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AI Vs. The Narrative of the Robot Job-Stealers

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Most of what we found was positive techno-friendly Narratives, but there are also very real, deeply held beliefs about AI as a threat to humanity, human jobs and human privacy that need to be addressed. As of last year, 10 percent of Americans considered AI a threat to humanity and six percent considered it a threat to jobs, though the former number was declining and the latter was rising. Doug is Founder & CEO of Protagonist which is a high growth Narrative Analytics company. Protagonist mines beliefs in order to energize brands, win narrative battles, and understand target audiences.


2 Alibaba Employees Named to MIT Young Innovator's List

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The Alibaba employee who fended off one of the world's largest DDoS hacking attacks and another who spearheaded development of a new voice-activated and controlled artificial intelligence product were Wednesday named to the 2017 MIT Technology Review's list of top Innovators Under 35. "Wang's contributions to developing cutting-edge technologies to empower next-generation artificial intelligence applications, and Wu's efforts in designing world-class internet security systems and helping small businesses defend against cyberattacks, make them true pioneers in their fields." Wang leads the artificial intelligence lab's research efforts in computer vision, natural language processing, speech recognition and machine learning. Alibaba Group is a leader in innovation and technology, with research and development in areas including cloud computing, quantum communications, biometric recognition, machine learning, image processing and speech recognition.


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Whether it's Apple's Siri, Microsoft's Cortana, Amazon's Alexa, or virtually any GPS system, chances are the computerized personalities in your life are women. Hanson Robotics recently demoed Sophia, a learning and expressive robot designed to help humans in areas like healthcare and customer service. Market research is likely the main factor that influences tech companies when constructing AI personalities. Whether its stereotypes about women in service roles, the desire for a female companion, or simply that feeling of trust that a woman's voice instills, female AI personalities are easier for most consumers to adopt.


AI programs are learning to exclude some African-American voices

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If there aren't enough examples of a particular accent or vernacular, then these systems may simply fail to understand you (see "AI's Language Problem"). "If you analyze Twitter for people's opinions on a politician and you're not even considering what African-Americans are saying or young adults are saying, that seems problematic," O'Connor says. Solon Barocas, an assistant professor at Cornell and a cofounder of the event, says the field is growing, with more and more researchers exploring the issue of bias in AI systems. Shared Goel, an assistant professor at Stanford University who studies algorithmic fairness and public policy, says the issue is not always straightforward.


10 Examples of How Brands Are Using Chatbots to Delight Customers

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Fandango's Facebook Messenger bot lets you watch movie trailers, find local theaters, and see what's trending this week. Spotify's Facebook Messenger bot makes it easy for its customers to search for, listen to, and share music. Mastercard's Facebook Messenger bot makes it easy for customers to check on account transactions (e.g., just ask "how much did I spent on restaurants in May?"). Staples' Facebook Messenger bot can answer common customer questions, which tend to be about orders -- tracking and returns -- and whether specific items are in stock.


CovertBand tracking system hijacks smart devices to record

Daily Mail

Researchers from the University of Washington remotely hijacked smart devices using a software code called CovertBand which played music embedded with repeating pulses that secretly tracked someone's position. 'Most of today's smart devices including smart TVs, Google Home, Amazon Echo and smartphones come with built-in microphones and speaker systems - which lets us use them to play music, record video and audio tracks, have phone conversations or participate in videoconferencing,' said co-lead author Rajalakshmi Nandakumar. When they played the CovertBand pulses beneath 20 popular songs - including Lenny Kravitz's'American Woman' and Michael Jackson's'Bad' - listeners could identify the'hacked' version of the song 58 percent of the time, just slightly above the 50 percent accuracy expected by guessing randomly. When they played the CovertBand pulses beneath 20 popular songs - including Lenny Kravitz's'American Woman' and Michael Jackson's'Bad' - listeners could identify the'hacked' version of the song 58 percent of the time, just slightly above the 50 percent accuracy expected by guessing randomly.


AI and HR, the final frontier

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For business, rapid advancement in machine learning and natural language processing, is enabling audiences to converse with a company in real-time, 24 hours a day. Commonly, and somewhat gimmick-ly, referred to as chatbots, these computer programmes enable people, be it consumers, staff, fans or anyone else, to get information from machines through text and speech. The HR chatbot (conversational software) connects with up-to-date employee handbooks, policy documents, CRMs and anything else it is given access to and answers questions in real time. Change is disruptive, and this, like all change management issues, requires managing and a coordinated approach.


Google Home and Chromecast vs. Amazon Echo and Fire TV: Which is the best hands-free TV experience?

PCWorld

Amazon added Fire TV voice controls to the Echo speaker and other Alexa devices a couple weeks ago, while Google has offered similar voice controls for Chromecast through its own Google Home speaker since last December. Amazon Echo voice commands work with any Fire TV device (including first-generation models). In May, Google announced that it was expanding voice controls to HBO Now, Hulu, YouTube TV, Google Play Movies & TV, CBS All Access, Food Network, CW, HGTV, Red Bull TV, Travel Channel, Crackle, DIY Network, Viki, and Cooking Channel, but it's unclear when this support will become available. Although Google Home and Amazon Alexa don't offer direct control over most televisions and sound systems, they both work with Logitech Harmony hubs, which in turn can control various TVs, sound systems, and streaming boxes.


EE TV gets voice controls thanks to Amazon's Alexa

Engadget

The hardware now supports Alexa, Amazon's voice-enabled assistant, through an Echo or Echo Dot-equipped speaker. So you can ask, "Alexa, ask EE TV what's on tonight" and hear some suggestions from the Freeview-powered guide. Amazon has long touted Alexa as a key part of its Fire TV and Fire TV stick, however those devices are for on-demand apps only. The problem, at least for now, is that the service requires an Echo speaker -- with Amazon's Fire TV, you get a purpose-built remote in the box.