By Iskander Smit

Target_is_New - Issue #182





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Target_is_New - Issue #182
By Iskander Smit • Issue #182 • View online
Hello. Two weeks in the world crisis. I keep continuing exploring the new and future and diving into human-tech relations. In my monthly newsletter on Cities of Things, I explored some of the aspects of agency in an AI world that can be a dangerous iteration on the information war that this Putin war is. At least in the first phase.
Updates of last week
Next to the usual work with graduation students and planning of new projects, it was nice to meet with a new group of students that will explore the intelligent interactions with street objects for the Applied AI minor of Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences.
We had an inspirational visit to a possible location for this year’s ThingsCon Summer edition. As it is not 100% confirmed I will share details next week probably. And the newsletter end of the month will share more on the program. You can subscribe!
I saw the presentation of Kars on Contestable AI and the role of these approaches in the design and understanding of AI systems. Very useful; find more information on the website.
I was invited to share some thoughts on trends with a group of students from the MILE program.
Upcoming this week
For the Apple fanboys and -girls, this evening the usual March event will present a new low-end phone and iPad I think, and maybe some new M2 chips, although that can be some other time too. What I am wondering about is the presentation in itself. The last couple of events were fully online and that worked out very well in how sleek it looked. Still, you miss some of the energy in the room of course. This event is again fully virtual, but I can imagine they would combine the scripted elements within a theatre setting one day. It would be cool if they are able to pull off a hybrid of virtual and reality. Would be a great lookout for future AR stuff at the same time. From hybrid to hyper realities. We will see…
For the rest, I will attend a workshop by Viktor Bedö titled “Design F®iction For Predictive Food Commoning”. And I will try to attend some of the Mozfest sessions. I invite you all to join the session Maria Luce and I facilitate on Friday 13:00-14:30CET on Trustful neighborhood relations with intelligent things in cities.
More events this week are the opening of an exhibition at Arcam architecture center on smart objects: Private Eye Butler Spy. I contributed on behalf of ThingsCon. On Wednesday evening there is a  Haunting Machines Talk.
Somewhat later IoT Rotterdam will take place again, 8 March. Including a Cities of Things hackathon.
News of last week
The usual mix of robotics and autonomous objects.

How to help humans understand robots
Bendy robotic arm twisted into shape with help of augmented reality
A Copernicus Moment. Part of a series on The Ecosystem…
Sophia, the first intelligent humanoid robot, to debut in Dubai
I'm an Amazon worker and I got 'trapped in warehouse by ROBOTS' - here's how I escaped
Google's New Soli Radar Tech Can Read Your Body Language
Move over candy bars, New York vending machine now selling NFT art
Bosch acquires Atlatec to bolster autonomous driving portfolio
Sony LinkBuds Review: Excellent Earbuds for Roaming Around Town
Putting The ‘Go’ In Frisbee Golf With A Robot Launcher
Kiwibot brings in $7.5 million in Pre-Series A funding
Paper of the week
In the Cities of Things reflecting post mentioned above, I refer to the concept of alienation. I found this column by Jonathan Bean a nice short expression of that concept in the case of connected products that disconnect the working from the interaction. In my own explorations to the predictive relations with AI-products could this be even more apparent. It is an architect’s view on connected products…
Bean, J. (2019). Nest rage. Interactions26(3), 22-23.
“Yet I can’t even look at the error logs on my own thermostat! The blackboxed black cylinder in the hall is a reminder that I’ve lost a bit of myself—and worse, given it over willingly. I have been alienated in my own home, by something I own. And that is most chilling of all.”
Read the column ‘Nest Rage’ of Jonathan Bean here. There is of course a lot more to be found on the theory of alienation.
See you next week!
Did you enjoy this issue?
Iskander Smit

I am working @Infonl as a research director, and chair Cities of Things, blogger Target_is_New, co-organizing @ThingsCon.
Visiting researcher at TU Delft Industrial Design Engineering.

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