Profit from Data We can't stop talking about the cost of data, a subject we never seem to get enough of. Like cellular data itself, which we never seem to get enough of; at least, for the money we’re paying. Having terms such as “daylight robbery” thrown about doesn’t seem to put South Africa’s online data providers off their stride. Not above enlisting some complex maths to aid their cause, they might suggest with an air of injured innocence that we really don’t pay that much for what we get, considering all the obstacles in the way of cheap mobile broadband.... show More So, do we pay too much for data? This month, Lumka Nofemele takes a look at the bigger picture and it’s not pretty. Everybody from government on down is banging on the table in support of lower prices. And there are solutions, it seems, if we care to look. Continuing the theme of data: a recent audience with cybersecurity expert and futurist Marc Goodman – okay, there were a couple of hundred others in the room at the time – shed some light on the murky world of cybercrime. Or just plain crime, for that matter. Goodman’s delivery might have been entertaining, but his message was earnest and forthright: we need to be aware that these days the bad guys are armed with weapons far deadlier than the six-shooter and the knobkierie. As technology has grown exponentially, it’s given the crime business a growth spurt on an industrial scale. Because it really is a business that adopts and exploits technology in ways the inventors probably never foresaw. At least, that’s my hope. So much for technologies that we’re already exposed to. But what about those on the horizon? Well, that’s what we can expect next month when senior associate editor Lindsey Schutters and digital content manager Nikky Knijf return from their travels. In addition to his online as-it-happened briefs from the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Lindsey will be giving us his usual sharp insights into the tech and ideas we can expect to emerge from the world of mobile. There will be enormous implications, you can be sure, for areas of technology that have all of a sudden realised that they’re part of the story, the automotive industry, for instance. Nikki will be closer to home, but much deeper down the rabbit hole, spending a week at a talk shop dealing with a subject that’s mysterious to many of us and potentially vital to practically all of us: blockchain and its role in the burgeoning bitcoin world. In case you didn’t know, a blockchain is a distributed computing system with a high byzantine fault tolerance. (Okay, I didn’t know either; I googled that.) I can’t wait to read Nikky’s in-depth report, not least because I have a feeling that it might just help me sound a little less clueless around the dinner table. anthony@ramsaymedia.co.za show less