A new machine-learning program accurately identifies COVID-19-related conspiracy theories on social media and models how they evolved over time--a tool that could someday help public health officials combat misinformation online. A lot of machine-learning studies related to misinformation on social media focus on identifying different kinds of conspiracy theories. Instead, we wanted to create a more cohesive understanding of how misinformation changes as it spreads. Because people tend to believe the first message they encounter, public health officials could someday monitor which conspiracy theories are gaining traction on social media and craft factual public information campaigns to preempt widespread acceptance of falsehoods. The study, anonymized Twitter data to characterize four COVID-19 conspiracy theory themes and provide context for each through the first five months of the pandemic.
Scientists have developed a new machine learning tool that can identify Covid-19-related conspiracy theories on social media and predict how they evolved over time, an advance which may lead to better ways for public health officials to fight misinformation online. The study, published in the Journal of Medical Internet Research, analysed anonymised Twitter data to characterise four Covid-19 conspiracy theory themes – such as one that erroneously claims the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation engineered or has malicious intent related to the pandemic. Using the AI tool's analysis of more than 1.8 million tweets that contained Covid-19 keywords, the scientists from the Los Alamos National Laboratory in the US categorised the posts as misinformation or not, and provided context for each of these conspiracy theories through the first five months of the pandemic. "From this body of data, we identified subsets that matched the four conspiracy theories using pattern filtering, and hand labeled several hundred tweets in each conspiracy theory category to construct training sets," explained Dax Gerts, a computer scientist and co-author of the study from the Los Alamos National Laboratory. The four major themes examined in the study were that 5G cell towers spread the virus; that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation engineered or have "malicious intent" related to Covid-19; that the novel coronavirus was bioengineered or was developed in a laboratory; and that vaccines for Covid-19, which were still in development during the study period, would be dangerous.
Four years after its introduction, the Brilliant platform remains an ambitious but niche product: You can replace light switches with video-enabled touchscreens, complete with a full Amazon Alexa hub, motion detection, and more. The $299 to $449 price per control panel--based on the number of integrated switches--has not budged since launch, making it one of the most expensive ways to outfit your home with smart tech. Interested in Brilliant but don't have five figures handy to kit out your entire home in touchscreens? Good news: Brilliant alleviates some of its platform's sticker shock with a dimmer switch that forgoes the touchscreen, replacing it with a simple touch slider that works just like the sliders on its multi-switch units. It sells for $70, which makes it a whole lot cheaper than a full control panel, but it's still quite a bit more expensive than smart dimmers based on other wireless technologies (Lutron Caséta, Wi-Fi, Z-Wave, Zigbee, et al).
Hosted by Dylan Doyle-Burke and Jessie J Smith, Radical AI is a podcast featuring the voices of the future in the field of artificial intelligence ethics. In this episode Jess and Dylan chat to Kate Crawford about the Atlas of AI. What is the Atlas of AI? How is AI an industry of extraction? How is AI impacting the planet? To answer these questions and more we welcome to the show Dr Kate Crawford to discuss Kate's new book Atlas of AI: Power, Politics, and the Planetary Costs of Artificial Intelligence.
No longer content to simply provide a platform for keeping up with long-lost cousins and spreading conspiracy theories, Facebook has branched out into developing artificial intelligence to help treat complex diseases. The social media giant's AI research department and the Helmholtz Zentrum München, a research center in Germany focused on environmental health, unveiled an open-source AI model designed to determine the viability of repurposing existing drugs into new pharmaceutical cocktails. Researchers and biologists now have free access to the Compositional Perturbation Autoencoder, or CPA, which evaluates the effects of drug combinations in varying dosages--a complicated task, as the number of possibilities can accelerate exponentially into the billions as more medicines are thrown into the mix. The model predicts not only how the drugs interact with one another, but also how they might work together to attack specific cell types and interrupt diseases. The researchers trained the machine learning model on single-cell RNA sequencing data, to help it gauge the effects of drug cocktails on individual cells without requiring drug- or cell-specific programming.
The online landscape is burgeoning. It is not just about computers, notebooks, tablet computers, and tablets. Presently a great number of apparatus are internet-connected. The listing of "smart" apparatus comprises washing machines, robotic vacuum cleaners, door locks, toys, and even toasters. The Internet of Things is the umbrella word -- and, yes, now you can purchase a wide umbrella -- for whatever connects to the web.
Ever wish you could easily export all your Facebook posts and notes onto a completely different platform? On Monday, Facebook announced a few new data portability options that allow you to seamlessly transition the content you've written on the social network onto platforms made for writing. Specifically, Facebook has built in an option to transfer your posts and notes into Google Docs as well as two popular blogging platforms, WordPress.com To give people more control and choice over their data, today we're announcing that Facebook posts and notes can be directly transferred to @GoogleDocs, @Blogger and @WordPress via our Transfer Your Information tool:https://t.co/ksHO0oeYq5 Facebook already offers options to export your data to your local hard drive.
Video is on an exponential growth trajectory, and it's not just Netflix originals and HBO docs and new films on Amazon Prime. In today's world, when people aren't eating or sleeping (or perhaps even when they are), they are likely viewing a video. Each day, people watch over 1 billion hours of YouTube. Creating and delivering movies, news and other compelling visual content is no longer just for the Hollywood elite. In fact, some of today's most prolific storytellers are doing so with little resources and amateur tools.
Tuesday is not only 420, but Apple's big spring event where new iPads, AirPods, and maybe even AirTags could be unveiled along with other new products. The "Spring Loaded" event starts at 10 a.m. PT on Tuesday, and will be completely livestreamed from Apple Park thanks to the pandemic. Usually Apple holds an IRL event at company headquarters in Cupertino, California. Like all Apple events, you'll be able to tune in a few different ways.