Technical Conference for Adults-POLITICO

With the help of Derek Robertson

Dispatch from Ryan Heath, Eyes and Ears of POLITICO’s Global Conference Circuit:

Toronto- The technical conference was once a huge fan club of the technology itself. Customers get the latest cool gadgets and make Tech God Founders (always male) a groupie-like fawn.

And OK, Some of them are not yet..

However, the industry is currently exposed to political headwinds, and regulators and citizens are well aware that the industry’s habit of creating its own rules can cause significant problems downstream. increase. You can find a group of engineers who are willing to tackle these big issues. -upon.

Today, the most interesting conferences are aimed at a wide range of people, from start-ups looking for initial capital to regulators and NGOs focused on making the gods of those technologies accountable.

This week in Toronto, 35,000 geeks will gather Collision meeting, North American descendants of the larger Web Summit, held every November in Lisbon.

This is part of a new generation of technical conferences that extends from popular activist events such as: RightsCon To Invitation-only codeBy Kara Swisher.

So what’s the difference: These events have real discussions from new CEOs attacking previous generations (Bill Gates fired here For him Recent crypto skepticism) A detailed discussion of what regulations and organization are needed to maintain Big Tech’s accountability.

There are also many women. According to the Collision organizers, 39% of the panelists here are women, and 350 of the 1557 start-ups represented are founded by women.

The gathered nerds are thinking more than just coding. Speakers include Margaret Atwood, author of the rights to abortion, and Alicia Garza, co-creator of the Black Lives Matter Global Network.

There is no difference: gimmick. Would you like to participate in tonight’s ax-throwing happy hour (what could go wrong)? Have you tried “nanoseptic tech” in the elevator (enjoy the self-cleaning elevator button at your own risk)?

If it’s all too much: Incorporate a robot drag queen for pride.

What is the crowd like? Obviously mixed and the hoodie is barely visible. The audience is becoming more global thanks to new technology niches such as climate technology, which has roots far beyond Silicon Valley.

Wandering through the hall, you’ll come across everyone from the female founders of Canadian provinces to British regulators and scholars on the West Coast. Investors, government teams, marketers for major tech companies.

I encountered Danijel Viševic, A European investor and former political adviser, he You wouldn’t have imagined attending a technical conference 10 years ago.

He knew enough about social platforms as a key member of the team that shaped the global image of former German Chancellor Angela Merkel, but in 2018 his real life mission was to tackle the climate crisis. After deciding to be, he says he is aiming for a clash (and beyond) to help “rebuild venture capital to save humanity.”He is the co-founder of World FundAims to fund new climate saving technologies.

In this world, knowing how to grow a company quickly is no longer enough. Viševic said: “If you want to invest in climate technology and invest in solutions that solve real problems, you need physicists, mathematicians, chemical engineers, mechanical engineers, and biologists.” He is also approaching equality. I found something. “There are far more female founders in this sector who solve real problems, and it’s not just money.”

What does the tech industry need to know? Congress is in a stalemate in technology regulation, and EU executives continue to overturn key technology enforcement decisions in court, but that’s not the reason for corner office self-satisfaction. It’s clear that geeks of all generations are learning that there are ways to run a world that doesn’t fit into the traditional Silicon Valley box.

Yesterday, code repository GitHub announces Copilot, an AI tool for writing code, has been available to developers after a year of development.

Over the last few months, there has been a wave of speculation and promotion about tools such as the text generator GPT-3 and the image generator DALL-E, which use AI to generate something like “new” content using large amounts of existing data. was. What does it mean to train such a model in the code that underlies the basic digital infrastructure?

I called Sanmay Das, a professor of computer science at George Mason University, and asked about the potential benefits and risks of such a tool. He called it “quite smart” when training his model using GitHub’s vast code store. He also warned of potential security risks by making the code very easy to reproduce. “This is a matter of scale,” says Das. “Suppose you have an AI trained in a particular way, and 10,000 people need a particular code snippet, but that code has a security flaw. Suddenly, 10,000 software with that flaw are deployed. it was done.”

Some critics are also concerned about the impact of Microsoft, which purchased GitHub in 2018, having access to and control of such tools developed by OpenAI. We estimate your tastes and the tastes of others using them to determine which ads to display, “Das said. “I have a question about privacy, I have a question about the owner of the data. There are legitimate concerns in that regard.” — — Derek Robertson

When Will Wright was there Developed the original “SimCity” Potential publishers were skeptical that everyone would want to play the game without explicit “winning” conditions.

The skepticism was clearly misguided as “SimCity” itself became a very lucrative franchise and created numerous imitators and successors, including “Townscaper”, which used the power of AI to add a new twist to the genre. ..

How the game works: Simply put, players build towns from very simple and non-customizable blocks. When they add and remove the blocks above, the game’s procedural generation engine looks amazingly organic and weaves them in an aesthetically pleasing way.this is Some kind Similar to SimCity, but the game builds its vision with its own “mind” and is out of full control.

Game designer Oscar Stallberg Speaked for a long time Recently, on the website Game Developer, I talked about the origin of the game and the technology behind it. This was inspired by his desire to create huge virtual landscapes, not just the same patterns and textures that repeat endlessly, as in previous generation video games. What Stalberg calls “toys” rather than games on Twitter, “Townscaper,” is just one of many projects done so far. Use AI Create a memorable virtual world. — — Derek Robertson

Stay in touch with the entire team: Ben Schreckinger ([email protected]); Derek Robertson ([email protected]); Constantine Kakaes ([email protected]); And HeidiVogt ([email protected]). Follow us on Twitter @DigitalFuture..

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Technical Conference for Adults-POLITICO

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