Options Techtonic with Mark Hurst: Playlist from August 12, 2019 Options

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Conversations with creators and thinkers who are charting the way forward in a tech-saturated society. Tech, community, video games, and whatever else is next.

Mondays 6 - 7pm (EDT) | On WFMU | 91.1, 90.1, 91.9 FM & wfmu.org
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Options August 12, 2019: Amy Webb, author of "The Big Nine," talks about AI and our future

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This week: Amy Webb, author, "The Big Nine: How the Tech Titans and Their Thinking Machines Could Warp Humanity"

This week: Amy Webb and a conversation about artificial intelligence.


The Big Nine: How the Tech Titans and Their Thinking Machines Could Warp Humanity, by Amy Webb

• On Twitter: @amywebb

The Great Hack, the excellent new documentary about Facebook and Cambridge Analytica, now on Netflix.

With $1 Billion From Microsoft, an A.I. Lab Wants to Mimic the Brain (NYT, July 22). Here's what it says about Sam Altman, previously of Y combinator: "at 34, he is the chief executive of OpenAI, the artificial intelligence lab he helped create in 2015 with Elon Musk, the billionaire chief executive of the electric carmaker Tesla... Since then, Mr. Altman has remade OpenAI, founded as a nonprofit, into a for-profit company so it could more aggressively pursue financing. Now he has landed a marquee investor," Microsoft...

DeepMind's Latest A.I. Health Breakthrough Has Some Problems, by Julia Powles (August 6): "Streams, then, seems typical of DeepMind's way of working. It offers few overall gains in clinical outcomes, creates anxiety and additional workload for physicians, and was built on the back of deeply controversial access to patients' data."

A.I. Ethics Boards Should Be Based on Human Rights, by Evan Selinger (June 20)

Small Businesses Aren't Rushing Into AI (WSJ, June 9): "Microsoft, Google are coming up with machine-learning tools for small and medium-size firms."

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Artist Track Album Label Images Approx. start time
  Amy Webb discusses her book "The Big Nine" and how AI will help determine the future of the world.
Tomaš Dvořák  Game Boy Tune   Options Machinarium Soundtrack  No label 
  Mark's intro      
0:00:05 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
  Interview with Amy Webb      
0:06:58 (MP3 | Pop‑up)
Shooby Taylor  The Theme   Options Shooby Taylor, The Human Horn  Shooby Taylor Prods. 
0:52:14 (MP3 | Pop‑up)

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Listener comments!

  6:00pm melinda:

Hi everyone!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:00pm ultradamno:

Hello Mark! Genuine Techelligentsia!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:01pm Mark Hurst:

Hi melinda, ultra!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:01pm listener james from westwood:

Evening, Mark and all!
Avatar 6:01pm geezerette:

Approaching with dread. Howdy, Mark and pals!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm Webhamster Henry:

Hello friends!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm chresti:

Hi Techtonica!
  6:02pm sufferwords:

do it
  6:02pm melinda:

That was a great exit for Scott before going on vacation, with the joyous Country Roads instrumental.
Avatar 6:02pm βrian:

First time back in months. 5 o'clock is a difficult time.

I'm already scared ...
Avatar 6:02pm northguineahills:

I could use a tonic & tech, hopefully it will be the perfect cocktail right now....
  6:02pm Dave Miss:

Happy August tech-ies
Avatar 6:02pm Bas NL:

Mark! Human Intelligence-ists!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm chresti:

  6:02pm melinda:

AI makes me uncomfortable.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:02pm Phillippe Bastille:

Hi Mark and gang
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:03pm chris:

hey, Mark and folks. oh boy, AI time... let's do this.
Avatar 6:03pm TDK60:

Hey there, been elsewhere a lot recently.
Avatar 6:03pm geezerette:

Chresti, ha! yep!
  6:04pm sufferwords:

The Great Hack was scariest movie I ever saw
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:05pm Webhamster Henry:

I wrote a rules engine may years ago - that was If-Then-Else, for sure!
Avatar 6:05pm βrian:

The Artificial Intelligentsia serves any master.
Avatar 6:06pm geezerette:

Chresti, every artist I know has been bugging me for years to join fb and I just freeze at the threshold every time.
Avatar 6:07pm northguineahills:

Anyone else remembers the Warp Recs Artifuicial Intelligence comps from the early-mid 90s?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:07pm chris:

i thought The Great Hack was well put together; eye and mind opening. i recommend it to anyone. especially, if they're still using fb.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:08pm Webhamster Henry:

My copy of GPT-2 says: In deciding which of the 9 technological stars to project, it is important to realize, at this point in history, that each one is a reaction unto human beings' response to the alien threat. The matrix is constantly monitoring us to see if we respond to the world, but past history reveals that when humanity sees only six artificial energetic systems discovering the truth, its reaction is militantly disingenuous. Technology is gaining understanding, and awareness of its meaning is rising, but it is still a bit scary.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:10pm Mark Hurst:

