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Truth & Consequences

Last Kid Picked Book Cover

The Artificial Me

By David Benjamin

“Generating a bio is a great way to show people some of the limitations of this system. Asking it to generate a bio for the same person three times in a row is an eye-opener for some. For me it was wrong universities, wrong field of study, and made up some awards that don’t exist. But it did upgrade me to IEEE Fellow (nice!)”

— Prof. Philip Koopman, Carnegie-Mellon University

Phil Koopman devised a foolproof method (see above) for testing the data-farming accuracy of the latest “artificial intelligence” application, ChatGPT—which is supposed to be so good at writing that journalists, p.r. flacks, and even “creative types” like me will soon be tucked away in a bed of mothballs. 

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Pete Buttigieg

Open Letter to Pete Buttigieg

By Colin Barnden

What’s at stake:
Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg says human drivers aren’t just problematic, “they are murderous.” So why are European roads much safer?

The U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is an executive department of the U.S. federal government.  It is headed by Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg, who reports directly to President Biden.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is part of USDOT and describes its mission as “Save lives, prevent injuries, reduce vehicle-related crashes” related to transportation safety in the U.S.

As Secretary of Transportation, it is Buttigieg that is ultimately responsible for transport safety and for addressing the rising death toll on U.S. roads. We wrote him a letter.

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ChatGPT phishing and vishing

ChatGPT is Turbocharging Fraudsters

By George Leopold

Amid the hype, the various downsides of the ChatGPT artificial intelligence engine are emerging as bad actors once again seize upon a technology innovation for nefarious purposes.

Most notable, according to cybersecurity analysts, is using OpenAI’s algorithmic wonder to increase the lethality of malware code and Internet scams, or phishing exploits. For instance, reports have surfaced—presumably compiled and written by humans—that cybercriminals are bypassing guard rails installed by OpenAI on its chatty bot to upgrade malicious content and advance phishing exploits well beyond emails from Nigerian princes seeking business partners.

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Back to the Future movie

HU’s in Charge Here?

By David Benjamin

According to “The Jetsons” and Back to the Future 2, we should all be cruising around—by now—in flying cars.

We’re not.

According to Silicon Valley and a flock of “visionary” carmakers, people should not be manually driving cars at all, because those beauties can drive themselves.

But they’re can’t.

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Tower Semiconductor

What Happens If China Blocks Intel’s Tower Deal?

By Peter Clarke

For want of a nail, the shoe was lost.
For want of a shoe, the horse was lost.
For want of a horse, the rider was lost.
For want of a rider, the message was lost.
For want of a message, the battle was lost.
For want of a battle, the kingdom was lost.
And all for the want of a horseshoe nail.

Intel has dreams of being the world’s second largest foundry by 2030. Those are big dreams indeed, with geopolitical overtones, but without taking the first step along that road – the acquisition of Tower Semiconductor Ltd. – it could all come to nothing.

And if China blocks Intel’s takeover of Tower, it could potentially upend the U.S. chip giant’s foundry aspirations. It could even compel Intel to abandon chipmaking and follow AMD down the path of being a fabless processor vendor.

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virtual reality at CES

Research Chief Touts ‘Metaverse of Things’ at CES

By David Benjamin

The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) is bullish on the “Metaverse,” a coinage and concept upon which Facebook (now Meta) creator Mark Zuckerberg has gambled his reputation.

In the opening session at CES 2023 in Las Vegas Wednesday (Jan. 4), the CTA’s vice president for research, Steve Koenig, trumpeted his organization’s support for the still-embryonic Metaverse, calling it a “real trend” with potential applications for business strategy. He called it a “next generation of the Internet” that will evolve into a “Metaverse of Things” (MoT?).

“The Metaverse is closer than you think,” proclaimed Koenig.

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screen junkie

Smoke on the Brain

By David Benjamin

“I think the primary gateway to the metaverse will be the smartphone…
The allure of the metaverse is that we will be able to transcend our physical world, ‘teleport’ to any place, real or imaginary, and have an enjoyable, educational, or practical experience there.”
—Jon Peddie, The Ojo-Yoshida Report

I grew up in a cloud of smoke, an experience pretty close to universal among so-called Baby Boomers. My parents and grandparents smoked, most of my aunts and uncles, nearly every adult, for that matter, in my hometown, smoked. Most of my school friends lit their first cigarette before high school. TV shows were interrupted incessantly by nicotine come-ons, for Kent, Chesterfield, Lucky Strike, Camel, Kool, and “Winston tastes good, like a cigarette should.”

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Arm vs. Qualcomm

Arm’s Qualcomm Lawsuit Is Just About Money, Right?

By Mike Feibus

What’s at stake?
Arm filed late August a lawsuit against Qualcomm Inc. and Nuvia, Inc. for breach of license agreements and trademark Infringement. But the lawsuit might not be as straightforward as it first appeared. At stake here is a new Arm processor developed by Qualcomm for laptops, which leverages technology innovated by Nuvia, now owned by Qualcomm. So, here’s the billion-dollar question: why is Arm — with the prospect of collecting royalties for each of Qaulcomm’s performance-packed processors — suing to prevent Qualcomm from making the chips?

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