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E.B.

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      For many years artificial intelligence wasn’t producing many breakthroughs. However, in recent times AI has finally produced major success stories. AI has already changed the world and its impact won’t slow down anytime soon. AI is set to dramatically transform the global economy and to disrupt lifestyles around the world. Here’s a short list of ten major changes that are expected to come soon because of the AI revolution.

1. Increased Economic Productivity

AI machines are better at certain skills than humans and can get certain tasks done faster. This means that the productivity of labor, business and entire countries is expected to increase with the AI revolution. Given the slow growth rates of major countries in recent years, this is good news.

2. Increased Unemployment and Declining Pay

Because AI is set to automate certain skills, companies are expected to increasingly automate many positions leaving many workers with less work, less pay or even full unemployment.

3. More Time for what Humans are Good At

AI is expected to give humans more time for what we are good at; social leadership and creative skills are not expected to be automated. AI should free up our time for these types of skills.

4. Higher Levels of Inequality

There are significant gaps between different nations, companies and industries when it comes to AI readiness. Companies are expected to make a lot more money while hiring and paying workers less. All of these factors are expected to increase economic inequality between individuals and between countries.

5. Increased Predictive Maintenance

AI is good at making predictions. This means that tasks like medical diagnostics will increasingly be done by AI, while doctors will have more time for human interactions with patients.

6. Increased AI Related Jobs

More jobs than ever before will be using AI. For many occupations, only certain tasks will be automated. So, if you’re trying to prepare for the coming years of career life, you should start working together with AI.

7. More Partially Automated Occupations

According to Mckinsey & Co. research, about 30 percent of activities in 60 percent of all occupations could be automated; in contrast, in 5 percent of occupations nearly all activities are automatable. This means that working hours might be fewer with remaining hours being spent collaborating with AI.

8. Increased Security

AI drones will increasingly help us deal with emergency situations by delivering care packages or emergency responses to those in need.

9. Better Healthcare

AI is already better than human doctors at diagnosing certain illnesses; this means that AI should set up humanity for a healthier future.

10. Routine Jobs and Data Maximization Jobs are expected to be Automated

AI is good at routine tasks with stable and predictable environments. It is also good at using data for maximizing results. Jobs involving these tasks are expected to be automated soon.

