Forget the Irish and US elections. The big question is whether dogs or cats are the superior species. A new TV programme attempts (...)

Max Schrems’s  case prompted the European Court of Justice decision over the Safe Harbour agreement. Photograph: Collins Courts

Transatlantic data protection package is still just a proposed framework, not a done deal

In the EU privacy is a fundamental right. Europe wants the US to guarantee that the data of EU citizens will have all the same protections in the US that are provided under this fundamental right in the EU

EU and US have radically different views on privacy

Bodies such as Gsoc apparently can gain access, outside the constraints intended in the original legislation, by sloppy back-door means that enable third-party investigations.

Gsoc’s demand for call records was carried out in direct opposition to the European Court of Justice

On what grounds does the Government continue to retain data? Did  journalists hold it to account? No. On what grounds does it still provide access – which the ECJ has stated is unlawfully lax – to  the Garda, Revenue, the Defence Forces and, apparently, the GSOC?

The media didn’t bother to scrutinise what was happening when it was about everyone else – this story is still about everyone else(...)

Citizens need to remain wary about the ways in which their data may be misused by organisations who collect it in exchange for services, Dara Murphy, Minister of State for European Affairs and Data Protection said on Wednesday.

Minister for data protection says trust remains low on protection of personal information

Oracle’s exectutive chairman of the bBoard and chief technology officer Larry Ellison. The company is taking on 450 people in Dublin

Company recruiting 1,400 people worldwide on back of cloud computing services growth

Locked out: can a nation state demand data held in another state’s territory, circumventing treaties and agreements?

The US’s attempt to access information in Dublin may change cloud computing

Teenagers are acutely aware of what they post, how they are seen, whether posts are liked. They will self-censor and delete, out of embarrassment and shame. Photograph: Thinkstock

Growing up on the internet involves constant management of a personal PR entity

Barely half of us in Ireland had bought something online by the second quarter of last year, according to an EU Eurostat survey

Ireland comes in well below the average in the EU for online shopping

Digital privacy became a truly dominant international concern this year with high-profile breaches including the Ashley Madison website. Photograph: Reuters/Mark Blinch

Recent court decisions, and legislation, will most likely affect everyone handling data

It was estimated that overall some 7.5 million Facebook users in 2012 were children under 13.

Much-hyped parental permission rule is tiny part of EU data protection directive

Tesla’s showcase store in Palo Alto has become a local entertainment must-see

RTÉ broadcaster’s rain-drenched Storm Desmond report was the clip that kept on giving

Pixar success story: Toy Story 3

Removing barriers to creativity is key ingredient, chief Ed Catmull believes

 The warehouse at the Amazon fulfillment centre in Hemel Hempstead gets ready for Cyber Monday. Online sales on Black Friday were massive this year, only marginally trailing Cyber Monday at $2.7 billion in the US.

The rather dull and predictable reality is that it is Thanksgiving weekend in the US, plus the entire month of December, that has (...)

In Ireland, all drones weighing over 1kg will need to be registered with the Irish Aviation Authority. Photograph:  Robert MacPherson/AFP/Getty Images

Drones need to be traceable and trackable, and laws enforceable

Emojis have been there since the dawn of email and text messages. Illustration: iStockphoto

Twitter hearts and Facebook thumbs-ups are woefully inadequate for the tragedy of Paris

Paulo Portas’s appearance  on the Web Summit main stage turned out to be a swan song. Photograph: Cyril Byrne

Hopefully, pledges will remain in place and promised infrastructure will stay on target

 Nico Sell, Wickr & Wickr Foundation, on the Code Stage on the last day  of the 2015 Web Summit in the RDS, Dublin. “Laconic and iconic hacker/artist/company founder of messaging app Wickr Nico Sell says every company should hire hackers to try to break their service.” Photograph: Sam Barnes/Sportsfile/Web Summit

Organisers need to take it elsewhere to learn maybe some of their ‘problems’ are self-generated

Jacki Ford Morie, founder of The Augmented Traveler, on the Centre Stage during day two of the 2015 Web Summit in the RDS in Dublin.   Photograph: Stephen McCarthy/Sportsfile

Web Summit hears how Nasa wants to send astronauts to Mars with an immersive world

Taking a break at this year’s Web Summit. With extra time audiences get a much better sense of each contributor, discussions are more robust and finely developed, and individual contributions more nuanced. Photograph: Eric Luke

Society Stage panels are generally given 35 to 45 minutes and the value of that extra time shows

Web Summit co-founder Paddy Cosgrave at the RDS yesterday. Photograph: Aidan Crawley/Bloomberg

Summit’s usual initial vast confusion reigns in the RDS, especially for speakers and media

The main stage of the Web Summit this year: an event fantastic and frustrating in equal measure

Summit is fantastic for its speaker line-up; frustrating, because the majority of the talks and panels are a dinky 20 minutes long(...)

