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AI News Stories

We worry AI will "eliminate jobs" and make millions redundant, rather than recognise that the real decisions are made by governments and corporations and the humans that run them.Kenan Malik


Artificial Intelligence (AI) is emerging technology with great promise and potential for abuse. Below are key excerpts of revealing news articles on AI technology from reliable news media sources. If any link fails to function, a paywall blocks full access, or the article is no longer available, try these digital tools.

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Are your kids being spied on? The rise of anti-cheating software in US schools
2024-04-18, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-05-26 20:43:21
https://www.theguardian.com/education/2024/apr/18/us-schools-anti-cheating-so...

In the middle of night, students at Utah’s Kings Peak high school are wide awake – taking mandatory exams. Their every movement is captured on their computer’s webcam and scrutinized by Proctorio, a surveillance company that uses artificial intelligence. Proctorio software conducts “desk scans” in an effort to catch test-takers who turn to “unauthorized resources”, “face detection” technology to ensure there isn’t anybody else in the room to help and “gaze detection” to spot anybody “looking away from the screen for an extended period of time”. Proctorio then provides visual and audio records to Kings Peak teachers with the algorithm calling particular attention to pupils whose behaviors during the test flagged them as possibly engaging in academic dishonesty. Such remote proctoring tools grew exponentially during the pandemic, particularly at US colleges and universities. K-12 schools’ use of remote proctoring tools, however, has largely gone under the radar. K-12 schools nationwide – and online-only programs in particular – continue to use tools from digital proctoring companies on students ... as young as kindergarten-aged. Civil rights activists, who contend AI proctoring tools fail to work as intended, harbor biases and run afoul of students’ constitutional protections, said the privacy and security concerns are particularly salient for young children and teens, who may not be fully aware of the monitoring or its implications. One 2021 study found that Proctorio failed to detect test-takers who had been instructed to cheat. Researchers concluded the software was “best compared to taking a placebo: it has some positive influence, not because it works but because people believe that it works, or that it might work.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on AI and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


These cities bar facial recognition tech. Police still found ways to access it.
2024-05-18, Washington Post
Posted: 2024-05-26 20:41:20
https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2024/05/18/facial-recognition-law-enf...

As cities and states push to restrict the use of facial recognition technologies, some police departments have quietly found a way to keep using the controversial tools: asking for help from other law enforcement agencies that still have access. Officers in Austin and San Francisco — two of the largest cities where police are banned from using the technology — have repeatedly asked police in neighboring towns to run photos of criminal suspects through their facial recognition programs. In San Francisco, the workaround didn’t appear to help. Since the city’s ban took effect in 2019, the San Francisco Police Department has asked outside agencies to conduct at least five facial recognition searches, but no matches were returned. SFPD spokesman Evan Sernoffsky said these requests violated the city ordinance and were not authorized by the department, but the agency faced no consequences from the city. Austin police officers have received the results of at least 13 face searches from a neighboring police department since the city’s 2020 ban — and have appeared to get hits on some of them. Facial recognition ... technology has played a role in the wrongful arrests of at least seven innocent Americans, six of whom were Black, according to lawsuits each of these people filed after the charges against them were dismissed. In all, 21 cities or counties and Vermont have voted to prohibit the use of facial recognition tools by law enforcement.

Note: Crime is increasing in many cities, leading to law enforcement agencies appropriately working to maintain public safety. Yet far too often, social justice takes a backseat while those in authority violate human rights. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption and artificial intelligence from reliable major media sources.


I tried the new Google. Its answers are worse.
2024-04-01, Washington Post
Posted: 2024-05-13 18:58:00
https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2024/04/01/new-ai-google-search-sge/

Have you heard about the new Google? They “supercharged” it with artificial intelligence. Somehow, that also made it dumber. With the regular old Google, I can ask, “What’s Mark Zuckerberg’s net worth?” and a reasonable answer pops up: “169.8 billion USD.” Now let’s ask the same question with the “experimental” new version of Google search. Its AI responds: Zuckerberg’s net worth is “$46.24 per hour, or $96,169 per year. This is equivalent to $8,014 per month, $1,849 per week, and $230.6 million per day.” Google acting dumb matters because its AI is headed to your searches sooner or later. The company has already been testing this new Google — dubbed Search Generative Experience, or SGE — with volunteers for nearly 11 months, and recently started showing AI answers in the main Google results even for people who have not opted in to the test. To give us answers to everything, Google’s AI has to decide which sources are reliable. I’m not very confident about its judgment. Remember our bonkers result on Zuckerberg’s net worth? A professional researcher — and also regular old Google — might suggest checking the billionaires list from Forbes. Google’s AI answer relied on a very weird ZipRecruiter page for “Mark Zuckerberg Jobs,” a thing that does not exist. The new Google can do some useful things. But as you’ll see, it sometimes also makes up facts, misinterprets questions, [and] delivers out-of-date information. This test of Google’s future has been going on for nearly a year, and the choices being made now will influence how billions of people get information.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on AI technology from reliable major media sources.


Palmer Luckey says Anduril is working on AI weapons that 'give us the ability to swiftly win any war'
2024-03-28, Business Insider
Posted: 2024-04-08 23:15:46
https://www.businessinsider.in/tech/news/palmer-luckey-says-anduril-is-workin...

A Silicon Valley defense tech startup is working on products that could have as great an impact on warfare as the atomic bomb, its founder Palmer Luckey said. "We want to build the capabilities that give us the ability to swiftly win any war we are forced to enter," he [said]. The Anduril founder didn't elaborate on what impact AI weaponry would have. But asked if it would be as decisive as the atomic bomb to the outcome of World War II he replied: "We have ideas for what they are. We are working on them." In 2022, Anduril won a contract worth almost $1 billion with the Special Operations Command to support its counter-unmanned systems. Anduril's products include autonomous sentry towers along the Mexican border [and] Altius-600M attack drones supplied to Ukraine. All of Anduril's tech operates autonomously and runs on its AI platform called Lattice that can easily be updated. The success of Anduril has given hope to other smaller players aiming to break into the defense sector. As an escalating number of global conflicts has increased demand for AI-driven weaponry, venture capitalists have put more than $100 billion into defense tech since 2021, according to Pitchbook data. The rising demand has sparked a fresh wave of startups lining up to compete with industry "primes" such as Lockheed Martin and RTX (formerly known as Raytheon) for a slice of the $842 billion US defense budget.

Note: Learn more about emerging warfare technology in our comprehensive Military-Intelligence Corruption Information Center. For more, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in the military and in the corporate world from reliable major media sources.


Deep underground, robotic teamwork saves the day
2023-07-20, Knowable Magazine
Posted: 2024-04-08 22:59:37
https://knowablemagazine.org/content/article/technology/2023/deep-underground...

When a Manhattan parking garage collapsed in April this year, rescuers were reluctant to stay in the damaged building, fearing further danger. So they used a combination of flying drones and a doglike walking robot to inspect the damage, look for survivors and make sure the site was safe for human rescuers to return. Soon, rescuers may be able to call on a much more sophisticated robotic search-and-rescue response. Researchers are developing teams of flying, walking and rolling robots that can cooperate to explore areas that no one robot could navigate on its own. And they are giving robots the ability to communicate with one another and make many of their own decisions independent of their human controller. Such teams of robots could be useful in other challenging environments like caves or mines where it can be difficult for rescuers to find and reach survivors. In cities, collapsed buildings and underground sites such as subways or utility tunnels often have hazardous areas where human rescuers can’t be sure of the dangers. As robots become better, teams of them may one day be able to go into a hazardous disaster site, locate survivors and report back to their human operators with a minimum of supervision. “More work ... needs to be done,” [roboticist Viktor] Orekhov says. “But at the same time, we’ve seen the ability of the teams advanced so rapidly that even now, with their current capabilities, they’re able to make a significant difference in real-life environments.”

