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Contents contributed and discussions participated by dr tech

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Vast archive of tweets reveals work of trolls backed by Russia and Iran | Technology | ... - 0 views

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    "More than 10m tweets sent by state actors attempting to influence US politics have been released to the public, forming one of the largest archives of political misinformation ever collated.

    The database reveals the astonishing extent of two misinformation campaigns, which spent more than five years sowing discord in the US and had spillover effects in other national campaigns, including Britain's EU referendum."
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Chinese search firm Baidu joins global AI ethics body | Technology | The Guardian - 0 views

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    "The president of Baidu, Ya-Qin Zhang, said in a statement: "As AI technology keeps advancing and the application of AI expands, we recognise the importance of joining the global discussion around the future of AI. Ensuring AI's safety, fairness and transparency should not be an afterthought but rather highly considered at the onset of every project or system we build.""
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Tech workers are downing tools and refusing to work on unethical projects / Boing Boing - 0 views

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    "Tech workers are in demand: companies find it easier to raise cash than to hire engineers; this gives workers enormous bargaining power, and they're using it.

    From the Google uprisings over a Pentagon babykiller project and a Chinese surveillance project to the Microsoft uprising over ICE contracts, tech workers are emerging as part of the solution -- while their secretive, shareholder-haunted bosses are more and more the problem."
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Microsoft now faces a big Windows 10 quality test after botched update - The Verge - 0 views

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    "Microsoft has pulled its latest Windows 10 update offline after some users complained of missing files. It's the latest in a string of incidents with regular patches and Microsoft's larger Windows 10 updates that have been causing issues for some PC users this year. While Microsoft tests Windows 10 with millions of beta testers, there are signs that this public feedback loop isn't always working. Earlier this year Microsoft delayed its April 2018 Windows 10 update due to last minute Blue Screen of Death issues, and then had to fix desktop and Chrome freezing issues after it was shipped to more than 600 million machines. "
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california law bans automated bots that pretend to be human - 0 views

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    "california has banned bots that pretend to be human. under a newly signed bill, these bots will need to disclose their nature, making it clear to the user that they're conversing with a machine rather than a human. 

     

    according to a bill signed on friday by democratic gov. jerry brown, automated accounts, more commonly called 'bots', will need to disclose to customers that they're not real humans, according to reporting from PC magazine. the bill is part of a move that will help users avoid falling victim to automated messages selling goods or services in a commercial transaction or to influence a vote in an election."
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Female Nobel prize winner deemed not important enough for Wikipedia entry | Science | T... - 0 views

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    "Until around an hour and a half after the award was announced on Tuesday, the Canadian physicist Donna Strickland was not deemed significant enough to merit her own page on the user-edited encyclopedia.

    The oversight has once again highlighted the marginalization of women in science and gender bias at Wikipedia."
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Facebook's spam filter blocked the most popular articles about its 50m user breach / Bo... - 0 views

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    "The articles were so widely and quickly shared that they triggered Facebook's spam filters, which blocked the most popular stories about the breach, including an AP story and a Guardian story.

    There's no reason to think that Facebook intentionally suppressed embarrassing news about its own business. Rather, this is a cautionary tale about the consequences of content filtering on big platforms."
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Exclusive: Tim Berners-Lee tells us his radical new plan to upend the - 0 views

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    "The app, using Solid's decentralized technology, allows Berners-Lee to access all of his data seamlessly-his calendar, his music library, videos, chat, research. It's like a mashup of Google Drive, Microsoft Outlook, Slack, Spotify, and WhatsApp."
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Facebook Is Breached by Hackers, Putting 50 Million Users' Data at Risk - The New York ... - 0 views

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    "Three software flaws in Facebook's systems allowed hackers to break into user accounts, including those of the top executives Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, according to two people familiar with the investigation but not allowed to discuss it publicly. Once in, the attackers could have gained access to apps like Spotify, Instagram and hundreds of others that give users a way to log into their systems through Facebook."
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Want the platforms to police bad speech and fake news? The copyright wars want a word w... - 0 views

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    "EFF's Legal Director Corynne McSherry offers five lessons to keep in mind:

    1. (Lots of) mistakes will be made: copyright takedowns result in the removal of tons of legitimate content.

