Saturday, January 4, 2014

Is Barack Obama Talking to Daniel Suarez?

by Meg Curtis, PhD

The president can assess Daniel Suarez's qualifications as a consultant by viewing his TED talk here: Obama can gift himself with one of Suarez's novels, as a late Christmas present, to bring him up to date on the necessity of integrating challenges to the health, well-being, security, and freedom of the American citizenry. 

Obama can also read this summary on Suarez's book jackets: "Daniel Suarez is an independent systems consultant to Fortune 1000 companies. He has designed and developed enterprise software for the defense, finance, and entertainment industries." This author functions on the cutting edge of Information Technology. He assesses the mentality of gamers, high tech workers, governments, and independent creators of robotics systems.

To listen to Suarez is to step, along with him, into the implications of technology for democracy. He illustrates his TED talk with graphics portraying how analysts can view data in groups so as to identify communications hubs, thus allowing analysts to facilitate community organization, or destroy each hub and communities along with the hubs. He can imagine where we are going from where are are--and how we keep the US safe from daemons. 

This consultant opens his book Daemons with these prophetic words in the frontispiece:

"daemon...A computer program that runs continuously in the background and performs specified operations at predetermined times or in response to certain events.

Condensed from '"Disk and Execution MONitor.'".

Is this concept not the hub of a functioning health care system? The patient about to undergo heart surgery may not have days to spend trying to contact his insurance provider before the anaesthesiologist grabs him. New parents need to keep their attention where it belongs: on new members of their families. And the US cannot afford any health care system which does not offer both computer expertise and respect for vital human beings. 

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