Note: Explore more positive stories like this in our comprehensive inspiring news articles archive focused on solutions and bridging divides.


Elon Musk v OpenAI: tech giants are inciting existential fears to evade scrutiny
2024-03-10, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-04-01 19:51:56
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2024/mar/10/ai-wont-destroy-us-but-...

In 2015, the journalist Steven Levy interviewed Elon Musk and Sam Altman, two founders of OpenAI. A galaxy of Silicon Valley heavyweights, fearful of the potential consequences of AI, created the company as a non-profit-making charitable trust with the aim of developing technology in an ethical fashion to benefit “humanity as a whole”. Musk, who stepped down from OpenAI’s board six years ago ... is now suing his former company for breach of contract for having put profits ahead of the public good and failing to develop AI “for the benefit of humanity”. In 2019, OpenAI created a for-profit subsidiary to raise money from investors, notably Microsoft. When it released ChatGPT in 2022, the model’s inner workings were kept hidden. It was necessary to be less open, Ilya Sutskever, another of OpenAI’s founders and at the time the company’s chief scientist, claimed in response to criticism, to prevent those with malevolent intent from using it “to cause a great deal of harm”. Fear of the technology has become the cover for creating a shield from scrutiny. The problems that AI poses are not existential, but social. From algorithmic bias to mass surveillance, from disinformation and censorship to copyright theft, our concern should not be that machines may one day exercise power over humans but that they already work in ways that reinforce inequalities and injustices, providing tools by which those in power can consolidate their authority.

Note: Read more about the dangers of AI in the hands of the powerful. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on media manipulation and the disappearance of privacy from reliable sources.


Emotion-tracking AI on the job: Workers fear being watched – and misunderstood
2024-03-06, Yahoo News
Posted: 2024-03-18 19:33:53
https://finance.yahoo.com/news/emotion-tracking-ai-job-workers-133506859.html

Emotion artificial intelligence uses biological signals such as vocal tone, facial expressions and data from wearable devices as well as text and how people use their computers, promising to detect and predict how someone is feeling. Over 50% of large employers in the U.S. use emotion AI aiming to infer employees’ internal states, a practice that grew during the COVID-19 pandemic. For example, call centers monitor what their operators say and their tone of voice. We wondered what workers think about these technologies. My collaborators Shanley Corvite, Kat Roemmich, Tillie Ilana Rosenberg and I conducted a survey. 51% of participants expressed concerns about privacy, 36% noted the potential for incorrect inferences employers would accept at face value, and 33% expressed concern that emotion AI-generated inferences could be used to make unjust employment decisions. Despite emotion AI’s claimed goals to infer and improve workers’ well-being in the workplace, its use can lead to the opposite effect: well-being diminished due to a loss of privacy. On concerns that emotional surveillance could jeopardize their job, a participant with a diagnosed mental health condition said: “They could decide that I am no longer a good fit at work and fire me. Decide I’m not capable enough and not give a raise, or think I’m not working enough.” Participants ... said they were afraid of the dynamic they would have with employers if emotion AI were integrated into their workplace.

Note: The above article was written by Nazanin Andalibi at the University of Michigan. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


The AI firm that conducted ‘state surveillance’ of your social media posts
2023-06-03, The Telegraph (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-02-26 13:49:37
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2023/06/03/logically-ai-firm-social-media-po...

An industrial estate in Yorkshire is an unlikely location for ... an artificial intelligence (AI) company used by the Government to monitor people’s posts on social media. Logically has been paid more than £1.2 million of taxpayers’ money to analyse what the Government terms “disinformation” – false information deliberately seeded online – and “misinformation”, which is false information that has been spread inadvertently. It does this by “ingesting” material from more than hundreds of thousands of media sources and “all public posts on major social media platforms”, using AI to identify those that are potentially problematic. It has a £1.2 million deal with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), as well as another worth up to £1.4 million with the Department of Health and Social Care to monitor threats to high-profile individuals within the vaccine service. It also has a “partnership” with Facebook, which appears to grant Logically’s fact-checkers huge influence over the content other people see. A joint press release issued in July 2021 suggests that Facebook will limit the reach of certain posts if Logically says they are untrue. “When Logically rates a piece of content as false, Facebook will significantly reduce its distribution so that fewer people see it, apply a warning label to let people know that the content has been rated false, and notify people who try to share it,” states the press release.

Note: Read more about how NewsGuard, a for-profit company, works closely with government agencies and major corporate advertisers to suppress dissenting views online. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and media manipulation from reliable sources.


‘A privacy nightmare’: the $400m surveillance package inside the US immigration bill
2024-02-06, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2024-02-12 19:31:26
https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2024/feb/06/us-immigration-bill-mexico-bo...

The $118bn bipartisan immigration bill that the US Senate introduced on Sunday is already facing steep opposition. The 370-page measure, which also would provide additional aid to Israel and Ukraine, has drawn the ire of both Democrats and Republicans over its proposed asylum and border laws. But privacy, immigration and digital liberties experts are also concerned over another aspect of the bill: more than $400m in funding for additional border surveillance and data-gathering tools. The lion’s share of that funding will go to two main tools: $170m for additional autonomous surveillance towers and $204m for “expenses related to the analysis of DNA samples”, which includes those collected from migrants detained by border patrol. The bill describes autonomous surveillance towers as ones that “utilize sensors, onboard computing, and artificial intelligence to identify items of interest that would otherwise be manually identified by personnel”. The rest of the funding for border surveillance ... includes $47.5m for mobile video surveillance systems and drones and $25m for “familial DNA testing”. The bill also includes $25m in funding for “subterranean detection capabilities” and $10m to acquire data from unmanned surface vehicles or autonomous boats. As of early January, CBP had deployed 396 surveillance towers along the US-Mexico border, according to the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

Note: Read more about the secret history of facial recognition technology and undeniable evidence indicating these tools do much more harm than good. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


In the name of ‘fake news,’ NewsGuard extorts sites to follow the government narrative
2023-12-10, New York Post
Posted: 2024-01-08 20:59:33
https://nypost.com/2023/12/10/opinion/newsguard-extorts-sites-to-follow-the-g...

An opaque network of government agencies and self-proclaimed anti-misinformation groups ... have repressed online speech. News publishers have been demonetized and shadow-banned for reporting dissenting views. NewsGuard, a for-profit company that scores news websites on trust and works closely with government agencies and major corporate advertisers, exemplifies the problem. NewsGuard’s core business is a misinformation meter, in which websites are rated on a scale of 0 to 100 on a variety of factors, including headline choice and whether a site publishes “false or egregiously misleading content.” Editors who have engaged with NewsGuard have found that the company has made bizarre demands that unfairly tarnish an entire site as untrustworthy for straying from the official narrative. In an email to one of its government clients, NewsGuard touted that its ratings system of websites is used by advertisers, “which will cut off revenues to fake news sites.” Internal documents ... show that the founders of NewsGuard privately pitched the firm to clients as a tool to engage in content moderation on an industrial scale, applying artificial intelligence to take down certain forms of speech. Earlier this year, Consortium News, a left-leaning site, charged in a lawsuit that NewsGuard’s serves as a proxy for the military to engage in censorship. The lawsuit brings attention to the Pentagon’s $749,387 contract with NewsGuard to identify “false narratives” regarding the war [in] Ukraine.

