CPSR

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The CPSR is an alliance of computer professionals concentrating on
certain areas of the impact of computer technology on society.  It
traces its history to the fall of 1981, when several researchers in
Palo Alto, California, organized a lunch meeting to discuss their
shared concerns about the connection between computing and the
nuclear arms race.  Out of that meeting and the discussions which
followed, CPSR was born, and has been active ever since. {This
section is part of the CPSR's letter to prospective members.}
 
The national CPSR program focuses on the following project areas:
 
 
Reliability and Risk  This area reflects on the concern that
overreliance on computing technology can lead to unacceptable risks
to society.  It includes, but isn't limited to, work in analyzing
military systems such as SDI.
 
Civil Liberties and Privacy  This project is concerned with such
topics as the FBI National Crime Information Center, the growing use
of databases by both government and private industry, the right of
access to public information, extension of First Amendment rights to
electronic communication, and establishing legal protections for
privacy of computerized information.
 
Computers in the Workplace  The CPSR Workplace Project has
concentrated its attention on the design of software for the
workplace, and particularly on the philosophy of ``participatory
design,'' in which software designers work together with users to
ensure that systems meet the actual needs of that workplace.
 
The 21st Century Project This is a coalition with other
professional organizations working towards redirecting national
research priorities from concentrating on military issues to
anticipating and dealing with future problems as science and
technology enter the next century.
 
For more information on the CPSR, contact them at:
 
Computer Professionals for Social Responsibility
P.O. Box 717
Palo Alto, CA  94302
cpsr@csli.stanford.edu
(415) 322--3778
(415) 322--3798 (Fax)