What Stephen Hawking gets right and wrong about ‘the most dangerous time for our planet’

“Technology is the main culprit here, widening the gulf between the haves and the have-nots. As Hawking explained, automation has already decimated jobs in manufacturing and is allowing Wall Street to accrue huge rewards that the rest of us underwrite. Over the next few years, technology will take more jobs from humans. Robots will drive the taxis and trucks; drones will deliver our mail and groceries; machines will flip hamburgers and serve meals. And, if Amazon’s new cashierless stores are a success, supermarkets will replace cashiers with sensors. This is not speculation; it is imminent.”

What Stephen Hawking gets right and wrong about ‘the most dangerous time for our planet’
via Instapaper

Insight From the Dalai Lama Applied to AI Ethics -via Future of Life Institute

“One of the primary objectives — if not the primary objective — of artificial intelligence is to improve life for all people. But an equally powerful motivator to create AI is to improve profits. These two goals can occasionally be at odds with each other.

Currently, with AI becoming smarter and automation becoming more efficient, many in AI and government are worried about mass unemployment. But the results of mass unemployment may be even worse than most people suspect. A study released last year found that 1 in 5 people who committed suicide were unemployed. Another study found significant increases in suicide rates during recessions and the Great Depression.

A common solution that’s often suggested to address mass unemployment is that of a universal basic income (UBI). A UBI would ensure everyone has at least some amount of income. However, this would not address non-financial downsides of unemployment.”

Insight From the Dalai Lama Applied to AI Ethics - Future of Life Institute
via Instapaper

Could you soon fly an airplane with your mind?

“What kind of things do you think we will be doing with our minds?

Look at it this way: a hundred years ago this interview would have happened with pen and paper through letters. Think of how much detail is lost through that method of communication. We could turn out a meaningful dialogue, but the emotional content would be largely lost. Today we are having it on a telephone, so you have an added layer of understanding through my voice, my enthusiasm, how I say things.

Then, if we have this conversation face to face, you can add even more detail. How my face looks as I speak, my hand gestures and so on.

Now, imagine if we spoke brain to brain and you could actually feel how I was feeling, understand what it is I am trying to say. You would know exactly what i am trying to tell you.”

Could you soon fly an airplane with your mind?
via Instapaper

Silicon Valley Has an Empathy Vacuum (that's putting it mildly) via GigaOM

“Silicon Valley’s biggest failing is not poor marketing of its products, or follow-through on promises, but, rather, the distinct lack of empathy for those whose lives are disturbed by its technological wizardry. Two years ago, on my blog, I wrote, “It is important for us to talk about the societal impact of what Google is doing or what Facebook can do with all the data. If it can influence emotions (for increased engagements), can it compromise the political process?””

Silicon Valley Has an Empathy Vacuum
via Instapaper

Death Is Optional | Edge.org. Fascinating conversation with YUVAL NOAH HARARI and Daniel Kahnemann

“Once you really solve a problem like direct brain-computer interface ... when brains and computers can interact directly, that's it, that's the end of history, that's the end of biology as we know it. Nobody has a clue what will happen once you solve this. If life can break out of the organic realm into the vastness of the inorganic realm, you cannot even begin to imagine what the consequences will be, because your imagination at present is organic. So if there is a point of Singularity, by definition, we have no way of even starting to imagine what's happening beyond that.”

Death Is Optional | Edge.org
via Instapaper

Watching the World Rot at Europe's Largest Tech Conference / must read !!

“You can go further. In the accounts given by philosophers like Bernard Stiegler, the human stands on the point of vanishing entirely; we become something incidental to a total technological system. As he points out, a human being without any technological prostheses is nothing, an unsteady sac of flesh defined only by what it doesn’t have: no shelter, no protection, no society. We create tools, but technical apparatuses and their milieus advance according to their own logic, and these non-living objects have their own strange form of life. Our brains developed to control our hands; human consciousness itself was only the by-product of a technical evolution that moved from flint-knapping to the hammer to the virtual bartender; its real job isn’t to perform any particular task but to perpetuate itself. “Robots,” he writes, are “seemingly designed no longer to free humanity from work but to consign it either to poverty or stress.””

Watching the World Rot at Europe's Largest Tech Conference
via Instapaper

When her best friend died, she used artificial intelligence to keep talking to him - great story on memorial bots

“Memorial bots — even the primitive ones that are possible using today’s technology — seemed both inevitable and dangerous. “It’s definitely the future — I’m always for the future,” she said. “But is it really what’s beneficial for us? Is it letting go, by forcing you to actually feel everything? Or is it just having a dead person in your attic? Where is the line? Where are we? It screws with your brain.””

When her best friend died, she used artificial intelligence to keep talking to him
via Instapaper

The Future of Food - The Food of the Future: fascinating stuff!

“The Cultured Beef Project aims to create artificial meat in the laboratory. Technicians remove muscle cells from the shoulder of a cow, and feed the cells with a nutrient mix in a Petri dish, and they grow into muscle tissue. From a few starter cells one can derive tens of tons of meat. The whole world could be fed with meat from muscle cells grown in a lab.

In 2013 the cost of lab–grown meat for a hamburger was $325,000. By 2016 it had dropped to below $50. The biggest obstacle so far is not technology but the taste–that is unlike what people are used to because blood, fat, and connective tissue are missing. But researchers are working to improve that. The slogan of a similar company, Modern Meadow, says that the “future is cultured, not slaughtered”.”

The Future of Food - The Food of the Future - The Medical Futurist
via Instapaper

Troubling Study Says Artificial Intelligence Can Predict Who Will Be Criminals Based on Facial Features

“Kate Crawford, an AI researcher with Microsoft Research New York, MIT, and NYU, told The Intercept, “I‘d call this paper literal phrenology, it’s just using modern tools of supervised machine learning instead of calipers. It’s dangerous pseudoscience.”

Crawford cautioned that “as we move further into an era of police body cameras and predictive policing, it’s important to critically assess the problematic and unethical uses of machine learning to make spurious correlations,” adding that it’s clear the authors “know it’s ethically and scientifically problematic, but their ‘curiosity’ was more important.””

Troubling Study Says Artificial Intelligence Can Predict Who Will Be Criminals Based on Facial Features
via Instapaper