Note: A recent trove of whistleblower documents revealed how far the Pentagon and intelligence spy agencies are willing to go to censor alternative views, even if those views contain factual information and reasonable arguments. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of news articles on corporate corruption and media manipulation from reliable sources.


‘The Gospel’: how Israel uses AI to select bombing targets in Gaza
2023-12-01, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-12-11 16:57:01
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/dec/01/the-gospel-how-israel-uses-ai-t...

Israel’s military has made no secret of the intensity of its bombardment of the Gaza Strip. There has, however, been relatively little attention paid to the methods used by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) to select targets in Gaza, and to the role artificial intelligence has played in their bombing campaign. After the 11-day war in Gaza in May 2021, officials said Israel had fought its “first AI war” using machine learning and advanced computing. The latest Israel-Hamas war has provided an unprecedented opportunity for the IDF to use such tools in a much wider theatre of operations and, in particular, to deploy an AI target-creation platform called “the Gospel”, which has significantly accelerated a lethal production line of targets. In early November, the IDF said “more than 12,000” targets in Gaza had been identified by its target administration division. Aviv Kochavi, who served as the head of the IDF until January, has said the target division is “powered by AI capabilities” and includes hundreds of officers and soldiers. According to Kochavi, “once this machine was activated” in Israel’s 11-day war with Hamas in May 2021 it generated 100 targets a day. “To put that into perspective, in the past we would produce 50 targets in Gaza per year. Now, this machine produces 100 targets a single day, with 50% of them being attacked.” A separate source [said] the Gospel had allowed the IDF to run a “mass assassination factory” in which the “emphasis is on quantity and not on quality”.

Note: Read about Israel's use of AI warfare since at least 2021. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on war from reliable major media sources.


AI doesn’t cause harm by itself. We should worry about the people who control it
2023-11-26, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-12-04 14:35:03
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2023/nov/26/artificial-intelligence...

OpenAI was created as a non-profit-making charitable trust, the purpose of which was to develop artificial general intelligence, or AGI, which, roughly speaking, is a machine that can accomplish, or surpass, any intellectual task humans can perform. It would do so, however, in an ethical fashion to benefit “humanity as a whole”. Two years ago, a group of OpenAI researchers left to start a new organisation, Anthropic, fearful of the pace of AI development at their old company. One later told a reporter that “there was a 20% chance that a rogue AI would destroy humanity within the next decade”. One may wonder about the psychology of continuing to create machines that one believes may extinguish human life. The problem we face is not that machines may one day exercise power over humans. That is speculation unwarranted by current developments. It is rather that we already live in societies in which power is exercised by a few to the detriment of the majority, and that technology provides a means of consolidating that power. For those who hold social, political and economic power, it makes sense to project problems as technological rather than social and as lying in the future rather than in the present. There are few tools useful to humans that cannot also cause harm. But they rarely cause harm by themselves; they do so, rather, through the ways in which they are exploited by humans, especially those with power.

Note: Read how AI is already being used for war, mass surveillance, and questionable facial recognition technology.


Moderna is spying on you
2023-11-27, Lee Fang on Substack
Posted: 2023-12-04 14:20:18
https://www.leefang.com/p/moderna-is-spying-on-you

The Moderna misinformation reports, reported here for the first time, reveal what the pharmaceutical company is willing to do to shape public discourse around its marquee product. The mRNA COVID-19 vaccine catapulted the company to a $100 billion valuation. Behind the scenes, the marketing arm of the company has been working with former law enforcement officials and public health officials to monitor and influence vaccine policy. Key to this is a drug industry-funded NGO called Public Good Projects. PGP works closely with social media platforms, government agencies and news websites to confront the “root cause of vaccine hesitancy” by rapidly identifying and “shutting down misinformation.” A network of 45,000 healthcare professionals are given talking points “and advice on how to respond when vaccine misinformation goes mainstream”, according to an email from Moderna. An official training programme, developed by Moderna and PGP, alongside the American Board of Internal Medicine, [helps] healthcare workers identify medical misinformation. The online course, called the “Infodemic Training Program”, represents an official partnership between biopharma and the NGO world. Meanwhile, Moderna also retains Talkwalker which uses its “Blue Silk” artificial intelligence to monitor vaccine-related conversations across 150 million websites in nearly 200 countries. Claims are automatically deemed “misinformation” if they encourage vaccine hesitancy. As the pandemic abates, Moderna is, if anything, ratcheting up its surveillance operation.

Note: Strategies to silence and censor those who challenge mainstream narratives enable COVID vaccine pharmaceutical giants to downplay the significant, emerging health risks associated with the COVID shots. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


The Future of AI Is War
2023-07-17, The Nation
Posted: 2023-07-23 15:24:30
https://www.thenation.com/article/world/artificial-intelligence-us-military/

Though once confined to the realm of science fiction, the concept of supercomputers killing humans has now become a distinct possibility. In addition to developing a wide variety of "autonomous," or robotic combat devices, the major military powers are also rushing to create automated battlefield decision-making systems, or what might be called "robot generals." In wars in the not-too-distant future, such AI-powered systems could be deployed to deliver combat orders to American soldiers, dictating where, when, and how they kill enemy troops or take fire from their opponents. In its budget submission for 2023, for example, the Air Force requested $231 million to develop the Advanced Battlefield Management System (ABMS), a complex network of sensors and AI-enabled computers designed to ... provide pilots and ground forces with a menu of optimal attack options. As the technology advances, the system will be capable of sending "fire" instructions directly to "shooters," largely bypassing human control. The Air Force's ABMS is intended to ... connect all US combat forces, the Joint All-Domain Command-and-Control System (JADC2, pronounced "Jad-C-two"). "JADC2 intends to enable commanders to make better decisions by collecting data from numerous sensors, processing the data using artificial intelligence algorithms to identify targets, then recommending the optimal weapon ... to engage the target," the Congressional Research Service reported in 2022.

Note: Read about the emerging threat of killer robots on the battlefield. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


Fantasy fears about AI are obscuring how we already abuse machine intelligence
2023-06-11, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-07-17 15:11:40
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2023/jun/11/big-tech-warns-of-threa...

A young African American man, Randal Quran Reid, was pulled over by the state police in Georgia. He was arrested under warrants issued by Louisiana police for two cases of theft in New Orleans. The arrest warrants had been based solely on a facial recognition match, though that was never mentioned in any police document; the warrants claimed "a credible source" had identified Reid as the culprit. The facial recognition match was incorrect and Reid was released. Reid ... is not the only victim of a false facial recognition match. So far all those arrested in the US after a false match have been black. From surveillance to disinformation, we live in a world shaped by AI. The reason that Reid was wrongly incarcerated had less to do with artificial intelligence than with ... the humans that created the software and trained it. Too often when we talk of the "problem" of AI, we remove the human from the picture. We worry AI will "eliminate jobs" and make millions redundant, rather than recognise that the real decisions are made by governments and corporations and the humans that run them. We have come to view the machine as the agent and humans as victims of machine agency. Rather than seeing regulation as a means by which we can collectively shape our relationship to AI, it becomes something that is imposed from the top as a means of protecting humans from machines. It is not AI but our blindness to the way human societies are already deploying machine intelligence for political ends that should most worry us.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on police corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


'Ways of Being' Review: Whole Earth Network
2022-06-17, Wall Street Journal
Posted: 2023-07-17 14:59:13
https://www.wsj.com/articles/ways-of-being-book-review-whole-earth-network-11...

