Humans now trust algorithms more than each other, according to new research

19-04-21 09:23:00,

Researchers from the University of Georgia have conducted a study which confirms what many already suspected; humans now tend to trust algorithms more than each other, especially when it comes to tedious tasks.

The premise of the study was simple: some 1,500 participants were shown photos and asked to count the number of people in them. 

The participants were able to take suggestions from a computer algorithm or the averages of guesses from their fellow humans in order to complete the task, which involved images of 15 to 5,000 people.

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As the crowd size or complexity of the task increased, the participants, understandably, relied more and more on the algorithm to count the people. After all, computers are especially good at tedious tasks that humans shy away from, such as counting.

“It seems like there’s a bias towards leaning more heavily on algorithms as a task gets harder and that effect is stronger than the bias towards relying on advice from other people,” says management information systems PhD student Eric Bogert, from the University of Georgia.

The researchers concede that, in this particular task at least, there is no ambiguity in terms of the answer, only right or wrong, so the lack of nuance or perspective makes the task ideal for an algorithm as opposed to a human. 

“This is a task that people perceive that a computer will be good at, even though it might be more subject to bias than counting objects,” says Aaron Schecter, an information systems researcher from the University of Georgia.

However, the researchers emphasized that our perception of how accurate an algorithm can be plays an important factor – outsourcing the task to a machine unwittingly affords the opportunity for bias and discrimination to creep in unbeknownst to the human participants.

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“One of the common problems with AI is when it is used for awarding credit or approving someone for loans,” Schecter says. 

“While that is a subjective decision,

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“Humans Love Violence”: Gandhi and the World Economic Forum – Global Research

30-01-21 06:55:00,

First published on January 28, 2020

This incisive article focusses on Mohandas Gandhi‘s call for non-violence, while underscoring today’s instruments of violence –including economic violence– exerted with impunity by the upper echelons of the financial establishment.

Robert J. Burrowes describes the complexities of the World prior to the onset of the Corona Crisis (in late January) as:

“an interrelated series of military, nuclear, ecological, economic, geoengineering, 5G, biodiversity and climate crises”

“The World Economic Forum gathering in Davos, which had no problem co-opting the usual range of concerned high-profile individuals to participate in (and thus add a veneer of legitimacy to) its annual forum [January 2020] despite its extensively documented role in killing and exploiting fellow human beings and plundering the Earth while obscuring and ‘greenwashing’ its violence using the corporate media.”

And these are the Davos people committed to enforcing a “New Normal” of  engineered unemployment and poverty, which is presented to public opinion as a humanitarian public health endeavour.

We refer you to an extensive archive of articles by Robert J. Burrowes on conflict, non violence and international solidarity.

Michel Chossudovsky, January 30, 2021,  on the 73d commemoration of Mohandas Gandhi’s assassination


As we approach the 73d anniversary of the assassination of Mohandas K. Gandhi on 30 January 1948, it is worth reflecting on one simple fact that he did not realize. His efforts to teach humanity that conflict, including violent conflict, could be resolved without violence were based on one fundamentally flawed assumption: that at least some humans were interested in, and committed to, seeking out and using nonviolent strategies for dealing with conflict in each and every context.

Unfortunately, as his own experience taught him and he showed clear signs of realizing towards the end of his life, the fundamental truth is that humans love violence and it is this love of violence that will ensure the extinction of Homo sapiens in the near term absent a profound response that shows no sign of emerging yet. See Human Extinction Now Imminent and Inevitable? A Report on the State of Planet Earth’.

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Elon Musk: Humans must merge with machines or become irrelevant in AI age

07-07-20 06:46:00,

Billionaire Elon Musk is known for his futuristic ideas and his latest suggestion might just save us from being irrelevant as artificial intelligence (AI) grows more prominent.

The Tesla and SpaceX CEO said on Monday that humans need to merge with machines to become a sort of cyborg.

“Over time I think we will probably see a closer merger of biological intelligence and digital intelligence,” Musk told an audience at the World Government Summit in Dubai, where he also launched Tesla in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

“It’s mostly about the bandwidth, the speed of the connection between your brain and the digital version of yourself, particularly output.”

Musk explained what he meant by saying that computers can communicate at “a trillion bits per second”, while humans, whose main communication method is typing with their fingers via a mobile device, can do about 10 bits per second.

In an age when AI threatens to become widespread, humans would be useless, so there’s a need to merge with machines, according to Musk.