Attendees view Oracle’s Team USA’s AC72 catamaran at Oracle Cloud Plaza on Howard Street during the OpenWorld conference in San Francisco

Larry Ellison says ability to turn off security features in software makes no sense

Mark Hurd, one of two chief executives at Oracle (with Safra Catz), was bullish about the future to the press,  saying:  “Our revenue rate is increasing as we get bigger.”    Photograph: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

After years of aggressive acquisitions, the company is huge, with more than 130,000 employees worldwide

Mark Hurd, co-president and co-chief executive officer of Oracle   speaks during the Oracle OpenWorld 2015 conference in San Francisco . Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

*Company says certain cloud operations may require access from engineering resources in other regions

Oracle chief Mark Hurd told the OpenWorld conference in San Francisco that the answer for companies is to start moving operations to a cloud environment. Photograph: Getty Images

Tech boss tells OpenWorld forum firms may not be ready for demands of internet generation

Oracle chief Larry Ellison addresses the Oracle OpenWorld conference in San Francisco on Sunday. He said security “is going to become a bigger and bigger risk as we move vast amounts of data into the cloud.” Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg.

Oracle founder says transition to ‘new era of utility computing’ is still slow

Attendees at Oracle’s annual OpenWorld conference in San Francisco wearing event rucksacks.

Tech giants partner for ‘Project Apollo,’ which will offer enhanced solutions

Inasmuch as the internet is “run” by anybody or anything, it is run by Icann.

Without set of governing standards, internet’s global platform could fracture

Ireland “firmly” backs the planned transition from US government to international oversight of a critical area of global internet management, Minister for Communications Alex White said. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill

Alex White says Ireland ‘firmly’ backs US handover of domain name management

 Barack Obama:  has given ICANN the green light to create the structures needed to move its core addressing and domain name functions out from under US government management. Photograph:  Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

ICANN in squabbles over whether it is ready to operate independently of US oversight

Why does the Web Summit have demands and grievances few other events seem to have? Which requests are legitimate, which not, and why?

Comment: Public dispute does no favours to Government, summit organisers or Dublin

Fadi Chehadé: “Make sure you know when you get in what are the principles you will not ever give up on, and hold them dearly, and never let them go.” Photograph: Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images)

Icann chief: an open meeting in Dublin next week has huge, divisive issues to debate

“As bizarre as it seems, existing evidence in the wake of Schrems suggests that only a handful of legal and business experts in the US or Europe, and very few companies, really understand EU privacy law.” Illustration: Thinkstock

Many of the 4,500 companies that relied on Safe Harbour are left a in a legal quandary

NetSuite CEO Zack Nelson: announced several important new  customers, including WH Smith and Prêt à Manger

Irish base is first move in cloud-based software company’s European expansion

The original case was about whether the DPC should have further investigated whether a user’s data  on a social network – Facebook – were handled in compliance with EU data protection and privacy law. Photograph: Dado Ruvic/Reuters

Karlin Lillington: ECJ has jolted US government into taking EU’s privacy stance seriously

Austrian Max Schrems at the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg yesterday. Photograph: Julien Warnand/EPA

Costly technical solutions will be found to comply with the ruling in Schrems case

Zachary Nelson, chief executive officer of NetSuite. Mr Nelson said NetSuite will partner with Telecity Group to provide data centre services. Photo: Bloomberg

Firm will partner with Telecity to provide data centre services to European customers

Icann president and chief executive Fadi Chehadé used his opening address  to argue that Icann’s role is solely at the technical layer of internet management.