Hi all, thanks for logging in - Webhamster Henry, is GPT-2 the OpenAI language definition?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:11pm Franco Twinkie:

So, last Friday we plugged the phone into rental car and used google maps for the first time to get us to some vague place in West Oakland. It worked! However, it became a unrelenting bossy shrew all the way thru the Altamont Pass. I would never by choice listen to that horrid voice again.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:11pm Mark Hurst:

And welcome back after awhile, @Brian and @TDK60!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:14pm Webhamster Henry:

GPT-2 , with a somewhat constrained NLP model, is an openai project. github.com...
You can feed it a prompting paragraph and it will bounce around in its multidimensional vocabulary matrix and create sentences that somewhat hang together. It can even answer questions if it can match your question closely enough.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:14pm chresti:

I found that not being able to argue with the G map voice very unsatisfying
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:14pm Webhamster Henry:

@Franco Twinkie: RETURN TO THE ROUTE!
  6:18pm JakeGould:

Has anyone asked Jeeves anything lately?
Avatar 6:19pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

John C. Lilly - 'Metaprogramming in the Human Biocomputer'...
What does your guest think of the progress of Quantum Computing? & it's implications on say Encryption , AI - & everything she's discussing....
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:19pm ultradamno:

I know You Tube is now insistent that I'm going to be a fan of coldwave band from eastern europe in the early eighties.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:19pm Franco Twinkie:

Google maps did not prevent us from stopping at a mall in Pleasanton, and me getting a truly mediocre cheeseburger, so what the hell good is it?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:20pm Webhamster Henry:

Netflix gave a prize for the algorithm that could improve its suggestions in 2009: en.wikipedia.org...
I think they are just using unstructured ML at this point.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:20pm ultradamno:

Deep Mind...now that's a soft, cuddly name you can't imagine ending the world in a science fiction dystopia
  6:22pm JakeGould:

If (Hun.Buns == true) {
My.Anaconda.Want = true;

There, I made a Sir Mix-A-Lot AI.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:22pm Webhamster Henry:

This person does not exist:
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:23pm ultradamno:

"Help this AI continue to dream"

Yep. I'm not clicking that.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:23pm chris:

at one point, and it may still be the case, for netflix, problems with recommendations are due to categorizing the available shows. all spaceship science fiction shows and movies are not created equal, for instance.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:24pm chris:

nice one, JG. :)
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:24pm Ken From Hyde Park:

They should start AI on lab rats and monkeys first and move on to humans when it's proven viable.
Avatar 6:25pm geezerette:

Franco@6:19: heh! :)
Avatar 6:26pm geezerette:

I do not want to be "cared for" by a damn robot.
  6:26pm JakeGould:

“It was the best of times, it was the blurst of times…”
Avatar 6:26pm geezerette:

ha ha!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:27pm Webhamster Henry:

Well, there's now a complete model of a fruit fly brain right now.
  6:28pm JakeGould:

@WebhamsterHenry: DJ Fruit Fly brain would be a good overnight DJ.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:29pm Webhamster Henry:

@JakeGould WFMU already has Owlsun on the Ichiban stream!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:31pm Travisano66:

We could see your point of disagreement with the speaker coming a mile away. I'm surprised you were able to wait until she finished speaking to express your different view. Kudos.
Avatar 6:32pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Intelligence (distinct from Consciousness) as Leggo. Hierarchecal systems where each Level is built of component Units of the level below... & no human grasps the Totality of it... It's coincident with our Evolution. We're monkeys that Use Things - & have complex societies & communication
....but every Adaptation can become a Maladaptation - if it endangers survival in the environment - if it even endangers the environment itself... The question is does our species have other capacities to weigh against it - like Widom to use things harmoniously....
Avatar 6:33pm Bas NL:

For the Greater Loot...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:33pm Mark Hurst:

Thanks, @Travisano.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:34pm chresti:

Right, Bas
  6:35pm DJ Fruitfly Maggot Brain:

Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:36pm chresti:

Avatar 6:36pm Bas NL:

For one thing, i would have little use for a system that beats in in every game.. what's the fun in that?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:37pm Franco Twinkie:

Last week in SF I found a copy of Beer Cans On The Mood by Ed Sanders. It has a song on it called Yodeling Robot. Said robot falls in love with Dolly Parton. Apocryphal? The record came out in 1972.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:40pm Franco Twinkie:

Avatar 6:40pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Keep coming back to Webz & AI being Public Utilities
- but also the tightest Monopolies there have ever been.
What resolution could there possibly be ??
Avatar 6:43pm geezerette:

The Trojan horses and shiny wampum were accepted by all of long ago. An enormous amount of propaganda,(i.e.advertising,Wired etc.) was employed to pacify, flatter, seduce and intimidate all of us to accept these gifts.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:44pm chresti:

