Do machines have ethics?

No, not really, and maybe one day — is probably the best way to answer that question.

Your fridge may now be able to order your food. There are robots who cut us up and clean us up, and nurture us.

But robots and AI — and perhaps the often autistic creators of blockchain* — don't care too much about ethics.

Since these things are taking over many decisions and you and me are still meatware or wetware, the charming tech terms for boring old biological humans, this stuff matters.

Will our governments step in? Will regulation ride roughshod over R&D? Or will industry find a way?

There's a new organisation, so far unnamed, that aims to deal with this. 

More here.

And then Wired & US President Obama & MIT Media Lab's Joi Ito had a great chat about AI, automation etc… 

Ito asked:

"the question is, how do we build societal values into AI?"

Worth reading this.

The future is temporary

From capital-heavy to asset-light.

From ownership to access.

From big, heavy, clunky machines to ones that ever smaller ones that access the cloud.

This magical Duo Skin, created at MIT, is a shining beacon on that path from heavy and permanent to light and temporary. 

How to: the start up stack you need to know about

A combination of tech tools is making it easier than ever easier to start a business. 

This very fast reduction in barriers to entry is yet another reason why the world is changing faster than ever before — and the pace is only set to accelerate. (For more, see Why you need a futurist and look for "extremistan", Ray Kurzweil, and Ian Morris.)

Despite everything, we're still human — as Stephen Pinker explains

This is here because it's important.

In a changing world, you have to remember that we are still flesh and blood animals who have evolved over millennia. 

We believe evolutionary psychology is the best way to understand human motivation. 

It's a unifying factor, if you like, that helps explain all the crazy, irrational things we do that behavioural psychology explains.

For great introductions to evolutionary psychology, read Stephen Pinker's The Blank Slate, or — our favourite read — Geoffrey Miller's Spent.