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The Gem of all Mechanisms

The 3 opens: software, hardware and data

Season 1, Ep. 11

Amanda Brock is CEO of OpenUK - she talks to Brian Runciman about open source and whether business understands its value, whether the public need to know more, the three reasons Microsoft are so big in OS now, popstar Imogen Heap and her mini-moo glove and the importance of free speech in code.

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  • 7. Playing with quantum with an eye on ROI

    Stefano Mensa from the Hartree Centre speaks to Brian Runciman MBCS about the industry-facing supercomputer centre, with a focus on quantum computing. What benefit will it add? How close are we to fault-tolerant quantum computing with the current logical qubit bottleneck? What can it do for UK business?
  • 6. Helping all innovative people deliver

    How can smaller organisations create a positive culture, encompassing genuine diversity of perspective? Melissa Sabella talks about her approach with the Honeycomb Works, where she has recently worked with RAEng on a new equity platform for start-ups and scale-ups. She also gives some practical tips, for example: how much time should you spend with your direct reports, and who should - or shouldn't - you give stretch assignments to?
  • 5. Digital Pioneers: Recoding our Future

    What is the mindset IT professionals require to really harness the potential of computing for social good? Our panel discusses ambition, boldness, capability, determination and entrepreneurism. Rashik Parmar MBE, Group CEO of BCS, Charlene Hunter MBE, CEO & Founder of Coding Black Females, Professor Andy Stanford-Clark, Distinguished Engineer, IBM UK, and Dr Kitty Hung, BCS Fellow and author talked about this with Brian Runciman MBCS at the launch of a new series of films from BCS and Content with Purpose.
  • 4. The Needham Debate: Optimisation algorithms

    In January 2024, Professor Ruth Misener was presented with the Needham Award for her exceptional contribution to identifying and solving fundamental computer science research challenges at the intersection of computational optimisation and machine learning. A special panel discussed the complexities of optimisation as a research discipline and how algorithms can help businesses make good decisions in the face of uncertainty and complexity. Ruth was joined by Michael Huth, Professor of Computer Science Head of Department of Computing, Imperial College London; Timo Berthold, Director at FICO and Lecturer at TU Berlin; Claire Adjiman, Professor of Chemical Engineering at the Department of Chemical Engineering, Imperial College London and Director of the Sargent Centre for Process Systems Engineering at Imperial and UCL; and Darren Budd, Commercial Director UK and Ireland, BASF.
  • 3. From 'Millionaire' to cybersecurity

    Lisa Ventura MBE has been on a fascinating journey from mainstream TV to a cybersecurity career. Alongside this she has had a developing diagnostic journey. She talks to Brian Runciman MBCS about neurodiversity, her autism diagnosis and more. As she says... 'we are all generation cyber.'
  • 2. Formal languages, mathematical models and bike sharing

    Professor Jane Hillston, one of the winners of the Lovelace Award for 2023, discusses her work in formal languages. She talks to Brian Runciman MBCS about resource use in systems and performance modelling - measuring how much resource is used and when, from a mathematical viewpoint. It has applications in biology and transport systems in smart cities such as bike-sharing. She is also involved in smart techniques, using ambient sensors and associated data to give people later-life benefits. Also discussed: tracking and husbanding data in AI models, double stochasticity in quantum, and is computer science post-colonial?
  • 1. Wikipedia: pretty good in parts

    Jimmy Wales, Wikipedia founder, speaks to Brian Runciman about the site's progress over the last 22 years; fakes news; reliable sources; the Wikipedia community and funding model; and being a pathological optimist. With bonus content on stochastic differential equations… 
  • 12. How the Light Gets In

    If you like combining live music with discussions about science and technology, there’s now several summer festivals that tick that box. At the Dot Festival at the Jodrell Bank Observatory, and at WOMAD festival, you can hear expert talks and bands. Claire Penketh went to another festival - How the Light Gets In - to find out more, in this special edition of the Gem. 
  • 11. Playing Doom on a Coke Machine

    Felix Ryan speaks to Brian Runciman about a specialist area of IT - pen testing in the context of embedded systems. He talks careers, inspirations and why he launched a podcast on such a niche area.