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Who gets to own outer space?

December 31st, 2017 at 10:07 pm » Comments Off

Right now, private companies and NASA have a nice, functional, symbiotic capitalist relationship. SpaceX and its competitors build and will soon operate the vehicles, while NASA pays for the service. But with Elon Musk’s eyes tilted toward Mars, that won’t last for long.



AI can be made legally accountable for its decisions

November 26th, 2017 at 12:05 pm » Comments Off

Computer scientists, cognitive scientists, and legal scholars say AI systems should be able to explain their decisions without revealing all their secrets.



When an algorithm helps send you to prison

October 26th, 2017 at 9:12 pm » Comments Off

In 2013, police officers in Wisconsin arrested a man driving a car that had been used in a recent shooting. The man, Eric Loomis, pleaded guilty to attempting to flee an officer, and no contest to operating a vehicle without the owner’s consent. Neither of his crimes mandates prison time.



Lawsuit targets searches of electronic devices at US border

September 15th, 2017 at 3:30 pm » Comments Off

WASHINGTON (AP) — A federal lawsuit filed Wednesday claims the U.S. government’s growing practice of searching laptops and cellphones at the border is unconstitutional because electronic devices now carry troves of private personal and business information. The government has vociferously defended its searches as critical to protecting the homeland.



A third of millennials have used Venmo to pay for drugs

July 18th, 2017 at 8:49 am » Comments Off

A new survey finds that 33% of millennials have used Venmo, the payments app owned by PayPal that’s popular with the demographic, to buy illicit drugs.



The rise of the online courtroom

May 3rd, 2017 at 10:00 am » Comments Off

The digital revolution has not escaped the courts. The courtroom of tomorrow may no longer involve litigants and their lawyers pitching up armed with reams of papers to do battle before robed, bewigged judges. In fact, for many it may not involve a court at all. Judges could be replaced by computers and the courtroom […]



Backyard skinny-dippers losing privacy to peeping drone stalkers

April 28th, 2017 at 3:23 am » Comments Off

Recent advances in technology mean we can no longer rely on fences or barriers around our homes to protect our privacy. This was certainly the case for Darwin resident Karli Hyatt, who on Tuesday explained how a drone invaded the security and privacy of her suburban backyard. Hyatt had returned home last week from an […]



Have we reached peak beer?

April 25th, 2017 at 1:06 pm » Comments Off

When craft brewers get together, we agree that this is the greatest time in history to be a beer drinker in America. In 1981, there were only 82 breweries in the United States, and our beer, fizzy and flavorless, was the laughingstock of the beer world. Today, America is home to over 5,300 small, innovative […]



The maker of an internet-connected garage door disabled a customer’s device over a bad review

April 23rd, 2017 at 10:21 am » Comments Off

There’s a new, dystopian risk to using internet-connected gadgets: If you complain, the company that made it might remotely kill your product. This is what happened to one customer who bought Garadget — an internet-connected garage door opener. It lets you remotely lock or unlock your garage with an app, or see if it’s open.



Do Robots and AI Deserve Rights?

March 9th, 2017 at 12:17 pm » Comments Off

When it comes to robot-human relations, the conversation typically centers on the welfare of the sentient. Science fiction paints us as petrified by our own creations; fears of a bot planet have influenced everything from Asimov’s “Laws of Robotics” to HAL 9000′s homicidal impulses to Skynet’s global genocide. These human-centric anxieties are understandable. However, as […]



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