Artificial Intelligence Special  
Once Upon a Bot

When I think of AI, I think of HAL.

HAL 9000 is the computer in *2001: A Space Odyssey*. HAL runs the systems on *Discovery One* the spacecraft sent to Jupiter to investigate a mysterious signal. Along the way, one things leads to another and HAL ends up trying to kill his human crew. He fails and is undone by crew member David Bowman who unplugs HAL’s systems—killing the computer while it sings a childhood song. 

Tim Maly is a writer and design researcher. He is a lecturer in Industrial Design at RISD and a fellow at Harvard’s metaLAB. He is co-founder of Border Town, an independent design studio about divided cities and of the Dredge Research Collaborative, which studies monumental acts of rarely acknowledged landscape architecture. Tim writes about design, architecture, cyberogs, networks, and infrastructure.

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Is Artificial Intelligence a Weapon of Mass Disruption?

Earlier this year, the defeat of Go world champion Lee Sedol by Google’s AlphaGo underscored the coming-of-age of artificial intelligence.  Since 1956, when the term AI was first coined, billions of dollars of investment have flowed into the development and commercialization of AI. Today, major tech companies are claiming that AI will benefit humankind in unprecedented ways, from road safety to environmental protection. 

Teck Boon is a Research Fellow in the Office of the Executive Deputy Chairman, S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. His research covers smart cities governance, policy implications of emerging science and technology as well as inter-organisational cooperation and information sharing. He obtained his PhD from the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy, National University of Singapore (NUS). Prior to joining RSIS, Teck Boon held research positions at both the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy and the Department of Economics, NUS.

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Driverless Cars: Running Over Privacy Rights in Australia?

Automated technologies using artificial intelligence are increasingly being applied in daily life, and Australia is no exception. Transportation has emerged as a prominent area in which AI and automation are being deployed among the general population, prominently unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs – better known as drones) and autonomous vehicles (better known as ‘driverless cars’). While these technologies promise certain social and economic benefits, they also have their costs, particularly as regards the privacy and data protection rights and interests of the individuals who use them. 

Angela Daly is Vice Chancellor’s Research Fellow in Queensland University of Technology’s Faculty of Law (Australia) and research associate at the Tilburg Institute for Law, Technology and Society (Netherlands). She is a socio-legal scholar whose work examines the regulation of new technologies. Along with QUT colleagues, she has just been awarded funding to conduct research on the regulation of autonomous transport. This article is based on her working paper ‘Intelligent Laws for Intelligent Vehicles? An Appraisal of Australia’s Approach to Automation’.

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Writer in Residence:
Sara M. Watson, Technology Critic
Encounters with Other Intelligences:
Reflections from Digital Asia Hub’s AI in Asia Conference
By definition, the project of artificial intelligence has largely been concerned with replicating human capability for logic and thought. The engineering history of AI reads like a narrative conflict of man versus himself, driven to model the next great feat of thought, capability for strategy, and even humor and punning. 
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AI in Asia: Startups and Non-Starters
An Interview with Tak Lo

Tak Lo is busy creating startup leaders in Asia as managing director of, an AI-focused VC fund based in Hong Kong. He is a Director at R/GA Ventures Asia and a Venture Partner at Mind Fund, an early stage fund. He is also an advisor to the Estonian eResidency and Tech City Upscale Programs. 

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AI 101
AI in Asia
Future of Work

Will humans go the way of horses in the second machine age? Two prominent economists explain. 

AI is evolving. Are ASEAN businesses keeping up? (Also, IBM Watson is big, but not the only game in town.)

First city/country in the world to launch self-driving taxis. Uber in Pittsburgh?Actually, it was nuTonomy in Singapore

Hong Kong to be “leader of the world” for electric cars (says Elon Musk), but slow on the autonomous vehicles front. 


Ethics and algorithms 

China’s Courts Look to AI for Smarter Judgments: expect big data and machine learning to improve the judicial system.

Japan eyes rights protection for AI artwork, to reflect the changing notions of authorship and use in the digital age.

Many factors contribute to China's rise as an AI leader: different privacy expectations is one of them.

A humanistic mission statement for AI can boost diversity. (Meanwhile, this List of Women in Machine Learning is a good start.)

AI for Good

Innovation and Learning

In Japan: experimenting with designing robot babies and creating emotional bonds with humans.

Watson goes to Asia: Hospitals in Thailand and India (soon China) test the supercomputer for cancer treatment.

The Rise of the Artificially Intelligent Hedge Fund: Hong Kong-based Aidyia says no human intervention required.

Japanese schoolgirl Rinna suffers from teenage angst and rebels against authority. So far, so normal, except she's an AI-powered chatbot.

Fun with Machine Learning
You too can have fun experimenting with AI. Go ahead, click (The Infinite drum loop is our favourite). 
We Turned One!
On November 21, Digital Asia Hub kicked off a 3-city series of “AI in Asia” events. The day-long workshop in Hong Kong was followed by an evening reception, celebrating a year since the hub’s soft launch. Check out our amazing roster of speakers and panelists. Our thanks to all the participants for making the event such a success. Onwards to Seoul and Tokyo! 
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