Vienna Manifesto on Digital Humanism

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https://www.informatik.tuwien.ac.at/dighum/index.php

If you are done playing childs games, maybe something worth looking into.

Currently its naive to the heavens, but also compatible with mainstream interests, so - maybe.

Premises:

The digitisation discourse is connected to "regressive fantasies". Humans would resort back to "being children and project in a relaps back to "prescientific, magical thinking" unrealistic hopes and fears onto automatization".

Informatics in todays world is a 'base science' without its products and results, no other field would work anymore. This means that informatics has to reflect more on its role in the world - in the positive, as well as negative sense.

Social media companies should be better guardians of free speech. (And who is paying for that impossible task?)

Children should be educated in computer sciences as early as possible.

Forecasting integrity, fairness and accountability of algorithms have to be established through regulation.

Automatic decision systems can not be allowed to replace human decision processes.

The question has to be asked how we should behave optimally in a corevolution of information-technology and humanity.


Demands:

"Explainable Artificial Intelligence" (means: no proprietary algorithms in decision processes) - currently not possible, because training neural networks is entirely black box, and doesnt care about any of why the process "works" - or that there even is a sort of stability within them - in fact, they are ever developing, and nobody knows how - we only look at outcomes of them in action. And remain impressed.

An unseperable connection between statistical and logical models - currently not possible, because big data analytics doesnt care about causality at all. All decisions are based on correlations. The posterboys in the field try to convince everybody, that thats sufficient, because look at the potential implementation possibilities. This is entirely impossible to intertwine. You have to give 'priority' to one set of rules.

Universities have pledged to start that thing which is called free thinking again. And actually do their jobs this time. Cross-disciplinary. They use words such as "Digital Humanism 2.0" and "New digital enlightenment needed".

The city of Vienna so far has sponsored the initiative with 320.000 Euros.


And they are all set up to fail in the current intellectual and economic environment.

Now go on and talk about why you don't trust science on facebook some more.
 
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11 Principals of the Manifesto:

//--
In conclusion, we proclaim the following core principles:

• Digital technologies should be designed to promote democracy and inclusion. This will require special efforts to overcome current inequalities and to use the emancipatory potential of digital technologies to make our societies more inclusive.

• Privacy and freedom of speech are essential values for democracy and should be at the center of our activities. Therefore, artifacts such as social media or online platforms need to be altered to better safeguard the free expression of opinion, the dissemination of information, and the protection of privacy.

• Effective regulations, rules and laws, based on a broad public discourse, must be established.

They should ensure prediction accuracy, fairness and equality, accountability, and transparency of software programs and algorithms.

• Regulators need to intervene with tech monopolies. It is necessary to restore market competitiveness as tech monopolies concentrate market power and stifle innovation. Governments should not leave all decisions to markets.

• Decisions with consequences that have the potential to affect individual or collective human rights must continue to be made by humans. Decision makers must be responsible and accountable for their decisions. Automated decision making systems should only support human decision making, not replace it.

• Scientific approaches crossing different disciplines are a prerequisite for tackling the challenges ahead. Technological disciplines such as computer science / informatics must collaborate with social sciences, humanities, and other sciences, breaking disciplinary silos.

• Universities are the place where new knowledge is produced and critical thought is cultivated. Hence, they have a special responsibility and have to be aware of that.

• Academic and industrial researchers must engage openly with wider society and reflect upon their approaches. This needs to be embedded in the practice of producing new knowledge and technologies, while at the same time defending the freedom of thought and science.

• Practitioners everywhere ought to acknowledge their shared responsibility for the impact of information technologies. They need to understand that no technology is neutral and be sensitized to see both potential benefits and possible downsides.

• A vision is needed for new educational curricula, combining knowledge from the humanities, the social sciences, and engineering studies. In the age of automated decision making and AI, creativity and attention to human aspects are crucial to the education of future engineers and technologists.

