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Filtered by author: Doug Vining
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Amazon Go video
Posted: 6 December 2016  
Watch how cool it is to shop at Amazon Go.
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No checkout required at Amazon Go
Posted: 6 December 2016  
Amazon's grocery store in Seattle is so convenient, you just take the goods and walk out. It's automatically scanned and charged to your account!
Amazon wants you to feel like you’re shoplifting from its new grocery store
6 December 2016
You can simply scan your phone, pick your food up off the shelf, and walk out.
MindBullet logo AMAZON OPENS 100th CITY STORE
Amazon eStore Hong Kong joins the high street line-up
Dateline: 22 October 2013
Amazon opened its one-hundredth city store yesterday, with queues of eager shoppers waiting to snatch up the opening specials on offer. And no, it's not ...
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Can't stop viral power
Posted: 6 December 2016  
Earlier this year, we published a MindBullet about micro generation and consumption of solar power, particularly in under developed areas like Africa. Now people who have abundant sunshine are leapfrogging the industrial-age model of a centralised power utility, straight into the future of basic electric power at almost zero cost!

Not even Trump can reverse this trend. ...
Off the grid solar is increasingly solving power problems in parts of rural Africa
6 December 2016
Pay-as-you-go solar systems have begun to light up homes in underserved parts of the continent, but will need to pack more punch to leapfrog the grid.
MindBullet logo SOLAR POWER GOES VIRAL
Rooftop, backyard and portable solar is the new meme
Dateline: 15 March 2022
The biggest energy revolution in 150 years has arrived gradually, then suddenly. Now it's here. Personal solar power has displaced central utilities ...
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Machines that spot criminals before the crime
Posted: 24 November 2016  
Can a computer identify a criminal just by looking at their face, without comparing it to a database? Apparently yes:

"The worry, of course, is how humans might use these machines. It’s not hard to imagine how this process could be applied to data sets of, say, passport or driving license photos for an entire country. It would then be possible to pick out those people identified as ...
A deep-learning machine was trained to spot criminals by looking at mugshots
24 November 2016
The effort aimed at identifying criminals from their mugshots raises serious ethical issues about how we should use artificial intelligence.
MindBullet logo CHINA TURNS ON FIRST PRE-CRIME DETECTION SYSTEM
Using online behaviour and social activity, government looks to catch terrorists and criminals in advance
Dateline: 1 April 2019
Reports from the Dark Web are filtering through: China has activated its 'predictive policing' platform known as the Peoples' Public Security Evaluation or ...
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The world in 2076
Posted: 16 November 2016  
Long term predictions and forecasts are risky - they are bound to be wrong. New Scientist takes a look at some scenarios for 60 years' time.
We've seen the future, and it will blow your mind
16 November 2016

New Scientist is 60 years old this week, and what better way to celebrate a landmark birthday than to wax lyrical about another time. But we’re not going ...

MindBullet logo THE FUTURE SURE AIN'T WHAT IT USED TO BE
The future will always surprise us
Dateline: 11 August 2026
Back in the 1950s, seventy years ago, people made all sorts of predictions about what the future would be like. We'd have flying cars and robot maids, it ...
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3D printing aviation engines
Posted: 16 November 2016  
3D printing has come a long way since the certification of a single printed part for aircraft was big news. General Electric Aviation has gone considerably further in the development of its Advanced Turboprop (ATP) for the Cessna Denali single-engine aircraft.

When completed, the 1,240 bhp ATP itself will have 855 conventional components reduced to just 12 printed parts, which include the ...
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Understanding artificial intelligence
Posted: 15 November 2016  
I think it's fair to say that most of us are fascinated by artificial intelligence, but we don't understand it. The idea of smart machines, that don't only understand natural language, but think like humans (if that's possible) conjures up all sorts of scenarios for the future. But even developers of advanced algorithms and deep neural networks can't explain exactly how they work, or rather ...
Understanding the four types of AI, from reactive robots to self-aware beings
15 November 2016
We need to do more than teach machines to learn. We need to overcome the barriers that separate machines from us – and us from them.
MindBullet logo EMERGENT INTELLIGENCE IS A WEB OF DEMOCRATIC DEVICES
Sensors and gadgets clamour to be heard
Dateline: 13 May 2024
After all these years, we're still stuck with basic artificial intelligence. AI has not matured to the 'general' level, where machines are as smart as ...
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Taxing food and water, and air
Posted: 8 November 2016  
A few years ago, we published a MindBullet which suggested that the climate control freaks, I mean bureaucrats, would eventually tax us for the very air we breathe. While that was a bit tongue-in-cheek, the idea is not so far fetched. Water is already taxed in the form of VAT on your council bill, and bottled water is taxed three times over, which is probably a good thing.

