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Posts Tagged ‘AI’

How Artificial Intelligence Will Reshape the Global Order

Posted by hkarner - 12. Juli 2018

Date: 11-07-2018
Source: Foreign Affairs By Nicholas Wright

The Coming Competition Between Digital Authoritarianism and Liberal Democracy

The debate over the effects of artificial intelligence has been dominated by two themes. One is the fear of a singularity, an event in which an AI exceeds human intelligence and escapes human control, with possibly disastrous consequences. The other is the worry that a new industrial revolution will allow machines to disrupt and replace humans in every—or almost every—area of society, from transport to the military to healthcare.

There is also a third way in which AI promises to reshape the world. By allowing governments to monitor, understand, and control their citizens far more closely than ever before, AI will offer authoritarian countries a plausible alternative to liberal democracy, the first since the end of the Cold War. That will spark renewed international competition between social systems. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »


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‚It’s going to create a revolution‘: how AI is transforming the NHS

Posted by hkarner - 6. Juli 2018

Date: 05-07-2018
Source: The Guardian

Scan of head in profile with tumour highlighted in red

Technology is making impressive inroads into cancer treatment, saving lives and money

The tumour is hard to miss on the scan. The size of a golf ball, it sits bold and white on the brain stem, a part of the organ that sends messages back and forth between body and brain. In many ways it is the master controller: from the top of the spinal cord, the brain stem conducts every heartbeat, every swallow, every breath.

For this young man, the cancer came to light in dramatic fashion. The growing tumour blocked fluid draining from his brain, triggering a huge seizure. Now doctors must work out the best way to treat him.

Raj Jena, a neuro-oncologist at Addenbrooke’s hospital in Cambridge, has pulled up the image to explain how doctors plan radiotherapy for patients. For a case like this he might need to study more than 100 images, each showing a thin slice of the brain. Then, image by image, Jena must carefully mark out the border of the tumour and the contours of sensitive brain regions that should be spared the radiotherapy beams: the hypothalamus, the pituitary gland, the pathways to the brain’s vision centres, for example. The process can take hours. But only once it is done can computers start calculating how to hit the tumour with radiotherapy beams without frazzling important parts nearby. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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China has the world’s most centralised internet system

Posted by hkarner - 2. Juli 2018

Date: 28-06-2018
Source: The Economist

A perfect example of a Hamiltonian internet for maximum control

THE HEADQUARTERS OF Western tech giants are typically horizontal affairs, in keeping with their supposedly flat corporate hierarchies. Facebook’s Silicon Valley campus is a jumble of two-storey buildings connected by parks and bridges. Google’s is a collection of dozens of separate structures spread over an entire neighbourhood in Mountain View. Employees commute between them on colourful bicycles.

By contrast, Tencent, China’s biggest tech titan, has gone fully vertical. Its brand new home consists of two office towers, 39 and 50 storeys high, which are among the tallest in the coastal city of Shenzhen. The only horizontal elements are three sky bridges connecting the towers, which boast facilities such as a running track and a rock-climbing wall. Once everyone has moved in, the buildings will accommodate more than 10,000 employees. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Tech World: Welcome to the Digital Revolution

Posted by hkarner - 22. Juni 2018

Date: 22-06-2018
Source: Foreign Affairs By Kevin Drum

Predicting the future is hard, so let’s start by explaining the past. What’s the best lens for evaluating the arc of world history during the nineteenth century? For starters, it’s the dawn of liberal democracy. The French have already guillotined their king, and a handful of John Locke enthusiasts across the Atlantic have established a nascent republic. In the United Kingdom, the philosopher John Stuart Mill is ably defending liberal democracy and human dignity. It’s starting to look like monarchy has had its day. Then there’s the laissez-faire capitalist revolution, starring such economists as Thomas Malthus and David Ricardo. Karl Marx is bringing economics to the proletariat.

The nineteenth century is also the height of Western empire and colonization. It’s the start of the era of total war. It’s the beginning of the decline of religion as a political force and its replacement with the rise of nationalism. It’s also, if one squints hard enough, the start of the era of human equality. Women demand equal rights in Seneca Falls, New York, and New Zealand becomes the first country to give them the vote. The United Kingdom outlaws the slave trade, the United States emancipates its slaves, and Russia frees its serfs.