• Education on computer science / informatics and its societal impact must start as early as possible. Students should learn to combine information-technology skills with awareness of the ethical and societal issues at stake.

We are at a crossroads to the future; we must go into action and take the right direction.
--//
src: https://www.informatik.tuwien.ac.at/dighum/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/manifesto.pdf


Now - here's hoping that someone will make a youtube video out of it, so any of you will ever care. Maybe your favourite podcaster will talk about them, once he gets payed enough through youtube advertising.

Because before they do - this will be a flash in the pan.

Have you ever thought about those things in California? No? Why not? Too warm there?

edI: I'm angry, btw - because I've already decided, that none of this will ever happen. Not enough money in it. Societies too convinced, that becoming the next projection screen for any brand that wants to pay you for native advertising is too much of a dreamjob to not venture out into that direction.

Oh - by the way - I'm so very concerned, that some of you might quit videogames, because the folks hacking Nintendo Switches currently are not conservative enough in these very forums.

If you ever grow up, you might want to look into those issues.
 
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notimp

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Oh, sorry - maybe it would help If you could convince people to be more PC and friendly to each other - and just ignore the problems we are currently facing in the field of social media companies?

Then at the same time, be very angry - that there are so many radical people out there these days - but not see the problem within ourselves, or the platforms we use? (No - you never were influenced by followercounts and social advertising. Never.)

Sorry, emotional outburst.

edit: Oh, great, one guy from Berkley made it in there. *sarc*

Authors
Hannes Werthner, TU Wien, Austria
Edward A. Lee, UC Berkeley, USA
Hans Akkermans, Free University Amsterdam, Netherlands
Moshe Vardi. Rice University, USA
Carlo Ghezzi, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Nadia Magnenat-Thalmann, University of Geneva, Switzerland
Helga Nowotny, Chair of the ERA Council Forum Austria, Former President of the ERC, Austria
Lynda Hardman, CWI (Centrum Wiskunde & Informatica), Netherlands
Oliviero Stock, Fondazione Bruno Kessler, Italy
James Larus, EPFL, Switzerland
Marco Aiello. University of Stuttgart, Germany
Enrico Nardelli, Università degli Studi di Roma “Tor Vergata”, Italy
Michael Stampfer, WWTF (Vienna Science and Technology Fund), Austria
Christopher Frauenberger, TU Wien, Austria
Magdalena Ortiz, TU Wien, Austria
Peter Reichl, University of Vienna, Austria
Viola Schiaffonati, Politecnico di Milano, Italy
Christos Tsigkanos, TU Wien, Austria
William Aspray, University of Colorado Boulder, USA
Mirjam E. de Bruijn, Leiden University, Netherlands
Michael Strassnig, WWTF (Vienna Science and Technology Fund), Austria
Julia Neidhardt, TU Wien, Austria
Nikolaus Forgo, University of Vienna, Austria
Manfred Hauswirth, TU Berlin, Germany
Geoffrey G. Parker, Dartmouth College, USA
Mete Sertkan, TU Wien, Austria
Allison Stanger, Middlebury College & Santa Fe Institute, USA
Peter Knees, TU Wien, Austria
Guglielmo Tamburrini, University of Naples, Italy
Hilda Tellioglu, TU Wien, Austria
Francesco Ricci, Free University of Bozen-Bolzano, Italy
Irina Nalis-Neuner, University of Vienna, Austria
 
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Thats the tough part mostly. Seeing it (not certain if you are correct, ...) and seeing nothing happening.

Nothing - curseword - at all.

Lets just say that I was at a 'young and hopefuls' event - where moron 'elites' held the f*cking talks about 'the solution to all aur problems is to teach the wacky people how to get 2000 facebook friends as well - then they feel attended to and all our problems are solved". All of them - literally. (Watch it here: https://alpbach.apa-ots-video.at/video/5333013067a14a6eb3013067a17a6ef3 )

Because getting peoples ambitions and real live goals into virtual ecosystems - gamified, is seen as a solution to another issue.