    2. Robots won't help: automated filtering tools like Content ID have been a disaster, and policing copyright with algorithms is a lot easier than policing "bad speech."

    3. These systems need to be transparent and have due process. A system that allows for automated instant censorship and slow, manual review of censorship gives a huge advantage to people who want to abuse the system.

    4. Punish abuse. The ability to censor other peoples' speech is no joke. If you're careless or malicious in your takedown requests, you should pay a consequence: maybe a fine, maybe being barred form using the takedown system.

    5. Voluntary moderation quickly becomes mandatory. Every voluntary effort to stem copyright infringement has been followed by calls to make those efforts mandatory (and expand them)."
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There's a literal elephant in machine learning's room / Boing Boing - 0 views

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    "FOLLOW US
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    Machine learning image classifiers use context clues to help understand the contents of a room, for example, if they manage to identify a dining-room table with a high degree of confidence, that can help resolve ambiguity about other objects nearby, identifying them as chairs.

    The downside of this powerful approach is that it means machine learning classifiers can be confounded by confusing, out-of-context elements in a scene, as is demonstrated in The Elephant in the Room, a paper from a trio of Toronto-based computer science academics."
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Machines will create 58 million more jobs than they displace by 2022, World Economic Fo... - 1 views

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    "The Future of Jobs Report arrives as the rising tide of automation is expected to displace millions of American workers in the long term and as corporations, educational institutions and elected officials grapple with a global technological shift that may leave many people behind. The report, published Monday, envisions massive changes in the worldwide workforce as businesses expand the use of artificial intelligence and automation in their operations. Machines account for 29 percent of the total hours worked in major industries, compared with 71 percent performed by people. By 2022, however, the report predicts that 42 percent of task hours will be performed by machines and 58 percent by people"
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Report: someone is already selling user data from defunct Canadian retailer's auctioned... - 0 views

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    "When Vancouver tech retailer NCIX went bankrupt, it stopped paying its bills, including the bills for the storage where its servers were being kept; that led to the servers being auctioned off without being wiped first, containing sensitive data -- addresses, phone numbers, credit card numbers, passwords, etc -- for thousands of customers. Also on the servers: tax and payroll information for the company's employees."
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OLIVE: a system for emulating old OSes on old processors that saves old data from extin... - 0 views

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    "is an experimental service from Carnegie Mellon University that stores images of old processors, as well as the old operating systems that ran on top of them, along with software packages for those old OSes; this allows users to access old data from obsolete systems inside simulations of the computers that originally ran that data, using the original operating systems and applications."
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Cloud computing and DRM: a match made in hell / Boing Boing - 0 views

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    "In a world of cloud computing, everything we do is governed by tens of thousands of words of legal fine-print (including the fine print that warned Mr da Silva that his movies might stop working if he changed the region associated with his Itunes account) that no one (including Mr da Silva, and you, and me) has ever, ever read (famously so!)."
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Instagram is supposed to be friendly. So why is it making people so miserable? | Techno... - 0 views

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    "But, for a growing number of users - and mental health experts - the very positivity of Instagram is precisely the problem. The site encourages its users to present an upbeat, attractive image that others may find at best misleading and at worse harmful. If Facebook demonstrates that everyone is boring and Twitter proves that everyone is awful, Instagram makes you worry that everyone is perfect - except you."
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The terrifying, hidden reality of Ridiculously Complicated Algorithms - 0 views

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    ""Weapons of math destruction" is how the writer Cathy O'Neil describes the nasty and pernicious kinds of algorithms that are not subject to the same challenges that human decision-makers are. Parole algorithms (not Jure's) can bias decisions on the basis of income or (indirectly) ethnicity. Recruitment algorithms can reject candidates on the basis of mistaken identity. In some circumstances, such as policing, they might create feedback loops, sending police into areas with more crime, which causes more crime to be detected."
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