Now comes an idea to ...
Food Tax Could Tackle Climate Change and Save Half a Million Lives: Study - NDTV Food
8 November 2016
Taxing food on the basis of planet-warming emissions generated to produce it could boost the fight against climate change and save half a million lives, a ...
MindBullet logo TAKE A DEEP BREATH, YOU'LL SOON BE PAYING FOR AIR
European agency for air quality seeks to introduce oxygen tax
Dateline: 28 April 2023
The EU Climate Control Agency (CCA), known colloquially as the 'carbon police', has introduced proposals to tax the very air we breathe. Two decades of ...
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Robowars for real
Posted: 7 November 2016   1 Comment
Six years ago we wrote about a future where armies would send in robotic vehicles and drones, rather than risk human casualties. Iraq is now taking this approach against ISIS. The ultimate victory will be achieved by the one with the most money for robots!
Iraq's War Robot Makes Battlefield Debut At Mosul
7 November 2016
Robots don’t experience fear. They don’t experience any emotions at all, really, but on the battlefield, it’s the lack of fear that stands out. When ISIS ...
MindBullet logo ROBOT ARMY INVADES ZENUTIA
Big Dog leads the charge while Taranis provides air cover
Dateline: 7 April 2016
It’s an open secret that NATO has been planning an invasion, but the ‘troops’ sent in to ‘restore democracy’ are quite unusual. For the first time in a ...
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Hacking toasters
Posted: 26 October 2016  
Almost five years ago, we wrote a MindBullet with a slightly humorous twist, about a microwave oven that used the internet of things to hack a toaster, among other things. Well, truth is stranger than fiction! In 2016, that's more or less exactly what happened, with massive consequences. This article says the government must step in... to save the internet from hacked toasters!
The government needs to step in and save the internet from hacked toasters
26 October 2016
The internet of things revolution is coming, whether you want it or not And it poses a terrifying risk to the future of the web.
MindBullet logo THE MICROWAVE GAVE MY TOASTER A VIRUS FOR CHRISTMAS
And the washing machine has gone crazy
Dateline: 1 January 2013
The internet of things has its drawbacks. Now that everything is connected, all the time, they don't always play nice. It's annoying, when you're sitting ...
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Social credit rating by government
Posted: 24 October 2016  
At the beginning of the year we published this MindBullet about having a social credit rating in China, which could unlock privileges. But China also seeks to impose penalties for those who don't perform well on its big data score. Is this grand social engineering, and the very opposite of an open democratic society?
China’s plan to organize its society relies on ‘big data’ to rate everyone
24 October 2016
The Communist Party wants to harness vast troves of online data to score people and companies on their behavior.
MindBullet logo OPEN SESAME TO THE GOOD LIFE
China's new social credit score for citizens starts paying dividends
Dateline: 15 April 2021
Yesterday was a good day for Mei-Hua Li. Her offer on her dream apartment was accepted, her internet speed got bumped up three notches (for free) and she ...
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Anything but Clump?
Posted: 21 October 2016  
With the increasing disenchantment with both candidates in the digital media, one wonders if our recent MindBullet, suggesting an AI system would be the best POTUS, isn't right on the mark.

After publishing this MindBullet, we came across this article from earlier in the year that asks the same question: Could a robot run for President? ...
Could a robot run for U.S. president in 2020?
21 October 2016
Advances in artificial intelligence have raised the question of a supercomputer running for office.
MindBullet logo AI FOR PRESIDENT
The next Commander in Chief is an avatar
Dateline: 3 November 2020
When a Presidential decision can affect millions of people's lives, it's a weighty matter; one that must balance ethics, integrity and pragmatism with what ...
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Failing tech
Posted: 12 October 2016   1 Comment
Here's a long form essay that almost precisely echoes the insight of our MindBullet from January 2015.

