Algorithms: A set of rules or instructions given to an AI, neural network, or other machines to help it learn on its own; classification, clustering, recommendation, and regression are four of the most popular types.
Deep learning: The ability for machines to autonomously mimic human thought patterns through artificial neural networks composed of cascading layers of information.
“In the years that followed” (the creation of Alan Turing’s Turing Test), “programs called chatbots, capable of conducting conversations, appeared to pass the Turing test by fooling unsuspecting humans into thinking they were intelligent. The first of these, ELIZA, was invented in 1966 by MIT professor Joseph Weizenbaum (1923–2008). In one case, ELIZA was left running on a teletype, and a visitor to Weizenbaum’s office thought he was text-chatting with Weizenbaum at his home office, rather than with an artificial intelligence (AI) program. According to experts, however, ELIZA didn’t pass the Turing test because the visitor wasn’t told in advance that the “person” at the other end of the teleprinter might be a computer.” Fair Use Source: B07C2NQSPV
bot, ‘bot n. [abbr. of robot] a ROBOT.
“1969 R. Meredith We All Died at Breakaway Station in Amazing Stories (Jan.) 130/2: When they got my ship the only part of me that the ‘bots were able to get into cold-sleep was my head, shoulders and a part of my spine.”
“1977 G. Benford Snatching Bot in Cosmos SF & Fantasy Mag. (May) 25/1: “What’s your name, little bot?” The robot squats mutely.”
“1984 D. Brin Practice Effect 23: Compared with some of the sophisticated machines Dennis had worked with, the exploration ‘bot wasn’t very bright.”
“1991 M. Weiss King’s Test 8: Yanking it off, he tossed it over his shoulder to the ‘bot.”
“2001 Time (Nov. 19) 87: This Pentium-powered bot uses sonar sensors to keep her from bumping into walls […] as she rolls along.”
See also One Nation, Under Surveillance — Privacy From the Watchful Eye, Privacy, History of Technology, History of Programming, History of Technology Bibliography, Privacy vs. Surveillance Bibliography
- Title: Database Nation: The Death of Privacy in the 21st Century
- Author: Simson L Garfinkel
- Print Length: 336 pages
- Publisher: O’Reilly Media; 1 edition
- Publication Date: Print: December 4, 2000, Kindle: July 14, 2008
- ASIN: B0026OR2OA
“Fifty years ago, in 1984, George Orwell imagined a future in which privacy was demolished by a totalitarian surveillance state that used spies, video surveillance, historical revisionism, and control over the media to maintain its power. Those who worry about personal privacy and identity — especially in this day of technologies that encroach upon these rights — still use Orwell’s “Big Brother” (see Google as Big Brother) language to discuss privacy issues. But the reality is that the age of a monolithic Big Brother is over. And yet the threats are perhaps even more likely to destroy the rights we’ve assumed were ours. Database Nation: The Death of Privacy in the 21st Century shows how, in these early years of the 21st century, advances in technology endanger our privacy in ways never before imagined even by science fiction authors. Direct marketers and retailers track our every purchase; surveillance cameras observe our movements; mobile phones report our location to those who want to track us; government eavesdroppers listen in on private communications; misused medical records turn our bodies and our histories against us; and linked databases assemble detailed consumer profiles used to predict and influence our behavior. Privacy — the most basic of our unalienable rights — is in grave peril. Simson Garfinkel — journalist, entrepreneur, and international authority on computer security — has devoted his career to testing new technologies and warning about their implications. This newly revised update of the popular hardcover edition of Database Nation is his compelling account of how invasive technologies will affect our lives in the coming years. It’s a timely, far-reaching, entertaining, and thought-provoking look at the serious threats to privacy facing us today. The book poses a disturbing question: how can we protect our basic rights to privacy, right to free speech, identity, and autonomy when technology is making invasion and control easier than ever before? Garfinkel’s captivating blend of journalism, storytelling, and futurism is a call to arms. It will frighten, entertain, and ultimately convince us that we must take action now to protect our privacy and identity before it’s too late.”
Forget the common cold for a moment. Instead, consider the rise of “false data syndrome,” a deceptive method of identification derived from numbers rather than more recognizable human traits. Simson Garfinkel couples this idea with concepts like “data shadow” and “datasphere” in Database Nation, offering a decidedly unappealing scenario of how we have overlooked privacy with the advent of advanced technology.
