Voting & Elections

Will Advanced AIs Ever Be Treated as Our Equals in Society?


For the first time, artificial intelligence (AI) may have eclipsed the science that brought it to "life": we now have AI that can converse in a human-like manner, robots designed to look like us, and deep learning machines built specifically to learn, think, and act the way we do. Experts believe that by 2030, machine intelligence will be on par with humans and that by 2045, the capabilities of AI will actually surpass human intelligence. Given the rate of advancement the field has seen and the resources being dedicated towards its continued development, robotics researchers believe we're closer to "thinking" machines than ever before. "It's getting to a point where we might be able to say this thing has a sense of itself, and maybe there is a threshold moment where suddenly this consciousness emerges," mathematician Marcus du Sautoy from the University of Oxford said. "And if we understand these things are having a level of consciousness, we might well have to introduce rights.

17 More Must-Know Data Science Interview Questions and Answers


The post 21 Must-Know Data Science Interview Questions and Answers was the most viewed post of 2016, with over 250,000 page views. For 2017, KDnuggets Editors bring you 17 more new and important Data Science Interview Questions and Answers. Because some of the answers are quite lengthy, we will publish them in 3 parts over 3 weeks. This is part 1, which answers the 6 questions below. Here is part 2 and part 3. Just before the Nov 8, 2016 election, most pollsters gave Hillary Clinton an edge of 3% in popular vote and 70-95% chance of victory in electoral college.

Google urges FEC to adopt more specific rules for political ads


Google, Facebook and Twitter have all found evidence of Russian influence for last year's US presidential election. Google, however, is seeking to separate itself a bit from it's social-media peers in a new document filed with the US Federal Election Commission (FEC) on Thursday, according to a report by Recode. The Google filing apparently urges US election regulators to create more specific rules for foreign-funded online political ads, including guidelines for ads about issues as well as those about candidates. In addition, the company says that it is different than Facebook or Twitter in that it allows political ads on Adsense websites, in search and on YouTube, so needs different rules for publishing. According to Recode, Google things that the "majority of advertisers...self-impose some sort of disclaimer" when placing ads, though the company is also considering requiring all election-related ads to use a specific icon to explain to viewers why they're seeing the ad.



In 2016, restless tech-industry forecasters enjoyed a rare moment of consensus: Whatever else might be coming next, everyone seemed to agree that bots would be a big part of it. The analyst Benedict Evans, in a representative essay, located a promising future specifically in chat bots -- conversational interfaces for artificial intelligence, designed to assist with particular tasks. Facebook, the year before, created a personal-assistant chat bot, and the company would soon open its Messenger app up to outside developers, who it hoped would create more bots to help people shop, look things up or otherwise organize their lives. Amazon's Echo, by then already a surprise mainstream success, provided a tailwind: Here was a widely used artificial intelligence just sitting there on millions of countertops. These predictions were self-interested, of course.

Colorado CIOs Highlight Potential Benefits of Teamwork, Collaboration


Collaboration and teamwork were a consistent theme at the Colorado Digital Government Summit with city and county officials providing uses cases that emphasized partnerships crucial to maximizing value from shared services, while standing up new solutions and embarking on new development techniques. The consolidated city-county of Denver migrated to shared services about 12 years ago, a journey that's nearly complete, said Scott Cardenas, Denver CIO, following his opening remarks to more than 200 at the event on Wednesday, Oct. 25. Having previously collaborated on apps like Ballot TRACE, their award-winning ballot tracking solution, Denver's IT and elections officials were primed to work together again during the 2016 election cycle.Together, they were able to establish a temporary election security operations center with real-time dynamics and audio and visual connections to watch for bad actors. The agency saw activity, but didn't experience a significant incident or breach during the election, according to Cardenas, a result that proved the project's worth and attracted nationwide notice. Denver is currently a finalist for project of the year at the Colorado Technology Association's 17th annual Apex Awards on Nov. 8 as a result of its elections collaboration.

Kenyan president declared winner of election boycotted by opposition, bagging 98% of the vote

Japan Times >> News

NAIROBI – BPresident Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday was declared the overwhelming winner of a rerun election boycotted by Kenya's main opposition leader, collecting 98 percent of the vote but also exposing the divisions roiling this East African country. While Kenyatta's backers celebrated his re-election, angry supporters of his rival, Raila Odinga, skirmished with police in Nairobi slums and burned tires in Kisumu, one of the opposition strongholds in western Kenya. Kenya's election commission said the turnout of registered voters in the Oct. 26 election was about 40 percent, compared with roughly twice that in August balloting that was nullified by the Supreme Court because of what it called "irregularities and illegalities." The rerun was marred by deadly clashes between police and Odinga supporters in the days that followed. Kenyatta said he expected Odinga followers to mount new legal challenges, indicating the long saga that has left many Kenyans weary of conflict and has hurt business in East Africa's economic hub is not over.

Senate inquiry to look at job hit from robotics


Labor has secured support for a Senate inquiry into the dramatic changes about to hit the workforce in the belief the political establishment is not doing enough to prepare people for the impact of innovation and robotics. The move follows a warning sounded last month by the shadow minister for the future of work and the digital economy Ed Husic who told the AFR's innovation summit that Australia risked being swamped by the consequences of technological change due to the reluctance of government and elements of business to take a lead role in preparing for automation and innovation. Mr Husic said 3.5 million Australian jobs stood to be affected by automation and change, including 250,000 vehicle drivers, while the economy stood to gain $1 trillion by 2030. Yet the rapidly-approaching change was barely audible in the national debate, in part due to the government retreating from its key innovation theme following a backlash during the last election campaign and criticism by former prime minister Tony Abbott.

Should the LAPD test drones? Police Commission is set for final vote on controversial proposal

Los Angeles Times

In the two months since the Los Angeles Police Department revealed that it wants to try flying drones, the unmanned aircraft have been the source of an often heated back-and-forth. Advocates say the drones could help protect officers and others by using nonhuman eyes to collect crucial information during high-risk situations. Skeptics worry that use of the devices will steadily expand and include inappropriate -- or illegal -- surveillance. The LAPD's harshest critics want the drone program scrapped before it even takes off. On Tuesday, the civilian board that oversees the LAPD will vote on whether to allow the department to test drones during a one-year pilot program.

The Justices Have Questions About How to Fix Partisan Gerrymandering


A partisan asymmetry means a map does not treat the parties equally in terms of how their votes translate into seats. At this final step, the gold standard is to use a computer algorithm to simulate many maps that satisfy the state's legitimate redistricting criteria. A partisan asymmetry means a map does not treat the parties equally in terms of how their votes translate into seats. At this final step, the gold standard is to use a computer algorithm to simulate many maps that satisfy the state's legitimate redistricting criteria.

Facebook axed 'tens of thousands' of accounts before German election


Facebook released a recap today about the efforts it made to minimize the spread of fake news during Germany's recent election. Facebook VP Richard Allan said in the announcement, "These actions did not eliminate misinformation entirely in this election – but they did make it harder to spread, and less likely to appear in people's News Feeds. Additionally, anytime users visited an article about the election, Facebook provided a way for them to compare all of the major parties' perspectives on that issue, and an Election Hub was set up for users to easily see who was on the ballot. Allan also said that the site removed tens of thousands of fake accounts during the month before the election, which is a much larger number than the thousands of accounts Mark Zuckerberg noted in his recent update on Facebook's role in promoting election integrity.