Technolotics #41 – Too Quick to Taze

Listen: Episode 41
Watch: Youtube


Guilty by conception

UK goverment unveils scheme to identify future criminals at birth.
Aim is to identify those at risk of failure, violent behaviour or criminality and then take action to prevent that happening.
Midwives, doctors and nurses asked to identify ‘chaotic’ families whose babies are in danger of growing up to be delinqunts, drug addicts and violent criminals.
Action on Rights for Children (ARCH) points to evidence that early intervention can in fact be harmful.

Assessment tools will include value judgements, made by doctors, nurses, midwives: one person’s dysfunction is another’s normal.
Those assessing may feel under pressure to note everything, even part-imagined ‘signs’ to stave off future allegations of negligence.
Cases could then be built on very tenuous or non-existent evidence.
Misses the point that even if the signs exist there is no guarantee the child will become a criminal.
Withholding information may become common as people fear any information given being used against them.

Misses the point that we already know where many of the dysfunctional families reside, in the most poor and disadvantaged areas.
So why not spend the money and resources in helping these people and their children rather than stymatising them by invading their homes and dictacting their home life.


The Register article
Register Article.
Independent Online article.
Observer online article.

Short Stories

Why antivirus doesn’t catch the infestion

Evolution in action again – as virus writers specifically test against the most popular packages
According to top packages have an 80% failure rate
Little known russian antivirus shop Kaspersky produced the most immune to new malware antivirus


Kaspersky Australian computer emergency responce team – 80% of malware gets through Antivirus software is being defeated Why most antivirus apps dont work

YouTube owns your videos

YouTubes updated terms and conditions provide the company myspace like ownership of your posted content
The licence enables derivative works – meaning that musicians could find their tracks stripped from posted videos and resold
While it looks like the company are just being legally cautious, this is another example of how we are relying on such networks not to be evil


Wired News Story
Boing boing Update

EU blocks municipal broadband

The European Commission is blocking individual municipalities who seek to provide free broadband for their residents
Similar laws have been passed at state level in the US – though the Communications, Consumer’s Choice, and Broadband Deployment Act of 2006 may change that
Is the worship of free market economics reducing access to broadband?
Arguably, broadband – like road networks, education, or urban waste disposal – is an example of where government investment provides a massive boon to economic growth – as well as an essential service
Let me just take this opportunity to describe the bin tag situation in Ireland!


Ars technica article

Too quick to Taze?

As this horrific video demonstrates – US police show little hesitation in using dangerous and highly agressive non-lethal takedown techniques

Taze video

Artificial Intelligence turns 50

Artificial intelligence the name was coined 50 years ago
Although strictly speaking, people have been trying to build AI since Turings 1950 ‘Computing machinery and intelligence’ paper
A.I has developed not into the generalist analogue of human intelligence imagined by Turing – but rather into a set of specialist knowledge bases and pattern recognition systems
Will general computational intelligence develop out of the exponential increase of computational power?
Or – as seems more likely, are we constained by our current inability to perfectly understand the mechanisms of our own cognition
Expert systems (like medical specialist programs), and fuzzy logic recognition mechanisms (like security cameras), are still incredibly stupid and specific
The simplist insect is more self sufficient, environmentally adaptive, and independent than our most advanced robots
Turing test is a red herring – confusing conversation with intelligence
Despite their stupidity specialist programmes have multiple uses in a variety of fields

Medicial diagnosis, voice recognition, surveillence of the public, aeronautics

Is robotics relevent to AI? How much is embodiment a prerequeset for AI?


Wired News article
Great discussion on the dangers of ‘evil AI’

Media Pimp


Slimtimer web based time tracking service


YYY’s Cheated Hearts
Cheated Hearts Dublin
Secret Diary of Steve Jobs Aged 51 1/2

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