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Where Is AI Driving Us?

With chaos in the White House, worsening climate change around the globe, more wars than we can count and a wobbling economy here at home, the last thing we need is another big challenge.

AI is not only powering a metastasizing array of autonomous machines that can think, learn and even reproduce themselves, but the advanced technology of digital intelligence has also begun restructuring our economic order, social frameworks and cultural ethic.

Once the stuff of science fiction, the future is suddenly upon us, with Google starting to market a driverless taxi service, Daimler developing a line of commercial trucks that drive themselves and General Motors rolling out a car with no steering wheel or gas and brake pedals.

In graphic terms, Musk warns that profiteering humans are 'summoning the devil' by creating a new superior species of beings that will end up dominating humanity, becoming 'an immortal dictator from which we would never escape.'

Not a corporate transaction, but a literal merger: surgically implant AI devices in human brains with 'a bunch of tiny wires' that would fuse people with super intelligence.

Populist author, public speaker and radio commentator Jim Hightower writes 'The Hightower Lowdown,' a monthly newsletter chronicling the ongoing fights by America's ordinary people against rule by plutocratic elites.

What is the recruiting/interview process like for AI Residents at Uber?

One thing that I believe likely stood out in my application was that I my cover letter 1/ was highly Uber-specific, referring to particular papers from Uber AI Labs that I had read and reproduced and 2/ contained specific ideas of research projects I might want to work on at Uber AI Labs (to be clear, I am not currently working on these ideas - we found better ones -, but I think including them showed that I was capable to think for myself about research, which was likely seen as a positive).

AI, Self-Driving Cars, and Lyft/Uber: Helpful or Harmful?

However, this raises questions about security, whether drivers are really needed in taxi services, and if the AI is actually advanced enough to take the wheel.

While self-driving AI has made progress by leaps and bounds in the past few years, a large part of the problem is that peak performance requires all cars on the road to be connected to each other, exchanging data.

For drones, this means a pilot can a pilot can set a flight path, and the drone will fly itself, gather data, taking photos, and creating maps.

It’s possible to extrapolate this to autonomous cars, “setting and forgetting,” letting the car handle decisions while the driver relaxes on a commute.

Waymo’s 360-degree sensors are powerful, detecting people, bicyclists, other vehicles, and even road work from more than three football fields away.

It’s not out of the realm of possibility that a hacker could gain access to a remote taxi service, locking the customer in the car.

The best-case scenario is that the customer breaks the window, causing damage to the car, but ultimately escaping harm.

Plus, being connected to the internet means that Uber or Lyft can send targeted advertising to your phone, because that’s likely what you will be staring at while the car drives itself.

There is very little chance companies would give up that advertising space in order to thwart potential hackers, as it is a huge bonus for the companies.

While only 10 percent of cars in 2013 were connected to the internet, Spanish company Telefonica estimates that number will be closer to 90 percent in 2020.

After hackers published a how-to guide for hacking Teslas, the company wirelessly pushed an update that immediately made the guide obsolete.

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