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Mind Matters Reporting on Natural and Artificial Intelligence

Monthly Archive June 2019

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Ad Exec Quit the Industry Over Big Tech’s Relentless Snooping

He was shocked by the brazen attitude to invasion of privacy
As George Gilder warns, if social media are not charging us for the service, it is because we are the product. Their surveillance, in order to maintain profitability, becomes the price we pay for being the product. Read More ›
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How Much Difference Can AI Deep Fakes Really Make in Elections?

Maybe not much and that truth should make us uncomfortable
Lawmakers in a free society who are very concerned about deepfakes might want to specify exactly how they are more dangerous than innuendo and insinuation which, by their very nature, are much harder to detect and address. Read More ›
Brain under water 3D render, subconscious mental life and brainstorm idea.

Prominent Psychologist Offers Non-Reductive Approach to Consciousness in Journal Article

A new edition of Communications of the Blyth Institute highlights mind, consciousness, and machine learning

Rakover presents an initial sketch of a methodology that allows a better conceptualization of the method by which mental states get moved in and out of consciousness. The edition also features a review of Scott D. G. Ventureyra’s On the Origin of Consciousness.

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Will Facebook’s New Focus on “Community” Groups Prevent Abuses?

When you look a little closer at the proposal, you will see that the answer is no

Facebook's move to a more group-focused interface gives the appearance of stronger privacy and community orientation but the structure and logic of social media ensure that these are appearances rather than realities.

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Artificial intelligence electronic circuit. Microchip with glowing brain. 3D rendered illustration.

Science Uprising: Stop Ignoring Evidence for the Existence of the Human Mind!

Materialism enables irrational ideas about ourselves to compete with rational ones on an equal basis. It won’t work
If materialism were true, we would probably already have found the consciousness gene and the wobbly free will knob in the brain. Instead, we are left with the infamously Hard Problem of Consciousness and bizarre materialist attempts to make it Go Away. Read More ›
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Bacteria

McPathogens: Are McDonalds’ Order Kiosks Clean? Another Look

Can rebuttals exposing fake news be fake news themselves? Judge for yourself
I snapped a picture of a kiosk screen shown below during a recent visit to a McDonald’s in Waco, Texas. The picture is taken at an angle where smudge leavings are most visible. Read More ›
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Will Space Aliens Become a New Majority Religion?

Nearly as many young Americans believe in ET as in God, says religion prof

Popular culture is looking for high-tech ETs to be its saviors and Silicon Valley aspires to become those ETs. What could possibly go wrong?

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Old calculator
Detail of an old office machine used for calculations

Machine Learning Dates Back To at Least 300 BC

The key to machine learning is not machines but mathematics

Machine learning is not a new technique, but is simply a modern extension of a tool that we have had in our toolbox since the days of the Babylonians. It continues to serve us well to help us extrapolate our data to estimate the value of unknown results and to help find the signal in noisy data.

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In 2018, Sci-Fi Phoned the Seventies, It Seems…

…for high-tech overpopulation scares. How else to explain Avengers’ Thanos?, asks Eric Holloway
In last year’s Avengers movie Infinity War, the main villain is an alien named Thanos who kills half the population on each planet, to enable sustainability. Read More ›
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Close-up Of A Man's Hand Holding Mobile Phone Showing Electric Meter Reading And Holding Flashlight

Scientific American: No Consensus on Smartphones’ Effect on Teen Brains

Others continue to wonder why teens seem comparatively fragile
The editor's view is that "change is unceasing, and different does not necessarily mean worse – despite the fears of the “cluck-cluckers." We recommend several other sources for alternative context and background. Read More ›
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How Do You Explain That Machines Won’t Really Think Like People?

Computation cannot become non-computational thought but it is difficult to prove that something can’t happen.
Jonathan Bartlett notes that some analysts resort to roundabout methods of explaining the problem. Read More ›
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Does Workplace Automation Improve Service or Merely Cut Costs?

Chances are, the CEO won’t know there’s a problem until complaints come in. Elon Musk didn’t
Philosopher jay Richards argues that what really distinguishes humans is our capacity for developing creative freedom. If that capacity is automated out of a system, we can expect to hear about many avoidable failures. Read More ›
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Can AI Make Unique Trail-Blazing Science Discoveries?

It would save us a lot of time but, as Eric Holloway warns, some things can’t be automated, by their very nature
"What is needed is the happy medium of a model that is complex enough to learn, but simple enough to not memorize. There is no way to automate finding the happy medium. It requires human intelligence." Read More ›
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Sorry, Wired: That “Crafty Robot” Doesn’t Write in Languages It’s Never Seen

The artificial intelligence industry is overwhelmed with title inflation and feat hype
Headline hype obscures the researchers’ remarkable accomplishments while luring the unsuspecting to believe AI is more than it is and does more than it does. Read More ›
Girl hiding on the sea shore

Betraying Dietrich Bonhoeffer by Espousing Abortion

Bonhoeffer opposed abortion but the president of the Dietrich Bonhoeffer Institute argues for it
I treat very premature babies—they can feel excruciating pain, and colleagues who do fetal surgery always ensure that the fetus, as well as the mother, has sufficient anesthesia during the operation. Read More ›
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If You Think Common Sense Is Easy to Acquire…

Try teaching it to a state-of-the-art self-driving car. Start with snowmen.
No sensible driver would stop and wait for a snowman. But a self-driving car very well might. And it’s not only snowmen that challenge AI; it is a broad range of unexpected encounters. Read More ›
Sunrise at the valley of orange plantation..Beginning of a new day with optimistic thought,inspiration concept..

Seven Minutes to Goosebumps: Confronting Materialism Head On

A new short film series takes on materialism in science, including that of AI’s pop prophets
At the Bradley Center, we are open to discussing and reporting any such discovery but are also open to evidence leading to alternative explanations. Read More ›
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Philosopher: Gloom and doom over AI is “silly”

Jay Richards thinks that historian Yuval Noah Harari is wrong to think that AI will necessarily subvert democracy

The idea that machines are capable of replacing us is the topic of many books he has read but, he argues, the thing that really distinguishes us is the capacity for developing creative freedom.

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Can health tracking apps make us sicker?

Yes, if information overload leads to more anxiety
In the Information Age, we face a problem our ancestors did not face: far too much information. Our challenge is learning how to know when we have all the information we need to calmly make decisions we can live with. Read More ›
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Yes, There ARE Ghosts in the Machine

And one of them is you
You power AI whenever you prove your humanity to the CAPTCHA challenges overrunning the web. AI systems are not some alien brain evolving in our mids. They are machines we build and train by embedding our humanity into their programming. Read More ›