“Some high bandwidth interface to the brain will be something that helps achieve a symbiosis between human and machine intelligence and maybe solves the control problem and the usefulness problem,” Musk explained.

The technologists proposal would see a new layer of a brain able to access information quickly and tap into artificial intelligence. It’s not the first time Musk has spoken about the need for humans to evolve, but it’s a constant theme of his talks on how society can deal with the disruptive threat of AI.

‘Very quick’ disruption

During his talk, Musk touched upon his fear of “deep AI” which goes beyond driverless cars to what he called “artificial general intelligence”. This he described as AI that is “smarter than the smartest human on earth” and called it a “dangerous situation”.

While this might be some way off, the Tesla boss said the more immediate threat is how AI, particularly autonomous cars, which his own firm is developing, will displace jobs. He said the disruption to people whose job it is to drive will take place over the next 20 years, after which 12 to 15 percent of the global workforce will be unemployed.

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Non-Elite Humans Are Daring To Create Their Own Narratives

05-09-19 10:05:00,

Authored by Michael Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

Somewhere between the arrest of Jeffrey Epstein and his extremely suspicious death in a Department of Justice operated prison, the public learned that an FBI intelligence bulletin published by the bureau’s Phoenix field office mentioned for the first time that conspiracy theories pose a domestic terrorism threat. This was followed up last week by a Bloomberg article discussing a new project by the U.S. military (DARPA) to identify fake news and disinformation.

We learned:

Fake news and social media posts are such a threat to U.S. security that the Defense Department is launching a project to repel “large-scale, automated disinformation attacks,” as the top Republican in Congress blocks efforts to protect the integrity of elections.

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency wants custom software that can unearth fakes hidden among more than 500,000 stories, photos, videos and audio clips. If successful, the system after four years of trials may expand to detect malicious intent and prevent viral fake news from polarizing society.

Recall that after the 2016 election, focus was on social media companies and we saw tremendous pressure placed on these platforms by national security state politicians and distressed Democrats to “do something” about the supposed fake news epidemic. Fast forward three years and it’s now apparently the U.S. military’s job to police human content on the internet. This is the sort of natural regression a society will witness so long as it puts up with incremental censorship and the demonization of any thought which goes against the official narrative.

Before we dissect what’s really going on, allow me to point out the glaringly obvious, which is that politicians, pundits, mass media and the U.S. military don’t actually care about the societal harm of fake news or conspiracy theories. We know this based on how the media sold government lies in order to advocate for the Iraq war, and how many of the biggest proponents of that blatant war crime have gone on to spectacularly lucrative careers in subsequent years. There were zero consequences, proving the point that this has nothing to do with the dangers of fake news or conspiracy theories,

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Humans or machines? Elon Musk & Jack Ma face off over future of AI

29-08-19 01:17:00,

One of the biggest challenges for human beings in the next two decades will be the lack of more human beings, according to Alibaba Chairman Jack Ma and Tesla CEO Elon Musk.

The billionaire techpreneurs met on one stage at the World Artificial Intelligence (AI) Conference in Shanghai on Thursday to debate the power of AI and the future of computers.

Ma believes artificial intelligence poses no threat to humanity, claiming that compared to humans, computers are just a toy. The best resource in the world is the human brain, he says, explaining: “It’s impossible that humans could be controlled by machines. They’re machines that are invented by humans.”

Musk disagreed with Ma, noting that computers are getting smarter than humans in more and more spheres and that the trend will continue. “We will be far, far surpassed in every single way. I guarantee it,” he said to Ma. He pointed to advances in chess and the Chinese board game of Go as evidence of progress in AI, saying “Your cell phone could crush the world champion of chess, literally.”

Arguing his point, the Tesla and SpaceX founder said humans are capable of creating things that are superior to people. Humans are not the last step in evolution, Musk suggested, warning that people must be wary of thinking that they are smarter than they really are. “The most important mistake smart people make is that they think they’re smart. Computers are already smarter than people. We just keep moving the goalposts,” he said.

Ma, who seemed at times to be bored or puzzled by Musk’s comments, as he frequently pulled pained expressions and raised eyebrows, disagreed with his opponent’s statements.

“Computers may be clever, but human beings are much smarter,” Ma repeated. “We invented the computer – I’ve never seen a computer invent a human being.”

According to the e-commerce giant founder, AI will open a new chapter so that humans will know themselves better. “Most of the projections about AI are wrong … people who are street-smart about AI are not scared by it.”

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