The artist, writer and technologist James Bridle begins "Ways of Being" with an uncanny discovery: a line of stakes tagged with unfathomable letters and numbers in thick marker pen. The region of [Greece] is rich in oil, we learn, and the company that won the contract to extract it from the foothills of the Pindus mountains is using "cognitive technologies" to "augment ... strategic decision making." The grid of wooden stakes left by "unmarked vans, helicopters and work crews in hi-vis jackets" are the "tooth- and claw-marks of Artificial Intelligence, at the exact point where it meets the earth." "Ways of Being" sets off on a tour of the natural world, arguing that intelligence is something that "arises ... from thinking and working together," and that "everything is intelligent." We hear of elephants, chimpanzees and dolphins who resist and subvert experiments testing their sense of self. We find redwoods communicating through underground networks. In the most extraordinary result of all, in 2014 the Australian biologist Monica Gagliano showed that mimosa plants can remember a sudden fall for a month. Ever since the Industrial Revolution, science and technology have been used to analyze, conquer and control. But "Ways of Being" argues that they can equally be used to explore and augment connection and empathy. The author cites researchers studying migration patterns with military radar and astronomers turning telescopes designed for surveillance on Earth into instruments for investigating the dark energy of the cosmos.

Note: Read a thought-provoking article featuring a video interview with artist and technologist James Bridle as he explores how technology can be used to reflect the innovative and life-enhancing capacities of non-human natural systems. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mysterious nature of reality from reliable major media sources.


AI makes non-invasive mind-reading possible by turning thoughts into text
2023-05-01, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-05-15 15:48:26
https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2023/may/01/ai-makes-non-invasive-mind...

An AI-based decoder that can translate brain activity into a continuous stream of text has been developed, in a breakthrough that allows a person’s thoughts to be read non-invasively for the first time. The decoder could reconstruct speech with uncanny accuracy while people listened to a story – or even silently imagined one – using only fMRI scan data. Previous language decoding systems have required surgical implants. Large language models – the kind of AI underpinning OpenAI’s ChatGPT ... are able to represent, in numbers, the semantic meaning of speech, allowing the scientists to look at which patterns of neuronal activity corresponded to strings of words with a particular meaning rather than attempting to read out activity word by word. The decoder was personalised and when the model was tested on another person the readout was unintelligible. It was also possible for participants on whom the decoder had been trained to thwart the system, for example by thinking of animals or quietly imagining another story. Jerry Tang, a doctoral student at the University of Texas at Austin and a co-author, said: “We take very seriously the concerns that it could be used for bad purposes and have worked to avoid that. We want to make sure people only use these types of technologies when they want to and that it helps them.” Prof Tim Behrens, a computational neuroscientist ... said it opened up a host of experimental possibilities, including reading thoughts from someone dreaming.

Note: This technology has advanced considerably since Jose Delgado first stopped a charging bull using radio waves in 1965. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on mind control and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Schools Are Pouring Millions Into AI-Powered Weapon Detection Systems. Do They Work?
2023-05-07, The Intercept
Posted: 2023-05-15 15:40:38
https://theintercept.com/2023/05/07/ai-gun-weapons-detection-schools-evolv/

As school shootings proliferate across the country — there were 46 school shootings in 2022, more than in any year since at least 1999 — educators are increasingly turning to dodgy vendors who market misleading and ineffective technology. Utica City is one of dozens of school districts nationwide that have spent millions on gun detection technology with little to no track record of preventing or stopping violence. Evolv’s scanners keep popping up in schools across the country. Over 65 school districts have bought or tested artificial intelligence gun detection from a variety of companies since 2018, spending a total of over $45 million, much of it coming from public coffers. “Private companies are preying on school districts’ worst fears and proposing the use of technology that’s not going to work,” said Stefanie Coyle ... at the New York Civil Liberties Union. In December, it came out that Evolv, a publicly traded company since 2021, had doctored the results of their software testing. In 2022, the National Center for Spectator Sports Safety and Security, a government body, completed a confidential report showing that previous field tests on the scanners failed to detect knives and a handgun. Five law firms recently announced investigations of Evolv Technology — a partner of Motorola Solutions whose investors include Bill Gates — looking into possible violations of securities law, including claims that Evolv misrepresented its technology and its capabilities to it.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption from reliable major media sources.


Big Tech Companies Are Becoming More Powerful Than Nation-States
2023-04-25, Common Dreams
Posted: 2023-05-15 15:33:27
https://www.commondreams.org/opinion/big-tech-companies-more-powerful-than-na...

U.S. citizens are being subjected to a relentless onslaught from intrusive technologies that have become embedded in the everyday fabric of our lives, creating unprecedented levels of social and political upheaval. These widely used technologies ... include social media and what Harvard professor Shoshanna Zuboff calls "surveillance capitalism"—the buying and selling of our personal info and even our DNA in the corporate marketplace. But powerful new ones are poised to create another wave of radical change. Under the mantle of the "Fourth Industrial Revolution," these include artificial intelligence or AI, the metaverse, the Internet of Things, the Internet of Bodies (in which our physical and health data is added into the mix to be processed by AI), and my personal favorite, police robots. This is a two-pronged effort involving both powerful corporations and government initiatives. These tech-based systems are operating "below the radar" and rarely discussed in the mainstream media. The world's biggest tech companies are now richer and more powerful than most countries. According to an article in PC Week in 2021 discussing Apple's dominance: "By taking the current valuation of Apple, Microsoft, Amazon, and others, then comparing them to the GDP of countries on a map, we can see just how crazy things have become… Valued at $2.2 trillion, the Cupertino company is richer than 96% of the world. In fact, only seven countries currently outrank the maker of the iPhone financially."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


Mapping Project Reveals Locations of U.S. Border Surveillance Towers
2023-03-20, The Intercept
Posted: 2023-03-27 14:24:38
https://theintercept.com/2023/03/20/border-surveillance-map/

The precise locations of the U.S. government’s high-tech surveillance towers along the U.S-Mexico border are being made public for the first time as part of a mapping project by the Electronic Frontier Foundation. While the Department of Homeland Security’s investment of more than a billion dollars into a so-called virtual wall between the U.S. and Mexico is a matter of public record, the government does not disclose where these towers are located, despite privacy concerns of residents of both countries — and the fact that individual towers are plainly visible to observers. The surveillance tower map is the result of a year’s work steered by EFF Director of Investigations Dave Maass. As border surveillance towers have multiplied across the southern border, so too have they become increasingly sophisticated, packing a panoply of powerful cameras, microphones, lasers, radar antennae, and other sensors. Companies like Anduril and Google have reaped major government paydays by promising to automate the border-watching process with migrant-detecting artificial intelligence. Opponents of these modern towers, bristling with always-watching sensors, argue the increasing computerization of border security will lead inevitably to the dehumanization of an already thoroughly dehumanizing undertaking. Nobody can say for certain how many people have died attempting to cross the U.S.-Mexico border in the recent age of militarization and surveillance. Researchers estimate that the minimum is at least 10,000 dead.