Icann has come under increasing pressure to step in and shut down websites or censor content

Awards are great for encouraging people and companies to push themselves, and think about achievement. Photograph: Thinkstock

Congratulations to every company with the pluck to place itself under scrutiny of judges

European Court of Justice issued its opinion after Austrian campaigner Max Schrems challenged Facebook over the transfer of his personal information to American intelligence agencies.

Safe Harbour is, and always has been, a joke. It needs to be replaced

In 2007, Stephanie Lenz posted a brief video on YouTube of her 13-month-old baby bouncing up and down to a Prince song that was playing in the background on her stereo

The Lenz v Universal case has been slowly making its way through California’s courts

The word ‘entrepreneur’ grew during the 1990s especially in the tech sector

People who call themselves an entrepreneur these days are likely to be anything but

Internet governance is broadening out

The non-profit group with oversight for the internet is trying to become more globalised

Marissa Mayer:  Yahoo chief executive has already proved that  a woman can have a baby and run a company. Photograph: Bloomberg

Double standards when it comes to lives of female executives

Kieran Drain (right), chief executive of the Tyndall National Institute, with Damien English, Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation, at the launch of the Tyndall 2014 annual report. Photograph: Conor McCabe Photography

Proponents argue it attracts foreign direct investment and makes graduates more employable

What they really mean is “go fail while one of our competitors has funded you, and come back to us when you have gained more experience”

Those now successful founders are not rushing to hire in people who made a mess of their previous companies

Eye for data: due diligence between parties to an acquisition or an investment now routinely includes a questionnaire on privacy and data-management policies and processes

Mergers, takeovers and other company sales are hinging on data-compliance and security issues

Anna Kern with her leaving cert results pictured with her mother, Lyudmyla Kyrychenko and sister, Olga Kyrychenko. Photograph: Adrian Butler

The case of Anna Kern, the Leaving Cert high-flier, shows the need for reform

Sundar Pichai, who will become chief executive of the slimmed-down Google. Photograph: Josh Edelson/AFP/Getty Images

Google now part of Alphabet but much of the internet functionality still centres on it

Girls don’t see the people who are in technology careers like the people in the ‘Big Bang Theory’, says Cathal Grogan, managing director, Verify Recruitment.

The Ada Lovelace Initiative aims to change female students’ perspectives on tech sector

During an archeological dig through my tech past I found the floppy disks for setting up my Indigo email account (floppy disks!). Photograph: Getty Images/iStockphoto

Things that once made a geek heart beat faster now seem comically old and useless

This  mock “killer robot”  in central London during the launch of a campaign calling  for the ban of lethal robot weapons attracted plenty of attention. But does such an image do the cause much good? Photograph: Getty Images

Developing autonomous weapons is not just the stuff of Hollywood summer blockbusters

Michele Neylon, director of Blacknight: “Because of the lack of rules, some companies just did what they wanted.”  Photograph: Brenda Fitzsimons

Controversial proposals would restrict ability to keep addresses, email contacts and phone numbers private

The homepage of the Ashley Madison website. Per capita only the Swiss and the Spaniards exceed us Irish as Ashley Madison “love rats”

The ‘terror’ a cheating spouse experiences as they fear being found out is not remotely equatable with suicide bombings or crashin(...)

Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg. The company is moving to improve its privacy and security policies. Photograph: Andreu Dalmau

Facebook is moving to rebuild users’ trust, say two of its top privacy and security officers

Angels are generally thought of as high net-worth individuals who give significant sums that get many young companies on to their feet before they go in search of venture funding

More people have become interested in start-up investment schemes where smaller investments of €5,000 to €10,000 are pooled

Facebook’s deputy chief privacy officer Stephen Deadman’s comments were an indirect rebuttal to questions raised during a European Court of Justice hearing earlier this year in a pending case between Austrian law graduate Max Schrems and the Irish data protection commissioner’s office. Photograph:  AFP/ Karen Bleier

Ireland also had the right skillsets in its population, says Facebook privacy officer

A photo taken from an Islamic State website shows its militants fighting in Iraq. Photograph:  via AP

Governments and business should collate their data to prevent attacks and limit terrorist recruitment online

 Nearly everyone has a mobile phone and it’s usually either being carried by its owner or within close reach, and hence, earshot. Broadcasting to every mobile on a network means an emergency alert also reaches visitors. Photograph: Simon Dawson/Bloomberg

