- Australian National University,
- University of Melbourne Australia,
- University of New South Wales,
- University of Queensland,
- University of Sydney,
- University of Western Australia.
Thursday, June 29, 2023
Wednesday, June 28, 2023
|Professor Sarah Kreps,
Professor Sarah Kreps, Cornell University, explained she was in the US Air Force engineering, working on the predator UAV, and AI was a short step from there. She suggested AI started in the civilian sector, and will then be adopted by the military. I am not so sure that is the case. What became web search engines, came out of research sponsored by US DoD. Some of the AI research is similarly sponsored.
From the Professor's description, the US approach seems to be limited to what the threat might be from an adversary's use of AI. What I suggest western military's need to do is consider how they will use AI. As an example, if AI is being used defensively to create plausible fake news to undermine your nation, how can it be use to create instant factual responses, or offensively to create a largely factual narrative to undermine the enemy.
Professor Kreps characterized western countries as an open system which could be exploited by misinformation, and AI can be used to enhance this. The result would be customized fake news to appeal to specific groups.
It would be interesting to see what the ADF's Information Warfare Division is doing with generative AI. Just as Australia's military cyber-security experts have had an increasing role protecting government and civilian systems, with its name changed from Defence Signals Directorate, to Australian Signals Directorate. Is there a similar role for IWD?
Professor Kreps suggested the vocabulary used could indicate when generative AI is used. I suggest that can't be relied on. Professional speechwriters know to use the language and cadence of their customers. It will not be difficult for AI to write using the language of a particular individual, or group.
This would appear to be an area where DARPA, its UK & US equivalents, could provide funding for universities. This could produce free open access tools to counter misinformation.
Tuesday, June 27, 2023
Friday, June 23, 2023
efore moving into education I worked at as a civilian computer policy advisor. This was mostly not about technical details, but working out what was needed, & how the relationships between the people in the organisation were stopping this happening. I try to help the interns I am mentoring, who are working in major government agencies & companies, with this. I talked about it yesterday with for a forthcoming podcast in his "
Thursday, June 22, 2023
There is some comfort in being an "honorary" lecturer at a university. As you are not getting paid a salary, you feel no obligation to go to administrative meetings. You just take on the teaching, or research, you want to do. Some prefer to avoid the stress of grading student work, and just do some mentoring. I have been formally trained in how to mark students so don't find it too stressful. One thing I have avoided, for decades, is an administrative role at a university. But recently I was asked to help process applicants for credit from studnts for study done elsewhere. In a way this is an extension of assessment. But in another way it is a very tedious administrative process, involving many rules, and use of precedents. As a former bureaucrat, I can cope with rules, but even so it is a tedious process.
Processing applications for credit for Australia courses is not so hard. First of all all Australian universities are real universities, federally accredited. In some countries anyone can call something a university, but in Australia that is illegal.
Next of all Australian universities professors borrow heavily from each other. Often courses at different institutions have the same titles, descriptions, learning objectives and assessment. Also degrees are accredited by the Australian Computer Society and Engineers Australia, and have much the same content.
Checking out an institution in another country is a little more difficult. First of all is it real? Australian universities employ staff to carry out forensic analysis of documents presented by students. Then there is the problem of the quantity of learning in courses, and the form of assessment. This becomes a particular issue for practically orientated skills: can a student learn to program in a few weeks, and be assessed with multiple choice questions on their coding ability? Can a student learn project management, without actually being a member of a project team? How much does workplace experience count, be it as part of a formal internship program, or concurrently with study, count? Ultimately these things come down to judgement.
Friday, June 16, 2023
To will help you:
- Understand where to start with projects and internships
- Understand how to effectively support work integrated learning
- Critically review whether WIL is for your institution"
Tuesday, June 6, 2023
Woke up feeling a little unwell. My intimidate thought was COVID-19, but test results were negative. So I probably have a cold. I have been vaccinated for COVID-19 and flu, so I should be okay, but what about those around me?
Employers are now encouraging their staff to return to work, unless they have a medical certificate. Organizers of seminars, and conferences, are discontinuing the online/hybrid option. Is this a signal to that society is willing to accept the level of disease, and death, which will result?
I suggest organisations continue to offer an online option for staff, and clients, where possible. This will have minimal expense (perhaps save money). As well as allowing those mildly ill to still participate, it will also provide for people with a disability, or with family, cultural and community obligations.
Saturday, June 3, 2023
|GovHack AGM Online
Greetings from the office of AWS Australia in Canberra, where I am attending the GovHack Annual General Meeting. GovHack is a non-profit organization which organizes an annual hackerthon using government data sources. This happens at sites around Australia (and last year NZ as well). Teams build applications using the data, and the best win prizes.
The meeting is around an impressive boardroom style table, with a large wall-screen showing Zoom participants. A slightly quirk touch is that the room's impressive video conferecne system is not being used. Instead a smartphone is propped up in a takeout coffee cardboard tray. This is in the makedo-do spirit of Govhack.
Many school, and university students take part, as do new staff at government agencies and corporations. In the past I have helped with university and defence department hackerthons. These are useful for people to learn to work rapidly on a project, and to work with people with diverse skills.
I was asked about participation by the Australian Computer Society (ACS). I suggested GovHack would appeal to the smaller chapters and branches, for participation in grass roots activites (I am a member of the ACS Professional Standards Board).
The hackerthon format I believe has considerable potential as part of formal assessed school and university courses, as well as professional development, and workplace learning. The hackerthon is similar to the group projects which students in some disciplines, such as computing, undertake over six months to a year, but compressed to three days. This may be of use for training the new federal government internal consultants.
|Event canvas from NWIW 2020
by Paul Telling
The Australian Government has decided to reduce reliance on external consultants, and make more use of public servants, including an internal consulting team. This will require new skills, both for those transitioning from the private sector, and those used to working in one agency. The hackerthon provides a way to learn to work in a diverse team rapidly. Normally hackerthons are though of as open events. However, it is possible to run an internal event with cleared staff, working on sensitive matters. Over the last few years I have assisted with three defence related hackerthons (Navy Warfare Innovation Workshop 2020, Secure Supply Chains ADF/NZDF 2020).
ps: You will notice that I appear on the Zoom twice: once in the room in Canberra, and secondly as an individual Zoom participant. Someone around the table asked about this, getting confused seeing two of me. In the past I found it much easier to treat a hybrid meeting as online, plus a room, than the other way around. This works fine provided I don;t have audio on (which causes feedback problems). One advnatge is to be able to post into, and easily read, the chat.