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Jul 8, 2022

Fixing Shoulder Pain: Harvard Scientists Develop a Method To Restore Damaged Tendons and Muscles

Posted by in category: employment

The typical office worker often has soreness throughout their body as a result of their sedentary desk jobs. Even young individuals may develop shoulder pain, which was previously primarily an issue for elderly people. Once shoulder pain creeps in, it is difficult to dress oneself, let alone move one’s body freely. It is also difficult to fall asleep. While the rotator cuffs are often naturally harmed as we age, repairing them has shown to be difficult.

Jul 6, 2022

Computer Chips That Imitate the Brain

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, employment, robotics/AI

A multi-institutional collaboration, which includes the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory, has created a material that can be used to create computer chips that can do just that. It achieves this by using so-called “neuromorphic” circuitry and computer architecture to replicate brain functions. Purdue University professor Shriram Ramanathan led the team.

“Human brains can actually change as a result of learning new things,” said Subramanian Sankaranarayanan, a paper co-author with a joint appointment at Argonne and the University of Illinois Chicago. “We have now created a device for machines to reconfigure their circuits in a brain-like way.”

With this capability, artificial intelligence-based computers might do difficult jobs more quickly and accurately while using a lot less energy. One example is analyzing complicated medical images. Autonomous cars and robots in space that might rewire their circuits depending on experience are a more futuristic example.

Jun 30, 2022

FBI says people are using deepfakes to apply for remote tech jobs

Posted by in categories: employment, internet, robotics/AI

What else can deepfakes do?We’ve seen examples of deepfakes being used almost to change the course of history when a Zelensky footage emerged back in March and told the Ukrainian army to lay down arms amid the Russian invasion. Fortunately, it was sloppy, and the army didn’t buy that. And now, if you consider what happens when a post-covid world that birthed many remote job opportunities for digital nomads merges with AI, The FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) has t… See more.


The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has warned that some people are using deepfakes to apply for remote tech jobs.

Jun 12, 2022

AI’s Threats to Jobs and Human Happiness Are Very Real

Posted by in categories: economics, education, employment, existential risks, finance, robotics/AI, transportation

There’s a movement afoot to counter the dystopian and apocalyptic narratives of artificial intelligence. Some people in the field are concerned that the frequent talk of AI as an existential risk to humanity is poisoning the public against the technology and are deliberately setting out more hopeful narratives. One such effort is a book that came out last fall called AI 2041: Ten Visions for Our Future.

The book is cowritten by Kai-Fu Lee, an AI expert who leads the venture capital firm Sinovation Ventures, and Chen Qiufan, a science fiction author known for his novel Waste Tide. It has an interesting format. Each chapter starts with a science fiction story depicting some aspect of AI in society in the year 2041 (such as deepfakes, self-driving cars, and AI-enhanced education), which is followed by an analysis section by Lee that talks about the technology in question and the trends today that may lead to that envisioned future. It’s not a utopian vision, but the stories generally show humanity grappling productively with the issues raised by ever-advancing AI.

IEEE Spectrum spoke to Lee about the book, focusing on the last few chapters, which take on the big issues of job displacement, the need for new economic models, and the search for meaning and happiness in an age of abundance. Lee argues that technologists need to give serious thought to such societal impacts, instead of thinking only about the technology.

Jun 5, 2022

Opinion We’re in the midst of a ‘great return to work.’ It’s worth celebrating

Posted by in category: employment

More than 6.5 million jobs have come back in the past year, one of the greatest employment rebounds in U.S. history.

May 28, 2022

Is diversity the key to collaboration? New AI research suggests so

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, employment, robotics/AI

A new training approach yields artificial intelligence that adapts to diverse play-styles in a cooperative game, in what could be a win for human-AI teaming.

As artificial intelligence gets better at performing tasks once solely in the hands of humans, like driving cars, many see teaming intelligence as a next frontier. In this future, humans and AI are true partners in high-stakes jobs, such as performing complex surgery or defending from missiles. But before teaming intelligence can take off, researchers must overcome a problem that corrodes cooperation: humans often do not like or trust their AI partners.

Now, new research points to diversity as being a key parameter for making AI a better team player.