Note: As the article states, the Department of Homeland Security was "the largest reorganization of the federal government since the creation of the CIA and the Defense Department," and has resulted in U.S. taxpayers funding corrupt agendas that have led to massive human rights abuses. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on government corruption and the disappearance of privacy from reliable major media sources.


‘Aims’: the software for hire that can control 30,000 fake online profiles
2023-02-14, The Guardian (One of the UK's Leading Newspapers)
Posted: 2023-03-12 17:11:05
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2023/feb/15/aims-software-avatars-team-jorg...

Advanced Impact Media Solutions, or Aims, which controls more than 30,000 fake social media profiles, can be used to spread disinformation at scale and at speed. It is sold by “Team Jorge”, a unit of disinformation operatives based in Israel. Tal Hanan, who runs the covert group using the pseudonym “Jorge”, told undercover reporters that they sold access to their software to unnamed intelligence agencies, political parties and corporate clients. Team Jorge’s Aims software ... is much more than a bot-controlling programme. Each avatar ... is given a multifaceted digital backstory. Aims enables the creation of accounts on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, Telegram, Gmail, Instagram and YouTube. Some even have Amazon accounts with credit cards, bitcoin wallets and Airbnb accounts. Hanan told the undercover reporters his avatars mimicked human behaviour and their posts were powered by artificial intelligence. [Our reporters] were able to identify a much wider network of 2,000 Aims-linked bots on Facebook and Twitter. We then traced their activity across the internet, identifying their involvement ... in about 20 countries including the UK, US, Canada, Germany, Switzerland, Greece, Panama, Senegal, Mexico, Morocco, India, the United Arab Emirates, Zimbabwe, Belarus and Ecuador. The analysis revealed a vast array of bot activity, with Aims’ fake social media profiles getting involved in a dispute in California over nuclear power; a #MeToo controversy in Canada ... and an election in Senegal.

Note: The FBI has provided police departments with fake social media profiles to use in law enforcement investigations. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and media manipulation from reliable sources.


AI In Space And Its Future Use In Warfare
2022-12-21, Forbes
Posted: 2023-01-09 14:33:28
https://www.forbes.com/sites/charlesbeames/2022/12/21/ai-in-space-and-its-fut...

Artificial intelligence (AI) has graduated from the hype stage of the last decade and its use cases are now well documented. Whichever nation best adapts this technology to its military – especially in space – will open new frontiers in innovation and determine the winners and losers. The US Army has anticipated this impending AI disruption and has moved quickly to stand up efforts like Project Linchpin to construct the infrastructure and environment necessary to proliferate AI technology across its intelligence, cyber, and electronic warfare communities. However, it should come as no surprise that China anticipated this advantage sooner than the US and is at the forefront of adoption. Chinese dominance in AI is imminent. The Chinese government has made enormous investments in this area (much more than Western countries) and is the current leader in AI publications and research patents globally. Meanwhile, China's ambitions in space are no longer a secret – the country is now on a trajectory to surpass the US in the next decade. The speed, range, and flexibility afforded by AI and machine learning gives those on orbit who wield it an unprecedented competitive edge. The advantage of AI in space warfare, for both on-orbit and in-ground systems, is that AI algorithms continuously learn and adapt as they operate, and the algorithms themselves can be upgraded as often as needed, to address or escalate a conflict. Like electronic warfare countermeasures during the Cold War, AI is truly the next frontier.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption and war from reliable major media sources.


The Israeli-made Lanius is a tiny racing drone that could scout and kill enemies while using artificial intelligence. It’s a nightmare scenario, weapons critics say
2022-11-18, Washington Post
Posted: 2022-12-05 10:33:05
https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2022/11/18/killer-racing-drone-weap...

Last week, an Israeli defense company painted a frightening picture. In a roughly two-minute video on YouTube that resembles an action movie, soldiers out on a mission are suddenly pinned down by enemy gunfire and calling for help. In response, a tiny drone zips off its mother ship to the rescue, zooming behind the enemy soldiers and killing them with ease. While the situation is fake, the drone — unveiled last week by Israel-based Elbit Systems — is not. The Lanius, which in Latin can refer to butcherbirds, represents a new generation of drone: nimble, wired with artificial intelligence, and able to scout and kill. The machine is based on racing drone design, allowing it to maneuver into tight spaces, such as alleyways and small buildings. After being sent into battle, Lanius’s algorithm can make a map of the scene and scan people, differentiating enemies from allies — feeding all that data back to soldiers who can then simply push a button to attack or kill whom they want. For weapons critics, that represents a nightmare scenario, which could alter the dynamics of war. “It’s extremely concerning,” said Catherine Connolly, an arms expert at Stop Killer Robots, an anti-weapons advocacy group. “It’s basically just allowing the machine to decide if you live or die if we remove the human control element for that.” According to the drone’s data sheet, the drone is palm-size, roughly 11 inches by 6 inches. It has a top speed of 45 miles per hour. It can fly for about seven minutes, and has the ability to carry lethal and nonlethal materials.

Note: US General Paul Selva has warned against employing killer robots in warfare for ethical reasons. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on military corruption from reliable major media sources.


The Brooklyn Hologram Studio Receiving Millions from the CIA
2022-05-27, The Intercept
Posted: 2022-06-12 13:21:56
https://theintercept.com/2022/05/27/metaverse-cia-military-hologram-looking-g...

Looking Glass Factory, a company based in the Greenpoint neighborhood of Brooklyn, New York, revealed its latest consumer device: a slim, holographic picture frame that turns photos taken on iPhones into 3D displays. Looking Glass received $2.54 million of “technology development” funding from In-Q-Tel, the venture capital arm of the CIA, from April 2020 to March 2021 and a $50,000 Small Business Innovation Research award from the U.S. Air Force in November 2021 to “revolutionize 3D/virtual reality visualization.” Across the various branches of the military and intelligence community, contract records show a rush to jump on holographic display technology, augmented reality, and virtual reality display systems as the latest trend. Critics argue that the technology isn’t quite ready for prime time, and that the urgency to adopt it reflects the Pentagon’s penchant for high-priced, high-tech contracts based on the latest fad in warfighting. Military interest in holographic imaging, in particular, has grown rapidly in recent years. Military planners in China and the U.S. have touted holographic technology to project images “to incite fear in soldiers on a battlefield.” Other uses involve the creation of three-dimensional maps of villages of specific buildings and to analyze blast forensics. Palmer Luckey, who founded the technology startup Anduril Industries ... has received secretive Air Force contracts to develop next-generation artificial intelligence capabilities under the so-called Project Maven initiative.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption from reliable major media sources.


Hacking Humans: How Neuralink May Give AI The Keys To Our Brains
2020-11-18, Forbes
Posted: 2021-01-11 16:39:31
https://www.forbes.com/sites/forbestechcouncil/2020/11/18/hacking-humans-how-...