So: democracy, capitalism, colonization, modern war, nationalism, and human equality. All of them vast in their implications, and all of them the catalyst for thousands of books.

And none of them mattered. When looking back today, the most important geopolitical feature of the nineteenth century is obvious: it was the era of the Industrial Revolution. Without it, there’s no rising middle class and no real pressure for democracy. There’s no capitalist revolution because agrarian states don’t need one. There’s no colonization at scale because there’s a hard limit to a nonindustrial economy’s appetite for raw materials. There’s no total war without cheap steel and precision manufacturing. And with the world still stuck largely in a culture and an economy based on traditional subsistence agriculture, there’s quite possibly no end to slavery and no beginning of feminism. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Erosion of Reality

Posted by hkarner - 19. Juni 2018

Date: 18-06-2018
Source: Scientific American By Caleb A. Scharf

The most immediate AI threat may be the distortion of truth; something we, and other species, have been doing for a long time

Let me say this upfront: I’m not convinced that ’superintelligent‘ AI are the most pressing threat from coming generations of deep learning machines. Indeed, the entire notion of superintelligence may be nothing more than a philosophical ‚what if‘ hypothesis. We simply do not know whether such a thing can in fact be made, developed, or evolved into existence – here on Earth or elsewhere in the cosmos.

Right now we don’t even have a convincing quantitative theory of intelligence. One that both tells us what we really mean by intelligence (‚oh look, it can open a can of beans‘) and tells us how intelligence actually scales with complexity, and whether or not there is a theoretical maximum.

It could be that intelligence follows an S-like curve-of-growth (a logistic function), like so many natural (and unnatural) phenomena. A logistic function or curve can start out with exponential growth, but then flattens or plateaus out as things saturate. A simple example is idealized population growth, where a rapid increase in the number of organisms plays off against the availability of food or resources, ultimately leveling off. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The Fed Can’t Save Jobs From AI and Robots

Posted by hkarner - 12. Juni 2018

Date: 11-06-2018
Source: The Wall Street Journal By Martin Feldstein

The central bank’s employment mandate can’t be squared with coming tech disruption.

The day is coming, experts tell us, when artificial intelligence and robotics will massively disrupt the labor market. Autonomous vehicles will put 3.5 million truck drivers at risk of losing their jobs. Checkout machines may replace 3.4 million retail cashiers. That is only the beginning of the long list of jobs that will be destroyed by technological change.

The shift will not happen all at once, and most of the people who lose their jobs will eventually find new employment. The benefits of automation will include lower production costs, which will increase real incomes and job-creating consumer demand. But the technology will also cause individual hardship and frequent periods of increased unemployment.

These large supply shocks cannot be offset by monetary policy. They therefore will present the Federal Reserve with a new challenge. In 1978 Congress gave the Fed a “dual mandate” of price stability and maximum employment. This distinguishes the Fed from the world’s other major central banks. The European Central Bank, the Bank of England and the Bank of Japan, for example, are required to target only the rate of inflation (although they may informally pay attention to the level of employment). Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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The world’s most powerful supercomputer is tailor made for the AI era

Posted by hkarner - 10. Juni 2018

Date: 09-06-2018
Source: Technology Review

The technology used to build America’s new Summit machine will also help us make the leap to exascale computing.

Since 2013, Chinese machines have occupied the number one slot in rankings of the world’s most powerful supercomputers. Now America is back on top again. Engineers at the US Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Lab in Tennessee have just unveiled Summit, a supercomputer with enough processing power to surpass the current record holder, China’s Sunway TaihuLight.

The new machine is capable, at peak performance, of 200 petaflops—200 million billion calculations a second. To put that in context, everyone on earth would have to do a calculation every second of every day for 305 days to crunch what the new machine can do in the blink of an eye. Summit is 60 percent faster than the TaihuLight and almost eight times as fast as a machine called Titan, which is also housed at Oak Ridge and held the US supercomputing speed record until Summit’s arrival.

