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Do we want to live in a world where our ‘best friends’ are AI chatbots?

Before the internet, before smart phones, teenagers and young people would seek out quizzes in comics, read problem pages in girls magazines and watch television for advice on how to be themselves. Young people would share a love of pop stars, fashion and musical trends with each other in attempt to find an identity as they were growing up. Today, we are reportedly in times of extended adolescence...[Read More]

Apple HomePod is already losing the smart speaker battle

The war for your digital home is waging. Apple has finally followed Amazon, Google and Microsoft by launching a smart speaker with a voice-controlled artificial intelligence assistant. Yet even though the “HomePod” is another technological marvel, there’s a chance Apple is already losing the battle. The competition isn’t just through the sound quality of the speaker – but the other things that use...[Read More]

Are autonomous cars really safer than human drivers?

Much of the push toward self-driving cars has been underwritten by the hope that they will save lives by getting involved in fewer crashes with fewer injuries and deaths than human-driven cars. But so far, most comparisons between human drivers and automated vehicles have been at best uneven, and at worst, unfair. The statistics measuring how many crashes occur are hard to argue with: More than 90...[Read More]

Artificial intelligence is the weapon of the next Cold War

It is easy to confuse the current geopolitical situation with that of the 1980s. The United States and Russia each accuse the other of interfering in domestic affairs. Russia has annexed territory over U.S. objections, raising concerns about military conflict. As during the Cold War after World War II, nations are developing and building weapons based on advanced technology. During the Cold War, t...[Read More]

Killer robots, free will and the illusion of control

Control. We all like to think we have it, but is it all just an illusion? It might seem like a very existential question but it plays an important part in our acceptance of new technologies, especially when it comes to robots. Even if we personally aren’t in control of something, we often like to comfort ourselves that someone else is. Humans have free will and empathy and we trust that we will ma...[Read More]

Take a trip through the real virtual world with Lenovo’s Mirage Solo

Lenovo brought a collection of new devices to CES 2018, including a set of devices aimed at making (virtual) reality better. The most interesting of these are the Mirage Solo Headset and Camera as well as the Lenovo C220 smart glasses. Show me the VR The Lenovo Mirage Solo is a virtual reality headset, based on Google’s Daydream technology, which combines immersive VR with a simple-to-use de...[Read More]

Will artificial intelligence become conscious?

Forget about today’s modest incremental advances in artificial intelligence, such as the increasing abilities of cars to drive themselves. Waiting in the wings might be a groundbreaking development: a machine that is aware of itself and its surroundings, and that could take in and process massive amounts of data in real time. It could be sent on dangerous missions, into space or combat. In additio...[Read More]

5 Things you can expect from Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 845 chip

This year the Snapdragon 835 chip was the belle of the ball for Android phone makers. The flagship phones from Samsung, LG, OnePlus and about 100 others — with the notable exceptions of Apple and Huawei, who like to do their own thing — all used it. Next year it’s going to be inclusion of the 845 that marks phones, tablets, virtual reality headsets and some laptops as being on th...[Read More]

Explainer: how the latest earphones translate languages

In the Hitchhiker’s Guide to The Galaxy, Douglas Adams’s seminal 1978 BBC broadcast (then book, feature film and now cultural icon), one of the many technology predictions was the Babel Fish. This tiny yellow life-form, inserted into the human ear and fed by brain energy, was able to translate to and from any language. Web giant Google have now seemingly developed their own version of the Babel Fi...[Read More]

Jobs and robots: bracing for technological disruptions to come

Rapid advances in artificial intelligence and the rapid adoption of robots across diverse industries are stalking the fear of jobless growth. Responses to these developments have focused on what to do to ensure that robots don’t steal jobs. Bill Gates, for example, has called for the taxing of robots that take away jobs. This has elicited responses from leading economists, such as Larry Summers (f...[Read More]

What should governments be doing about the rise of Artificial Intelligence?

There is little doubt that Artificial Intelligence (AI) is transforming almost every facet of human life. How far this transformation will go and what the full ramifications for society will be are still unknown but this hasn’t prevented people from making both optimistic and dire predictions. Elon Musk’s call for AI regulation has been matched by equal calls for governments not to. AI’s problem w...[Read More]

Will technology take your job? More of us are safer than we thought, but not all

We all want to know how many jobs will be threatened by the rise of robots and technology. You might feel vulnerable if your job is one that could be affected. But thanks to a new report, 27% of the 160 million people in the United States labour force can breathe easier knowing their jobs are safer than they thought. That’s 43 million living, breathing and working people in America. By extension, ...[Read More]

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