            Last January China landed the first ever robotics mission to the far side of the moon. China’s Chang’e-4 mission has done eight full days of science work in this new territory. Days and nights last roughly two weeks and the nights are deadly cold. Despite difficult conditions the rover finished up its seventh workday on July 9th. The two robots took a two-week nap which started July 26th and ended on August 7th. After the workday of August 7th eight workdays had gone by. By then the rover had travelled a total of 890 feet. The far side of the moon has major differences from the side that we typically see and this mission is hoping to uncover reasons behind those differences. Beautiful photos of this new world have emerged from this inspiring trip. This mission has historical significance because it is the first time that China has done something not yet attempted by other space powers. China wishes to become a leading space power like the United States and Russia. Now China has a space exploration accomplishment that no other country can claim for themselves. China is also beginning to build a new space station in 2020 with the goal of it being operational in 2022.
Many social media services have developed dark modes for using their websites at night. The glare of a bright screen at night usually puts a strain on a person’s eyes. Twitter and Gmail already offer Dark Mode settings and Facebook already has it for its Messenger app. According to software engineer Jane M. Wong, Facebook proper is already using an early version of Dark Mode, but it will take a while for this idea to be fully implemented. Facebook frequently tests new features without making it obvious. However, the company doesn’t have set timelines for when new features are released. This new feature may negatively contribute to the problem of tech addiction. Daytime addiction to social media is already common among web users. Only time will tell if social media companies will ever begin to take the problem of tech addiction seriously.
According to MIT Technology Review, one of Google’s deep learning artificial intelligence (AI) programs called Lymph Node Assistant has already been better at diagnosing breast cancer than human doctors since October 2018. Google trained an algorithm to understand which breast cancer tumors have spread. 90 percent of breast cancer deaths occur because of the spreading of breast cancer tumors which is called metastasis. Now Google AI can detect and diagnosis tumors in real time through its “augmented reality microscope.” This device is a microscope with a camera and running AI software inside. The camera continuously takes photos of body tissue under the microscope. Allegedly the program then provides real time insight onto a screen about whether areas are benign or malignant. The details of this microscope have been published in a paper in Nature recently. This new breakthrough will help doctors treat patients in ways that are faster and more successful.
            The movie Finding Dory did not increase demand for blue tang fish, instead it created more awareness about the species. Warnings that this would happen are because of reports that the movie Finding Nemo inspired increased demand for clown fish. Results from University of Oxford research show that there’s no link between blockbuster movies and demand for wildlife. Instead, these blockbuster films sometimes inspire viewers to learn more about the animals they depict. In the past media sources have made false accusations of film influences on consumer behavior. These accusations were often made against very famous movies such as Harry Potter and Jurassic Park. This same research group at Oxford will be researching the impact of environmental BBC documentaries such as Blue Planet on plastics and Black Fish on attitudes towards cetacean (a type of aquatic mammal) captivity.
Many parents today are trying to get their children interested in and knowledgeable about STEM subjects. The economic benefits of STEM knowledge are significant. Games, books and other tools can be used to spark STEM knowledge and passion from an early age. One important STEM subject which is sometimes overlooked is data science. Data science is the practice of organizing and analyzing massive amounts of data. This practice is also very much about understanding the patterns which can be found in these data collections. There are certain simple methods for parents to teach their kids the basics of data science. One of these methods is to collect objects of different shapes, sizes and colors. Let’s say the parent uses 11 objects. Then the parent rearranges 5 of these objects in order to explain a pattern to the kid. Then the parent should ask their kids how they think the remaining objects will be used if the same pattern continues. The next step is to let the kid point out what the pattern is; this skill of pattern recognition from data is at the core of data science. Using certain objects in a random way is also an important part of the teaching process because data science is also about dealing with randomness in data. Small games like this can explain the basics of data science to kids at an early age. These types of intellectual tasks are good for the mental development of children.
American parents are increasingly terrified that their kids might get shot to death in school. The US has high levels of gun violence, especially mass shootings and school shootings. The recent mass shootings in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio have increased an already growing interest in products that are allegedly bullet proof. One Houston based company called TuffyPacks sells bulletproof back-pack inserts. Sales for their products have increased every year since 2016. Parents with kids are the ones buying these types of products. Unfortunately, there’s not much evidence that these products actually work. Another company in Sanford, Florida called Guard Dog Security has been selling bullet protection backpacks since 2013. Matthew Mayers, a professor at Rutgers University who studies school violence prevention, says that these products do not work at all and are only marketing schemes designed to make money by exploiting fear. Apparently, this tactic is making good business sense regardless of the security results.
Licensing music for podcasts has so far been a difficult task to accomplish. In order to make this goal happen, the US collecting society SoundExchange will be collaborating with SourceAudio on creating a new service for podcast music. SourceAudio is already in the licensing business for the media, so they have the experience for making this new project happen. SoundExchange boss Michael Huppe thinks that the partnership will be good for both podcasters and music companies. Michael said that the podcast music industry was rapidly growing, and that this new collaboration would give musicians a new way to make money from their work by making it available on podcastmusic.com. SourceAudio CEO Geoffrey Grotz added that there’s currently no way for musicians to have rights for their music in the world of podcasts; he believes his company’s new collaboration with SoundExchange will be a start to solving this problem. This new podcasting service is set to launch in 2020. It will be interesting to see how this new service will change the music industry.
A Canadian fintech company called Monarch has just created the world’s first decentralized and scheduled crypto-currency payment system. Crypto-currency is a digital currency created and managed through cryptography, an advanced set of encryption techniques. Monarch isn’t the first company to create crypto-currency subscriptions; in fact, Coinbase and PumaPay were the first companies to make this service happen. This new service from Monarch will allow companies like Netflix and Hulu to receive crypto-currency for subscriptions. Monarch currently has over 270,000 users and has the support of Bitcoin founder Roger Ver and LinkedIn founder Eric Ly; the company also received $2 million to fund their blockchain services. Time will tell how quickly this new payment method changes how business and personal finance operate.
            On September 1st, New Zealand will allow companies to pay salaries through crypto-currency. However, the country will require that the crypto-currency being used have a fixed conversion rate with a normal currency; the crypto-currency must also be easily converted into regular money. Bitcoin is the world’s largest crypto-currency. Next month companies in New Zealand will be able to pay workers through bitcoin. It will also be legal for bonuses to be paid in crypto-currency. Crypto-currency salaries will be taxed just like normal salaries. The new ruling does not apply to self-employed workers who won’t be able to get paid through crypto-currency. This change signifies a new attitude of government towards crypto-currency. It means that at least one government in the world sees value in using crypto-currencies for regular payments. Some countries such as Russia, China and others have actually banned or restricted the use of crypto-currencies. Much uncertainty remains about how successful crypto-currency will be in the future; many people have concerns about the environmental impact of crypto-currency because of the large amounts of energy needed to make the system work.