Tax


Facebook Wants to Open Special 'Community Skills Hubs' in Europe and Train a Million People

TIME

The U.S. company – which has faced regulatory pressure in Europe over issues ranging from privacy to antitrust – said it would open three "community skills hubs" in Spain, Poland and Italy as well as investing 10 million euros ($12.2 million) in France through its artificial intelligence research facility. "People are worried that the digital revolution is leaving people behind and we want to make sure that we're investing in digital skills to get people the skills they need to fully participate in the digital economy," Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook's chief operating officer, told Reuters. The community hubs will offer training in digital skills, media literacy and online safety to groups with limited access to technology, including old people, the young and refugees. Facebook also committed to having trained one million people and business owners by 2020. "Absolutely we want to make sure that people see that we are investing locally, we're investing in technology, we're investing in humans," Sandberg said.


Saks president on artificial intelligence: 'We don't need A.I. in our stores. We have I'

#artificialintelligence

Saks Fifth Avenue isn't intimidated by the emergence of artificial intelligence and consumer preferences shifting to online retail, the luxury department store's president told CNBC on Friday. "When you think about the online versus the offline experience, we don't need AI in our stores. We have'I,'" said Marc Metrick, president of Saks. "We have living, breathing, 4,500 style advisors in our stores." "The focus for Saks in the luxury space is really kind of convergence between tech and this living, breathing, selling associate," Metrick said in an interview on "Squawk Box." Metrick spoke as e-commerce giant Amazon has been aggressive in expanding its retail muscle, including through partnerships and acquisitions.


Brace yourself for AI and blockchain

#artificialintelligence

At first glance, the threats seem clear: One type of software will learn how to perform all manner of business functions, particularly in finance and accounting, while another will continuously validate any set of data or information. Between them, artificial intelligence and blockchain seem poised to disrupt -- or even destroy -- many of the core businesses of the accounting profession, automating or rendering irrelevant important traditional services like the audit. But while there can be little doubt that they will eliminate the need for human beings to perform many of the individual functions traditionally associated with accountants, both in public practice and in industry, they will certainly not eliminate the profession's overall role, or its importance. In fact, both AI and blockchain have the potential to help accountants actually boost their revenue, their relevance and their value -- provided they're willing to develop the necessary skills, and change their mindsets. Understanding why each of these two emerging technologies is less of a threat and more of an opportunity than they might seem requires a separate, deeper dive into each, as they're going to have different impacts on the profession, over different time horizons.


Clustering the Top 1%: Asset Analysis in R – freeCodeCamp

@machinelearnbot

The recent tax reform bill passed in the US has raised a lot of questions about wealth distribution in the country. While there's been a lot of focus on how the tax plan will impact income, there's been less attention focused on how this plan impacts the assets of wealthy households. The goal of this post is to show how the R programming language can be used to data mine publicly available sources to better understand the net worth of affluent households in the US. To answer these questions, we present descriptive statistics of this survey data and perform cluster analysis on affluent households, which we identify as households with a net worth of more than $1,000,000 USD. Based on the survey data, our analysis shows that the net worth of the top 1% of households in the US is $10.4M and the net worth of the top 0.1% of households is $43.2M.


Science Fiction by ABBA

Slate

On this week's If Then, Slate's April Glaser and Will Oremus talk about a key detail in the new tax plan that could have a huge effect on gig workers in the tech sector--and maybe even robots. They also discuss Apple's "batterygate" iPhone situation: What happened, and what can we take from their unusual apology? The hosts are also joined by Slate's Future Tense editor Torie Bosch to talk about the anthology she co-edited What Future: The Year's Best Ideas to Reclaim, Reanimate & Reinvent Our Future.


The 50 big ideas for 2018

@machinelearnbot

If 2017 left you breathless, exhausted by unexpected headlines, then brace yourself. The coming year may bring even more turbulent change, according to the CEOs, academics, economists and other bold thinkers we consulted for our annual peek at the year ahead. Get ready to hide your phone and immerse in a few tech-free hours (or days). "We're at an inflection point," says Arianna Huffington, CEO of Thrive Global, adding that tech's addictive grip on our lives will move from the fringes to the center of conversation. Bosses will start banning devices from meetings, as will restaurants during meals, predicts GE Vice Chair Beth Comstock.


Sorry, Congress: Your Tax Bill Won't Create the Jobs of the Future

WIRED

Republicans argue that the lower taxes for corporations and wealthy individuals promised in the tax bill currently before Congress will result in new investment in businesses and more jobs. But in the age of artificial intelligence and automation, trickle-down economics won't create employment. What corporations and the US economy at large need most in this emerging era is not more free cash, but a new approach to machine-assisted human productivity and purpose. Olaf J. Groth (@olafgrothsf) is a professor of global strategy, innovation, and digital futures at Hult International Business School, as well as CEO of Cambrian.ai. With Mark Nitzberg he is the co-author of Solomon's Code: Humanity in a World of Thinking Machines, due in 2018.


The U.S. leads in artificial intelligence, but for how long?

#artificialintelligence

Even as the world's top artificial-intelligence researchers gathered in Los Angeles this week, many are beginning to wonder just how much longer the U.S. will remain the epicenter of AI. The Neural Information Processing System (NIPS) conference in Long Beach is the number one place for presenting breakthroughs in AI. But U.S. government policies threaten to put a dampener on the recent boom in the field. The U.S. Congress's tax plan is the latest challenge, threatening to raise costs for graduate students significantly. This follows reduced funding for fields including AI and tightening of rules on immigration for international researchers.


The U.S. leads in artificial intelligence, but for how long?

#artificialintelligence

Even as the world's top artificial-intelligence researchers gathered in Los Angeles this week, many are beginning to wonder just how much longer the U.S. will remain the epicenter of AI. The Neural Information Processing System (NIPS) conference in Long Beach is the number one place for presenting breakthroughs in AI. But U.S. government policies threaten to put a dampener on the recent boom in the field. The U.S. Congress's tax plan is the latest challenge, threatening to raise costs for graduate students significantly. This follows reduced funding for fields including AI and tightening of rules on immigration for international researchers.


The U.S. leads in artificial intelligence, but for how long?

#artificialintelligence

Even as the world's top artificial-intelligence researchers gathered in Los Angeles this week, many are beginning to wonder just how much longer the U.S. will remain the epicenter of AI. The Neural Information Processing System (NIPS) conference in Long Beach is the number one place for presenting breakthroughs in AI. But U.S. government policies threaten to put a dampener on the recent boom in the field. The U.S. Congress's tax plan is the latest challenge, threatening to raise costs for graduate students significantly. This follows reduced funding for fields including AI and tightening of rules on immigration for international researchers.