Finding gems on classmates twitter and blog feeds

Don’t talk in front of robots? 5-min drama from @guardian, worth a watch: Probing re. ethics, us & the end. #mscedc

A really enjoyable short video Matthew shared which gave a brilliant take on the duality of the sci-fi culture block we have just left. In this video, humans argue around a table about the prospect of the AI, also sat at the table, becoming self-sufficient and sentient and seeking to destroy humans. Various arguments have given with an ethics researcher trying to talk the AI out of using human beings as an example of humanity.

Eventually, the AI decides humans aren’t worth the effort or its superior intelligence and finds a way to leave the planet and go off in search of more worthy lifeforms.

All this worry of AI being a threat to humanity is centred around humanism and the importance of humans over everything else. We are blinded by our self worth.


Fear versus promise

movie clubDuring our movie club on Monday night, there was one comment that really resonated with me. We had spent a lot of time talking about the fear and dystopia of the sci-fi genre and even talking about why humans innately fear the idea of robots who resemble humans physically, like in “Westworld” or the cyborg in “We only attack ourselves”, yet none of us found “Gumdrop” scary. We linked this to our love of fairgrounds and that controlled fear, it’s scary but we know we are safe so it’s ok to be scared. Helen then said something which I think might have been a quote from someone else but it just seemed to switch on a light with me, “… in contrast to the promise of the digital.”

Day to day in my job as a learning technologist I deal with the promise of technology and the disheartening of fear, not the fear of A.I.s becoming sentient or of the dystopia caused by technology, but just fear of technology or possibly more specifically of the change it brings.  This week I am attending an information session to update myself and other learning techs about the project the university has begun to bring lecture capture in for the start of next semester. this means that all lectures will be recorded for the first time so that student can use the recordings as revision material and the lecturers can use the material for teaching at other points. It’s a big step, though, and rightfully some of the staff involved are scared of being recorded and scared of the impact this will have on attendance. Some feel it would have a negative effect on learning but the one objection which shocked me the most is that people are scared that somehow these recordings would be used to monitor teaching staff. Very “1984”.



Open – I feel vulnerable

screenshots of my digital footprint

Currently battling with my own perception of my personal cyber culture. With the #MSCEDC course being pretty much conducted publicly for all and sundry, I’m questioning why I feel uncomfortable about it. After all, I blog, publicly A LOT, at last count I have 8 blogs, I have a youtube channel which again is public, I tweet, public, and much more so what’s the issue? I can only ascertain it’s about control or the level of control.  My digital footprint is massive, google me (that sounds like a teenage put down) and you’ll find pictures, blog posts etc. but in all of that I control what is and isn’t public, who can and can’t access things and how they are displayed. I carefully construct what I say and how I interact on these platforms to present the public face I want people to see. With the course blog, I feel I have very little control, it’s all public but I can’t decide not to post because I have to use it for the purpose of the course so all my thoughts, my personal development, my mistakes are there, laid bare.