Developing a Digital Asshole

In this day and age, AI is far too safe. No, I’m not talking about autonomous weapons – those are a real concern – I’m talking about social automation. Organizations and brands are releasing chatbots that are wholesome, kind, polite, accommodating, and completely fucking boring. The problem is that humans aren’t nice all the time. Sometimes…

The Choice Not to Think

To think, or not to think, that is the question. Technological advancements have nearly always come with the promise of making our lives easier, taking a burden off our shoulders, and freeing up more time and mindshare for us to use as we see fit. As the current wave of automation technologies (AI, robotics, IoT,…

The Illusion of Value

This isn’t an article, it’s a rant. And like any good rant, I don’t even really know who I’m talking to, however, I know I’m talking to you. I’m talking to you, because you’re the one that needs to hear this. Odds are, that likely means that I’m talking to myself and I just need…

Robot-Centered Design

The future of user-centered design with a new kind of stakeholder You’re a designer. You create products, experiences, services, buildings, and more. Each time you begin the design process, you consider the multitude of touchpoints and features of your design and how they engage with your intended user. This is the logic of the Human-Centered…

The Future is Slowly Killing Me

Technology-Induced Depression and Other Follies of Our Modern Digital Age I was shaking uncontrollably. It started with my hands, and I remember holding them to my face, looking at my own flesh as though it were foreign. The tremor quickly traveled down my arms, towards my legs, and within seconds my whole body was vibrating…

Robotic Scapegoating

As a robotics guy, the most common question I get is also one of my least favourite: “Are robots going to take over the world?” I hear it with such frequency that I’ve developed the formulaic response, “only if I tell them to.” While my playful side loves uttering this phrase with a half-maniacal grin,…

The End of Purpose: Robotic Implications

The whole point of robotics is to make our lives easier. Designers aim to take steps out of someone’s day (drive your car, prep your meal, brush your teeth, etc.) and transfer that responsibility to a machine of some kind. In theory, this setup sounds ideal – the more mundane tasks we can transfer to…

Artificial Bosses and Robot Employees

5 Tips to Getting the Most Out of Your Robotic Workforce.  So you’ve made the leap to automating part or all of your workforce with robotic employees or “roploys.” Congratulations, you are at the forefront of the robotics movement and are leading the charge forward towards a new era of workplace operations and productivity. However,…

Reality Reprogramming and the Cognitive Operating System

Is reality truly as we perceive it? Or is our perceived world nothing but a vision of reality skewed by evolution to optimize our survival – even at the detriment of the truth? Are we looking at the world through rose-colored glasses, or, more extremely, through a filter that morphs our senses so greatly that…

IoT Inside of Me

Would you eat an IoT device if your airline told you to? Sure, we already put some fairly questionable things inside of our bodies on airplanes whenever we peel back the plastic wrap on those in-flight meals, but how much do you really trust your airline? British Airways (BA) made some buzz this past week…

Half Man, Half Machine, All Centaur

A robot is going to steal your job. AI is only a handful of years away from being smarter than you. The bot uprising is coming to enslave or kill us all. Deep learning is creating code that we can’t understand. The great digital divide is coming. Maybe. Or maybe there is another path forward….

Posthumous AI and the Digital Confessional

Many people are stuck with their eyes fixed on the AI horizon and the believed-to-be-inevitable singularity when humans transcend their physical form into a world of digital bliss. Regardless of which side of the singularity debate you fall on, there are many stepping-stones ahead of this extreme that warrant recognition and discussion not in five…