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 DATA VOLUMES and HUMAN POTENTIALS - Helmholtz Society Annual Gathering
picture picture 19 Sep 2014 @ 19:52, by Heiner Benking

Yester­day the major National Reseach Centers, HELMHOLTZ Association [link] had their Annual Convention and where to look into Future Research and Challenges in a festive setting in the Capital Representation of the German Telekom. Politics, Administrators and Researchers mingled and discus­sed technological challenges and breakthroughs.

After some opening words form the Minister and President the first panel was about BIG DATA and second about HUMANS and DATA. It became obvious what data, coded and non-coded at various scales are involved but I missed a little the proportions and consequences, the dimensions and challenges involved.
We heard about Peta-, Exa-, Zetta-, Jotta-Bytes [link] and how many interaction go on around such numbers in our "processing" and in our brains, and how we can process and visualize such data and make the impacts and interactions „communicatable“ and „digestible“.
I had to join this crowd because this topic is dear to me since the early 80ies. I was in computer graphics, vector and later raster visualization, selling the software for all the number crunchers of the world those days....
We sold to research and military, oil and gas and so I learned about many disciplines and their need to manage gargantuan volumes of data. Here an anecdote from 1981:
The CONTROL DATA (CDC) representative visited our sales office and boasted about the volumes all the CDC customers were storing on all their computers. They / we sold EAGLE DRIVES with 80MB and so the data volume was a lot: It was one PetaByte ! We were able to visualize the Sonar Data with UNIRAS software, so the Titanic could be located, and many more stories to be told later...

Today we learned about Peta- – Eta- and Zeta-Bytes and the audience was in awe about the sheer magnitudes...

And again another anecdote: When I met Robert Jungk I told him that I do exactly what Heinz Haber was telling often about his ability to manage large numbers..... Heinz Haber worked with Walt Disney and later founded BILD DER WISSENSCHAFT – The German Scienitfic American „. He told and wrote that when he was a young boy tamps and in times of the inflation he used his knuckles to visualize for him the exponential grows from 1 – 10 – 10 power 2, 3,4,5,6,7,.... to come to grips by embodying and visualizing magnitudes. And so he told that he was able to have an idea about for example Billions of Years and so qualify for becoming a Parleo-Geologist.
This is the same like Gregory Bateson had in mind, hen he requested that Hunan could develop antenna for time-horizon.
I told that Robert Jungk that I did such a visualization of scale, sector, and time scales in Scale-Models. He was alerted and I had his attention, cooperation and many of his connection in the following years.

Why do I add such anecdotes here? I feel we have not proceed with the ability to grope, grog, and grasp what is behind the date and how and where they connect.

But let me now get back to the GHF “symposium” ….

While trying to end this report after getting home, I listen to ARTE Television:

TOXIC [link]

Verkannte Gefahr Sondermüll
Live Freitag, 19. September um 21:45 Uhr (53 Min.)

Während heftig über den Verbleib von Atommüll diskutiert wird, gibt es kaum Diskussionen über die Entsorgung von Sondermüll. Dabei fallen in der modernen Industrie Massen von Laugen, Lösungsmitteln und anderen Stoffen an, die Schwermetalle enthalten. Die Autoren der Doku haben sich auf Sondermülldeponien umgesehen und den Umgang mit den gefährlichen Altlasten beobachtet.

And I am getting very angry and concerned ! Before our Tschernobyl Radioactivity Mapping I attended the TELI UMWELT-ANALYTICS journalists workshop at the Wissenschaftszentrum Schloss Reisensburg - Universität Ulm. All is known about the dangers, for me at least since 25 years.. So what have senior researchers done around UFZ and GSF and HGF ... over the years? and how should we act on FRACKING. The BGR in the 80 issued a report: MACHET EUCH DIE ERDE UNTERTAN, ABER TUINIERT SIE NICHT. Conquer but not Ruin the Earth

We say with HASAN OEZBEKHAN "Can implies Ought" - but what was done the last 25 years and what are the time-bombs after another 25 years, and how is the situation in the "other" 4. Worlds.....

All our AGF - the former Helmholtz Society - where not speaking up, they where "measuring and modelling" - ignorant of the scales, proportions, consequences,... and I wonder if our modern managing "big data, big noise" will help address the root-causes and stop risks we should to tamper with.....

We tried in 1990 to have the father of ECOLOGICAL CHEMISTRY - Friedhelm Korte [link] (unfortunately nothing about the father of Green Chemistry in English) with us when we did the ENERGY AND ENVIRONMENT SOCIETY in 1990, after the GLOBAL CHANGE exhibition. [link] He was also at such a National Reseach Center, but he addressed the deep and relevant questions, not muddling through in the dark, measuring "noise" and gwetting stuck in intellectual "silos"....


Can Implies Ought ....

Sectarianism of Sciences, also of Clans, Civil Society organizations, Gangs, and "Insiders"...? Nathan Keyfritz [link]
und John Warfield: Group-Clan-Think .... - [link] particip-infomanagement.pdf

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