The hackable technology that worries even a legendary con man

Before we release new technology into the ether, we need to make safeguards so that bad actors can't misuse them.

  • Right now cybercrime is basically a financial crime — it's a business of stealing people's money or stealing their data. Data has value.
  • We develop a lot of technology — we need to always ask the question how the new innovation can be misused and make safeguards so that it cannot be done.
  • Because we currently don't do these things, we have hackable vehicles, pacemakers, and laptops.
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Sponsored by the Institute for Humane Studies
  • The internet is parasitic on traditional media sources, says Keith Whittington. Traditional news outlets do the hard reporting to generate the facts and notable opinions that other outlets respond to.
  • The greatest challenge to truth in journalism is that social media presents news stories out of context; we no longer see news among other news articles, and we may only ever see the headline without the detail and nuance required.
  • Media institutions are working to tackle these challenges, but until then it is our responsibility as citizens and consumers to get smarter about how we navigate news feeds and the hyper-partisan press.
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AI: Our New Best Friend

The fourth wave of the Industrial Revolution is here. If change is led by the right people, we will have ethical machines, says Intel's Lama Nachman.

  • We're entering the fourth wave of the Industrial Revolution, says Genevieve Bell, cultural anthropologist and fellow at Intel. You can chart humanity's progress through four disruptive stages: Steam engine, electricity, computers, and now AI.
  • AI is already all around us, but what will it look like at scale? What will life be like when "suddenly all the objects around us are capable of action without us directing them?" asks Bell. Will fully scaled AI be a boon or an existential threat to humanity?
  • Speaking at The Nantucket Project, Lama Nachman, director of Intel's Anticipator Computing Lab, affirms her optimism. "My belief is that, really, ethical people and ethical researchers are the ones who are going to build ethical machines."
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Sponsored by the Institute for Humane Studies
  • For society to stay open and free, you don't need to eliminate prejudice. You need the opposite: All kinds of prejudice pitted against each other.
  • Intellectual diversity helps society as a whole learn the truth. And as long as society has rules that force ideas to be openly tested, the intolerant will not gain the upper hand.
  • "In America it's legal to be intolerant. It may not be right. It may not get you accepted or respected. But absolutely it's legal and it should be legal," says Jonathan Rauch.
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McDonald's wants to automate its drive-thrus with A.I.

The fast-food company recently agreed to acquire a tech company whose "speech-to-meaning" technology might soon be interpreting customers' orders.

  • McDonald's has agreed to acquire Apprente, whose speech recognition technology can supposedly understand complex orders.
  • McDonald's has acquired two other tech companies this year: one that updates drive-thru menus, and another that uses mobile apps to boost customer engagement.
  • The company hasn't said whether the new A.I. is likely to replace human workers.
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Etgar Keret (writer) – a tunnel dug under the prison floor

Etgar Keret's stories are as funny, painful, and surreal as life itself. We talk about the craziness of his native Israel, his new collection of short stories FLY ALREADY, marijuana, dementia, and much more.

Think Again Podcasts


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Machines probably aren’t interested in global takeover. Here’s why.

What most people worry about when it comes to artificial intelligence likely comes from science-fiction fantasy.

Videos
  • When someone says they fear artificial intelligence, what are they imagining? Robots taking over the world is the stuff of science-fiction fantasy.
  • Despite decades of beating humans at the game of Go, AI has never developed the desire to take over actual territory. The reality is that machines are not resourceful and have no interest in us.
  • Although AI plays an increasingly important role in our lives, we have a ways to go before deep learning and machines are solving all of our problems.
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The world needs carbon-neutral flying. Here’s how to bring it one step closer.

We need electric planes, sustainable aviation fuels, and hybrid propulsion now, not later.

Technology & Innovation

In the year when the Swedish word "flygskam" (flight-shaming) hit the news in Europe, public concern about carbon emissions from aviation is endangering the sector's social license to operate.

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