Tag: futurism

Clues to Political anger in the shape of our Cities

It does ring true…

It was by looking at the working class that I was able to draw the geographic contours of peripheral France. The problem with urbanists is that they often begin with geography to get to people. I did exactly the opposite. And when you do that you come to realize that the majority of the working class in the West live in places that do not count anymore, that no longer exist culturally. That is why much of my focus is on that issue.

What is interesting is that the Western working class is no longer at the forefront of the economic model, and ultimately it finds itself geographically relegated. The real estate market creates the conditions for the presence of the people that business needs to function, and today the working class lives in places that matter the least. It is this economic rupture that leads to a cultural rupture, and eventually a very, very strong political rupture.

A French Thinker Diagnoses U.S. Political Anger – CityLab

Games are now way more than Games

While this link talks about Fortnite, it really speaks to a trend. Even if the fad of Fortnite passes, and another brand replaces it, the underlying trend will probably continue.
The sophistication of games, their free-form narrative structures, and the cost and ubiquity of devices are trends converging on a new reality — that games are becoming the new Social Networks. When you can chat with other players, share thrilling experiences, and integrate the game into your day wherever you are, it becomes clearer this is going to become a new language for players to connect through – the way  conversations about TV shows were for a previous generation.

A new technology is integrating itself into the culture, and everything from society to the economy is going to be affected.

The game is an excuse to stay connected

Source: Fortnite was 2018’s most important social network

What we get wrong about technology

Source: What we get wrong about technology — ft.com

The point of this article will be clear to anyone struggling to use new technology in current processes.

The article stops short of future predictions but the insights from the past are illuminating.

To become really transformative, Electricity required the reinvention of the the manufacturing process, worker skills, factory architecture and more. Just sticking an electric motor where a steam engine originally was, did very little.

The same way that replacing a typewriter with Email and Microsoft Word actually does very little in real terms.

Garbage in, Garbage out

Machine learns racial and gender biases embedded in human data.

Lets not assume AI will be evil or wise. AI see, AI do, like any monkey. At some point it may grow up and learn ‘good’ from ‘bad’ but thats debatable.

Machine learning algorithms are picking up deeply ingrained race and gender prejudices concealed within the patterns of language that humans commonly use, scientists say.

For instance, in the mathematical “language space”, words for flowers are clustered closer to words linked to pleasantness, while words for insects are closer to words linked to unpleasantness, reflecting common views on the relative merits of insects versus flowers.

The latest paper shows that some more troubling implicit biases seen in human psychology experiments are also readily acquired by algorithms. The words “female” and “woman” were more closely associated with arts and humanities occupations and with the home, while “male” and “man” were closer to maths and engineering professions.

And the AI system was more likely to associate European American names with pleasant words such as “gift” or “happy”, while African American names were more commonly associated with unpleasant words.

Source: AI programs exhibit racial and gender biases, research reveals

Blockchain cuts out the Middleman

The Internet decentralised information. The Blockchain will decentralise transactions.

“a 1% transaction fee may not seem like much, but down a 15-step supply chain, it adds up. […] The decentralization that blockchain provides would change that, which could have huge possible impacts for economies in the developing world”

Source: The Promise of Blockchain Is a World Without Middlemen

AI & The Future Of Civilization

Listening to Stephen Wolfram dismantle and Unpack complex ideas is always the most relaxing thing ever…after all the hysteria and scaremongering about AIs destroying humanity, this is a cool clear look at whats really going on. No Drama, no fuss.

I find the idea of the building of a language to help Humans and AI communicate with each other on a common platform and share a view of the world, as being very central to making real AI possible and relevant. Not, you know, the apocalypse.

Source: AI & The Future Of Civilization | Edge.org