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Jack C Crawford
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It was a great experience!

Did any of you watch?

Here's the live stream for our panel hangout today. tag +Jack C Crawford, panelist from

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Last year, when I made the leap to start an artificial intelligence company, I felt the fear of the robots from many around me. Dangerous self-driving cars, unlit factories filled with robots assembling products 24x7, and deeper intrusions into our privacy by folks like Facebook and Google. Even then, I sensed doubt about whether these advancements, promised long ago, might ever be achieved. 10 years ago, many experts said that we would never have a driverless vehicle.

By December 2016, it was
01100111 01100001 01101101 01100101 00100000 01101111 01110110 01100101 01110010 (credit +Riva-Melissa Tez )

So here we are, closing the first week of 2017. This is the year that the fear of automation shall be exchanged with another fear:

m i s s i n g . o u t

So my question to each of you, will you wait any longer to learn more about AI?

Or, are you comfortable with missing out?


Learn more tomorrow at AI 101

Friends, I would like to offer you a special deal for you to SKIP STEP 1 and join the MyPolly BETA.

5 days only.

Begin at STEP 2:

You may share with other friends on social networks!

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Jobs expressing humanity are safe from AI
There is so much we still have to learn about the workings of our brains (let alone our minds) that I wonder how close we really are to creating a machine capable of learning in quite the way we do. 2017 seems very likely to be the year of AI (though more l...

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Speech ... Let's get the conversation started.

Sign up for the limited beta:

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We just launched waitlist signup for our new product: MyPolly Build-a-bot. Details on the signup page. Would you folks please check it out?

We are starting the Beta first week of January. We seek AI oriented developers to start trying it out before we hold some hackathons. First hackathons in India, then in LA and SF. Any other locations?

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+Yonatan Zunger Thanks for this. Just the enlightenment I needed today.
Something often neglected in discussions of Galileo and his trial for heresy is that the dispute wasn't about whether the Earth revolves around the Sun; it was about who had the right to say that the Earth revolves around the Sun.

From the Vatican's perspective, statements about the nature of reality are effectively policy statements, and so may only be made by the organ of policy -- namely, them. Galileo's science argued that anyone could perform experiments and learn things about the factual nature of reality, and communicate these ideas to others, and that this knowledge was not limited or controllable by the Church.

There's an important logic to the Vatican's argument here. Statements of factual reality, while they aren't policy statements in their own right, tend to have very profound policy implications. If I tell you that the roof is on fire, then you are likely to place a very high priority on things like leaving the building and calling the fire department.¹ If I tell you that the Earth is not at the center of the universe, this might lend weight to arguments that the experience of the Crucifixion isn't unique and at the center of the universe (this is the heresy that Giordano Bruno was later burned for), and thus that the Church isn't the natural and unique center of political authority.

That is, organs of political power are right to think of scientific statements as having policy implications -- and organs of policy tend to be very jealous of that prerogative, and not appreciate anyone else trying to make policy without them.

Science is particularly dangerous, in this regard, because it provides testable statements about the nature of reality which are in effect available to anybody, and because those statements are sometimes surprises. A surprising change in facts which can't be negotiated away is profoundly dangerous to institutions of power, because those changes might compromise anything from a delicately negotiated balance of power to the significance of the organization itself. Encouraging science is something only done by the most confident of governments and institutions: the ones who believe that, no matter what the nature of reality may be, they will be able to face up to it.

Leaders who are more concerned with their personal survival than the fate of the country as a whole will often not see it this way: public perception, and the resulting political leverage it creates, is ultimately far more important to the exercise of power, even though it is far less important than knowledge of the facts to the protection of the nation.

A good modern example of this dichotomy can be seen in the different ways that the Department of Defense and Congress discuss climate change. To the DoD, this is a practical threat, requiring planning and advance preparation, and thus detailed knowledge whenever possible. To Congress, this is a political threat, requiring changes in policy which may compromise important bargains with people who would lose out from those changes, and thus requiring careful control of public perception independent of the underlying reality.

¹ Or alternatively, that we don't need no water; let the motherfucker burn.

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My brilliant and dear friend +Giselle Minoli has inspired me to open up a discussion on the impact of Artificial Intelligence ( #AI ) on our lives and society. To move that discussion along, I will moderate with an introduction of AI that seeks to dispel our current perspectives on how it is being created today. The discussion should then include how it might evolve. Based on that, I am certain that you will bring your own views on the impact of AI both now and in the future.

Here is a fantastic interview by #WiredMagazine with President Barack Obama and MIT's Joi Ito. You will be very impressed by Mr. Obama's knowledge and views on AI. Brilliant in fact.

As a bit of information and a disclaimer, I am the founder of an AI startup based in San Francisco. At the present, we are building a platform for conversational AI. Initially, we have put our first "baby" out there as a type of bot. The bot isn't a dictionary or a search engine. Think of her as someone you might meet at a gathering.

Her name is Polly and you are invited to engage with her at . Ask her her name, where she lives, what she does for a living, or what is her favorite color. If you are bold, ask her who is running for president (i'm not sure whether she knows.)

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Come join me in San Francisco at the AI World Conference & Expo on November 7-8, 2016
Look for in the Emerging AI Products Pavilion. Free Exhibit Hall Pass! AIWE16EP
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