When Elon Musk gave the world a demo in August of his latest endeavor, the brain-computer interface (BCI) Neuralink, he reminded us that the lines between brain and machine are blurring quickly. It bears remembering, however, that Neuralink is, at its core, a computer — and as with all computing advancements in human history, the more complex and smart computers become, the more attractive targets they become for hackers. Our brains hold information computers don't have. A brain linked to a computer/AI such as a BCI removes that barrier to the brain, potentially allowing hackers to rush in and cause problems we can't even fathom today. Might hacking humans via BCI be the next major evolution in hacking, carried out through a dangerous combination of past hacking methods? Previous eras were defined by obstacles between hackers and their targets. However, what happens when that disconnect between humans and tech is blurred? When they're essentially one and the same? Should a computing device literally connected to the brain, as Neuralink is, become hacked, the consequences could be catastrophic, giving hackers ultimate control over someone. If Neuralink penetrates deep into the human brain with high fidelity, what might hacking a human look like? Following traditional patterns, hackers would likely target individuals with high net worths and perhaps attempt to manipulate them into wiring millions of dollars to a hacker's offshore bank account.

Note: For more on this, see an article in the UK’s Independent titled “Groundbreaking new material 'could allow artificial intelligence to merge with the human brain’.” Meanwhile, the military is talking about “human-machine symbiosis.” And Yale professor Charles Morgan describes in a military presentation how hypodermic needles can be used to alter a person’s memory and much more in this two-minute video. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on microchip implants from reliable major media sources.


Scientists develop AI that can turn brain activity into text
2020-03-20, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2020-11-16 01:22:03
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/mar/30/scientists-develop-ai-that-ca...

Reading minds has just come a step closer to reality: scientists have developed artificial intelligence that can turn brain activity into text. While the system currently works on neural patterns detected while someone is speaking aloud, experts say it could eventually aid communication for patients who are unable to speak or type. “We are not there yet but we think this could be the basis of a speech prosthesis,” said Dr Joseph Makin, co-author of the research from the University of California, San Francisco. Writing in the journal Nature Neuroscience, Makin and colleagues reveal how they developed their system by recruiting four participants who had electrode arrays implanted in their brain to monitor epileptic seizures. These participants were asked to read aloud from 50 set sentences multiple times, including “Tina Turner is a pop singer”, and “Those thieves stole 30 jewels”. The team tracked their neural activity while they were speaking. This data was then fed into a machine-learning algorithm, a type of artificial intelligence system that converted the brain activity data for each spoken sentence into a string of numbers. At first the system spat out nonsense sentences. But as the system compared each sequence of words with the sentences that were actually read aloud it improved, learning how the string of numbers related to words, and which words tend to follow each other. The system was not perfect. However, the team found the accuracy of the new system was far higher than previous approaches.

Note: Remember that the military in their secret projects is often 10 to 20 years in advance of anything public. In 2008, CBS reported the story of a man with ALS who could type using only a brain computer interface. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on microchip implants from reliable major media sources.


From the 60 Minutes archives: Survivors of Josef Mengele's twin experiments
2020-08-30, CNN News
Posted: 2020-11-09 19:22:56
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/from-the-60-minutes-archives-survivors-of-josef-...

Lesley Stahl reports on an innovative project that uses artificial intelligence technology to allow people to talk with Holocaust survivors, even after their death. This high-tech initiative is a project of the USC Shoah Foundation. The project's creators film lengthy interviews with Holocaust survivors, then enter all the recorded answers into a database. When a person asks a spoken question, voice recognition technology identifies what the person is asking, then artificial intelligence identifies the best answer to the question and pull up the video of that response. [Stahl] digitally spoke with ... Eva Kor, an identical twin who survived the brutal experiments of Josef Mengele at the Auschwitz concentration camp. Kor died in July 2019 at the age of 85, yet there she was, in a life-like projection, willing to answer Stahl's questions, even her recollections of Mengele: "When I looked into his eyes, I could see nothing but evil," the digital Kor told Stahl. "People say that the eyes are the center of the soul, and in Mengele's case, that was correct." In 1992, 60 Minutes reported on Mengele's twin experiments, and Stahl interviewed the living Kor. Kor recalled how her twin sister, Miriam, helped sustain her life at Auschwitz. "I was continuously fainting out of hunger; even after, I survived," Kor said. "Yet Miriam saved her bread for one whole week. Now can you imagine what willpower does it take?" Kor told Stahl it had taken her 40 years before she was able to speak with her sister about the atrocities they experienced at Auschwitz.

Note: The 60 Minutes video at the link above is quite revealing. If only good people around the world were willing to step out of their comfort zones and see what Dr. Josef Mengele, the Angel of Death at Auschwitz, did to his concentration camp inmates, we might live in a kinder gentler world. If you are open to learning more see an excellent two-page summary on secret Nazi experiments and this well documented webpage on how Mengele may have been allowed to escape to then serve in secret American projects. By shining a light into the dark shadows, we can transform our our world.


New records show Google, Microsoft, and Amazon have thousands of previously unreported military and law enforcement contracts
2020-07-08, MSN News
Posted: 2020-07-12 16:01:04
https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/technology/new-records-show-google-microsoft-a...

Ties between Silicon Valley and the Pentagon are deeper than previously known, according to thousands of previously unreported subcontracts published Wednesday. The subcontracts were obtained through open records requests by accountability nonprofit Tech Inquiry. They show that tech giants including Google, Amazon, and Microsoft have secured more than 5,000 agreements with agencies including the Department of Defense, Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, the Drug Enforcement Agency, and the FBI. Tech workers in recent years have pressured their employers to drop contracts with law enforcement and the military. Google workers revolted in 2018 after Gizmodo revealed that Google was building artificial intelligence for drone targeting through a subcontract with the Pentagon after some employees quit in protest, Google agreed not to renew the contract. Employees at Amazon and Microsoft have petitioned both companies to drop their contracts with ICE and the military. Neither company has. The newly-surfaced subcontracts ... show that the companies' connections to the Pentagon run deeper than many employees were previously aware. Tech Inquiry's research was led by Jack Poulson, a former Google researcher. "Often the high-level contract description between tech companies and the military looks very vanilla," Poulson [said]. "But only when you look at the details ... do you see the workings of how the customization from a tech company would actually be involved."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corruption in government and in the corporate world from reliable major media sources.


A.I. Experts Question Amazons Facial-Recognition Technology
2019-04-03, New York Times
Posted: 2019-04-22 02:32:17
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/03/technology/amazon-facial-recognition-techn...

At least 25 prominent artificial-intelligence researchers, including experts at Google, Facebook, Microsoft and a recent winner of the prestigious Turing Award, have signed a letter calling on Amazon to stop selling its facial-recognition technology to law enforcement agencies because it is biased against women and people of color. The letter, which was publicly released Wednesday, reflects growing concern in academia and the tech industry that bias in facial-recognition technology is a systemic problem. Amazon sells a product called Rekognition through its cloud-computing division, Amazon Web Services. The company said last year that early customers included the Orlando Police Department in Florida and the Washington County Sheriffs Office in Oregon. In January, two researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology published a peer-reviewed study showing that Amazon Rekognition had more trouble identifying the gender of female and darker-skinned faces in photos than similar services from IBM and Microsoft. It mistook women for men 19 percent of the time, the study showed, and misidentified darker-skinned women for men 31 percent of the time. There are no laws or required standards to ensure that Rekognition is used in a manner that does not infringe on civil liberties, the A.I. researchers wrote. We call on Amazon to stop selling Rekognition to law enforcement.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and the erosion of civil liberties.


