Friday Five: AI makes assumptions about you
Zone’s Rianna Mitchell handpicks and shares the five best news stories on digital trends, experiences and technologies…
1. AI makes assumptions about you
UK data privacy watchdog warns organisations against deploying AI-powered emotional analysis systems. The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) expresses concerns regarding the use of “immature” biometric technology putting individuals at harm by being prone to systemic bias, inaccuracy, and discrimination.
Biometric data derives from human characteristics — such as facial expressions, heartbeats, and gaze tracking — and is used to gauge moods, inflexions, and overall sentiment. The watchdog alerted that the subpar technology “may not work yet, or indeed ever,” as scientists inform there is no robust link between peoples’ inner emotions and intent. The ICO said they will investigate companies using this technology that fails to act responsibly or pose a risk to vulnerable people.
2. Goodbye Mr. Fax
As technology hurtles forward, the outdated fax machine is heading towards the ash heap of history. Once a staple in British offices, the UK’s communication regulator Ofcom plans to extinguish the universal requirement for fax numbers. Telecom providers BT and KCOM would no longer be required to provide fax services under the universal service obligation (USO).
Contributing to its deep decline are present-day communication technologies, like Wi-Fi, which are more effective for the modern workplace. Ofcom said: “Not only are alternatives to fax machines now more widely available, migration of telephone networks to internet protocol (IP) technology means fax services can no longer be guaranteed to work in the same way.”
3. Weapons are entering the building
Evolv’s weapon scanning technology has risky limitations, despite claiming its AI scanners can detect all weapons. Designed for venue safety and security, the US-based company’s AI machines have been deployed by public venues in the UK, improving the customer experience by reducing manual checks and preventing long queues.
However, research firm IPVM suggest they may fail to detect certain types of knives, bombs, and components. Marion Oswald, of the government’s Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation said: “There needs to be more public information and more independent evaluation of these systems before they are rolled out in the UK. Evolv told BBC News it had informed venues of all “capabilities and limitations”.
4. AI helps beat luxury brand counterfeits
DNA launches a sustainable blockchain-powered technology to help combat luxury brand counterfeiting. The UK blockchain-based start-up creates unique digital passports, which help to prove authenticity and ownership of jewellery, collectables, art, and luxury goods.
The technology can make physical products instantly verifiable, storing every historical transfer of ownership on a unique DNA digital passport which is then safeguarded on the Kadena blockchain platform. Lukas Schullin, Manager of Schullin Wein says: “Our mission is to empower a safer and more reliable online marketplace bringing the power and security of the blockchain to the mainstream with a simple-to-use platform that bridges the physical and digital worlds.”
5. Composable Architecture: Why businesses need to know about it
How can companies plan for a future that keeps on evolving? One answer is composable architecture. Zone’s Head of Engineering, Paul Kiernan, explores the concept of composable architecture and its importance for businesses looking to set their foundations for the future.
He explains what composable architecture is, why it’s beneficial for businesses, how to leverage the concept, and what companies need to watch out for in the process. Take a look here.