Emergency alerts in US expand from radio and television to mobile phones

“YouTube is a major user of web bandwidth, along with streaming service NetFlix. Between the two, they hog half of the world’s total bandwidth. Surely they should pay more for it?” Photograph: Andrew H Walker/Getty Images

There should not be a fast lane and a slow lane for delivery of services to internet users

William Malcolm, senior privacy Counsel at Google, at the conference in NUI Maynooth on Wednesday. Photograph: Alan Betson

Tech company evolving its approach to last year’s European Court of Justice ruling

Because it removes banks as intermediaries for payments, BitCoin threatens a major function and income source for the institutions. This is especially true in the area of remittances

Mainstream finance and venture capital beginning to take cryptocurrency seriously

Bruce Schneier: “We’re all open books to both governments and corporations; their ability to peer into our collective personal lives is greater than it has ever been before”

The bargain you make, again and again, with various companies is surveillance in exchange for free service

Mary Mulvihill: Ensured that generations of notable Irish women of science and technology were not entirely forgotten, or left as mere footnotes to (men’s) history.

Science writer leaves an outstanding , accessible historical legacy of Irish technology

Since Stuxnet’s exposure in 2010, 20 countries have announced digital warfare programmes

The Stuxnet worm, used by the US in Iran, showed the power of a targeted network attack

Harvard Business School: the study conducted by Harvard Business School professor Tom Eisenmann and DocSend looked at 200 start-ups that successfully raised more than $360 million, from a range of top venture capitalists. Photograph: Stephen Rose/Liaison

Start-ups’ slide presentations should last just under four minutes, Harvard study finds

There is a growing convergence between the internet of things and the world of manufacturing. Photograph: Reuters/Lee Jae-Won

Ireland is well-placed for Manufacturing 4.0 as products feed data back to the factory

Now more than ever, the broad capabilities that come from arts and humanities degrees need to be valued and retained. Photograph: Chris Ison/PA Wire

Focus on science and technology to the detriment of arts and humanities is a big mistake

“Private-equity and venture-capital play an ever increasing role in Europe’s capital markets. In 2014, we saw a clear pickup of investment and divestment activity across Europe, supported by robust fundraising,” EVCA chief executive Dörte Höppner said in a statement

Ireland joint fifth in Europe when singling out venture capital investment as a percentage of GDP

Belgian authorities have taken Skype to court because it refused to allow two suspects’ Skype calls to be tapped. Photograph: Peter Byrne/PA Wire

Microsoft-owned company says its calls not the same as those made over traditional infrastructure

IADT student Jack Luke trying out a wireless assistive display housed in a 3D printed enclosure capable of transcribing speech into text to assist the hearing impaired

On a sunny morning, top tech companies gather at IADT to see the talent on display. By 11am most of the students will have jobs (...)

A driverless car during a press event this month in Zurich, Switzerland. Photograph: EPA/Ennio Leanza

Google has had very safe driverless cars on public roads since 2010

Security cannot come with privacy as its price. Nor can absolute privacy be promised, at the sacrifice of security. The balancing point is proportionality.

Evidence shows data gathering does not increase security or convictions

Facebook Ireland managing director Sonia Flynn: “Music is a huge passion for me and the opportunity to join the SoundCloud team combines technology with music.” Photograph: Dara Mac Dónaill

Kildare native is new international vice-president at HQ of music site

Transport nightmare: Sensors that form an integral part of traffic lights could be hacked. Photograph: Rui Vieira/PA Wire

Smart cities are the future but all that interconnectivity means more opportunities for hackers to create havoc

Use the “restricted” setting if you feel you must add people who ask to be Friends even if you don’t really want to, or for Friends you already have, wish you didn’t have, but don’t want to unfriend them (so harsh). Photograph: Getty Images

Connecting with people on social media can lead to perplexing etiquette problems

Bruce Schneier, chief security officer at Resilient Bruce Schneier, chief security officer at security company Resilient, says the Sony attack, believed to be carried out by North Korea, exposed many of the major risks related to hacking.

