The implications of new mind-reading technologies that discovers what we find most attractive

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What if technology could help you discover what you found most attractive, in people, art, or your environment?

In Alfred Bester’s SF novel The Deceivers, Demi Jeroux evolves her appearance to match what her lover finds most attractive.

Now existing in real life, a recent paper Brain-computer interface for generating personally attractive images describes the process of identifying what people find the most attractive.
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Touch typing is still a vital productivity skill but will that continue?

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When I was a teenager my father encouraged me to learn to touch type, in those days this being on electric typewriters. His rationale was that if I was preparing my resume I wouldn’t be able to give it to the typing pool to do. Needless to say I have benefited from his encouragement greatly over many years, in more ways than preparing my resume.
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How do we know when AI becomes conscious and deserves rights?

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Machines becoming conscious, self-aware, and having feelings would be an extraordinary threshold. We would have created not just life, but conscious beings.

There has already been massive debate about whether that will ever happen. While the discussion is largely about supra-human intelligence, that is not the same thing as consciousness.

Now the massive leaps in quality of AI conversational bots is leading some to believe that we have passed that threshold and the AI we have created is already sentient.

An article in Washington Post The Google engineer who thinks the company’s AI has come to life tells the story of a member of Google’s Responsible AI team, Blake Lemoine, who has become convinced that the Google’s (Language Model for Dialogue Applications) LaMDA chatbot platform has become sentient, and after being placed on administrative leave by Google, ‘blew the whistle’ to media.
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Beyond Zoom fatigue: next generation 3D and holographic calls

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I was recently interviewed on the Sunrise breakfast TV program on the next phase of video calling, which will shift to far more immersive technologies.

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Responsible AI: selecting degrees of transparency and highlighting potential for bias

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As the power of AI soars, the ethics of how we use AI is becoming an increasingly pressing issue, which as a futurist I speak about frequently.

In working with the intelligent automation company Pega I have learned about some of their extremely interesting approaches to ‘Responsible AI’.
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The race heats up between Facebook and Apple to create the next big thing after smartphones

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News is just out that Facebook has locked up an exclusive deal with microLED leader Plessey to supply next-generation micro displays to power augmented reality glasses. Read on for the context and implications…

Beyond smartphones will likely be smartglasses

After the TV and desktop came the laptop and tablet and then the smartphone. The progress of our interfaces with technology and information will not end here. The most obvious contender for the immediate successor to the smartphone is some form of augmented reality glasses.

I have been writing about the potential of augmented reality glasses for over a decade, even being honored at the top of a list of ‘failed’ tech predictions for the 2010s for my prognostications in late 2009 of AR as a core form of human augmentation.
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AI-written articles will force humans to improve the quality of their writing

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This year has seen massive advances in article writing by AI. The Open AI Institute released its GPT-2 article generator last month after earlier in the year saying it was too dangerously powerful to release to the public. You can try it with small text seeds here.
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Will Apple’s AR glasses be as transformative as the iPhone?

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Augmented reality indubitably has the potential to transform our interface with technology and information.

Virtual reality can potentially take us into extraordinary realms, but always away from our everyday reality. Augmented reality (AR) can and will be woven into our everyday.

It is inevitable that AR will, in time, be a major way for us to access and interact with information.
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6 key elements of strategy for emerging technologies

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Over the last 7 days I have done the keynote at the Oracle Impact conferences in Melbourne, Brisbane and Auckland on the topic of Technology Leadership in an Accelerating World.

The events were centered around emerging technologies, particularly AI, IoT and Blockchain, and how these can be applied in a business environment.

The central theme of my keynote was the role of the senior technology executives in working with the business leaders to understand and seize the emerging opportunities from new technologies.

The slides to my presentation are below, as always with the disclaimer that were designed to support my keynote, not to stand alone.
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How will a pedestrian’s death shape the future of autonomous cars?

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Yesterday morning I was interviewed on the Today show on the implications of an Uber driverless car killing a pedestrian in Phoenix, Arizona. The segment is below.

The big picture

It is truly tragic that 1.3 million people are killed every year by automobile accidents (heavily weighted to developing countries, putting into context the already devastating death toll of for example 30,000 in the USA and 1,200 in Australia). By one analysis 94% of these deaths are caused by human error.
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