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How the Enlightenment Ends
From ACM Opinion

How the Enlightenment Ends

Three years ago, at a conference on transatlantic issues, the subject of artificial intelligence appeared on the agenda. I was on the verge of skipping that session—it...

How Fortnite Captured Teens' Hearts and Minds
From ACM Opinion

How Fortnite Captured Teens' Hearts and Minds

It was getting late in Tomato Town. The storm was closing in, and meteors pelted the ground.

The Singularity Is Not Near: The Intellectual Fraud of the 'Singularitarians'
From ACM Opinion

The Singularity Is Not Near: The Intellectual Fraud of the 'Singularitarians'

Technology was identified as the true official religion of the modern state more than seventy years ago by the late Christian anarchist philosopher Jacques Ellul...

Facial Recognition Tech Is Creepy When It Works, And Creepier When It Doesn't
From ACM Opinion

Facial Recognition Tech Is Creepy When It Works, And Creepier When It Doesn't

For the last few years, police forces around China have invested heavily to build the world's largest video surveillance and facial recognition system, incorporating...

Free Will, Video Games, and the Most Profound Quantum Mystery
From ACM Opinion

Free Will, Video Games, and the Most Profound Quantum Mystery

The word "predictable" first entered the English language two centuries ago.

'2001: A Space Odyssey' Is Still the 'Ultimate Trip'
From ACM Opinion

'2001: A Space Odyssey' Is Still the 'Ultimate Trip'

In the spring of 1964 the filmmaker Stanley Kubrick was very worried. NASA was about to fly the Mariner 4 space probe past Mars.

Google's Duplex Could Make Assistant the Most Lifelike AI Yet
From ACM Opinion

Google's Duplex Could Make Assistant the Most Lifelike AI Yet

The conversation seems mundane. At least, at first.

How Frightened Should We Be of A.I.?
From ACM Opinion

How Frightened Should We Be of A.I.?

Precisely how and when will our curiosity kill us?

One Space Between Each Sentence, They Said. Science Just Proved Them Wrong.
From ACM Opinion

One Space Between Each Sentence, They Said. Science Just Proved Them Wrong.

In the beginning, the rules of the space bar were simple.  Two spaces after each period.  Every time.  Easy.

Forging Voices and Faces: The Dangers of Audio and Video Fabrication
From ACM Opinion

Forging Voices and Faces: The Dangers of Audio and Video Fabrication

In 1963, before he could give the speech he'd prepared for his trip to Dallas, U.S. president John F. Kennedy was assassinated. In March 2018, a company re-created...

The Facebook Controversy: Privacy Is Not the Issue
From ACM Opinion

The Facebook Controversy: Privacy Is Not the Issue

Cambridge Analytica's wholesale scraping of Facebook user data is familiar news by now, and we are all "shocked" that personal data are being shared and traded...

Autonomous Weapons Would Take Warfare to a New Domain, Without Humans
From ACM Opinion

Autonomous Weapons Would Take Warfare to a New Domain, Without Humans

Killer robots have been a staple of TV and movies for decades, from Westworld to The Terminator series. But in the real world, killer robots are officially known...

When John Doerr Brought a 'Gift' to Google's Founders
From ACM Opinion

When John Doerr Brought a 'Gift' to Google's Founders

On a fall day in 1999, in the heart of Silicon Valley, I arrived at a two-story, L-shaped structure off the 101 freeway. It was young Google's headquarters, and...

'2001: A Space Odyssey': What It Means, and How It Was Made
From ACM Opinion

'2001: A Space Odyssey': What It Means, and How It Was Made

Fifty years ago this spring, Stanley Kubrick's confounding sci-fi masterpiece, "2001: A Space Odyssey," had its premières across the country.

Why Police Should Monitor Social Media to Prevent Crime
From ACM Opinion

Why Police Should Monitor Social Media to Prevent Crime

In February, the ACLU of Massachusetts released a damning report detailing prejudice in social media surveillance efforts by the Boston Police Department (BPD)....

The 'Terms and Conditions' Reckoning Is Coming
From ACM Opinion

The 'Terms and Conditions' Reckoning Is Coming

Eleanor Margolis had used PayPal for more than a decade when the online payment provider blocked her account in January. The reason: She was 16 years old when she...

Here's How Hackers Could Cause Chaos in This Year's US Midterm Elections
From ACM Opinion

Here's How Hackers Could Cause Chaos in This Year's US Midterm Elections

On November 6, Americans will head to the polls to vote in the congressional midterm elections. In the months before the contest, hordes of foreign hackers will...

Regulate Artificial Intelligence to Avert Cyber Arms Race
From ACM Opinion

Regulate Artificial Intelligence to Avert Cyber Arms Race

Cyberattacks are becoming more frequent, sophisticated and destructive. Each day in 2017, the United States suffered, on average, more than 4,000 ransomware attacks...

We May Own Our Data, But Facebook Has a Duty to Protect It
From ACM Opinion

We May Own Our Data, But Facebook Has a Duty to Protect It

Two years ago, Jack M. Balkin, a constitutional-law professor at Yale, published a fifty-page article in the U.C. Davis Law Review examining what he called problems...

Three Problems with Facebook's Plan to Kill Hate Speech Using AI
From ACM Opinion

Three Problems with Facebook's Plan to Kill Hate Speech Using AI

Mark Zuckerberg told the US Congress this week that Facebook will increasingly rely on artificial intelligence to catch hate speech spread on the platform.
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