The New Thought Police
2009-01-01, PBS
Posted: 2018-08-27 17:29:37
http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/nova/military/nsa-police.html

The National Security Agency (NSA) is developing a tool that George Orwell's Thought Police might have found useful: an artificial intelligence system designed to gain insight into what people are thinking. The device will be able to respond almost instantaneously to complex questions posed by intelligence analysts. As more and more data is collectedthrough phone calls, credit card receipts, social networks like Facebook and MySpace, GPS tracks, cell phone geolocation, Internet searches, Amazon book purchases, even E-Z Pass toll records - it may one day be possible to know not just where people are and what they are doing, but what and how they think. The system is so potentially intrusive that at least one researcher has quit, citing concerns over the dangers in placing such a powerful weapon in the hands of a top-secret agency with little accountability. Known as Aquaint, which stands for "Advanced QUestion Answering for INTelligence," the project was run for many years by John Prange, an NSA scientist at the Advanced Research and Development Activity. A supersmart search engine, capable of answering complex questions ... would be very useful for the public. But that same capability in the hands of an agency like the NSA - absolutely secret, often above the law, resistant to oversight, and with access to petabytes of private information about Americans - could be a privacy and civil liberties nightmare. "We must not forget that the ultimate goal is to transfer research results into operational use," said ... Prange.

Note: Watch a highly revealing PBS Nova documentary providing virtual proof that the NSA could have stopped 9/11 but chose not to. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on intelligence agency corruption and the disappearance of privacy.


Google to drop Pentagon AI contract after employee objections to the business of war
2018-06-01, Washington Post
Posted: 2018-06-10 22:43:28
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-switch/wp/2018/06/01/google-to-drop-p...

Google will not seek to extend its contract next year with the Defense Department for artificial intelligence used to analyze drone video, squashing a controversial alliance that had raised alarms over the technological buildup between Silicon Valley and the military. Google ... has faced widespread public backlash and employee resignations for helping develop technological tools that could aid in warfighting. Google will soon release new company principles related to the ethical uses of AI. Thousands of Google employees wrote chief executive Sundar Pichai an open letter urging the company to cancel the contract, and many others signed a petition saying the companys assistance in developing combat-zone technology directly countered the companys famous Dont be evil motto. Several Google AI employees had told The Post they believed they wielded a powerful influence over the companys decision-making. The advanced technologys top researchers and developers are in heavy demand, and many had organized resistance campaigns or threatened to leave. The sudden announcement Friday was welcomed by several high-profile employees. Meredith Whittaker, an AI researcher and the founder of Googles Open Research group, tweeted Friday: I am incredibly happy about this decision, and have a deep respect for the many people who worked and risked to make it happen. Google should not be in the business of war.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


What is Project Maven? Google Urged to Abandon U.S. Military Drone Program
2018-05-15, Newsweek
Posted: 2018-05-21 19:52:33
http://www.newsweek.com/project-maven-google-urged-abandon-work-military-dron...

Hundreds of academics have urged Google to abandon its work on a U.S. Department of Defense-led drone program codenamed Project Maven. An open letter calling for change was published Monday by the International Committee for Robot Arms Control (ICRAC). The project is formally known as the Algorithmic Warfare Cross-Functional Team. Its objective is to turn the enormous volume of data available to DoD into actionable intelligence. More than 3,000 Google staffers signed a petition in April in protest at the company's focus on warfare. We believe that Google should not be in the business of war, it read. Therefore we ask that Project Maven be cancelled. The ICRAC warned this week the project could potentially be mixed with general user data and exploited to aid targeted killing. Currently, its letter has nearly 500 signatures. It stated: We are ... deeply concerned about the possible integration of Googles data on peoples everyday lives with military surveillance data, and its combined application to targeted killing ... Google has moved into military work without subjecting itself to public debate or deliberation. While Google regularly decides the future of technology without democratic public engagement, its entry into military technologies casts the problems of private control of information infrastructure into high relief. Lieutenant Colonel Garry Floyd, deputy chief of the Algorithmic Warfare Cross Functional Team, said ... earlier this month that Maven was already active in five or six combat locations.

Note: You can read the full employee petition on this webpage. The New York Times also published a good article on this. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and war.


Google employees quit over controversial Pentagon work
2018-05-14, New York Post
Posted: 2018-05-21 19:50:26
https://nypost.com/2018/05/14/google-employees-quit-over-controversial-pentag...

Theres something eating at Google employees. Roughly one dozen employees of the search giant have resigned in the wake of reports that the ... company is providing artificial intelligence to the Pentagon. The employees resigned because of ethical concerns over the companys work with the Defense Department that includes helping the military speed up analysis of drone footage by automatically classifying images of objects and people, Gizmodo reported. Many of the employees who quit have written accounts of their decisions to leave the company. Their stories have been gathered and shared in an internal document. Google is helping the DoDs Project Maven implement machine learning to classify images gathered by drones, according to the report. Some employees believe humans, not algorithms, should be responsible for this sensitive and potentially lethal work - and that Google shouldnt be involved in military work at all. The 12 resignations are the first known mass resignations at Google in protest against one of the companys business decisions - and they speak to the strongly felt ethical concerns of the employees who are departing. In addition to the resignations, nearly 4,000 Google employees have voiced their opposition to Project Maven in an internal petition that asks Google to immediately cancel the contract and institute a policy against taking on future military work.

Note: You can read the full employee petition on this webpage. An open letter in support of google employees and tech workers was signed by more than 90 academics in artificial intelligence, ethics, and computer science. The New York Times also published a good article on this. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on corporate corruption and war


Alexa and Siri Can Hear This Hidden Command. You Cant.
2018-05-10, New York Times
Posted: 2018-05-15 07:08:25
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/05/10/technology/alexa-siri-hidden-command-audio...

Over the last two years, researchers in China and the United States have begun demonstrating that they can send hidden commands that are undetectable to the human ear to Apples Siri, Amazons Alexa and Googles Assistant. Researchers have been able to secretly activate the artificial intelligence systems on smartphones and smart speakers, making them dial phone numbers or open websites. In the wrong hands, the technology could be used to unlock doors, wire money or buy stuff online - simply with music playing over the radio. A group of students from University of California, Berkeley, and Georgetown University showed in 2016 that they could hide commands in white noise played over loudspeakers and through YouTube videos to get smart devices to turn on airplane mode or open a website. This month, some of those Berkeley researchers published a research paper that went further, saying they could embed commands directly into recordings of music or spoken text. So while a human listener hears someone talking or an orchestra playing, Amazons Echo speaker might hear an instruction to add something to your shopping list. There is no American law against broadcasting subliminal messages to humans, let alone machines. The Federal Communications Commission discourages the practice as counter to the public interest, and the Television Code of the National Association of Broadcasters bans transmitting messages below the threshold of normal awareness.

Note: Read how a hacked vehicle may have resulted in journalist Michael Hastings' death in 2013. A 2015 New York Times article titled "Why Smart Objects May Be a Dumb Idea" describes other major risks in creating an "Internet of Things". Vulnerabilities like those described in the article above make it possible for anyone to spy on you with these objects, accelerating the disappearance of privacy.


'The Business of War': Google Employees Protest Work for the Pentagon
2018-04-04, New York Times
Posted: 2018-04-16 20:02:16
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/04/technology/google-letter-ceo-pentagon-proj...