Cryptologist Bruce Schneier tells RSA conference that focus should be on dealing with fallout of cyberattacks

Will it be Woz? Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak is on the shortlist to be immortalised in wax at San Francisco’s Madame Tussauds. Photograph: Tony Avelar/Bloomberg News

Next tech figure at the San Francisco museum will be selected from shortlist of 10

European data regulators risk damaging the EU business market by fragmenting regulation into 28 individual national markets, Facebook has warned. Photo: Reuters

Social network is currently implicated in a case regarding its data gathering practices

Facebook privacy officer Erin Egan said international regulatory discussions did not give enough credit to the US. PhotographIllustration: Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Google, Microsoft and Facebook say they cannot tailor service to suit each country

Data privacy: many of the technology tools we use today are showing themselves to be insufficient for protecting our information

The very concept of ‘big data’ would seem to oppose one of fair information practices

Austrian data activist Max Schrems’s lawsuit against Facebook, whose European headquarters is in Dublin, has seen suggestions made that the Irish Data Protection Commissioner may be deliberately underfunded. Photograph: Leonhard Foeger/Reuters

Ireland’s policy has come under scrutiny but it is no worse than most other EU states

Cyber security: RSA’s Amit Yoran told a conference in San Francisco that a major problem was that the industry “has adopted a defensive mindset. We’re simply building taller castle walls and digging deeper moats.”

2015 will be the year of the ‘super mega breach’ warns president of security firm RSA

David Smith:  “There’s no doubt it’s a good time to be bought and make an exit. Corporations have cash and it’s easier to acquire technology than to do blue-sky thinking.”

FirstCapital’s boss in Silicon Valley says Irish firms should think big about funding

Apple’s Tim Cook: “While I have never denied my sexuality, I haven’t publicly acknowledged it either, until now.” Photograph: Brendan McDermid/Reuters

Few top-level executives such as Tim Cook of Apple go public

 Whistleblower Edward Snowden: disclosures of large scale, secretive state surveillance.   Photograph: Frederick Florin/AFP/Getty Images

Lawyer Elizabeth Knight is fighting for user protection but fears new European laws won’t go far enough

 National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden exposed government snooping. However, the information gathered by companies means citizen information can be made available to the government anyway, without secretly harvesting it.  Photograph: Frederick Florin/AFP/Getty Images

Companies have valuable information on citizens that government is happy to access

Curious crowds: HANAhaus, a cafe created by German technology giant SAP, has just opened in the tech hub of Palo Alto. It is located in the city’s much-loved 1927 Varsity Theatre

SAP’s HANAhaus cafe aims to marry world-class coffee and food with creative places to work and think

The Apple Watch. You can get an Apple Watch for a snip starting at “just” $349

The main idea of the Apple Watch is that it will perform a double act with your iPhone

Austrian law student   Max Schrems: the case heard on Tuesday originates in an action brought by him against the Irish Data Protection Commissioner, in which he asserted the commission should have taken more substantial action when he filed a complaint over Facebook’s handling of his data. Photograph:   Dieter Nagl/AFP/Getty Images

European Court of Justice hearing on data privacy could have profound implications

Investment in European technology companies reached a four-year high in 2014

Growth in Europe surpassed the US in terms of funding, with some $5.7 billion invested in 855 deals

Phil Gilbert (centre), general manager IBM Design, at an IBM Design studio gathering

Phil Gilbert has creative and innovative vision for the computing giant

Tom Wheeler, chairman of the US Federal Communications Commission, announces the preservation of net neutrality. Photograph: Pete Marovich/Bloomberg

The decision of the FCC to preserve net neutrality will benefit internet innovation

The IBM facility at Damastown , near Clonee, in Co. Meath. The new The Irish design centre will collaboratively create software for Big Data, cloud, mobile, social and cognitive computing solutions

New centre to create software, services and digital products

A drone nearly collided with a jet at Heathrow airport last December: many drone operators – both recreational and commercial – are ignorant of regulations or deliberately flout them.  Photograph: REUTERS/Carlo Allegri

Rules in Ireland and the US have been slow to catch up with the fast-moving technology

As the EU prepares its new regulations, indications are that data protection challenges will be handled by the data protection commissioner in the country in which a multinational has its EU headquarters. For many  big  tech companies, that country is already Ireland. Kimihiro Hoshino/AFP/Getty

But a US legal case could throw the entire cloud-computing sector into chaos

By making the internet more useful and usable through better identification and classification of its content society will benefit in many ways

The Insight Centre for Data Analytics aims to give Irish research groups a global reach, says one of its founding directors Prof S(...)

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