When we've come to rely on technology, that never fails, we are often unprepared to deal with the unusual circumstance, when it DOES fail. Over time, computers can diminish our skills! ...
Crash: how computers are setting us up for disaster | Tim Harford
12 October 2016
The Long Read: We increasingly let computers fly planes and carry out security checks. Driverless cars are next. But is our reliance on automation ...
MindBullet logo WHEN TECHNOLOGY FAILS TO FAIL
Critical system failures that don't trigger corrective action cause disasters
Dateline: 21 March 2016
Yet another airliner has fallen out of the sky without warning. And the reason is fail-safe systems that fail to alert the pilots to the real problem when ...
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Diesel's days are numbered
Posted: 19 October 2016  
Germany is the latest country to announce a future when all cars must be emissions free. The target date is 2030. But as this article in Wired points out, it's damn difficult to make a decent profit on pure electric vehicles. Which means the big auto makers are hedging their bets. Quite likely, when they say "every car will be electric" they mean they'll all use some sort of hybrid technology ...
Das Diesel is Dead. The Next Generation German Car Will be Electric. Probably.
19 October 2016
BMW, VW, and Mercedes promise they're serious about electric cars, but are moving slowly.
MindBullet logo VINYL CARS MAKE A COMEBACK
Like vinyl records of old, retro automobiles are suddenly back in fashion
Dateline: 28 April 2029
It's been a while since manually driven, gasoline automobiles gave way to electric vehicles with autopilot. Just as horses and buggies gave way to motor ...
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The future of mobility
Posted: 11 October 2016  
Here's an interesting article on urban mobility in 2030, by McKinsey&Company, based on their report. I am pretty sure that by 2030 most urban dwellers will prefer to view mobility as an on-demand service, rather than an investment in personal vehicles. McKinsey provides several models for the future, all of them disruptive. That's the key - disruption is certain.
An integrated perspective on the future of mobility
11 October 2016
A number of social, economic, and technological trends will work together to disrupt mobility, potentially creating three new urban models by 2030.
MindBullet logo MOBILITY AS A SERVICE
Private cars banned in New York and London
Dateline: 17 August 2019
Four years ago, it was proposed that gasoline and diesel vehicles be banned from certain cities and states; but the new trend towards mobility as a service ...
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Google's home invasion begins
Posted: 6 October 2016  
Three years and one month ago, we published this MindBullet about Google 'invading' peoples homes with a smart TV. Well, now they are doing it, but with a speaker instead of a screen. Or you can use the phone to summon Google's Assistant. Yes, we 'predicted' that, way back in 2004, in a MindBullet too:
http://www.futureworld.org/PublicZone/MindBullets/MindBulletsDetails.aspx?MindBulletID=93. ...
All That New Google Hardware? It's a Trojan Horse for AI
6 October 2016
Five years ago, experts thought the phone would be the interface to everything. That's not the case anymore.
MindBullet logo GOOGLE STAGES A HOME INVASION
With Google Screen you get more than just television, broadband and games
Dateline: 26 August 2015
Google has launched its pay TV service, with regular television channels on a broadband connection. But unlike 'on demand' services, this is an entirely ...
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How to train your robot
Posted: 6 October 2016  
In a previous MindBullet we talked about the Robot Internet, where unskilled robots could download all the information they needed to perform a skill or carry out a new function. There's a name for that now, and it's 'cloud robotics'. Using connected artificial intelligence, let robots learn from each other. That's what Google is doing.
Google's next big step for AI: Getting robots to teach each other new skills
6 October 2016
Robots haven't reached human intelligence yet, but Google's researchers are showing how they're closing the gap using downloadable intelligence.
MindBullet logo ROBOEARTH TAXES THE MACHINES
With robots paying labour tax, the 99% can be as idle and as comfortable as the elites
Dateline: 4 July 2025
We're living in the age of abundance. The age of the algorithm. The age of... well, automated utopia. Who would have thought that this soon, with machines ...
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More 3D printer magic
Posted: 4 October 2016  
Here's another advance in additive, or rather digital direct metal manufacturing. This 3D printer not only makes finished parts from metal powder, it also mills and polishes them to final specifications.
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How to steal an AI
Posted: 4 October 2016  
How do you steal someone else's deep learning algorithm that has been built up from thousands, perhaps millions of data inputs? Apparently all you need to do is build a machine learning system that quizzes the target AI often enough and voila! you can replicate it.
How to Steal an AI
4 October 2016
Researchers show how they can reverse engineer and reconstruct someone else's machine learning engine---using machine learning.
MindBullet logo COGNITIVE SYSTEMS RULE, OK
Machines that think for themselves are taking over the world
Dateline: 22 February 2022
In our quest to develop smarter, more powerful, less power-hungry computers and devices, we have created artificial intelligence that rivals that of the ...
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3D printers shaping the future of manufacturing
Posted: 28 September 2016  
Some people are already dismissing consumer 3D printing as a passing fad. They may prove to be right. But one area where 3D printing is surging ahead, though still far from mature, is industrial manufacturing systems. As printing, or additive manufacturing systems become increasingly automated, robotized, and new technologies get developed, we will see large-scale disruption to traditional ...
12 high-end 3D printers shaping the future of additive manufacturing
28 September 2016
The most incredible innovations in 3D printing technology can be found amongst the industry's high-end machines. These are 12 of the most exciting high-end ...
MindBullet logo MARS MOTHERSHIP PRINTED IN 3D
3D printing in space solves problem of launching huge rockets
Dateline: 3 November 2025
A decade ago the first 3D printer to go to space was sent to the International Space Station. It proved to be so useful, more, bigger printers soon ...
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Filtered by author: Doug Vining
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