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Who Is Responsible When Autonomous Systems Fail?

 Originally published in CIGIonline.org, June 15, 2020 Elaine Herzberg was killed on the night of March 18, 2018, after she was struck by a self-driving Uber car in Tempe, Arizona. Herzberg was crossing the street with her bike when the vehicle, which was operating in its autonomous mode, failed to accurately classify her moving body

An Algorithm That ‘Predicts’ Criminality Based on a Face Sparks a Furor

 Originally published in Wired.com, June 24, 2020 Its creators said they could use facial analysis to determine if someone would become a criminal. Critics said the work recalled debunked “race science.” In early May, a press release...

Big Tech Companies Back Away From Selling Facial Recognition to Police. That’s Progress.

 Originally published in Vox, June 11, 2020. After IBM, Amazon, and Microsoft upend their facial recognition businesses, attention turns to federal lawmakers. Microsoft president Brad Smith announced on Thursday that his company did not sell facial recognition...

New Facial Recognition Tech Only Needs Your Eyes and Eyebrows

 Originally published in OneZero, May 7, 2020 You won’t be able to hide behind a mask The term “facial recognition” typically refers to technology that can identify your entire face. How that recognition happens can vary, and...

Here’s How Amazon Alexa Will Recognize When You’re Frustrated

 Originally published in OneZero, Sept 27, 2019 OneZero spoke to Rohit Prasad, chief scientist for Alexa, about the new tone-detecting feature. Amazon knows that Alexa doesn’t get everything right, so the virtual personal assistant is picking up...

Research Summary: Health Care, Capabilities, and AI Assistive Technologies

 Originally published in MAIEI, May 3, 2020. The adoption of AI-enabled solutions in the healthcare industry has accelerated with the ongoing pandemic and while there are a lot of concerns raised, most quite aptly, there is a...

Want to Find a Misinformed Public? Facebook’s Already Done It

 Originally published in The Markup, April 23, 2020. While vowing to police COVID-19 misinformation on its platform, Facebook let advertisers target users interested in “pseudoscience.” Last week, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wrote a post pledging to combat...

Specification Gaming: The Flip Side of AI Ingenuity

 Orginally published in Deep Mind, April 21, 2020. Specification gaming is a behaviour that satisfies the literal specification of an objective without achieving the intended outcome. We have all had experiences with specification gaming, even if not...

8 Things That Algorithms Can Do Better Than Humans

 We humans like to think that we are at the top of the evolutionary hierarchy. However, it is increasingly becoming clear that algorithms can execute some tasks better and more judiciously than humans can, or ever will...

Whole Foods is Reportedly Using a Heat Map to Track Stores at Risk of Unionization

 Originally published in The Verge, April 20, 2020 The heat map apparently uses more than two dozen different metrics to track which Whole Foods stores may unionize. The heat map focuses on monitoring three main areas: “external...

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