Tartle Best Data Marketplace
Tartle Best Data Marketplace
Tartle Best Data Marketplace
Tartle Best Data Marketplace
Tartle Best Data Marketplace
Tartle Best Data Marketplace

Here are some issues worth mulling over when it comes to the development of AI: data protection. Biased decision-making. Bias in employment. The social impact on the environment. The future of warfare. 

What are your thoughts regarding the impact of tech innovation on humanity? Don’t you think you deserve to have a say when it comes to how technology is being developed?

In this episode, Alexander McCaig welcomes Bernd Stahl back on the TCAST. The pair navigate some important questions regarding the ethics of artificial intelligence, and the impact of its progress.

The Trickle-Down Effects of AI

One issue Alexander raised was regarding the top-down hierarchical approach that’s commonly been used in many different kinds of organizations, throughout the history of humanity. This approach usually backfires because all the power to decide is concentrated in the hands of an elite few. As a result, the people who form the base of the top-down approach are dependent on them.

However, AI can be developed in a way that would enable resource-holders to directly analyze the general public, using ethically-sourced data to power their algorithms. Through direct interaction with the communities that they want to research and develop, the benefits of future technology can better tickle down to those who need it the most. 

But this system also poses risks, especially when the people who are being studied do not have a say in the amount of data that is taken from them. With this, Alexander McCaig raises the idea of allowing people to choose which data can enter these systems and be analyzed. 

Discussing the Deadlock in AI and Ethics

To this, Bernd Stahl discusses the magnitude of this initiative. While the European Union is trying to achieve this through its General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), Bernd Stahl points out that it can be difficult for the individual data subject to communicate their desires to the data collectors. In addition, data regulation needs to account for changes in consumer’s preferences over time because as humans, we aren’t very consistent in what we want. 

Due to the complexity of this relationship, history has developed in a way that allowed companies to accumulate the resources and the power to benefit the most from AI. There is a strong recognition that this imbalance is problematic. It’s inequitable, it does not help humanity evolve or enforce equality, and it does not give the disenfranchised the best chances to succeed in life through technology.

So Alexander McCaig raised the question: what if we could work towards a collective decision on how we define the ethics and outcome of AI systems? If we agree on our vision of the future and focus our efforts on that as a collective, we could better inform the AI algorithms and help direct them to a clearer path. One that is in favor of humanity. 

However, Bernd Stahl pointed out that vast differences in preferences and moral stances can make it difficult for us to agree on one clear direction. 

Closing Thoughts

AI is capable of helping us. This is undisputed. One area that Bernd Stahl believes AI can be most utilized is in medicine. For example, personalized medicine can look into the genome sequencing and medical history of an individual, and run it against other samples. This would potentially empower scientists, providing the information they need to tailor a specific combination of pharmaceuticals so that individuals can get bespoke treatment.

But are we maximizing the potential of our technologies, or allowing those seated in power to take a hefty cut of the benefits for their vested interests?

Bernd Stahl likened the creation of AI to the discovery of fire. If we could ask the first person to figure out what fire was to predict how vital it would be to the evolution of humanity, they would have no idea how to respond. 

We can only work on what we know. This is why Bernd Stahl recommends looking at AI with continuous reflection and assessment. We need to be capable of seeing how AI is developing and providing our feedback. 

And that’s why your data is worth billions.

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Are We Really In Control Of Tech Development and Innovation? with Prof. Bernd Stahl by TARTLE is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0

What’s something you’ve done in the past month that, you believe, has an impact on humanity’s evolution? Or, at the very least, your personal evolution in your human experience?

We’ve innovated and developed so many technologies to help improve our quality of living. Think of the machinery and AI that goes into putting food on our tables. From local farms to processing areas to grocery stores, we are incredibly lucky to be living in such comfortable times. 

But what if we could still take things a step further? Imagine a future where you can bypass grocery stores and farms because you’ve got your food growing on your very own kitchen counter. 

Too Much Time on the Road?

The reality is that we spend a lot of time in transit to other activities. For example, our daily commutes to and from work. Our “quick trips” to the local supermarket. These activities disrupt our regular flow. And while it’s true that some of us may find these activities enjoyable, it feels more like we’re adapting to the mediocrity of what is instead of fighting for what can be. 

