miércoles, 8 de agosto de 2018

Transexualidades. Otras miradas posibles - Miquel Misse

Transexualidades. Otras miradas posiblesTransexualidades. Otras miradas posibles by Miquel Missé
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Un libro imprescindible como introducción al entendimiento de las identidades trans*. El autor propone una aproximación liberada de nuestros prejuicios, acompañando en un viaje a la transexualidad desde una visión social no medicalizada. Precisamente, la despatologización de las identidades trans lo configura como el principal instrumento para entenderlas. En su relato, huye de buscar una razón para la existencia de personas de personas no conformes de la uniformidad entre sexo biológico y su vivencia de género, incitando a aceptarlo como una manifestación de la diversidad humana.

Miquel Missé, sin dejar de reconocer los tratamientos médicos como elementos que mejoran la calidad de vida de las personas trans, señala a la patologización como origen de la transfobia. El tratamiento de ciertos cuerpos como incorrectos y, por tanto, tratables desde el punto de vista médico, señala a las personas trans como seres que han de adaptarse a un sistema. Se convierte esta mirada también en el puntal principal de la propia transfobia interna y el rechazo a su propia diversidad que aparece en algunas personas trans.

La aceptación de la existencia de las personas trans, con la mirada del autor, se convierte en instrumento de cambio social, que enlaza con las reivindicaciones feministas. La discriminación de la mujer y de las personas trans parten de una misma raíz, la identificación por las clases dominantes de un solo modo de ser mujer o de ser hombre.

En definitiva, el ensayo nos invita a arriesgarnos a explorar nuestra visión del mundo. Desechar las identidades trans como problema médico nos lleva a cuestionar nuestro sistema social, la educación que se da a nuestros hijes y el marco legal que define y clasifica a las personas.

Frases entresacadas del libro en este hilo de twitter https://twitter.com/egarciagarcia/sta...

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martes, 7 de agosto de 2018

"Rayuela" - Julio Cortázar

RayuelaRayuela by Julio Cortázar
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

No es la primera vez que leo "Rayuela". Antes de cumplir el cuarto de siglo de vida la había leído ya dos veces, una en cada uno de los diseños de lectura recomendados por su creador. Sin embargo, la novela de Julio Cortázar es quizás solo abarcable en el siglo XXI, cuando el viaje por sus páginas puede ser acompañado de una conexión a Internet, cuando podemos situarnos en cada lugar de París citado y escuchar de fondo el jazz que rezuman sus mejores pasajes .

Leer de nuevo "Rayuela" es también encontrar el tiempo perdido de nuestras vidas. La lectura juvenil nos subrayaba la vida en París, el viaje al mundo que queríamos para el resto de nuestros días, amores locos con la Maga y noches de bohemia y diálogos intelectuales. La lectura adulta nos hace reparar más en los pasajes de nostalgia, en los momentos que Horacio recuerda de vuelta en Buenos Aires el amor perdido y el tiempo pasado al otro lado del océano, el último canto de rebeldía que supone enamorarse sin esperanza de la mujer de otro.

"Rayuela" es, también, una parábola de la vida. No es sólo la tragicomedia de las rupturas amorosas llenas de comicidad y la amargura de los amores sin sentido. La novela es la continua decisión entre ser protagonista de nuestro propio relato o ser instrumentos pasivos. Ir en el orden acelerado con que los acontecimientos se nos presentan o deleitarse también en vivir el detalle de los capítulos prescindibles, aquellos que dan razón de ser a los que nos sucede. Cada vuelta al relato principal nos atrae la tentación de no volvernos a dejar llevar a saltar fuera de la senda, aun sabiendo que sólo la verdad de nuestras vidas podemos encontrarla allí.

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martes, 17 de julio de 2018

Our responsibility on the digital revolution

I am currently reading "The Folly of Technological Solutionism" by Evgeny Morozov. The book is a must read essay on the many dangers to a democratic society that Internet and technoloy are seeding. One of them is the destruction of any possibility of dissent. In Mozorov´s words, we are close "to build a technological environment where lawbreaking is impossible" and, therefore,  the outcome will be " to close the important social valves through which social change happens."

