The Obtain: AI privateness dangers, and cleansing up delivery

That is in the present day’s version of The Obtain, our weekday publication that gives a day by day dose of what’s occurring on the planet of expertise.

What does GPT-3 “know” about me?

One of many largest tales in tech this yr has been the rise of enormous language fashions (LLMs). These are AI fashions that produce textual content a human may need written—generally so convincingly they’ve tricked individuals into pondering they’re sentient.

These fashions’ energy comes from troves of publicly accessible human-created textual content that has been hoovered from the web. For those who’ve posted something even remotely private in English on the web, likelihood is your knowledge is perhaps a part of among the world’s hottest LLMs. 

My colleague Melissa Heikkilä, our AI reporter, just lately began to surprise what knowledge these fashions may need on her—and the way it may very well be misused. A bruising expertise a decade in the past left her paranoid about sharing private particulars on-line, so she put OpenAI’s GPT-3 to the check to see what it “is aware of” about her. Examine what she discovered.

How ammonia might assist clear up world delivery

The information: Foul-smelling ammonia would possibly appear to be an unlikely gas to assist lower greenhouse-gas emissions. But it surely might additionally play a key position in decarbonizing world delivery, offering an environment friendly technique to retailer the vitality wanted to energy giant ships on lengthy journeys.

What’s occurring: The American Bureau of Delivery just lately granted early-stage approval for some ammonia-powered ships and fueling infrastructure, which means such ships might hit the seas inside the subsequent few years. Whereas the gas would require new engines and fueling programs, swapping it in for fossil fuels that ships burn in the present day might assist make a big dent in world carbon emissions.

What’s subsequent: Some firms are trying even additional into the long run, with New York–primarily based Amogy elevating almost $50 million earlier this yr to make use of the chemical for gas cells that promise even higher emissions cuts. If early checks for ammonia work out, these new applied sciences might assist the delivery business to considerably scale back its emissions. Learn the total story.

—Casey Crownhart

The must-reads

I’ve combed the web to seek out you in the present day’s most enjoyable/essential/scary/fascinating tales about expertise.

1 Pakistan is reeling from its devastating flooding
Poor coverage making, blended with a local weather change-driven monsoon, has displaced tens of millions of individuals and destroyed houses, meals and livelihoods. (Vox
+ These photographs spotlight the extent of the destruction. (The Guardian)
+ Residents are attempting to salvage their belongsides from the waters. (BBC)

2 California has handed new on-line youngster security guidelines 
The laws will power web sites and apps so as to add protecting measures for under-18s. (NYT $)
The state additionally desires to punish docs who unfold well being misinformation. (NYT $) 

3 NASA will attempt to launch its Artemis rocket once more on Saturday
An inaccurate sensor studying is believed to have prompted the botched lift-off on Monday. (BBC)

4 Elon Musk has discovered a brand new tactic to attempt to wriggle out of shopping for Twitter
He’s utilizing the current whistleblower allegations. (FT $)
+ What it’s essential to know in regards to the upcoming authorized struggle. (WSJ $)
+ Twitter is failing to adequately deal with self-harming content material. (Ars Technica)

5 Deepfakes are infiltrating the mainstream
The expertise is enhancing by the day, and we must be nervous. (WP $)
+ A horrifying new AI app swaps girls into porn movies with a click on. (MIT Expertise Overview)

6 Cyber insurance coverage isn’t geared up to take care of cyber warfare
Insurers can’t agree on what ought to and shouldn’t be coated. (Wired $)

7 A program to wash polluted Nigerian wetlands worsened the issue
Ogoniland residents have been left to take care of the oil-soaked lands. (Bloomberg $)
+ The businesses that prompted an oil spill in California have been fined $13 million. (CNN)

8 How large isopods received so large
The roly-poly relative’s genes clarify why it will probably develop to the dimensions of a chihuahua. (Hakai Journal)
+ The primordial coelacanth was an energy-saving knowledgeable. (New Scientist $)

9 Gen Z is de facto into making collages
Naturally, there’s an app for that. (The Data $)

10 Dadcore vogue has gone viral
Leaving a technology of iconic fishing followers in its wake. (Enter)

Quote of the day

“I’ve positively had days the place I’ve achieved all of that, nevertheless it’s exhausting.”

—Dynasti deGouville, 22, describes the strain she felt to subscribe to the #ThatGirl way of life of early rising, grueling train, and restrictive diets peddled by TikTok clips of skinny, white girls to the Wall Road Journal.

The large story

Humanity is caught in short-term pondering. Right here’s how we escape.

October 2020

People have advanced over millennia to understand an ever-expanding sense of time. We have now minds able to imagining a future far off into the gap. But whereas we could have this potential, it’s hardly ever deployed in day by day life. If our descendants have been to diagnose the ills of Twenty first-century civilization, they might observe a harmful short-termism: a collective failure to flee the current second and look additional forward.

The world is saturated in info, and requirements of dwelling have by no means been increased, however so typically it’s a wrestle to see past the subsequent information cycle, political time period, or enterprise quarter. The best way to clarify this contradiction? Why have we come to be so caught within the “now”? Learn the total story.

—Richard Fisher

We are able to nonetheless have good issues

A spot for consolation, enjoyable and distraction in these bizarre occasions. (Received any concepts? Drop me a line or tweet ’em at me.)

+ This canine slide seems to be like an infinite delight.
+ Three hours of underground 90s hip hop is assured to place you in a great temper.
+ After a two-year break, the World Gravy Wrestling Championship is again! 
+ Electro icon Gary Numan has some attention-grabbing phrases of knowledge.
+ The Perseverance Rover is digging round for proof of previous life on Mars.

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