Inside Cuba’s D.I.Y. Internet Revolution

Posted by & filed under Civil Liberties, Cuba, Ethical Issues, IT and Politics.

Source: Wired Magazine Date: October 10th. 2017 Link: https://www.wired.com/2017/07/inside-cubas-diy-internet-revolution/ Discussion 1) “Every week, more than a terabyte of data is packaged into external hard drives known as el paquete semanal (“the weekly package”). It is the internet distilled down to its purest, most consumable, and least interactive form: its content. This collection of video, song, photo, and text files from the… Read more »

‘We’re all feeling Puerto Rico’s pain’: Tweets and social posts from disasters change how we help

Posted by & filed under Amazon, Ethical Issues, FaceBook.

Social media bombards us with news of natural disasters, and with that comes a risk of desensitization, as these increasingly frequent disasters become blurs of information in our feeds. But the technologies we rely on, on a daily basis, are also turning out to be critical tools for those trying to help — even from… Read more »

‘I’m sorry to hear that’: Why training Siri to be a therapist won’t be easy

Posted by & filed under Apple, Artificial intelligence, Ethical Issues.

We already turn to our smartphones for help with all sorts of tasks, such as checking the weather or getting directions. But could the next role for your hand-held device be as your therapist? Apple plans to make Siri, its digital assistant, better at responding to people’s mental-health issues — an ambition that has raised serious ethical… Read more »

Google’s Search Changes May Not Level Playing Field

Posted by & filed under Civil Liberties, Ethical Issues, Google, IT and Politics, IT and the law.

GOOGLE WILL ALLOW rivals to bid on coveted advertising spots that it previously reserved for itself at the top of product search results in Europe, but there are widespread doubts that the move will create meaningful competition. Source: Wired Magazine Date: September 28th, 2017 Link: https://www.wired.com/story/googles-search-changes-wont-really-level-playing-field/ Discussion 1) “Google’s plan to auction space at the top of search results… Read more »

Social media and censorship in China: how is it different to the West?

Posted by & filed under Censorship, China, Ethical Issues, ethics, IT and Politics.

China has disrupted WhatsApp in a censorship drive ahead of the government’s Communist Party meeting next month.  It has only been accessible through virtual private networks (VPNs) at times – but even some of them are being blocked.  Other social media platforms, which people in the West use every day, are also banned in mainland China.  Instead they’re replaced by… Read more »

Self-Driving Cars Will Kill People. Who Decides Who Dies?

Posted by & filed under Artificial intelligence, Automation, Emerging Technologies, Ethical Issues, IT and the law, self driving cars.

To understand the trolley problem, first consider this scenario: You are standing on a bridge. Underneath you, a railroad track divides into a main route and an alternative. On the main route, 50 people are tied to the rails. A trolley rushes under the bridge on the main route, hurtling towards the captives. Fortunately, there’s… Read more »

How Facebook knows you’re Jewish

Posted by & filed under Ethical Issues, FaceBook, IT and Politics, IT and the law.

Facebook is wishing some of its “Jewish” users a Happy New Year.  Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, began Wednesday evening — and some Facebook users received a celebratory message when they logged in. While the note was well received by some, others questioned how exactly the social network was aware of their religious affiliation. In some… Read more »

Using your face to buy your lunch

Posted by & filed under China, Civil Liberties, Emerging Technologies, Ethical Issues.

Chinese technology giant Alibaba has unveiled the first facial recognition system to pay for shopping – at a fast food restaurant. Amidst concerns about data privacy it insists none of the information it uses is retained. Source: BBC Technology News Date: September 7th, 2017 Link to video (1 minute 38 sec run time after 15 second ad in… Read more »

The surprising new strategy of pro-Russia bots

Posted by & filed under bots, Ethical Issues, Fake News, Twitter.

Co-ordinated groups of Twitter bots pushing pro-Russian propaganda have developed an odd but occasionally effective strategy – retweeting messages that the bot-makers disagree with and flooding their enemies with followers. Source: BBC Technology News Date: September 12th, 2017 Link: http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-trending-41203789 Discussion 1) Thinking of this from a digital marketing perspective, how could you use this methodology to help… Read more »

Apple reveals ‘leap forward’ iPhone X

Posted by & filed under Apple, Emerging Technologies, Entertainment, Ethical Issues, IT and the law, IT Trends.

Apple has revealed a high-end smartphone with an “edge-to-edge” screen that has no physical home button. The iPhone X – which is referred to as “ten” – uses a facial recognition system to recognise its owner rather than a fingerprint-based one. Source: BBC Technology News Date: September 12th, 2017 Link: http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-41228126 Discussion 1) Is it really a “leap… Read more »