We are witnessing the dawn of a "Black Mirror" alike society. The TV distopia looks as closer to be real each day. At least it´s what it is pointing byt the pieces of news of a system for rating people in China to detect dissidents, the ever expanding usage of algorithms for detecting situations  and areas where crimes could arise or the build of robots for policing missions. Soon, lawbreaking will be impossible and therefore any form of social dissent would be in danger.

Few times we reflect about the origins of the inventions described above. We see those digital applications as coming from thin air, the press usually described them as an outcome from the evolution with few human intervention. But the reality is that companies and persons has produced them. A couple of months ago an article in The Guardian recalled this and the benefits that companies obtain from this activity. The same article started with a remembrance on how IBM´s puching-machines paves the way to the Holocaust.

Perhaps it is the right time to open the debate of the ethical limits of the technology workers activity. Furthermre, also our responsibility as consumers of digital products and services who are fueling the perfectioning of them for its usage in different spheres. Digitalisation is not happening in the vacuum, all of us have some responsibility on it.

martes, 10 de julio de 2018

Connected mobility: One of the cross-roads for 5G development in EU

The completion of the Digital Single Market will change once for all the European economy. On top of the shared digital economy space many applications will be more easy adopted. One of these applications are connected mobility. In order to to make Europe a world leader in the deployment of connected and automated mobility, the European Commission adopted in May a communication which sets the strategy for the mobility of the future.

One of the elements of the strategy is the adoption by the end of 2018 of a delegated regulation under the Intelligent Transport Systems Directive to ensure secured and trustful communications between vehicles and infrastructure. This legislation may be the cornerstone for a sophisticated market of entertainment and business services and products which revenues could exceed EUR 620 billion by 2025 for the EU automotive industry and EUR 180 billion for the EU electronic sector. As a consequence, the fight wthin the EU Council  and the EU parliament spurred by lobbys has already started.

The core of the fight is related with the role 5G will play in the legislation. Currently, cars are equipped with V2V technology based on wifi and there is a fear among many that the EU Commission will not impose any interoperability obligation between this systems with the forthcoming 5G infrastructure. While others are against given any prominence to 5G and judges that "imposing interoperability on the market warrants the same response as imposing one single technology: it stifles competition".

But will it be possible to fully develop  the V2V market without 5G interoperability? Many think-tanks and researchers do not see it possible and see 5G as the key for the develop V2V market. However, others thing that linked V2V to 5G will delay V2V development due to the lavk of maturity (and availability) of the new cellular technology. At the same time, telecom operators willnot be interested in the deployment of 5G networks along roads without a ceratinty that this infrastructure will be used and provide a reasonable ROI.

So we have arrive a new chicken and the egg problem. 5G is the key for the development and digitalisation of many industries, but at the same time needs a demand from this industries in the medium short-term. The adoption of 5G as a standard in connected mobility is one of the many cross-roads that 5G development in EU will face in the next years.


martes, 3 de julio de 2018

Digital Single Market: Where are we?

After two years of regulatory frenzy, the Digital single Market Stratefy is close to its completion. Although all the initial proposals put forward by the European Commission has been sustancially changed, the number of EU digital regulations have been multiplied by four (from less than two decens to nearly half hundred). It would be difficult to say from now on that the digital dimension of the single market is an space without law. 

The importance of the work already done was forseseen in its inception. The main global think-tanks that published analysis on the future of Europe a couple of years ago included a chapter about the digital outlook. Perhaps it is time to reviews if the former goals are now a reality: Elimination of cross-border barriers, establishing the pillars of a data economy and the creation of a level playing field.

Firstly, certainly the cross-border barriers for digital trade has decreased. The end of roaming charges, the ban on geoblocking, portability for digital content suscriptions  and other regulations has armonised the digital regulatory approach. P2B relationship regulation now under debate will be the final milestone to be reach. The fragmentation of the digital European market has been certainly avoid in a high degree. 

Secondly, the flow of data across Europe will be easier from now on. Beyond the GDPR, a regulation on the free flow of non personal data has been also approved. Location restrictions on data will need to be justified and the mere legacy of the Gutenberg era will not be a reason anymore.