Lets say, that at that event - some of the 'elites' joked around at events about social media and ethics, that only people with instagram and facebook accounts would be welcome to come, because the other ones wouldn't even know what people were talking about. Ha. Ha. Haha.

Lets say that I've seen 30 young people forming gaggles arround a co founder of N26 (basically an online bank account service without the bank, or the service), thats currently one of the fastest growing unicorns in western Europe - and smile and 'I have a great idea' the sh*t out of that person, just so they would maybe get a job there.

Lets say that I turned to a representative of a Big Data joint, that is used by Mastercard and others to deflect legal issues and responsibility (they founded the company to deal with 'anonymization' of user data), and told her, that there is still potential in creating app based local communities, and virtual economies. Lets just say that she had an adviser standing by that just told her - 'someone already thought of that, the app didn't get much traction'.

Lets say, that now - a year later, its the next bis google project (project Shoelace) - I'm not taking credit.

Lets say, that the US ambassador to our country lied to me and everyone of the public, at a related conference - in insisting that there would be no need at all to regulate any of the big 5 US tech companies - because, and I quote "Mozilla also was overtaken by chrome" - with the 'top expert' (young gal) of the country, on stage saying nothing. Just nothing about it. Nothing. While everyone looked uncomfortably at me, for having made such a suggestion.

Lets just say, that now - a year later, that young gal (expert) is on record - saying, that we need to do something, probably have state regulation in that field and talking about how we can get a grip on those companies - I'm not tacking credit.


Lets just say, that I visisted events for 'the young and hopefull' that were very concerned about 'russian election interference' and 'vote hacking' - when most of the european voting infrastructure isn't even online - but entirely unsure about that I strongly insisted that - maybe we should prevent facebook from selling micro targeted ads for political campaigns. Because manipulation of peoples feelings, becomes an issue, if you can do it specifically - for 500 subgroups.

Lets just say, that now - a year later, everyone is totally on board with regulating facebook - because they wanted to establish their own (dont care about no - its 'independant' consortium!) currency (my 'warcry' having been, if we don' tdo it now - when then? a year back), and suddenly the big guys (central banks) spoke up.

The only thing that I have learned out of the entire experience is, that people dont matter - everyone just finds it super dandy if you get emotionally manipulated with personalized playbooks - and that if there is no money in it - f*cking nobody cares. For years.


Just pray that your children arent born intelligent and caring.
 
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I had 'facebook is hiring social studies and psych majors straight out of university - in mass - for years' to keep people glued to their platform on my side. And Zucks Mentor speaking up against it, and former facebook management, and...

Nothing. No reaction. Facebook was still hip and happening AFTER the US congress hearing 'whatever that was' that cost them 5 billion and won them 6 billion in shareprice hike the same day.

I've had people much dumber than me try to convince me, that it is ok for societies to loose all privacy - if I would just stop caring about my selfimage in the mind of others...

What do you have again?

'Don't worry - its all going to work out? At some point. Just believe?'

(Not directed at you - just so you get the full impact of that sentiment.)
 
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Very good points you brought up. It's these issues that make me reconsider having children at all.

Imo, humankind just isn't mature enough to handle the digital age, one can argue that we weren't ready for such advanced technology. And what driving force led to its creation? War.

Either we have to evolve, or that's it: Dystopia or Extinction.
 
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notimp

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I've set through lectures where our best and brightest (former google staffers, and Cambridge law professors) literally SOLD the gig economy to open and young minds. Becasue - hey, it still produces jobs, right?

Hey Alexa - hire me an indian to transcribe, what I'm just saying.

I've heard trade union representatives, that were only invited to say, that they also saw it as a great opportunity to cash more members.

And now get going on producing that future folks.

Lovely.

You know that any of those psychologists and social studies majors must have thought about the impact of the stuff they were hired to do on society at large? You know they had to.

I heard none of those voices ever even as much as reaching Wired magazine. (Nothing against Wired.)
 
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