This week’s headline quotes Zoë Baird, chief executive of the Markle Foundation, from a New York Times article on skills-oriented hiring, training, and education that helps individuals find a career pathway even if they do not pursue a traditional four-year degree.
You can always check out the Center's trend collection to see how this scanning comes together to identify trends relevant to our future.
And as you scan through these articles, consider dropping me a line to let me know what you're reading this week to help prepare for the future.
Algorithms, Artificial Intelligence, and Learning Machines
The Verge “Instagram now uses AI to block offensive comments”
Instagram introduced an enhanced comment filter that uses machine learning to identify comments that seem offensive. See also Wired.
Books and Publishing
The British Psychological Society “New findings suggest it might be better to read toddlers an e-book than a print book”
A new study in Frontiers in Psychology suggests that very young children may benefit from e-books, with toddlers pointing more frequently to pages in e-books, commenting more on content, and turning more pages by themselves.
Cities and Government
MIT Technology Review “The unaffordable urban paradise”
Another look at how high-tech development, once viewed as a boon for cities and urban centers, has ushered in a new phase of winner-take-all urbanism, where a relatively small number of metro areas, and a small number of neighborhoods within them, capture most of the benefits.
The Atlantic “The elusive teacher next door”
Teachers and other government employees, including police officers, firefighters, and social workers, are increasingly priced out of the communities in which they work, forcing some cities to explore subsidized housing as a solution.
The Guardian “From braille to Be My Eyes – there's a revolution happening in tech for the blind”
Smartphones and high-speed connectivity have led to a growing area of tech-enabled accessibility tools, everything from screen readers to programs like Be My Eyes that pair visually impaired users with on-call volunteers that connect via a video connection to help the users navigate various situations.
Education Week “Chan-Zuckerberg to push ambitious new vision for personalized learning”
The Chan Zuckerberg Initiative will invest hundreds of millions of dollars in a new vision of "whole-child personalized learning," driven by software that can help teachers better recognize and respond to each student's academic needs with the aim of dramatically expanding the scope and scale of efforts to provide every student with a customized education.
The New York Times “A new kind of tech job emphasizes skills, not a college degree”
A skills-based career path seeks to expand the so-called new-collar or middle-skill jobs category of workers who do not have a four-year college degree but can find gainful employment in technology where computing skills like writing code can be tested and measured outside of classroom preparation.
Slate “New Zealand could require students to learn to code”
The New Zealand Ministry of Education released a draft of a revised curriculum that would require schools to teach children how to program computers before the time they reach high school – the government is accepting input from the public about the proposed change.
The Atlantic “The American South will bear the worst of climate change’s costs”
A new study from Science simulates the costs of global warming, modeling every day of weather in every U.S. county during the 21st century, and finding that states in the Southeast and Midwest will feel the greatest economic impact from climate change, feeding into further economic disparities with communities in the Northeast and on the coasts. See also Ars Technica, Fast Company, GeekWire, and The Verge.
Mashable “Facebook could now be fined $57m over hate speech”
Germany’s new Network Enforcement Act could fine technology companies up to €50 million ($57 million) for failing to monitor and remove hate speech, criminal material, and fake news on social networks. See also The New York Times.
Recode “Facebook found a new way to identify spam and false news articles in your News Feed”
Facebook will limit the reach of super-posters, those who post 50-plus times per day and often share posts that could be spam or false news, lowering their rank and reach in the News Feed. See also TechCrunch.
The Verge “Canada’s Supreme Court rules Google must block certain search results worldwide”
Canada’s Supreme Court upheld a British Columbia court ruling that ordered Google to de-list entire domains and websites from its global search index – the ruling follows a dispute between two technology companies, one of whom was accused of relabeling the competitor’s product and selling it as their own online, resulting in a request for Google to remove search results until the allegations could be tested. See also CNET.
ProPublica “Facebook’s secret censorship rules protect white men from hate speech but not black children”
Reviewing Facebook’s internal documents, ProPublica finds that Facebook’s rationale for flagging content tends to favor elites and governments over grassroots activists and racial minorities, training censors to delete hate speech against “protected categories,” including white males, but to allow attacks on “subsets” such as female drivers and black children. See also The Daily Dot, Gizmodo, and Mic.
Journalism and News
Nieman Lab “The New York Times is now charging for its cooking site”
The New York Times relaunched its NYT Cooking recipe site and app as a paid product – a subscription costs $5 every four weeks – part of a strategy to generate $800 million in digital revenue by 2020. See also Advertising Age, Digiday, and Mashable.
Mic “Secretaries of state are resisting White House requests for voter data”
U.S. President Donald Trump’s Presidential Advisory Commission on Election Integrity requested information on every state’s voters, including names and partial social security numbers – U.S. secretaries of state are pushing back on the demands for detailed personal information on voters. See also Gizmodo.
Bloomberg “Macau's ATMs are using facial recognition to help follow the money”
Regulators in the lucrative gaming hub of Macau are integrating facial-recognition software into ATMs to help verify the identity of users and monitor transactions.
Engadget “Dubai will police streets with autonomous patrol cars”
The Dubai police plan to deploy a fleet of self-driving police cars that will scan people and identify criminals and "undesirables" using biometric software.
Restaurants, Retail, and Spaces
Engadget “Target is testing its own Prime Pantry-like delivery service”
Seeking to compete with Amazon's Prime Pantry service, Target will trial a "Restock" service that allows users to fill a box with up to 45 pounds of groceries for a flat $5 next-day delivery fee.
TechCrunch “Uptime, YouTube’s experimental app for watching videos with friends, opens to all”
Uptime, YouTube’s experimental app that lets viewers watch videos with friends while reacting and commenting, has been made available to all users after a testing period that had begun in March.
TechCrunch “Twitter inks live stream deals for Wimbledon, Comic-Con coverage, and more”
Twitter announced new deals to live stream from the floor of the San Diego Comic-Con in July and to stream news and interviews, behind the scenes footage, and “selected action” from Wimbledon. See also Engadget.
Advertising Age “AMC bets viewers will pay more to watch ad-free”
AMC has introduced a commercial-free service, AMC Premiere, that costs $4.99 a month. See also Recode, TechCrunch, and The Verge.