Dear Reader,

Welcome to your weekly round-up of news you need to know – for smart, data-driven, augmented, creative people.

Change the world!
Brendan Harkin

It is but lost time to converse with you whose whole works are only analytics
William Blake, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell

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South Korea is making Your Data a Product that You Own: “Each data saved on mobile or Internet of Things devices are small in themselves, but they become an AI-based big data service when put together, There are strong opinions that it is unfair for only big data companies to earn profits. Our goal is to make sure all data collected by humans and machines is paid for and exchanged fairly”. Read More.

Soon People will be playing computer games for a living: XML reader Professor Ted Castronova’s lengthy but brilliantly thought-out essay on how games, automation, employment, and income will play out. Read More.

Never been on a cruise ship before? Robotic barmen, immersive technological entertainment and virtual views are just some of the technology that can fill a cruise experience with a lifetime of memories and more futuristic fun than your wildest dreams. See here.

The IEEE has released Ethically Aligned Design, which the institute hopes will guide the AI (Artificial or Augmented Intelligence) and AS (Autonomous Systems) industries to build benevolent and beneficial AI and AS. The framework is based on the input of more than 100 thought leaders in the fields of AI, law and ethics, philosophy, and policy.


If you’re in the UK, here are 48 organisations that have unlimited warrantless access to your web-browsing and word searches.

The idea of a circular economy is starting to gain traction – and there’s some great things happening: Nike currently produces 71 percent of all of its products with recycled materials, and designers use 29 high-performance materials made from factory scrap.

McKinsey Global Institute says that we’re barely scratching the surface in making good use of data (exec summary and full report links)

I’d never heard of Barrett Brown before – have you? And of course there’s Aaron Swartz.


White space is where unmet and unarticulated needs are uncovered to create innovation opportunities. Mercedes-Benz design director Gorden Wagener explains.

The Magic Leap (of faith!). The best funded start-up in the history of the world is starting to worry some people. When I was at a VR event in NY earlier this year there was general disgust that Magic Leap would use mere VFX to fake a product demo on youtube. Let’s see.

The Prime Minster of India’s “demonetization” of the two most used currency notes in circulation has had horrendous affects against the poor – and no affect at all on the rich, who don’t store their wealth in worthless pieces of paper. For the real intent behind “demonetization”, read my London friend Brett Scott’s superb explanation of why we’re being forced towards a cashless society.

Interestingly, Google gives up on the idea of an in-house designed autonomous vehicle at the same time Uber (with Volvo) starts testing them – without a license btw, get the irony.


“I think the future of all business is storytelling” said Sree Sreenivisan, the new NYC Digital Officer, who held similar roles at Columbia University and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. “We all have to be better at listening instead of broadcasting”.

Garbage of the Week Award goes to … University of Otago Dunedin Multidisciplinary Health and Development Research Unit director (sic) Professor Richie Poulton who believes he can identify “criminals” with a “simple test” at three years old. He can’t even get his headline to match his different premises. Let’s start jailing these kids right now, either them or Professor Poulton. Philip K. Dick  would be laughing in his grave.

Bauhaus Ballet by Oskar Schlemmer – Bringing dance into the age of industrial production – 6 minutes of incredible art and imagination from almost a hundred years ago.

And how prescient were Kraftwerk – We are the Robots. And by this point they’re not even on-stage anymore. Does it matter?

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