Thousands of Google employees, including dozens of senior engineers, have signed a letter protesting the companys involvement in a Pentagon program that uses artificial intelligence to interpret video imagery and could be used to improve the targeting of drone strikes. The letter, which is circulating inside Google and has garnered more than 3,100 signatures, reflects a culture clash ... that is likely to intensify as cutting-edge artificial intelligence is increasingly employed for military purposes. We believe that Google should not be in the business of war, says the letter, addressed to Sundar Pichai, the companys chief executive. It asks that Google pull out of Project Maven, a Pentagon pilot program, and announce a policy that it will not ever build warfare technology. That kind of idealistic stance ... is distinctly foreign to Washingtons massive defense industry and certainly to the Pentagon, where the defense secretary, Jim Mattis, has often said a central goal is to increase the lethality of the United States military. Some of Googles top executives have significant Pentagon connections. Eric Schmidt, former executive chairman of Google and still a member of the executive board of Alphabet, Googles parent company, serves on a Pentagon advisory body, the Defense Innovation Board, as does a Google vice president, Milo Medin. Project Maven ... began last year as a pilot program to find ways to speed up the military application of the latest A.I. technology.

Note: The use of artificial intelligence technology for drone strike targeting is one of many ways warfare is being automated. Strong warnings against combining artificial intelligence with war have recently been issued by America's second-highest ranking military officer, tech mogul Elon Musk, and many of the world's most recognizable scientists. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


This Computer Uses LightNot ElectricityTo Train AI Algorithms
2018-02-20, Wired
Posted: 2018-02-27 00:06:00
https://www.wired.com/story/this-computer-uses-lightnot-electricityto-train-a...

William Andregg ushers me into the cluttered workshop of his startup Fathom Computing. Inside [a bulky black box is] a prototype computer that processes data using light, not electricity, and its learning to recognize handwritten digits. In other experiments the device learned to generate sentences in text. Andregg claims this is the first time such complex machine-learning software has been trained using circuits that pulse with laser light, not electricity. The company is working to shrink its [prototype], which covers a few square feet of workbench, to fit into a standard cloud server. Fathom hopes the technology will become one of the shovels of the artificial-intelligence gold rush. Tech companies, particularly large cloud providers like Amazon and Microsoft, spend heavily on computer chips to power machine-learning algorithms. Fathoms founders are betting this hunger for more powerful machine learning will outstrip the capabilities of purely electronic computers. Optics has fundamental advantages over electronics, says William Andregg. Youre already reaping the benefits of using light instead of electricity to work with data. Telecommunications companies move our web pages and selfies over long distances by shooting lasers down optical fiber. Optical computers arent likely to power your laptop or smartphone any time soon. Fathoms prototype is still too bulky, for one thing. But the technology does look to be a decent match for the main work that chips perform in AI projects based on artificial neural networks.

Note: Explore a treasure trove of concise summaries of incredibly inspiring news articles which will inspire you to make a difference.


US general warns of out-of-control killer robots
2017-07-18, CNN News
Posted: 2017-07-24 02:00:55
http://www.cnn.com/2017/07/18/politics/paul-selva-gary-peters-autonomous-weap...

America's second-highest ranking military officer, Gen. Paul Selva, advocated Tuesday for "keeping the ethical rules of war in place lest we unleash on humanity a set of robots that we don't know how to control." Selva was responding to a question from Sen. Gary Peters, a Michigan Democrat, about his views on a Department of Defense directive that requires a human operator to be kept in the decision-making process when it comes to the taking of human life by autonomous weapons systems. Peters said the restriction was "due to expire later this year." "I don't think it's reasonable for us to put robots in charge of whether or not we take a human life," Selva told the Senate Armed Services Committee during a confirmation hearing for his reappointment as the vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. He predicted that "there will be a raucous debate in the department about whether or not we take humans out of the decision to take lethal action," but added that he was "an advocate for keeping that restriction." Selva said humans needed to remain in the decision making process "because we take our values to war." His comments come as the US military has sought increasingly autonomous weapons systems.

Note: In another article Tesla founder Elon Musk's warns against the dangers of AI without regulation. A 2013 report for the U.N. Human Rights Commission called for a worldwide moratorium on the testing, production, assembly, transfer, acquisition, deployment and use of killer robots until an international conference can develop rules for their use. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


Navy seeks autonomous drones despite warnings from critics
2016-02-16, CNN News
Posted: 2017-07-24 01:38:32
http://www.cnn.com/2016/02/16/politics/navy-autonomous-drones-critics/index.html

The Navy is looking to increase its use of drones that are more and more independent of direct human control. In recent days, Pentagon officials and Navy leaders have spoken about the program and the push to develop more autonomous and intelligent unmanned systems. Secretary of Defense Ash Carter in a speech earlier this month confirmed that the United States was developing "self-driving boats which can network together to do all kinds of missions, from fleet defense to close-in surveillance." And Rear Adm. Robert P. Girrier, the Navy's director of Unmanned Warfare Systems, discussed the effort at a January event at the Center for Strategic and International Studies. The drive is being dubbed "human machine teaming," which uses unmanned vehicles that are more independent than those piloted or supervised by human operators. Girrier told the audience that the "technology is there" and that more autonomous drones would allow the United States "to achieve supremacy at a lower cost." The Navy's push comes despite critics expressing increasing alarm at further automating drones, advances that have sparked fears of militaries developing robots that can kill without accountability. In July a group of concerned scientists, researchers and academics ... argued against the development of autonomous weapons systems. They warned of an artificial intelligence arms race and called for a "ban on offensive autonomous weapons beyond meaningful human control."

Note: In another article Tesla founder Elon Musk's warns against the dangers of AI without regulation. A 2013 report for the U.N. Human Rights Commission called for a worldwide moratorium on the testing, production, assembly, transfer, acquisition, deployment and use of killer robots until an international conference can develop rules for their use. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing military corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Forget the Mother of All Bombs fear the Mother of All Algorithms
2017-04-19, San Diego Union-Tribune (San Diego's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2017-04-23 18:56:02
http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/opinion/commentary/sd-autonomous-weapons-...

The Mother of All Bombs made news last week after the U.S. military dropped its most powerful non-nuclear bomb at a site in Afghanistans Nangarhar Province. This massive ... explosive device may seem a high-tech marvel. But the technology is old news, based on ... World War II-era theories. Yet theres plenty of new news on the military weapons front. The militarys new toys are often fantastically costly. Yet in some categories, technological advances create opportunities for cheap but powerful military tools ... starting with weaponized drones. The Defense Department is designing robotic fighter jets that would fly into combat alongside manned aircraft. It has tested missiles that can decide what to attack, and it has built ships that can hunt for enemy submarines ... without any help from humans. The dilemma posed by artificial intelligence-driven autonomous weapons - which some scientists liken to the third revolution in warfare, after gunpowder and nuclear arms - is that to take fullest advantage of such weapons, the logical move would be to leave humans entirely out of lethal decision-making, allowing for quicker responses to threats. But if future presidents and Pentagons trusted algorithms to make such decisions, conflicts between two nations relying on such technology could rapidly escalate - to possibly apocalyptic levels - without human involvement. More than 20,000 AI researchers, scientists and [others have signed] a ...petition endorsing a ban on offensive autonomous weapons.

Note: In 2013, the United Nations investigated the rise of lethal autonomous robots, and reported that this technology endangers human rights and should not be developed further without international oversight. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing war news articles from reliable major media sources.


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