their customers' policies based on often unsubstantial information. A typical knee jerk reaction that calls for an abandonment of technology is not the correct response to it's improper use.

Finally Wailgum writes, "While technology is the enabler in all of this, technology isn't to blame. We must remember that real, live human beings are making decisions from the software's computational capabilities. We still have to hold the people accountable....Just because IT applications are dispassionate and without feeling doesn't mean we—the humans using the tech—have to be, too." (emphasis mine)

Posted via email from Mark's Musings

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