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Kaila Colbin

Member since July 2007 Contact Kaila

Articles by Kaila All articles by Kaila

  • Political Awareness In The Facebook Age  in Online Spin on 07/22/2016

    We're just finished one presidential convention, heading toward another -- and it's not my job to discuss the candidates or their positions. Instead, I want to discuss the way we come to conclusions about the candidates and their positions: the quality of our data, the depth of our knowledge, the level of our ability to make informed decisions.

  • 137 Million Reasons We Should Be Terrified Of Technological Unemployment in Online Spin on 07/08/2016

    In May, the COO of the World Bank noted that, "For the first time in history, the number of people living in extreme poverty has fallen below 10%." Surely a graph of change in incomes over time will reflect these positive trends - right?

  • Waze, Google, Facebook: The Observer Effect And Our Interconnected, Co-Created Reality in Online Spin on 06/24/2016

    In science, the "observer effect" describes the impact of measurement on behavior. To measure voltage, for example, you have to stick something in the current, and that something will in turn modify the voltage. The photons used to measure electrons affect their paths; a thermometer exchanges heat with the object whose temperature it is taking. As a metaphor, the concept can be easily extrapolated. Our society, our economy, our politics, our impact on the planet -- all co-created in a complex feedback loop of which each of us is an integral part.

  • What Apple Really Bought With Its Billion-Dollar Bet On Didi  in Online Spin on 06/10/2016

    A month ago, Apple invested a billion dollars in Chinese ride-sharing business Didi Chuxing. Not an AI play. Not a chatbot play. Not a wearable, VR, music or a telecommunications play. Chinese ride-sharing. Which begged the question: "Um, why?"

  • Kaila's Internet Reading List in Online Spin on 05/27/2016

    We are officially inundated with content. Content is coming out of our ears and crawling from the drainpipe and dripping from the ceiling. We don't need more content. We need to know what to read. And although the algorithms may be getting better and better, for now, I still prefer a good old-fashioned recommendation from someone else. Here are a few Web ones from me.

  • When Watson Comes For Your Job, Give It To Him in Online Spin on 05/13/2016

    A week ago, the venerable law firm BakerHostetler announced a new hire, Ross. Ross is joining the bankruptcy department of the 100-year-old firm. Despite being new to practicing law -- BakerHostetler is Ross' first job -- Ross brings a myriad of skills to the role. In addition to reading and understanding language, Ross can also "postulate hypotheses when asked questions, research, and then generate responses (along with references and citations) to back up its conclusions." You've guessed it: Ross is the world's first artificially intelligent "lawyer," based on IBM's Watson.

  • Google, Amazon and Netflix Are A New Breed Of Monopoly; Same As The Old Breed in Online Spin on 04/29/2016

  • Of Course Facebook Will Want Your Credit Card -- And Of Course, You'll Give It To Them  in Online Spin on 04/15/2016

    I'm at the counter and I've just ordered my coffee. "That'll be five bucks," says the lady at the register. I hold my credit card to the machine for a second or two, it beeps, and I turn to go. "You use that system?" my friend asks, dubiously. "You bet," I say. "It's amazing what I'll do to save a few seconds." It's something I only noticed once I started using Uber: the startling feeling of luxury and sense of satisfaction I get from arriving at my destination and simply emerging from the vehicle like a movie star at the Oscars. No pedestrian wallet-fumbling for me, thanks. My people have it covered.

  • AlphaGo Might Be The Most Effective Marketing Campaign Ever in Online Spin on 04/01/2016

    The Los Angeles Times said, "The results are in and history has been made... [This development] brings to a close the era of board games as benchmarks in computing."

  • Today Pizzabots, Tomorrow The Future: Autonomous Cars Coming Fast  in Online Spin on 03/18/2016

    I think we need a new word for "future." When I hear people talking about "the future," I usually make a couple of baseless assumptions: It's in my lifetime, but far enough away that I don't really have to worry about it. Maybe 20 or 30 years. Maybe more. This tendency to arbitrarily assign a timeline can be misleading.

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