Curating the Internet: Science and technology digest for November 8, 2019

in rsslog •  4 days ago 

Former MTV exec launches app to match listeners and podcasts; Uploading human minds is probably still centuries away - if at all; A new malware family intercepting text messages; Henry Kissinger says AI will fundamentally alter human awareness; and five ancient healing techniques that actually work


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  1. Former MTV exec Andy Schuon says his new app solves the podcast discovery problem - The Spkr app launched on Thursday (November 7), with a promise to solve the "podcast discovery problem". The product was launched by ex-MTV executive, Andy Schuon with investor backing. The app aims to solve the discovery problem by having its curators listen to smaller independent podcasts and provide them with more visibility. The app also wants to help users to discover content by delivering it in smaller chunks.

  2. How Close Are We To Uploading Our Minds? - RealClear Science links to a TEDed video on the topic of uploading our brains. In short, we need a better understanding of the brain, our scanning technology needs to improve by a factor of more than 1,000 - which would require fundamentally new scanning technology, and we would need technologies that can store the massive data sets. According to the video, this storage technology is closer to reality than the other needs, but it doesn't exist yet. The video argues that we are still hundreds of years away from being able to accomplish this, and that there may be ethical reasons why we shouldn't do it, even if we could.

    Here is the video, narrated by Michael S. A. Graziano
    :


  • MESSAGETAP: Who’s Reading Your Text Messages? - FIREEYE reports on a new malware family that is designed to intercept and collect SMS messages inside a wireless carrier's network. The software, known as MESSAGETAP, was discovered inside a telecommunication provider's linux server cluster that operated as a Short Message Service Center (SMSC). Information that it collects included the message contents, the IMSI number, the sending phone number, and the receiving phone number. The IMSI includes data for a country code, a mobile network code, and a mobile station identifier. The malware is believed to be sourced from a Chinese hacking group that FIREEYE refers to as "ATP41". h/t Bruce Schneier

  • Henry Kissinger Warns That AI Will Fundamentally Alter Human Consciousness - During a speech to the Strength through Innovation conference, the former US Secretary of State - now 96 - said that he thinks artificial intelligence is going to influence the ways that humans think of things in areas ranging from self-perception to strategic decision making. He also criticized AI professionals for failing to think through the implications of their actions. He added that the coming transformation will be a paradigm shift that on the magnitude of the Enlightenment, but also worried about a phenomenon like WWI, which he said was triggered by a series of logical steps that led to a number of unintended and unwanted consequences. h/t Communications of the ACM

  • STEEM 5 Ancient Medical Practices That Actually Worked | Random Thursday - (i) Molds and fungi; (ii) Leeches; (iii) Maggots; (iv) Trepanation - boring or drilling a hole in the skull; and (v) Fecal transplants. Watch the embedded video for a collection of techniques that didn't work, and for more information about each of those five.

    Here is the video, but click through and give @answerswithjoe an upvote!

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