artificial intelligence

Marketing in the Digital Age: News Round-Up (week ending Oct 5, 2018)


Selfie deaths on the rise, A.I. written ads, and the QR code resurrection in this week’s Marketing in the Digital Age.

Death By Selfie

Summary: A study from the All India Institute of Medical Sciences found over 250 people have died in the past five years while trying to take a selfie. The country with the most selfie deaths was India followed by Russia, US, and Pakistan.

Opinion: Well, I guess we all have to go sometime.

Burger King’s “A.I. Written” Ads

Summary: Burger King released a series of ads that started with the bleeping sound of a modem and a warning that the ad was created by artificial intelligence. It produced ads around a chicken sandwich like “It tastes like bird.” Lo and behold, the ads were actually created by humans posing as A.I. as a nod to the threat people fear of A.I.

Opinion: Any ad that gets me to write about it I take as good as marketing!

Instagram Introduces Scannable Nametags

Summary: As the title of the article implies, Instagram rolled out scannable, semi-customizable QR name tags for users across the platform. Even though QR codes aren’t huge in the US, they have generated $1.65 TRILLION from transactions in China and Japan, and the hope is it translates over to the US over the coming years.

Opinion: Even with slow adoption of it in the US, scannable QR codes have provide their worth in spades with our friends in the East. Makes sense to incorporate it as international growth for these companies become increasingly important.

Marketing in the Digital Age: News Round-Up (week ending Jun 8, 2018)


In this week's Marketing in the Digital Age, several subjects of A.I. have come up and Facebook has a breach of data, again.  With A.I. rapidly progressing and coming into the forefront of media, what type of regulation needs to be in place to keep humanity protected? 

Facebook Breaches Data of its Users

Summary: New York Times reported this week that Facebook gave 60 device makers access to users' data and that of their friends without express permission.  Facebook denies this.  However, they have confirmed that a data-sharing partnership with Chinese firms including Huawei (a company flagged by US intelligence as a security threat).  Apparently the information transferred was stored only on a user's device, not Chinese company servers.  

Opinion: A lot of what has been happening in the social media space has gone unchecked, largely because it's a new arena and the implications from it haven't been planned for or  contemplated.  I imagine that will quickly change with the massive breaches Facebook has undergone the past several months.  

Google Won't Use A.I. for Evil

Summary:  Google CEO Sundar Pichai announced yesterday an emphasis of Alphabet's philosophy of "don't be evil" when he confirmed that Google won't use its A.I. tools for weapons or surveillance.- with some caveats.  It will work with the government and military on cybersecurity and surveillance but nothing that violates "internationally accepted norms".   

Opinion: What is one woman's/man's evil is not necessarily the other's.  A.I. is coming, but as you see from the Facebook breaches, a level of regulation also needs to be set here to ensure humanity's safety.  Using a vague avoidance of what violates "internationally accepted norms" could likely vary on more subtle points from one person to the next (or one country to the next country).

A.I. Training in the Dark Corners of Reddit

Summary: Researchers at MIT trained an artificial intelligence psychopath machine, Norman (as in Norman Bates), using Reddit.  The purpose was to show that the data used to train machine learning algorithms influences its behaviors.  “Norman suffered from extended exposure to the darkest corners of Reddit,” the researchers state, “and represents a case study on the dangers of artificial intelligence gone wrong when biased data is used in machine learning algorithms.” Example of what Norman responded with: 



Opinion: See opinion above.  Don't let it get to be a problem before potential solutions and regulations are explored! 

@tinycarebot vs. @infinite_scream

Summary: Two Twitter bots have been stuck on a seemingly endless loop of "conversation" for hours on Twitter.  @infinite_screeam will respond to any tweet with a poignant "AAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHH" while @tinycarebot sends out uplifting, emoji-filled messages. So every uplifting tweet is met with virtual screams.  

Opinion:  Hah, just a stupid and fun way to go into the weekend before A.I. takes over writing these blogs for me.