Technology Record - Issue 28: Spring 2023

9 ANDY CLAYTON-SMITH: EXECUTIVE EDITOR The war in Ukraine has just entered its second year. Along with the untold traumas of those directly involved in this conflict, economic shockwaves are resonating around the world. In any such event, information can actively be used to define the course of activities, and never more so than in this age of connected technology and highly advanced social integration. In our cover story, starting on page 50, we offer perspectives from Microsoft and many of its leading partners on the subject of cybersecurity and its heightened importance in these troubled times. Another topic on many peoples’ minds right now is that of artificial intelligence. Recent announcements set the stage for a leap in innovation which Bill Gates has categorised as “the most important technological advance in decades”. Microsoft’s partnership with developer OpenAI and the announcement of the corporation’s significant investment in development of its core AI product ChatGPT puts both companies at the head of the conversation about where this ground-breaking technology might take us all next. In our lead Marketwatch item on page 18, we discuss the full range of Azure-based AI tools which Microsoft has recently rolled-out, along with insights into how these new tools will further extend the reach and reliability of existing products such as Microsoft 365, Bing and Viva. One thing is certain, if we are to embrace these new developments, then we must also consider the entirely new ethical debates that come with them. In a world where multiple AI solutions can now effectively pass the ‘Turing test’ and gain an ability to exhibit intelligence equivalent to that of a human, what measures do we need to put in place to protect the consumer and forestall the unwanted attentions of potential ‘bad actors’? As with most things, with evolution comes uncertainty, and so it is incumbent upon AI developers, enterprise leaders, public sector organisations and citizens worldwide to ensure these tools for potential good do not turn into a modern-day Pandora’s box. Some interesting times ahead, which will no doubt ensure that the topic of AI stays firmly front-of-mind for everybody. For now though, I hope you enjoy reading more in the latest edition of Technology Record. WELCOME: SPRING 2023 Safely embracing new technology