Barack Obama: Now Is the Greatest Time to Be Alive - inspiring read

“The point is, we need today’s big thinkers thinking big. Think like you did when you were watching Star Trek or Star Wars or Inspector Gadget. Think like the kids I meet every year at the White House Science Fair. We started this event in 2010 with a ­simple premise: We need to teach our kids that it’s not just the winner of the Super Bowl who deserves to be celebrated but the winner of the science fair. Since then, I’ve met young people who are tackling everything from destroying cancer cells to using algae to produce clean energy to distributing vaccines to remote areas of the world—all before most of them can even vote.”

Barack Obama: Now Is the Greatest Time to Be Alive
https://www.wired.com/2016/10/president-obama-guest-edits-wired-essay/
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Your Next Friend Could Be a Robot: must read !

“t turns out that humans can form emotional bonds with a “social technology,” as these systems are called, without true artificial intelligence. People are good at anthropomorphizing objects, and this tendency can be enhanced by the right auditory and visual cues.

Last week Toyota Motor announced a robot child designed to appeal to the growing ranks of the childless in Japan. Hasbro has created a line of pet robots designed for the elderly.

Some studies suggest these kinds of robots can yield benefits similar to owning actual pets.

None of this surprises Heather Knight, a researcher of “social robotics” at Stanford University. “Sociability is the interface between people,” says Dr. Knight.

The point of a truly social interface is that it is the same as no interface at all. No screens, no pointing devices, no unfamiliar conventions. Conversation, with all its quirks and “inessential” chitchat, is simply how humans interact with each other. Soon, it will be how we interact with machines as well.”

Your Next Friend Could Be a Robot
http://www.wsj.com/articles/your-next-friend-could-be-a-robot-1476034599
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Crash: how computers are setting us up for disaster | Tim Harford on the dangers of automation

“This problem has a name: the paradox of automation. It applies in a wide variety of contexts, from the operators of nuclear power stations to the crew of cruise ships, from the simple fact that we can no longer remember phone numbers because we have them all stored in our mobile phones, to the way we now struggle with mental arithmetic because we are surrounded by electronic calculators. The better the automatic systems, the more out-of-practice human operators will be, and the more extreme the situations they will have to face.”

Crash: how computers are setting us up for disaster | Tim Harford
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/oct/11/crash-how-computers-are-setting-us-up-disaster
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Humans are going to have the edge over robots where work demands creativity | Tim Dunlop

As I said, the point of capitalism is to destroy jobs, not create them.

The second big change is post-industrialisation. Wealth is being created – not by making and selling physical things – but in areas of knowledge, information and financialisation.

These areas simply do not need as many workers as traditional employers. Where Kodak used to employ 140,000 people and was valued at $28bn (and is now bankrupt thanks to digitisation), Instagram was sold to Facebook in 2012 for a billion dollars when it (Instagram) employed 12 people.

Facebook itself is the sixth-largest company in the US, but it employs a mere 12,000 people full time. Compare that to, say, General Motors, which during the 1980s employed 349,000 workers in the US alone.

Google, one of the richest corporations on the planet, only employs about 55,000 people worldwide.

You get the picture.”

Humans are going to have the edge over robots where work demands creativity | Tim Dunlop
http://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2016/sep/26/humans-are-going-to-have-the-edge-over-robots-where-work-demands-creativity
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AI Is Not the Future, It's the Present

“If you’re an iPhone user, you’ve come across Apple’s AI, and not just in Siri’s improved acumen in figuring out what you ask of her. You see it when the phone identifies a caller who isn’t in your contact list (but did email you recently). Or when you swipe on your screen to get a short list of the apps that you are most likely to open next. Or when you get a reminder of an appointment that you never got around to putting into your calendar. Or when a map location pops up for the hotel you’ve reserved, before you type it in. Or when the phone points you to where you parked your car, even though you never asked it to. These are all techniques either made possible or greatly enhanced by Apple’s adoption of deep learning and neural nets.

“Yes, there is an ‘Apple brain’ – it’s already inside your iPhone.””

AI Is Not the Future, It's the Present
https://letstalkpayments.com/ai-is-not-the-future-its-the-present/
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Most experts say AI isn’t as much of a threat as you might think - let's debate!

“Bostrom aggregates the results of four different surveys of groups such as participants in a conference called “Philosophy and Theory of AI,” held in 2011 in Thessaloniki, Greece, and members of the Greek Association for Artificial Intelligence (he does not provide response rates or the phrasing of questions, and he does not account for the reliance on data collected in Greece).

His findings are presented as probabilities that human-level AI will be attained by a certain time:

By 2022: 10 percent.

By 2040: 50 percent.

By 2075: 90 percent.”

Most experts say AI isn’t as much of a threat as you might think
https://www.technologyreview.com/s/602410/are-the-experts-worried-about-the-existential-risk-of-artificial-intelligence/
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When your boss is an algorithm - great read via the FT

“There are no good estimates on the global scale of the gig economy but in the US there are about 800,000 people earning money this way — via online intermediaries such as TaskRabbit, Lyft, Uber and Deliveroo — without being anyone’s employee. The term “algorithmic management” was coined last year by academics at the Carnegie Mellon University Human-Computer Interaction Institute, and it is this innovation, they argue, that makes the gig economy possible. For companies like Uber, which aspires to “make transportation as reliable as running water”, algorithmic management solves a problem: how to instruct, track and evaluate a crowd of casual workers you do not employ, so they deliver a responsive, seamless, standardised service.”

When your boss is an algorithm
http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/88fdc58e-754f-11e6-b60a-de4532d5ea35.html
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Do no harm, don't discriminate: official guidance issued on robot ethics

“Now the British Standards Institute has issued a more official version aimed at helping designers create ethically sound robots.

The document, BS8611 Robots and robotic devices, is written in the dry language of a health and safety manual, but the undesirable scenarios it highlights could be taken directly from fiction. Robot deception, robot addiction and the possibility of self-learning systems exceeding their remits are all noted as hazards that manufacturers should consider.

Welcoming the guidelines at the Social Robotics and AI conference in Oxford, Alan Winfield, a professor of robotics at the University of the West of England, said they represented “the first step towards embedding ethical values into robotics and AI”.”

Do no harm, don't discriminate: official guidance issued on robot ethics
http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/sep/18/official-guidance-robot-ethics-british-standards-institute
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Artificial Intelligence Software Is Booming. But Why Now? - NYTimes.com

“How will we know when the A.I. revolution has taken hold? A technology truly matures when it disappears. We don’t marvel at houses with electricity now, or the idea of driving to work at 60 miles an hour. We can say “phone” and mean a hand-held computer with NASA-level processing power and a professional-quality camera for taking selfies with our drones.”

Artificial Intelligence Software Is Booming. But Why Now? - NYTimes.com
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/09/19/technology/artificial-intelligence-software-is-booming-but-why-now.html?nytmobile=0
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What artificial intelligence will look like in 2030

“Now is the time to consider the design, ethical, and policy challenges that AI technologies raise,” said Grosz. “If we tackle these issues now and take them seriously, we will have systems that are better designed in the future and more appropriate policies to guide their use.””

What artificial intelligence will look like in 2030
http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2016/09/what-artificial-intelligence-will-look-like-in-2030/
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