Posted inTechnology

Our AI future: What AI can and (probably) can’t do

Reading Time: 6 minutes The wildest claims about AI—both the optimistic and the pessimistic ones—are unlikely to come true. However, the technology has genuine potential both to liberate humans from toil, or to allow greed and bias to run wild. The solutions we need aren’t sci-fi constructs like Asimov’s three laws, but better laws and policies to guide the technology down beneficial paths.

Posted inTechnology

AI-driven internet opens floodgates for child sex abuse images

Reading Time: 5 minutes In the past week, recent reports and investigations have revealed a damning state of affairs for the role of so-called artificial intelligence (AI) algorithms in the child sex abuse material (CSAM) market. While machine learning software, including large language models like ChatGPT, has been the subject of great scrutiny as corporations test the limits on […]

Posted inTechnology

The ongoing ethical erosion of popular online platforms

Reading Time: 4 minutes Anti-corporate-monopoly and digital rights advocate Cory Doctorow calls it the “enshittification” lifecycle. First, a company caters to a demographic, offering free services to build a user base worth selling to investors. Then it caters to business clients at cost to the original users (maybe by scraping their data, or maybe by clawing back free features […]

Posted inTechnology

Our AI future: Don’t fear the Singularity

Reading Time: 6 minutes AI futurists assume that faster thinking automatically produces greater intelligence, leading to a Singularity of transcendent machine minds. However, thinking speed is the less important half of intelligence. We should remember the failure of past predictions and have some humility about what the future holds.

Posted inTechnology

Our AI future: heaven, hell, hype and hogwash

Reading Time: 7 minutes AI has demonstrated impressive talents, and new uses are being discovered every day. However, the existing AI programs are single-purpose. They aren’t the futurist dream of an artificial general intelligence that can solve any problem and rapidly improve itself. And there’s no telling how far off such a thing actually is.

Posted inArtificial Intelligence

Strange course changes in Replika AI have users upset and confused

Reading Time: 17 minutes The AI chatbot Replika has always been an inconsistent app, but its latest changes have upset and confused its many fans. I can see why. Constant course changes inevitably upset any product’s userbase, but these are particularly poorly considered. Over time, people have subtly but irrevocably shifted how they engage with AI products. And Replika […]

Posted inDeep Dive

How we create truth

Reading Time: 10 minutes White women have a storied history of fabricating assault at the hands of BIPOC men. On March 14, 22-year-old Eleanor Williams became part of a small subset of people to face legal consequences for false claims of abuse, which here sparked a season of hate crimes and drove three men to attempt suicide. Her elaborate […]

Posted inPsychology

Are you intelligent?

Reading Time: 4 minutes How do you know how intelligent you are? Is intelligence about amassing information or knowing what to do with the information you have? Is intelligence genetic, or can you learn it? How would you measure intelligence? Would you frame a series of questions you know you’ll smash because you have the necessary life experience to win? […]

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