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Target_is_New - Issue #181

Target_is_New - Issue #181
By Iskander Smit • Issue #181 • View online
Hi all. This was a crazy week. Still is. As I schedule this post end of Monday evening or so it might happen a lot when you read this on Tuesday. How important is everything? It is a feeling you probably all have. On the other hand; stopping everything is also not helpful, terminating normal life from a distance does not feel right too. There is of course also always discussion about how genuine these responses are, posting a flag or something on social media. I do not like to judge. If it helps to express something that is not possible in another form, then it is fine I think.
Should I say anything or remove this? I leave it for now. And I think I keep on living here, proceeding with my normal activities, and at the same time keep aware, donate something more, be open to real needs. And hope for the best…
Updates of last week
In between the news not many events to report from. I attended STRP scenarios on ‘Hybrid Infinities’ in the online space. A different tool this time: Ohyay. A kind of mix of Mibo and Spatialchat but more straightforward. And the makers did tune it nicely. Having all participants play a game with your mouse pointer felt a bit like these warming-up routines at (TEDx) conferences that you have to stand up in the room and be spontaneous with your neighbor; not my cup of tea normally but it worked ok this time.
The talks delivered nice art examples shaping the notion of hybrid infinities. For me, there was an extra hybrid layer watching from the couch. I did not take notes, just experienced the examples :)
The works of Leo Scarin showed for instance his project where he merged reality in the virtual space; having to add real touch sensations to the things so experienced in the VR: “Variations in a Remote Room”. It plays with the physical experience depending on virtual behavior; what will that do for your experience?
The session of Radicle Civics can be rewatched here. The first 25 minutes have the presentation of Indy Johar.
If you are into Stephen Wolfram, you might think this a nice conversation on his physics project diving aspects like “Universality, the Principle of Computational Equivalence, and undecidability” and more.
I also watched a presentation “Creativity in Multiplayer Mode Introducing Metalabels” by Yancey Strickler (one of the founders of Kickstarter) that I think is an interesting interaction/reflection on the discussion on DAOs. “Metalabels are groups of people using a common identity for a common purpose on public releases that manifest their point of view”. This is very near the idea of the Cities of Things Knowledge Hub concept (2nd paragraph)….
Plans for this week
Next to usual activities I am looking forward to the start of the students of HvA AAI minor (responsible AI) working on interactions with vocal things in the city.
I am invited to share thoughts on trends again for a class of students of the MILE program.
And I am looking forward to this workshop with Scott Smith and John Willshire. And also the AITech session with Kars Alfrink on his research to contestable AI. I mentioned his work in an earlier newsletter. Sensemaker AMS will have a DIY session in-person again.
News of the week
This week some new human-intellitech co-performance, autonomous driving, and the weekly Web3 critique.

At Last, a Self-Driving Car That Can Explain Itself
Toyota Patents Artificial Muscles for Robots, Might Build Them in the U.S.
Centipedes, the ‘envy of engineers,’ inspire a new generation of robots | Science | AAAS
Sensitive robot ‘thumb’ uses computer vision to ‘feel’ touch
12 best pet tech devices for cats and dogs: Amazon, Litter Robot, more
GM seeks US approval to deploy self-driving car without a steering wheel
Paper of the week
Let me highlight this week a paper based on a graduation project I supervised last year. Always nice if a graduation project leads to this. It is about trust and autonomous vehicles, which relates to one of the articles of last week. The paper is by David Valentine:
Valentine, D. C., Smit, I., & Kim, E. (2021). Designing for calibrated trust: exploring the challenges in calibrating trust between users and autonomous vehicles. Proceedings of the Design Society, 1, 1143-1152.
Trust is an important factor in building acceptance of autonomous vehicles within our society, but the complex nature of trust makes it challenging to design for an appropriate level of trust. This can lead to instances of mistrust and/or distrust between users and AV’s. Designing for calibrated trust is a possible option to address this challenge.
David did a deep dive into models of trust and learned from designing a toolkit for designers of autonomous vehicles. This paper focuses on the theory, not on the toolkit. One of his findings was that trust is not only defined in the interaction with the vehicle while using but also in the phase just before that, the expectations you build. Nice to compare with the described system above that aims to enhance trust in autonomous transport by adding a helpful coach.
See you next week!
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Iskander Smit

Weekly updates on human-tech interactions in robotics, ai, autonomous vehicles, cities, and beyond.
I am working @_Structural as a design director and chair Cities of Things foundation, co-organizing @ThingsCon.

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