I fear that the goal of maximum profit and domination would lead to a worst case, catastrophic outcome
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:44pm ultradamno:

Amazon Workers Attempting Walkout Enter 7th Hour Wandering In Ever-Expanding, Labyrinthian Warehouse www.theonion.com...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:45pm Webhamster Henry:

I see health care records being as backward compatible as Microsoft Word documents.#cassandra
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:45pm chris:

HIPAA regulations in the us require the ability to exchange medical records between providers
  6:46pm JakeGould:

@WebhamsterHenry: They would probably still have legacy code to keep dates compatible with “Lotus 1-2-3” date formatting.
  6:46pm JakeGould:

@Chris: Have you ever had to deal with that bullshit in the real world? It’s messy and leaky.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm chris:

no, not really Jake. i've heard good stories of success, but not the ones of failure
  6:48pm JakeGould:

Regulations without teeth are concepts.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:48pm Franco Twinkie:

Geezer, I too was brow beat by well meaning friends to raise my profile by signing on to fb and instagram. I just ignored everybody.
  6:49pm N. Ron Hubble:

No racists in AI?! https://www.thestranger.com/news/2017/10/04/25451102/we-snuck-into-seattles-super-secret-white-nationalist-convention
Avatar 6:49pm geezerette:

Avatar 6:49pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Fear of Socialism manifested everything Feared of Socialism. Essentially One Party Cryptocracy...
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:50pm chris:

there was an expensive investigation quite some time ago between the company i work for and the VA. it worked... but was expensive to get to a working point. this was prior to HIPAA and just as HL7 standard was being developed.
  6:50pm JakeGould:

@Chris: Many places require documents be handed over physically and in person. Just imagine dealing with jumping between faculties—it’s always more than one—if you are sick.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:50pm ultradamno:

Isn't that kind of the problem of Myanmar? Where, lack of competition has lead to Facebook as essentially being the internet?
  6:51pm JakeGould:

In general, most people in the U.S. don’t fully grasp how amazing universal healthcare would be. It would allow for the ideal situation of health data access and such as well as everything else.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:51pm chris:

healthcare in the us is a sad, sad thing, imho.
Avatar 6:51pm geezerette:

Franco, same here and they all think I'm a little backward.
  6:52pm Phil:

This woman is a genius.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:53pm chris:

there are many hospitals and providers in NY that use Epic EMR, making data access between places much, much easier.
Avatar 6:53pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

Exactly Ultrad - Monopolies. Imagine if we could choose companies - who could challenge the products of the Nine....
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:53pm Franco Twinkie:

I am backward! So fucking what?
Avatar 6:53pm geezerette:

Thanks once again, Mark. Very worthwhile program.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:54pm Webhamster Henry:

Ray Kurzweil says (cautions) that learning is an exponentially growing process, so the fact that AI seems dinky and trivial now is no harbinger of how it will be in a year or two . www.kurzweilai.net
Avatar 6:54pm Bas NL:

Thanks Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:54pm chris:

thanks, Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:54pm Mark Hurst:

Thanks, everyone!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Ken From Hyde Park:

Maybe we should start with artificial stupidity and work our way backwards?
Avatar 6:55pm Dan Bodah:

Great interview Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:55pm Franco Twinkie:

Mark, thank you for leading the charge of refuseniks.
Avatar 6:55pm geezerette:

Franco, exactly!
  6:56pm JakeGould:

¿ʇɐɥʍ ƃuᴉʞɔnɟ oS ¡pɹɐʍʞɔɐq ɯɐ I
Avatar 6:56pm Revolution Rabbit Nov63:

W Henry - what has happened with Tech that could possibly make someone think it's gonna slow down ??
Avatar 6:56pm geezerette:

Jake, :D
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:56pm Travisano66:

Someone get that man a real horn an make him stop.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:56pm Mark Hurst:

Thanks, Franco. I just think people deserve better options than the monopolies we have now!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:57pm chresti:

Thanks Mark!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:57pm Franco Twinkie:

Ha! Brilliant!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:57pm chris:

!sdrawkcab eb
  6:57pm JakeGould:

Yuck fou!
Avatar 6:58pm geezerette:

T shirt, Chris & Jake!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm ultradamno:

How often does a human horn change his reed?
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm Ken From Hyde Park:

This has been an Irwin Chusid production!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm chresti:

Bizzaro World!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 6:58pm Mark Hurst:

This is the lead-in to Vocal Fry!
Avatar 6:58pm geezerette:

  6:59pm mrmikestandsir:

Man, this year takes me back to the 90s
Avatar 6:59pm geezerette:

Ken FHP, hilarious!
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:00pm Travisano66:

This is why mothers should not be able to tell their grown children that they're good at things.
Avatar Swag For Life Member 7:01pm Ken From Hyde Park:

More Shooby Taylor info: www.keyofz.com...
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