However, it is not so clear that the third objective regarding establishing a level playing has been achieved. There are suspicions that the innovative regulations as the GDPR, the forthcoming copyright directive or the P2B regulation will benefit the bigger platforms more than limiting their power. Comply with the GDPR or  developing the automatic copyright filters will be easy to develop for the Google of Facebook but perhaps more difficult for small european start-ups.

Lights and shadows. For the next five years, the task of the next European Commission should be to monitorise and observe the outcomes and try to assess if things has been develop the right way or some excess should be corrected.

sábado, 23 de junio de 2018

Gender Gap in the ICT sector

The very same women's day, the European Commission published a report on the gender gap in the ICT sector. The report shows the many faces of the unbalance between women and men around the digital economy development. To begin with, the report shows that the gender gap starts in the education on ICT ( four times more men with ICT-related studies than women in Europe), continue at the first step of entering on the digital jobs (women represent only 21.5% of all workers in digital jobs) and is maintained on the senior management positions (only  19% of the senior manangement post globally is held by women). 

A further report published on the gender representation in the audiovisual sector presents also evidences of the gender gap, as a  general underepresentation of women in creative off-screen roles and the existence of a glass-ceiling that prevents women from climbing the professional ladder. Therefore, it could be suspected that the situation is similar in all the different kind of jobs related with the digital economy.

Although the reports don´t provide evidences os the consequence of the underepresentation of women on the ICT sector, these are easly to find. For instance, the few women involved on the design on AI algorithms has as consequence that machines are learning a biased view of women and its role in society. Lack of diversity on ICT job post may have as a consequence a future where the current gains on the fight against gender discrimination get lost. 

On the occasion of a recent event, CEOs of tech companies sign a manifesto that includes concrete steps for reducing the ICT sector gender gap. Among the actions that aimed to establish a level-playing field between women and men on the digital economy development working place, the CEOs propose promoting an open and female-friendly company culture, embedding diversity as a core value of human resources policy and other positive discrimination policies that could pave the way to leadership posts for women. 

There´s no doubt that introducing measures in the working place facilitate the fight against gender gap in the sector, however, is not enough. As it was said before, the gap starts at the education level so the adoption of technology studies by girls should be promoted heavily since for the different range ages, particularly those which are critical in the election of the future professional career (12-14 years).

Finally, it also should be adopted some kind of naming and shaming measure among government. The establishment and dissemination of rankings and benchmarks is always a great pressure for the development of a policy. 

miércoles, 6 de junio de 2018

"The Power" - Naomi Alderman

The PowerThe Power by Naomi Alderman
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Nowadays, almost everyone knows something about "The Handmaid's Tale", that dystopian vision of a future where patriarchalism reigns and the discrimination of women has reached the summit. However, the book has passed unnoticed for years and some people gets shocked when they discovered that it was written in 1985. I remember that I read that book around 2002 and since then I have strongly recommended Margaret Atwood´s novel many times. Those who followed the advice didn´t get dissapointed.

Among many others attractiveness, the appeal of "The Handmaid´s Tale" is that it provides a framework to meditate about the unfairness of a society based on a extrem unfairness in the gender relationships. It´s a mirror to feel ashamed of our image which its deficiencies has been distorted to its maximum. You should expect the same impact when you read "The Power".

"The Power" invites you to travel through the other side of the mirror and feels the horror of the side you daily live. The novel shows a word where women gets concious of an inmense physical power that allow them to dominate men. Little by little, women begin to dominate every parcel of life in different countries and in front of our eyes appears the reverse of the more extreme forms of female discrimination applied to men. For instance, a kind of male genital mutilation called "the curving procedure".

Although the plot of "The power" could have been better developed, the progress of the story is sometime slow. However, it achieves its objetcive of making you feel the rejection and disgust against both the current patriachal society and any kind of radicalism. The novel also shows how the desire of revenge may pervert any fair cause and the dificulty of avoid being a dictator if you are powerful enough, even if you have suffered before oppression. Therefore, it is not only a novel that calls your attention about the unfairness of any kind of injustice but also about the weaknesses of human nature.

I do not have any doubt to recommend the book. However, do not expect a masterpiece as "The Handmaid´s Tale"

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