We Asked An AI To Write A Column For Us. The Results Were Wild
We’ve been testing weekly short fiction pieces scribed by GPT-2, a text-generating artificial intelligence algorithm originally built by OpenAI. We give the algorithm a sentence from a real article, and the algorithm iteratively generates what it thinks the next word should be.
Inside China’s Massive Surveillance Operation
Xinjiang, northwest China, is in a state of surveillance lockdown. Every message, word and movement is monitored for its extremist potential. A million Uyghur muslims are being held in concentration camps.
Is Quibi A Good Idea?
Quibi, short for “quick bites,” which promises lots of celebrity-led programming in snack-sized doses. The service has grabbed headlines and snagged investments from Disney and Alibaba. But, is Quibi… good? Will it work?
The Pentagon’s Push To Program Soldiers’ Brains
The military wants future super-soldiers to control robots with their thoughts. The mission is to make human beings something other than what we are, with powers beyond the ones we’re born with and beyond the ones we can organically attain.
The Citizen Scientist Who Finds Killers From Her Couch
CeCe Moore has no scientific degree. Like other prominent figures in the genealogy community, she is self-taught. Moore is, in her own estimation, among the most experienced genetic genealogists in the world. Now she is using her genetic knowledge to expose murderers.
The True History Behind ‘The Plot Against America’
Philip Roth’s classic novel, newly adapted by HBO, envisions a world in which Charles Lindbergh wins the 1940 presidential election. Roth’s account of a celebrity-turned-politician winning the presidency on a platform of fearmongering and “othering” proved more prophetic than he could have predicted.
Defeated Chess Champ Garry Kasparov Has Made Peace With AI
For almost two decades after becoming world champion in 1985, Garry Kasparov dominated the game with a ferocious style of play and an equally ferocious swagger. In 1997, at the height of his powers, Kasparov was crushed and cowed by an IBM supercomputer called Deep Blue.
The Rise Of Shopify, $68 Billion In Size. How Did It Get So Big?
Shopify is the leading E-commerce platform in the United States with 23% market share and has become the second-largest platform in terms of total merchandise volume, surpassing eBay in September 2019 and just behind Amazon. The company’s stock is up more than 20 times its IPO price.
Credit Card Companies Are Tracking Shoppers Like Never Before
Transactions have given rise to a complex data-selling ecosystem. At the heart of it are credit card processing networks, including Visa, American Express, and Mastercard, the latter of which took in $4.1 billion in 2019 for services that include marketing analytics as well as fraud detection.
How The Dumb Design Of A WWII Plane Led To The Macintosh
For all the triumph of America’s new planes and tanks during World War II, a silent reaper stalked the battlefield: accidental deaths and mysterious crashes that no amount of training ever seemed to fix. At first, pilots took the blame for crashes. The true cause, however, lay with the design. That lesson led us into our user-friendly age—but there’s peril to come.
The New Mind Control
The internet has spawned subtle forms of influence that can flip elections and manipulate everything we say, think and do. Most of the vacuous thoughts and intense feelings our teenagers experience from morning till night are carefully orchestrated by highly skilled marketing professionals working in our fashion and entertainment industries.
How To Fight Lies, Tricks And Chaos Online
It took me years to really understand where all the information I saw online was coming from. So this isn’t just a guide to spotting when something is fake. It’s a system for slowing down and thinking about information — whether that information is true, false, or something in between.
How Psychology Is Just Catching Up With The Effects Of Online Hate
Lindsay Ellis is a video essayist. She makes videos commenting on films, TV shows, and other media. More than 860,000 people subscribe to her YouTube channel. But there is also this difficult aspect to what Ellis does: online hate.
Iraq’s Social Media Martyrs
Huge nationwide protests against corruption have been making headlines, but these young millennials are taking on power in a different way, by celebrating beauty, fashion and rap. They’ve got millions of followers, but, as Unreported World finds out, fame can have deadly consequences.
The Small Virginia Town Where Drone Deliveries Have Begun For Real
Wing, a subsidiary of Google, chose Christiansburg (population 22,500) as its first launching site for American commercial drone delivery operations — it’s also testing in Australia and Finland — not only because of the relatively flat terrain and low population density, but because of nearby Virginia Tech University.
The Tech Giants Are Coming For Our Homes
The likes of Amazon, Google, Samsung, Apple and others are all competing for smart home dominance – but what drove so many of us to invite these multinational corporations into the highly personal spaces where we live?
The Diabetes Patients Who Hacked A Pancreas
While diabetics anxiously awaited the release of commercial systems, tech-savvy diabetics and their loved ones worked on do-it-yourself systems. How could a bunch of hackers, working in their free time, create something medical manufacturing companies had yet to put on the market?
Digital Technology Is Not To Blame For Our Hyperfast Lives
Life in the 21st century, we are told, is faster than ever. Time is scarce, the pace of everyday life is accelerating, and everyone complains about how busy they are. For all the smart tech, we still feel pressed for time. Are digital services the problem, or are we humans to blame?
Inside The Failure Of Google+, A Very Expensive Attempt To Unseat Facebook
Create a social network or risk everything. That was the original pitch for Google’s Facebook rival, Google+, a refrain hammered over and over by the social network’s chief architect, Vic Gundotra, in meetings with the company’s top brass.
How Journalists Covered The Rise Of Mussolini And Hitler
How to cover the rise of a political leader who’s left a paper trail of anti-constitutionalism, racism and the encouragement of violence? Does the press take the position that its subject acts outside the norms of society?
The Complicated, Problematic Influence Of TripAdvisor Restaurant Reviews
The travel site is beloved and trusted by tourists — a fact some New York restaurants are exploiting however they can. While locals are more likely to turn to user-generated review sites like Foursquare, Yelp, or Google Maps to navigate the city’s shifting restaurant landscape, TripAdvisor holds considerable clout with international travelers.