May 27, 2022

AI reskilling: A solution to the worker crisis

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, business, employment, finance, information science, robotics/AI

By 2025, the World Economic Forum estimates that 97 million new jobs may emerge as artificial intelligence (AI) changes the nature of work and influences the new division of labor between humans, machines and algorithms. Specifically in banking, a recent McKinsey survey found that AI technologies could deliver up to $1 trillion of additional value each year. AI is continuing its steady rise and starting to have a sweeping impact on the financial services industry, but its potential is still far from fully realized.

The transformative power of AI is already impacting a range of functions in financial services including risk management, personalization, fraud detection and ESG analytics. The problem is that advances in AI are slowed down by a global shortage of workers with the skills and experience in areas such as deep learning, natural language processing and robotic process automation. So with AI technology opening new opportunities, financial services workers are eager to gain the skills they need in order to leverage AI tools and advance their careers.

Today, 87% of employees consider retraining and upskilling options at workplaces very important, and at the same time, more companies ranked upskilling their workforce as a top-5 business priority now than pre-pandemic. Companies that don’t focus on powering AI training will fall behind in a tight hiring market. Below are some key takeaways for business leaders looking to prioritize reskilling efforts at their organization.

May 24, 2022

How Americans think about artificial intelligence

Posted by in categories: employment, food, health, law, robotics/AI, transportation

Artificial intelligence (AI) is spreading through society into some of the most important sectors of people’s lives – from health care and legal services to agriculture and transportation.1 As Americans watch this proliferation, they are worried in some ways and excited in others.

In broad strokes, a larger share of Americans say they are “more concerned than excited” by the increased use of AI in daily life than say the opposite. Nearly half of U.S. adults (45%) say they are equally concerned and excited. Asked to explain in their own words what concerns them most about AI, some of those who are more concerned than excited cite their worries about potential loss of jobs, privacy considerations and the prospect that AI’s ascent might surpass human skills – and others say it will lead to a loss of human connection, be misused or be relied on too much.

But others are “more excited than concerned,” and they mention such things as the societal improvements they hope will emerge, the time savings and efficiencies AI can bring to daily life and the ways in which AI systems might be helpful and safer at work. And people have mixed views on whether three specific AI applications are good or bad for society at large.

Continue reading “How Americans think about artificial intelligence” »

May 16, 2022

What producers of Star Wars movies are getting wrong about androids

Posted by in categories: employment, entertainment, robotics/AI

Robin Murphy, a roboticist at Texas A&M University has published a Focus piece in the journal Science Robotics outlining her views on the robots portrayed in “Star Wars,” most particularly those featured in “The Mandalorian” and “The Book of Boba Fett.” In her article, she says she believes that the portrayals of robots in both movies are quite creative, but suggests they are not wild enough to compete with robots that are made and used in the real world today.

Murphy begins by noting that one in particular, IG-11 in the Mandalorian, makes for good viewing with a rotating head that allows for shooting at targets in any direction, but she also notes that such a robot would very likely be overly susceptible to joint failure and would be saddled with huge computational demands. She suggests a more practical design would involve the use of fixed-array sensors.

Murphy also notes that robots in “Star Wars” do fail on occasion, generally during suspenseful scenes, which she further notes might explain why the empire met with its demise. As just one example, she wonders why the stormtroopers so often miss their targets. She also notes that in some ways, droids in “Star Wars” movies tend to be far more advanced than droids in the real world, allowing them to hold human-like jobs such as bartending, teaching or translating. In so doing, she points out, producers of the movies have shied away from showing them doing more mundane work, like mining.

May 11, 2022

Chipmaker NXP considers Austin for $2.6 billion expansion, up to 800 new jobs

Posted by in categories: employment, energy

In a move that could add even more fuel to the booming Central Texas high-tech sector, chipmaker NXP Semiconductors is considering a $2.6 billion expansion in Austin that would create up to 800 jobs.

The potential expansion is the latest big project for which the Austin area is in the running. Tech firm Applied Materials said in March that it’s considering Hutto for a $2.4 billion research and development center, while chipmaker Infineon Technologies said in February that it’s considering Austin for a $700 million expansion.

NXP Semiconductors, which is based in the Netherlands and has two fabrication plants in Austin, is seeking tax breaks from the Austin Independent School District under the state’s Chapter 313 incentive program for proposed expansion. An initial presentation to the district’s board Tuesday night didn’t specify the amount, but previous incentives agreements from Texas school districts for similar Chapter 313 deals have been for tens of millions of dollars.

Continue reading “Chipmaker NXP considers Austin for $2.6 billion expansion, up to 800 new jobs” »

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