We can spend more time finding enjoyment in connecting with nature, the way we were meant to do so. Hiking, going to the park, taking your dogs on a walk. Spending time with our families. These are the evolutive and cultural things that need to occur for you to increase your self-awareness.

The COVID-19 pandemic forced us to take some pretty ingenious measures so we could ensure the survival of our loved ones and our communities. For example, businesses started allowing work from home setups. In some places around the world, grocery vans patrol the area and allow people to buy without leaving their homes. 

This sudden change in our daily flow may not have been the best introduction to a more introspective life. But it’s a glimpse to a world where we are capable of being more self-sufficient. Where opportunities come knocking at our door, instead of the other way around. 

Exploring the Metaverse

Someday, the internet will become a place where we can fully live in, with our five senses. We can create avatars of ourselves and “travel” to meetings with teammates from around the world. We would also be living under a digital economy, where users can create, buy, and sell goods. 

It’s difficult to pin down the full scope of what the metaverse is, because how accurately can we paint a picture of a world that’s yet to come? What we can tell you is that if we play our cards right today, the research and development in these technologies should create a world where humanity is at the center of its evolution.

Where we have the opportunity to truly transcend, to live out the authentic human experience.

Closing Thoughts

Technology gives us the capacity to remove redundancies that do not contribute to our evolution. All those routine activities that you used to have to do, just to survive? Let them be managed automatically by machine learning and AI. That way, we can focus on the things that make us human.

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In recent times, the logistics industry has moved to the forefront of everyone’s attention. This can be attributed to events like the COVID-19 pandemic, which had a significant impact on the transportation of goods, services, and people; and the Suez Canal incident, which became a hot topic for jokes and memes amongst younger generations on the internet. 

This podcast is a deep dive into the state of the logistics industry, analyzing different perspectives on how professionals and the C-suite can help bring the global supply chain to its full potential with the dawn of the Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Capturing the Human Element of Tech Innovation

In the simplest words, logistics has always been described as the act of bringing something from point A to point B. However, there is plenty more to discover beneath the surface. 

The increased number of nodes across the supply chain that contribute to the end product, the additional pressure to make transportation more efficient, and a world that continues to demand for more from international suppliers pressure the logistics industry to continuously reinvent. While it is inspirational to see that the pace of technological innovation is accommodating these concerns, our discussion dares to ask: does this pace make room for the human element?

The human element of tech innovation refers to whether we are capable of maximizing the potential of gadgets, processes, and standards. It’s a concern that consistently pops up for big data across different industries: the capacity of businesses to make the most out of these silos. 

How Can Logistics Professionals Push for Change?

Adopting modern technologies can be difficult because of the initial learning curve. It will, inevitably, disrupt the way that certain processes and workflows have been carried out for decades. In some cases, entire occupations may be rendered obsolete. The reality is that there is still some resistance to making this transition because not many people see the importance of bearing this temporary disruption to get the long-term benefits.

“You can create new technologies but unless people choose to adopt it, it’s not going to do anything fantastic.” Alexander McCaig pointed out..

Ruben Huber mused over the possibility of careers in logistics taking on a more consultative aspect. This would be part of their efforts to bridge the gap between the dearth of knowledge offered by big data in the industry, and their clients.

“We need to be more than just transporters of cargo from A to B. I always see this in our industry as an opportunity to do a lot more,’ he explained, “It’s very true that we still do things like we used to do them instead of questioning it.”

Dare to Question Status Quo

Malcolm Mclean was a truck driver who was sitting at the port and started wondering why he had to wait ten hours for cargo to get offloaded from the ship. He eventually worked on developing this line of inquiry into a full-fledged business idea— one that is credited to have revolutionized the shipping industry.

To put this in the perspective of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, it’s not just about how labor is going to get disrupted by these technologies. It’s also a call for people to come together as a global community so that the technologies can be utilized to solve real world problems.

Closing Thoughts

As the pandemic continues, we continue to be bombarded by new and exciting ways to restructure the way we work.

The globalized economy we are privileged to experience today is built on the foundations of a supply chain that stretches across multiple countries. Businesses and corporations source all their raw materials and labor from beyond their geopolitical borders, as part of their efforts to provide the end products and services that we enjoy on a regular basis.

