The Obtain: AI job panic, and concussion-preventing mouthguards


That is right this moment’s version of The Obtain, our weekday publication that gives a every day dose of what’s happening on the planet of expertise.

Persons are anxious that AI will take everybody’s jobs. We’ve been right here earlier than.

It was 1938, and the ache of the Nice Melancholy was nonetheless very actual. Unemployment within the US was round 20%. New equipment was reworking factories and farms, and everybody was anxious about jobs.

Had been the spectacular technological achievements that have been making life simpler for a lot of additionally destroying jobs and wreaking havoc on the financial system? To make sense of all of it, Karl T. Compton, the president of MIT from 1930 to 1948 and one of many main scientists of the day, wrote within the December 1938 subject of this publication concerning the “Bogey of Technological Unemployment.”

His essay concisely framed the talk over jobs and technical progress in a method that is still related, particularly given right this moment’s fears over the impression of synthetic intelligence. It’s a worthwhile reminder that worries over the way forward for jobs are usually not new and are greatest addressed by making use of an understanding of economics, slightly than conjuring up genies and monsters. Learn the complete story.

David Rotman

This high-tech mouthguard may assist forestall concussions

When athletes or troopers have a concussion, essentially the most useful plan of action is to easily get them off the taking part in subject or out of the motion to allow them to recuperate. But a lot about head accidents stays a thriller, together with the explanation why some impacts end in concussion whereas others don’t.

New measuring gadgets, such because the Impression Monitoring Mouthguard, are being developed that would assist ship a wealth of details about head impacts. By giving a direct warning that an individual must be faraway from motion or play, they may assist defend troopers and athletes alike from mind injury. Learn the complete story.

—David Hambling

Be part of us to debate crucial AI points in Europe and past

Synthetic intelligence took the world by storm in 2023. Its future—and ours—will probably be formed by what we do subsequent. Register now to affix MIT Know-how Evaluation journalists for a free LinkedIn Stay dialogue tomorrow at 11am ET as they discover what’s subsequent for AI in Europe, the US, and past.

The must-reads

I’ve combed the web to search out you right this moment’s most enjoyable/necessary/scary/fascinating tales about expertise.

1 X has blocked all searches for Taylor Swift 
It’s a heavy-handed try to cease the circulation of AI-generated specific pictures of her. (FT $)
+ X is reportedly engaged on a brand new content material moderation HQ in Texas. (Bloomberg $)
+ The viral AI avatar app Lensa undressed me—with out my consent. (MIT Know-how Evaluation)

2 Huge Tech is determined to sever its dependence on Nvidia’s chips
Sadly for them, it’s not as straightforward as merely constructing their very own semiconductors. (NYT $)
+ Japan is investing closely in its personal chip manufacturing strains. (FT $)
+ Huawei’s 5G chip breakthrough wants a actuality verify. (MIT Know-how Evaluation)

3 China has authorised dozens of AI fashions for public use
Regulators authorised 14 previously week alone. (Reuters)
+ The US is spooked, and needs cloud companies to flag overseas purchasers. (Bloomberg $)
+ 4 issues to find out about China’s new AI guidelines in 2024. (MIT Know-how Evaluation)

4 Meta is optimistic about going head-to-head with Apple
The struggle of the blended actuality headsets is beginning to warmth up. (WSJ $)
+ 2024 hasn’t been plain crusing for Apple thus far. (Economist $)
+ These minuscule pixels are poised to take augmented actuality by storm. (MIT Know-how Evaluation)

5 A George Carlin “AI comedy particular” was, in reality, written by a human
Confronted with a lawsuit, the video’s creators admitted an algorithm had not generated the fabric. (NYT $)

6 US spies are sifting by means of huge quantities of public information
They’re lastly tapping into OSINT information. (Bloomberg $)
+ Leaked datasets are a trove of data, if you recognize what you’re on the lookout for. (Motherboard)

7 Decarbonizing the financial system is less complicated stated than achieved
The authorized obstacles are even harder to navigate than the excessive prices. (The Atlantic $)
+ That doesn’t imply it’s not value pursuing, although. (MIT Know-how Evaluation)

8 Instacart is utilizing gross AI-generated meals pictures
Which makes your complete platform look spammy. (Insider $)

9 BeReal is courting celebrities now
The issue is, they aren’t precisely recognized for his or her authenticity. (Wired $)

10 What it takes to develop meals in house
Mmm, tasty 3D-printed meals! (The Guardian)
+ Future house meals could possibly be produced from astronaut breath. (MIT Know-how Evaluation)

Quote of the day

“Organizations need to say, ‘Yeah, we have now a chief AI officer,’ as a result of that makes them look good.”

—Advisor Randy Bean means that corporations’ rush to capitalize on the AI growth is generally a type of company bragging, he tells the New York Occasions.

The massive story

How existential threat grew to become the largest meme in AI

June 2023 

Who’s afraid of the large dangerous bots? Lots of people, it appears. Lots of of scientists, enterprise leaders, and policymakers have lately made public pronouncements or signed open letters warning of the catastrophic risks of synthetic intelligence, from deep studying pioneer Geoffrey Hinton to California congressman Ted Lieu.

We’ve been right here earlier than: AI doom follows AI hype. However this time feels completely different. What have been as soon as excessive views are actually mainstream speaking factors, grabbing not solely headlines however the consideration of world leaders.

Has AI actually develop into (extra) harmful? And why are the individuals who ushered on this tech now those elevating the alarm? Or is the looming specter of regulation responsible? Learn the complete story.

—Will Douglas Heaven

We will nonetheless have good issues

A spot for consolation, enjoyable and distraction in these bizarre occasions. (Obtained any concepts? Drop me a line or tweet ’em at me.)

+ Patrick Swayze traditional Street Home has had a 2024 makeover.
+ I don’t know in the event you’ve observed, however taprooms are fairly fancy today.
+ The champagne bottles onboard the fateful Titanic are nonetheless intact. How?
+ Comfortable 57th anniversary to the Mantra-Rock Dance, the apex of San Francisco’s hippie period.
+ A Buffy the Vampire Slayer reboot is within the pipeline, in accordance with, err, Dolly Parton.


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