The week started more or less with me picking up Y shortly after she went to school because she fell ill. Having her at home most of the week meant my and E’s work schedule was somewhat disrupted because of taking care of Y.

This week I

  • Found out that having updated Mastodon on my VPS with Yunohost didn’t work flawlessly: the client side is not showing in the browser. The server part still works so I can still interact with my Mastodon account from this site and from my mobile. Hopefully with a next update things will right themselves. For now it’s not a big deal. However searching online doesn’t provide any clear answers to resolving it if a next update doesn’t fix it.
  • Had the weekly client meetings
  • Prepared and then hosted the first regular meeting of the interprovincial ethics committee that I’m secretary to. I assist the seven members, a mix from ethics related academics and people well versed in governance and knowledge of what provinces are and do. It was a good session with discussions that give a solid start to thefirst year of having this committee.
  • Had the monthly half day team meeting. Our new team member F gave us a hands-on introduction of finding and mitigating bias in machine learning models, as well letting us reflect on what bias mitigation itself means as an intervention (e.g. if you remove bias from a model, but there’s also bias in the data or the system that the data describes, are you going to counteract that systemic bias? Does making something fair statistically sometimes mean it’s more unfair to some individuals described in the data?) I did a short introductory session about complexity, how to recognise it and what different tools to use than in more linear and predictable settings.
  • Met payroll for our team.
  • Listened to a webinar of the EU Data Space Support Center consortium about their ongoing work. I’m somewhat concerned about some of the vocabulary being used to describe data spaces. They are intended as federated structures, but the consortium bandies about a role title ‘dataspace owner’ which to my ears is an unfitting term.
  • Went to Utrecht innercity with the three of us for some shopping and coffee, and to find birthday gifts for multiple family members.
  • Took Y to her swimming lesson.
  • Visited niece C’s birthday party in Haarlem, after which C and Y both went home with their grandparents where they’ll stay over for a few nights. The coming week is a school holiday.

A mural depicting physicist dr. Caroline Bleeker, on a house in Strosteeg Utrecht near where we parked earlier this week.