According to Garfinkel, “technology is not privacy neutral.” It leaves us with only two choices: 1) allow our personal data to rest in the public domain or 2) become hermits (no credit cards, no midnight video jaunts–you get the point).
Garfinkel’s thoroughly researched and example-rich text explores the history of identification procedures; the computerization of ID systems; how and where data is collected, tracked, and stored; and the laws that protect privacy. He also explains who owns, manipulates, ensures the safety of, and manages the vast amount of data that makes up our collective human infrastructure. The big surprise here? It’s not the United States government who controls or manages the majority of this data but rather faceless corporations who trade your purchasing habits, social security numbers, and other personal information just like any other hot commodity.
There’s a heck of a lot of data to digest about data here and only a smidgen of humor to counterbalance the weight of Garfinkel’s projections. But then again, humor isn’t really appropriate in connection with stolen identities; medical, bank, and insurance record exploitation; or the potential for a future that’s a “video surveillance free-for-all.”
In many information-horrific situations, Garfinkel explores the wide variety of data thievery and the future implications of larger, longer-lasting databases. “Citizens,” Garfinkel theorizes, “don’t know how to fight back even though we know our privacy is at risk.” In a case study involving an insurance claim form, he explains how a short paragraph can grant “blanket authorization” to all personal (not just medical) records to an insurance company. Citizens who refuse to sign the consent paragraph typically must forfeit any reimbursement for medical services. Ultimately, “we do not have the choice [as consumers] either to negotiate or to strike our own deal.”
The choice that we do have, however, is to build a world in which sensitive data is respected and kept private–and the book offers clever, “turn-the-tables” solutions, suggesting that citizens, government, and corporations cooperate to develop weaker ID systems and legislate heavier penalties for identification theft.
Garfinkel’s argument does give one pause, but his paranoia-laden prose and Orwellian imagination tends to obscure the effectiveness of his argument. Strangely, for all his talk about protecting your privacy, he never mentions how to remove your personal information from direct mail and telemarketing groups. And while he would like for Database Nation to be as highly regarded (and timely) as Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, the fact remains that we’re not going to perish from having our privacy violated. –E. Brooke Gilbert
From Library Journal
If you have a computer with Intel’s “processor serial number,” own a pet with an embedded “radio frequency identification device,” use ATMs and credit cards, and shop on the Internet, privacy is almost a nonexistent concept, because your every move is being tracked and stored somewhere for future use. Garfinkel, who has reported on computer privacy issues for Wired and other publications, is an exceptional writer who clearly understands his topic; here he explores today’s threats to privacy and how they might be stopped. This is for all libraries.
- Database Nation: The Death of Privacy in the 21st Century by Simson L Garfinkel, 2000. Fair Use Source: B0026OR2OA
- One Nation, Under Surveillance — Privacy From the Watchful Eye by Kenneth W. Royce, 2014. Fair Use Source: B00NU30KP4
- The Computer Book: From the Abacus to Artificial Intelligence, 250 Milestones in the History of Computer Science by Simson L Garfinkel, 2019. Fair Use Source: B07C2NQSPV
See also Database Nation: The Death of Privacy in the 21st Century, History of Technology, History of Programming and History of Technology Bibliography, The Story of the Computer: A Technical and Business History
- Title: The Computer Book: From the Abacus to Artificial Intelligence, 250 Milestones in the History of Computer Science
- Author: Simson L Garfinkel and Rachel H. Grunspan
- Print Length: 528 pages
- Publisher: Sterling
- Publication Date: January 15, 2019
- ASIN: B07C2NQSPV
Part of Sterling’s extremely popular Milestones series, this illustrated exploration of computer science ranges from the ancient abacus to superintelligence and social media.
With 250 illustrated landmark inventions, publications, and events—encompassing everything from ancient record-keeping devices to the latest computing technologies—this highly topical addition to the Sterling Milestones series takes a chronological journey through the history and future of computer science. Two expert authors, with decades’ of experience working in computer research and innovation, explore topics including the Sumerian abacus, the first spam message, Morse code, cryptography, early computers, Isaac Asimov’s laws of robotics, UNIX and early programming languages, movies, video games, mainframes, minis and micros, hacking, virtual reality, and more.