This Week’s Awesome Tech Stories From Around the Web (Through April 29)


DIY GPT-Powered Monocle Will Tell You What to Say in Every Conversation
Chloe Xiang | Motherboard
“AI chatbots that can churn out convincing text are all the rage, but what if you could wear one on your face to feed you the right line for any given moment? To give you, as Gen Z calls sparkling charisma, rizz? ‘Say goodbye to awkward dates and job interviews,’ a Stanford student developer named Bryan Chiang tweeted in March.’i


‘Indiana Jones 5’ Will Feature a De-Aged Harrison Ford for the First 25 Minutes
Sarah Fielding | Engadget
“Footage of Ford’s earlier roles was pulled from the Lucasfilm archives to [train the AI]. Ford also acted with dots across his face to aid the system—and with the agility of a young man, according to Mangold. Then, the technology would quickly do its thing. Mangold would ‘shoot Harrison on a Monday as, you know, a 79-year-old playing a 35-year-old, and I could see dailies by Wednesday with his head already replaced.’i


The Secret History of AI, and a Hint at What’s Next
Christopher Mims | The Wall Street Journal
“The AI revolution is here. Recent developments like AI chatbots are important, but serve mostly to highlight that AI has been profoundly affecting our lives for decades—and will continue to for many more. What’s unique about this moment is that new systems like text-generating AIs, such as ChatGPT, and image-generating AIs, like DALL-E 2 and Midjourney, are the first consumer applications of AI. They allow regular people to use AI to make things. That’s awoken many of us to its potential.”


The Quest for Longevity Is Already Over
Matt Reynolds | Wired
“We already live exceptionally long lives, [Jay Olshansky] points out. In 1990 [he] wrote a paper arguing that eliminating all forms of cancer—which was responsible for 22 percent of US deaths at the time—would only add three years to the average US life expectancy. Once you get to a certain age, if one thing doesn’t kill you, then there’s something else around the corner that will. Olshansky argues we should shift our attention to helping people live healthier lives, rather than simply focusing on overall lifespan.”


Artifact Can Now Summarize and Explain Articles to You Like You’re Five
Jay Peters | The Verge
“If you’re on the latest version of the app, you can summarize an article you’re reading by tapping the ‘Aa’ icon at the top of the screen and then on ‘Summarize.’ After a moment, the summary will appear at the top of your screen in a black box. You can also ask Artifact to summarize in different tones, including ‘Explain Like I’m Five,’ ‘Emoji,’ ‘Poem,’ and ‘Gen Z,’ by tapping the three dots menu in that black box.”


After Half a Century, There Is a Commercial Market for Moon Missions
Staff | The Economist
“As the listing and the orderbook bear witness, the biggest difference between ispace and the entities that have landed on the Moon before is that it is a private company. All previous landings have been by national space agencies. Companies did not attempt them because there was no commercial opportunity. Now, though, there is.”


Cryptocurrency Ethereum Has Slashed Its Energy Use by 99.99 Percent
Matthew Sparkes | New Scientist
“Alexander Neumüller at the University of Cambridge, who worked on the [CCAF] project, says the experimental update has been a technological success, achieving a ‘staggering’ reduction in electricity consumption. …The CCAF now estimates that Ethereum will consume just 6.6 gigawatt hours of electricity annually, equivalent to about 2,000 typical homes in the UK. In contrast, Ethereum’s previous consumption from its launch to the Merge totalled 58.3 TWh—comparable to Switzerland’s annual electricity consumption.”


AI Spam Is Already Flooding the Internet and It Has an Obvious Tell
Matthew Gault | Motherboard
“The frightening thing is that content that contains ‘as an AI language model’ or ‘I cannot generate inappropriate content’ only represents low effort spam that lacks quality control. Menczer said that the people behind the networks will only get more sophisticated. ‘We occasionally spot certain AI-generated faces and text patterns through glitches by careless bad actors,’ he said. ‘But even as we begin to find these glitches everywhere, they reveal what is likely only a very tiny tip of the iceberg.’i


Inside the Struggle to Make Lab-Grown Meat
Kristina Peterson and Jesse Newman | The Wall Street Journal
“Many are skeptical that cultivated-meat companies—which rely on expensive technology to make a low-price commodity—will be able to produce meat affordable enough to make a meaningful dent soon in the more than $1 trillion global meat market. They expect hybrid products, often made with animal cells and other ingredients such as plant-based protein, to have a quicker, less costly path to market.”


Europe to ChatGPT: Disclose Your Sources
Sam Schechner | The Wall Street Journal
“Makers of artificial-intelligence tools such as ChatGPT would be required to disclose copyright material used in building their systems, according to a new draft of European Union legislation slated to be the West’s first comprehensive set of rules governing the rollout of AI. Such an obligation would give publishers and content creators a new weapon to seek a share of profits when their works are used as source material for AI-generated content by tools like ChatGPT.”

Image Credit: Clark Van Der Beken / Unsplash 

Singularity Hub Staff
Singularity Hub Staff
Singularity Hub chronicles technological progress by highlighting the breakthroughs and issues shaping the future as well as supporting a global community of smart, passionate, action-oriented people who want to change the world.
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