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Artificial Intelligence is Hard to See: Social & Ethical Impacts of AI

The big con­cerns that I have about arti­fi­cial intel­li­gence are real­ly not about the Singularity, which frankly com­put­er sci­en­tists say is…if it’s pos­si­ble at all it’s hun­dreds of years away. I’m actu­al­ly much more inter­est­ed in the effects that we are see­ing of AI now.

Virtual Futures Salon: Dawn of the New Everything, with Jaron Lanier

So here’s what hap­pened. If you tell peo­ple you’re going to have this super-open, absolute­ly non-commercial, money-free thing, but it has to sur­vive in this envi­ron­ment that’s based on mon­ey, where it has to make mon­ey, how does any­body square that cir­cle? How does any­body do any­thing? And so com­pa­nies like Google that came along, in my view were backed into a cor­ner. There was exact­ly one busi­ness plan avail­able to them, which was adver­tis­ing.

Virtual Futures Salon: Radical Technologies, with Adam Greenfield

I am pro­found­ly envi­ous of peo­ple who get to write about set­tled domains or sort of set­tled states of affairs in human events. For me, I was deal­ing with a set of tech­nolo­gies which are either recent­ly emerged or still in the process of emerg­ing. And so it was a con­tin­u­al Red Queen’s race to keep up with these things as they announce them­selves to us and try and wrap my head around them, under­stand what it was that they were propos­ing, under­stand what their effects were when deployed in the world.

Defying Faith

The chal­lenge for the Church and for the the­olo­gians was to say okay, per­haps that’s what is writ­ten. But for exam­ple if you con­sid­er that God has deliv­ered the Creation in sev­en days, know­ing that nowa­days Amazon can deliv­er every­thing on Earth overnight, it means that Jeff Bezos has defeat­ed God? Or does it mean some­thing dif­fer­ent? And I think it means prob­a­bly some­thing dif­fer­ent.

Virtual Futures Podcast #5: Electronic Waste, with Dani Ploeger

This idea of (re)performing the posthu­man was pret­ty much based on a desire to talk about the cyborg ten years after, or fif­teen years, twen­ty years after the Cyborg Manifesto and Katherine Hayles’ book became famous. And to really—yeah, to talk about maybe the nor­mal cyborg, the nor­mal tech­nol­o­gized body. You know, tech­nol­o­gy in the every­day and its impli­ca­tions for the way we per­ceive and expe­ri­ence our bod­ies.

The Conversation #51 — Phyllis Tickle

Historians get real­ly ner­vous about pat­terns. That’s chang­ing a bit now. And the truth of it is there’s not much way to avoid the 500-year cycle. You almost have to work too hard to unsay it, it’s so obvi­ous­ly there in every way. And if you say every 500 years we go through one, then you imme­di­ate­ly say we’re in the 21st cen­tu­ry and baby are we going through one.

Postcapitalism

Neoliberalism is bro­ken. The eco­nom­ic mod­el of the last thir­ty years. It worked for a bit, dragged the bot­tom two thirds of the world’s pop­u­la­tion up the income scale dra­mat­i­cal­ly, facil­i­tat­ed the tech rev­o­lu­tion. But it’s stopped work­ing.

The Stupefying Smart City

What I’m wor­ried about is that with the tech­no­log­i­cal tools that we have today, as in the past, our first use of them is the least inven­tive that we can make. And the issue is how urban­ists can actu­al­ly use these new tools well rather than use them in a way which is harm­ful.

Your Body is a Honeypot
Loving Out Loud When There’s No Place to Hide

We have to ask who’s cre­at­ing this tech­nol­o­gy and who ben­e­fits from it. Who should have the right to col­lect and use infor­ma­tion about our faces and our bod­ies? What are the mech­a­nisms of con­trol? We have gov­ern­ment con­trol on the one hand, cap­i­tal­ism on the oth­er hand, and this murky grey zone between who’s build­ing the tech­nol­o­gy, who’s cap­tur­ing, and who’s ben­e­fit­ing from it.

The Spawn of Frankenstein: Fear of the Unknown

It’s not the strange­ness of new tech­nolo­gies that fright­ens us but the way tech­nol­o­gy threat­ens to make us strangers to our­selves. In a semi-Freudian spir­it, then, I’d like to pro­pose that where Frankenstein and its spawn are con­cerned, our fear of the unknown may real­ly be about our dis­com­fort with know­ing.

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