Was Saudi Arabia wrong to give citizenship to a robot? (I’d say yes, too)

  “It seems foolish and misguided to give a robot an official government status that creates any semblance of equality to an actual human. Machines aren’t people; even if you believe in the singularity we’re not there yet. Sophia is no more human than an old shoe. The robot won’t be subject ...

Doubts About the Promised Bounty of Genetically Modified Crops (via the NYT)

  “An extensive examination by The New York Times indicates that the debate has missed a more basic problem — genetic modification in the United States and Canada has not accelerated increases in crop yields or led to an overall reduction in the use of chemical pesticides. The promise of genetic modification ...

The Real Story of Automation Beginning with One Simple Chart (Via Scott Santens)

  “What should be immediately apparent is that as the number of oil rigs declined due to falling oil prices, so did the number of workers the oil industry employed. But when the number of oil rigs began to rebound, the number of workers employed didn’t. That observation itself should be ...

This Cardiologist Is Betting That His Lab-Grown Meat Startup Can Solve the Global Food Crisis (made me think)

  “Meat without animals. It’s not a new notion. In a 1932 essay predicting sundry future trends, Winston Churchill wrote, “We shall escape the absurdity of growing a whole chicken in order to eat the breast or wing, by growing these parts separately under a suitable medium.” The basic science to ...

Slide-deck from my presentation at Mayo Clinic Rochester: 2017 Rewoldt Lecture: the future of technology and democracy

Here it is – big thanks to the Rewoldt family for supporting this event, and to the Mayo Clinic for bringing me here! mayo clinic gerd leonhard rewoldt lecture technology democracy the future PUBLIC low res  17MB PDF  

In our focus on the digital, have we lost our sense of what being human means? Nice post by Genevieve Bell

  “We will need new practitioners to tame and manage the emerging data-driven digital world, as well as those to regulate and govern them. Rather than just tweaking existing disciplines, we need to develop a new set of critical questions and perspectives. Working out how to navigate our humanity in the ...

Made me think: The new Luddites: why former digital prophets are turning against tech

  “In 1967 Lewis Mumford spoke presciently of the possibility of a “mega-machine” that would result from “the convergence of science, technics and political power”. Pynchon picked up the theme: “If our world survives, the next great challenge to watch out for will come – you heard it here first – ...

Der Feind ist nicht Facebook, der Feind sind wir selbst” (Interview mit Gerd Leonhard, in German)

“Wir sollten Technologie umarmen, aber nicht Technologie werden” Der Futurist und Humanist Gerd Leonhard über eine digitale Ethik. “Wir werden in zwanzig Jahren an dem Punkt angelangt sein, wo fast nichts mehr unmöglich ist”, sagt Gerd Leonhard im Gespräch mit dem KURIER. Der deutsche Futurist und Humanist sprach bei 4GameChanger über das ...

AI May Soon Replace Even the Most Elite Consultants (made me think)

According to the Wall Street Journal (WSJ), a new partnership between UBS Wealth Management and Amazon allows some of UBS’s European wealth-management clients to ask Alexa certain financial and economic questions. Alexa will then answer their queries with the information provided by UBS’s chief investment office without even having to ...

Former Talking Heads frontman says consumer tech is working against what it means to be human

  It has been about creating the possibility of a world with less human interaction. This tendency is, I suspect, not a bug, it’s a feature. We might think Amazon was about making books available to us that we couldnt find locally and it was, and what a brilliant idea, but ...

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