But it isn’t just national pride that’s at stake here. Supercomputers are already being used in industry for everything from designing new aircraft to creating new materials. Others are employed by the military to design nuclear weapons, and by scientists to conduct fundamental research. If the most powerful one is in the US, American researchers and the country’s armed forces will have an extra edge. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Images aren’t everything: AI, radiology and the future of work

Posted by hkarner - 9. Juni 2018

Date: 07-06-2018
Source: The Economist

Clever machines will make workers more productive more often than they will replace them

RADIOLOGISTS, say the pessimists, will be first against the wall when the machines take over. Analysing medical images is a natural fit for “deep learning”, an artificial-intelligence (AI) technique which first attracted attention for its ability to teach computers to recognise objects in pictures. A variety of companies hope that bringing AI into the clinic will make diagnosis faster and cheaper. The machines may even be able to see nuances that humans cannot, assessing how risky a patient’s cancer is simply by looking at a scan.

Some AI researchers think that human beings can be dispensed with entirely. “It’s quite obvious that we should stop training radiologists,” said Geoffrey Hinton, an AI luminary, in 2016. In November Andrew Ng, another superstar researcher, when discussing AI’s ability to diagnose pneumonia from chest X-rays, wondered whether “radiologists should be worried about their jobs”. Given how widely applicable machine learning seems to be, such pronouncements are bound to alarm white-collar workers, from engineers to lawyers. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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Wenn der Roboter den Bankkunden hilft

Posted by hkarner - 26. Mai 2018

Bettina Pfluger, 25. Mai 2018, 12:00 derstandard.at

Roboter, künstliche Intelligenz und Livechat – wollen Banken am Ball bleiben und neue Zielgruppen erreichen, müssen sie mit der Zeit gehen

Stellen Sie sich vor, Sie gehen spätabends in ein Bankfoyer, um dort noch schnell Geldgeschäfte zu erledigen. Der Automat, den Sie bisher bedient haben, wurde neu designt und bietet nun mehr Services als früher. Sieht alles ein bisschen kompliziert aus. Jetzt heißt es: ja keinen Fehler machen, denn Personal, dem man jetzt noch Fragen stellen kann, ist keines mehr da. „In so einer Situation können Roboter den Mitarbeiter ersetzen“, sagt Martin Häring, Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) bei Finastra, einem Unternehmen für Finanzsoftware. Solche humanoiden Berater werden laut Häring die Mitarbeiter nicht bereits morgen ersetzt haben. Aber sie könnten außerhalb der Geschäftszeiten im Foyer stehen und dort für Hilfe sorgen. Dafür müssten sie nur noch stabiler werden, um gegen Vandalismus gefeit zu sein. Das alles kann in rund fünf Jahren so weit sein. „Die Roboter haben zudem eine Kamera in den Augen eingebaut mit Gesichts- und Mimikerkennung, daher könnten diese Roboter in einem geschützten Bereich im Foyer Kunden auch erkennen und ihnen ihren Kontostand sagen“, gibt Häring einen Einblick in die Bankwelt von morgen.

Digitale Bankenwelt

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Posted by hkarner - 25. Mai 2018

McKinsey Global Institute, May 2018

Automation and artificial intelligence (AI) are changing the nature of work. In this discussion paper, part of our ongoing research on the impact of technology on the economy, business, and society, we present new findings on the coming shifts in demand for workforce skills and how work is organized within companies, as people increasingly interact with machines in the workplace. We quantify time spent on 25 core workplace skills today and in the future for the United States and five European countries, with a particular focus on five sectors: banking and insurance, energy and mining, healthcare, manufacturing, and retail. Key findings:
Automation will accelerate the shift in required workforce skills we have seen over the past 15 years. Our research finds that the strongest growth in demand will be for technological skills, the smallest category today, which will rise by 55 percent and by 2030 will represent 17 percent of hours worked, up from 11 percent in 2016. This surge will affect demand for basic digital skills as well as advanced technological skills such as programming. Demand for social and emotional skills such as leadership and managing others will rise by 24 percent, to 22 percent of hours worked. Demand for higher cognitive skills will grow moderately overall, but will rise sharply for some of these skills, especially creativity.
Some skill categories will be less in demand. Basic cognitive skills, which include basic data input and processing, will decline by 15 percent, falling to 14 percent of hours worked from 18 percent. Demand for physical and manual skills, which include general equipment operation, will also drop, by 14 percent, but will remain the largest category of workforce skills in 2030 in many countries, accounting for 25 percent of the total hours worked. Skill shifts will play out differently across sectors. Healthcare, for example, will see a rising need for physical skills, even as demand for them declines in manufacturing and other sectors. Den Rest des Beitrags lesen »

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