And the results are fascinating…
Archives For Artificial Intelligence
My friend Tim Brunelle recently gave a speech on creativity and the age of A.I. and automation. He wrote a 11 min read Medium piece on it that is so rich and full of quotes, it takes a couple reads through to realize its breadth and impact.
For starters, I love his point about how idea people are agitators that can be perceived as troublemakers. This is something I’ve learned a lot about myself in the past few years…
As Idea People, we are also agitators.
I’ll paraphrase Robert Grudin, who describes us in his book The Grace of Great Things, “Many [Idea People] initially are seen as troublemakers simply because their vigorous and uncompromising analysis exposes problems that previously had been ignored.”
Grudin warns that, “Creativity is dangerous. We cannot open ourselves to new insight without endangering the security of prior assumptions. Creative achievement”—and that’s what I believe all of us Idea People are all about — “Creative achievement is… an adventure. It’s pleasure is not the comfort of the safe harbor, but the thrill of the reaching sail.”
So onward we sail.
Tim goes on to discuss the problem of A.I. and automation stealing our jobs, and then his simple premise that rather than resist and fight it, we should learn how to enhance our own creativity using these new tools..
So I’m curious — what if you editors, you publishers, writers and designers thought of yourselves as technologists? How might your product evolve, what new products would emerge — from curious Idea People seeking to apply the benefits of AI to the sustained, periodic shipment of words, images and motion to subscribers?
I must admit I am not a scientist. I am not a software developer. I can’t spool up an artificial intelligence on Amazon Web Services. But I can ask questions and I can learn. In learning about AI and automation I’ve found I am not afraid of the future of Idea People. I’m bullish on our abilities to derive opportunity from the evolution of technology.
I believe the long term, passionate, purposeful thinkers in this room will discover unique, robust and profitable ways to benefit from automation and artificial intelligence. If we remain curious.
I think this is cogent advice for anyone in the creative industry or a role that requires any semblance of problem solving. Embracing emerging technology and learning to use it today pays long-term dividends.
Don’t fight the A.I. Become it’s master.
“The AI neither hates you, nor loves you, but you are made out of atoms that it can use for something else.”
–Eliezer Yudkowsky, A.I. theorist
The following predictions were made by Ray Kurzweil in his book The Singularity Is Near.
Kurzweil’s book Spiritual Machines significantly impacted my life and changed my career trajectory…
If you’re a fan of Sherry Turkle’s Alone Together, this will hit you in all the right places…
In many instances, the researchers observed children persistently obstructing the robot. Sometimes a child would step aside when asked by the robot, but then would quickly come back in front of it. Other children started ignoring the robot’s requests and just stood in front of it. In at least one situation (above), a child started to verbally express her intention to block the robot (“No-no”), when requested to move. Other children joined her in obstructing the robot and saying it couldn’t go through.
According to the study, “Escaping from Children’s Abuse of Social Robots,” obstruction like this wasn’t nearly the worst of it. The tots’ behavior often escalated, and sometimes they’d get violent, hitting and kicking Robovie (below). They also engaged in verbal abuse, calling the robot “bad words.” (The researchers did not disclose what bad words may have been used, but they mention that one kid called the robot “idiot” eight times.)
The researchers say they observed the children “acting violently” toward the robot in several occasions: Bending the neck, hitting with plastic bottle, hitting with ball, throwing a plastic bottle.
The Japanese group didn’t just document the bullying behavior, though; they wanted to find clever ways of helping the robot avoid the abusive situations. They started by developing a computer simulation and statistical model of the children’s abuse towards the robot, showing that it happens primarily when the kids are in groups and no adults are nearby.
Next, they designed an abuse-evading algorithm to help the robot avoid situations where tiny humans might gang up on it. Literally tiny humans: the robot is programmed to run away from people who are below a certain height and escape in the direction of taller people. When it encounters a human, the system calculates the probability of abuse based on interaction time, pedestrian density, and the presence of people above or below 1.4 meters (4 feet 6 inches) in height. If the robot is statistically in danger, it changes its course towards a more crowded area or a taller person. This ensures that an adult is there to intervene when one of the little brats decides to pound the robot’s head with a bottle (which only happened a couple times).