Justin Lane is an Oxford University-trained artificial intelligence (AI) expert and entrepreneur with no patience for fluffy theories. That led to some fascinating fieldwork in Northern Ireland, where he studied Irish Republican Army and Ulster Defence Association extremists up close. Ultimately, he applied his humanities research to AI programming and agent-based computer simulations. Somehow, he managed to enter undergrad in Baltimore, Md. as a Green Party liberal and emerge from England's ivory towers as a Second Amendment advocate. He now describes himself as a political moderate with "a libertarian flavor." When I first met him, Lane was working at the Center for Mind and Culture in Boston.
The Serious Fraud Office is a specialist prosecuting authority tackling the top level of serious or complex fraud, bribery, and corruption across England, Wales and Northern Ireland. It both investigates and prosecutes its cases, which is unique but necessary because the cases are complicated, and lawyers and investigators need to work together from the outset of them. Supporting both lawyers and investigators is an IT infrastructure that is managed by chief technology officer (CTO) Ben Denison, who also looks after the technology that supports the SFO's operational activities. "That includes digital evidence, so in our cases when we're investigating someone we'll see information from phones, tablets, laptops, and email, and we have a digital forensics team that processes that material and extracts relevant data from it, and it can then be ingested into another system which our case teams use to review it from," Denison tells PublicTechnology. In essence, the SFO ensures that all of the data – whether it's digital or a hard copy – is put into one place, so that it can be reviewed together.
The first is a shortage of doctors and nurses - there simply aren't enough to meet demand. Data from a BBC Freedom of Information request shows that between 2013 and 2015, there has been a 50% increase in nursing vacancies, rising from 12,513 to 18,714. Meanwhile, the number of nursing vacancies across England, Wales and Northern Ireland reached 23,443 by the end of December - equivalent to 9% of the workforce. In comparison, the average vacancy rate across the UK economy was 2.7%. With a lack of qualified staff, the system struggles under demand, and a backlog develops.
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