With so much emphasis on delivering these goods to the communities that need them, it is safe to say that logistics and the supply chain are people-oriented industries. It will be important to continue optimizing technologies and making the most out of big data. In addition, everybody must be transparent and made to understand the process so that a mutual understanding is fostered towards that common goal of progress for humanity as a whole.

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Do you believe that you are on the cusp of a breakthrough on a daily basis? Despite popular belief (and to some extent, the media’s portrayal of success stories), the wildest successes rarely ever happen on a whim. These stories are the result of regular and consistent creative acts, which prime our brain and our mindset to be more receptive for the big reveal to the big solution.

That's what makes innovation possible.

This is the message of Josh Linkner’s book, entitled Big Little Breakthroughs, and he believes that everybody has the capacity to be creative; however, a lot of people hold themselves back for several reasons. It could be due to preconceived notions they have of themselves, a bias against creative thinking, or certain thinking habits. 

Exercising the Creative Muscle

We are used to thinking that your creativity is like our height: a physical feature we grow into for a bit, but cannot change eventually. However, the reality is it’s more like our weight. By implementing changes in habit, mindset, and lifestyle, we are capable of making incremental adjustments. 

However, creativity does not exist in a binary. It’s more like our position changes on a spectrum depending on how consistently we choose to exercise our creativity muscle.

There are plenty of misconceptions that prevent us from being creative. The first is that it is only possible to be a creative person in certain industries. We have conditioned ourselves to think that it is only in the arts that we can be creative—but in reality, there are plenty of opportunities to express the right side of our brain across all industries. 

Creativity can be a powerful tool in hyping up conversations with your clients in customer service positions, finding quick solutions to last-minute problems in operations, and extracting meaningful insights from pools of data. 

The biggest blocker of creative output has never been a lack of natural talent, or a lack of opportunity; Josh believes that it is caused by fear and our tendency to stick to safe ideas, while we wait for a “right time” to launch the more provocative ones. It is our responsibility to be more thoughtful of the status quo, and challenge ourselves to find new ways to be creative.

Creativity in Nation Building and Social Justice

In the podcast, Josh shared an insightful discussion he had with Caron Proschan, one of the individuals he interviewed for Big Little Breakthroughs. Caron was a fitness nut who also enjoyed chewing gum. One day, when she reached into her bag for a stick of gum, she realized that it was an eerie shade of blue— almost certainly synthetically produced using who knew what substances.

This small discovery inspired Caron to search for natural alternatives. However, there was no such thing as natural gum. The massive chewing gum industry was run almost entirely by two giant organizations, with no concern for the quality of the ingredients that went into manufacturing gum.

As a result, Caron set out to create the world’s first all-natural gum. She is now the founder and CEO of Simply Gum.

Beyond Caron and her passion towards creating natural snacking alternatives, we see traces of these small changes in other parts of our lives. Rosa Parks is another stunning example of how simple actions can lead to ripple effects. Her act of defiance on the bus was eventually used as a source of empowerment for the civil rights movement. 

This is meaningful because it indicates that the power for change does reside in everyday people; not large corporations, entities, or figures in authority. 

“Sustainable progress usually doesn't come from the stroke of an autocratic leader; it comes from the body of the people.” Josh concluded.

In many situations, the action that starts the ripple effect is always small: saying “no,” or just looking for ways to improve something you love. Creativity is not limited to situations or people that make you feel fear; rather, the sparks for creativity can come from a positive desire or drive to change something.

Closing Thoughts: Eradicating Anti-Creative Biases

Big Little Breakthroughs is a rallying call for people to become more aware of the way they limit themselves. Now that we’ve established that everyone is capable of being creative, how do we encourage ourselves to develop it as a skill?

According to Josh, experimentation is the key to making creativity a habit. Trying to solve a problem from the get-go will be difficult; but pinpointing small actions people could take would be a great start.

Josh likened this process to pointillism. Pointillism, which refers to painting in small strokes that eventually blend into an image from a distance, is the perfect metaphor for his message. He challenges everybody, especially the younger generation to find small ideas to work on and rise from every failure with a slight creative pivot.  

It’s inspiring to think that a passing thought is all it can take for you to change the world.

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