An artist built a robot that stabs humans just to make a point

From Digital Trends:


[T]he thing that makes Reben’s robot interesting is what it says about how our future trust in robots will play out depending on what they’re asked to do. It’s no coincidence that his current robot builds on the same core technology that previously allowed him to build a prototype robotic headscratcher called the “headgasmatron.” As Reben points out, with only slight modifications it’s possible to flip people’s trust in robots from an unquestioning intimate relationship to one based on fear.



Source: This robot isn’t shy about hurting its human creator | Digital Trends

Tesla driver killed while using autopilot was watching Harry Potter, witness says

From The Guardian:


Driver in first known fatal self-driving car crash was also driving so fast that ‘he went so fast through my trailer I didn’t see him’, the truck driver involved said.


Source: Tesla driver killed while using autopilot was watching Harry Potter, witness says | Technology | The Guardian

Virtual Reality is the future of porn, and it’s a creepy future indeed




From TechCrunch:



Once you get past the somewhat off-putting nature of swapping nether regions with a professional, VR porn does offer an interesting way forward for an industry that, like many others, has been hard hit by the prevalence of free online content … “[With VR], we can raise the bar and get people to subscribe to porn again. “

Welcome to the future, everyone. It’s super weird here.


Source: VR is the future of porn, and it’s a creepy future indeed | TechCrunch

Why messaging bots are a looming security threat

From Mashable:



[U]nlike the web, which often provides at least a few signals that an interaction is secure (for instance, the lock icon in your browser, the security certificate, or even simply the URL), there’s no obvious way to tell a good bot from a bad bot.

What’s more, bots haven’t been around long enough for users to be savvy enough to distinguish between those from legitimate sources and potential bad actors. Think of email phishing scams: While it’s not uncommon for a scammer to send an email purporting to be from, say, your financial institution, most email software has gotten pretty good at flagging these types of messages so they’re accompanied by a warning or go straight to your junk folder.

But there’s no analogous mechanism for bots. Hypothetically, you could begin interacting with, say, a shopping bot and have no idea that it’s a fake meant to steal your credit card info or other personal information.


Source: Why messaging bots are a looming security threat

How virtual tourism will enhance real-world travel

From Mashable:


As technological innovations have improved virtual reality capabilities and popularized the medium, virtual tours have become more commonplace. You can use VR to check out a casino or museum from your couch, visit Red Rock Canyon from your favorite recliner or take a trip to Bath while you’re in your bath …

When VR tours are done well, it almost feels like you’re there — which begs the question: Will people start checking destinations off their bucket lists by booting up a device instead of booking travel and actually making a real life trip?


Source: How virtual tourism will help enhance real-world travel

#TBT: the 1980s Dingbot that was far from high-tech


It all started so innocently!

And, FYI, it’s Monday, not Tuesday or Thursday or whatever the hell day a throwback is supposed to occur on. I. MARCH. TO THE BEAT. OF MY OWN. FREAKIN’. DRUM!

– Joshua


From Mashable via Daily Motion:




American muscle car wirelessly charges phone while doing donuts


If I could be convinced it wouldn’t turn on me at the first opportunity, this would truly be the perfect ride! – Joshua


From Mashable:



Computers may be evolving but are they intelligent? Watson on Jeopardy!

From The Conversation:



Read article: Computers may be evolving but are they intelligent?

How analytics are turning games into distraction machines

From Digital Trends:


No matter how users stumble into a freemium game, once they’re hooked, almost every title is an unending staircase. They’re designed so that each step up only leads to more options, and more opportunities to spend more money, and more time in the pursuit of the next goal. It’s an infinite climb that, for some players, can have more in common with addiction than entertainment.

When it comes to understanding freemium, the best advice may be the message that Matthew Broderick received back in the ‘80s when he tried to win the War Game against a machine: “The only way to win, is not to play!”


Gaming analytics allow developers to hack your feeble human brain like never before, and highly refined games they’re cranking out with it are more like crack than art.

Source: How analytics are turning games into distraction machines | Digital Trends

Can this software identify terrorists by facial features?

From Digital Trends:


Faception’s theory of facial personality profiling is supported by two genetic research observations: DNA affects personality, and DNA determines facial features. Linking these two observations lead the company to infer that personality can be identified in facial features since both are products of genetic expression.

The accuracy of this inference is yet to be determined but … AI technology itself is idiosyncratic. Machine learning algorithms learn from the data they’re given – and this data can can cause them to learn things in error.


An Israeli startup claims its software can identify terrorists, academics, professional poker players, and pedophiles by facial features alone.

Source: Can this Software Identify Terrorists by Facial Features? | Digital Trends