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technology

The True (Energy) Cost of Artificial Intelligence

Context: Deep Learning’s Diminishing Returns Rolf Landauer coined the phrase that information is physical. The consequences being that all computation and sophisticated or automated statistical analysis at scale has similar costs, at scale. Diminishing returns is a function of the second law of thermodynamics. The article’s observation that “new approaches” are required is accurate. Are […]

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Philosophy technology

AI as Propaganda

Context: Attack Mannequins: AI as Propaganda An interesting article but the assertion of ideological counter-propaganda in this context is a bit of stretch. It projects much more structure, aptitude and volition to the behavioural and regulatory (as control/governance) systems than has ever actually existed. The assertion of all ideological positions requires a foil, an antithesis […]

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Philosophy

Distributed Intelligence

Intelligence is somewhat catastrophically problematised by our inability, from within the system, to ever fully capture or represent the system. From within language (and logic) we generate models as fantasies of complete and consistent truths that much more closely approximate to systems of belief that, similarly, simulate closure and completeness without ever being able to […]

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technology

Machine Intelligence as Criminal Mastermind?

Context: The Criminal Potential of Artificial Intelligence Beyond autonomous cybernetic system as tool or aperture of adversarial vulnerability lies the distinct possibility of AI as malevolent criminal mastermind. Notwithstanding the current paucity of anything even vaguely resembling Artificial General Intelligence, and regardless of our best (and worst) aspirations to benchmark and bootstrap this technology into […]

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technology

The Great American Novel will not be Automated

Context: The Great American Novel will not be written by a Computer It’s a great point and notwithstanding that hard-core reductionist types often enough give the piñata of John Searle’s Chinese Room a comprehensively passive aggressive thrashing with pitchforks and torches, it is an irreducible fact under the current ascendant paradigm. Semantic complexity in either […]

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Philosophy

Ethical Principles in AI: The Diversity of Approaches Masks a Unifying Truth

From the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University: “(…) this white paper and its associated data visualization compare the contents of thirty-six prominent AI principles documents side-by-side.” It is clearly an admirable endeavour. Note that: a simultaneously proliferating diversity of (re)sources and aggregation around key points reflects and illustrates more than […]

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Philosophy

Synthetic Biases

Context: What Is Synthetic Data? …and yet, with this – the bootstrap into virtualised abstraction becomes all but complete. Fascinating and clearly intersects with some of Jean Baudrillard’s observations on simulation, semiotics and reality. Training machine intelligence on data generated in virtual worlds solves some tricky problems but at what cost; where does the “real-world” […]

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Philosophy

AI: Big Data, Narrow Intelligence

Context: The False Philosophy Plaguing AI The (or at least a) problem here is that the ascendant technologies, frameworks, cultures and commercial incentives have inadvertently stumbled upon the constructive and recursively self-inflected sweet-spot through which those core assumptions themselves optimally self-propagate. If the incentives and rewards for developers, researchers and corporate or institutional entities find […]

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technology

Cybersecurity’s Endless Spinning Wheel

Context: Utah cyberattacks on the rise as millions paid out in new ‘double-extortion’ ransomware schemes Does there ever come a point at which the accelerating combinatorial complexity of this context transcends human aptitude to comprehend and mitigate the hyper-inflating entropy of the problem-space? I imagine that as long as human brains, incentives and motivations are […]

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Philosophy

Personal Data, Privacy and the Normative Ubiquity of Technological Self-Surveillance

An introspective taxonomy of labels and the grammatical order of participatory technology in – and as – systems of knowledge and control has always been the nature, kernel and subjective essence of personal identity. It is difficult to identify a particular inflection point at which this Linnean, categorical game evolved from constructive personal boundary and […]

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Philosophy

War

Sunday morning brought this little documentary gem of existential anxiety to my digital doorstep: The future of modern warfare: How technology is transforming conflict. Long gone are the days when a newspaper delivery, thrown from a footpath and having missed its mark might shatter our living room window, allowing us the superficially satisfying retort of […]

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Philosophy

Artificial General Intelligence

Context: Artificial general intelligence: Are we close, and does it even make sense to try? It seems to me that there is an unbridgeable discontinuity here between a belief in the ascendant utility of more data processed faster and the (at least superficially) antithetical systemic self-containment and enigmatic ontological bootstrap of a sentience that I […]