This book describes itself as the work of ‘the ultimate insider’. This seems rather apt as it provides us with a glimpse of what the technocratic chattering class are saying about the current AI moment. Unfortunately it doesn’t provide us with insight into how this current moment will play out as the view from inside appears to be is quite poor, lacking the perspective need to really grapple with this question.Continue reading
We have a new essay published by Deloitte Insights, The trust deficit between workers and organizations isn’t personal. It’s systemic. Trust is widely acknowledged as a key contributor to workplace performance. What is rarely acknowledged, however, is that there are both interpersonal and organisational aspects to trust. While the interpersonal trust between a manager and their subordinates is important, what is likely more important is how workers trust managers as representatives of the firm’s bureaucracy.Continue reading
Why do some the technologies always seem to be ten years away? We’re not talking about the science fiction dreaming of faster than light travel or general AI and the singularity. Those ten years apply to technologies that forever seem to be just out of reach, just beyond our current technical capabilities, like nuclear fusion (as opposed to fission) or quantum computing. Researchers make incremental progress and we’re told that (once the technology works) its going to change everything, but despite this incremental progress estimates of when the technology will be commercialised and so available to the public always seem to be in the ballpark of ‘ten years’.Continue reading
The hype for generative AI doesn’t seem to be dying off. This is unsurprising as—unlike the metaverse, blockchain, and crypto—the technology is providing demonstrable benefits. We’re clearly in the installation phase where mad experimentation is the rule rather than the exception.
A lot of the mad experimentation we’re seeing is focused on either integrating new things into a LLM, or on jamming a LLM into some existing solution to ‘revolutionise’ it. There’s some great stuff in there—a wealth of new LLM-powered creative tools is enabling us to unleash our artistic urgers. On the other hand, integrating a LLM with an online learning platform is useful, but unlikely to be revolutionary.Continue reading
One might be convinced that our robot overlords have finally arrived, with all the noise in the news and social media about the new generation of generative AI tools. Tools such as GPT-3 & GPT-4, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion, have resulted in a wave of creativity as we experiment with them, discovering what they can do, the new opportunities they represent, how to trick them, and where they fail. It’s now possible to turn a rough drawing into a functioning web site, create a recipe from a picture of potential ingredients, or develop a Seinfield-spoof streaming show. Conversations with these tools have even led some users to believe that the technology is conscious.Continue reading
We have a new essay published on Deloitte Insights, A new narrative for digital data, a collaboration between the Centre for the Edge, Deloitte Integrity, and the Australian Data Standards Body that picks apart some of the continuing challenges with data privacy. It seems that every week the is a new announcement where the personal information for millions of individuals leaked to some fraudster. Indeed, if data privacy were a country then we would consider it a fail state. This essay compares Western and an Indigenous Australian framings of this problem to argue that our Western obsession with property rights might be the problem, rather than the solution.Continue reading
The secret of our species’ success resides not in the power of our individual minds, but in the collective brains of our communities. Our collective brains arise from the synthesis of our cultural and social natures—from the fact that we readily learn from others (are cultural) and can, with the right norms, live in large and widely interconnected groups (are social). The striking technologies that characterize our species […] emerge not from singular geniuses but from the flow and recombination of ideas, practices, lucky errors, and chance insights among interconnected minds and across generations.
— From Chapter 1, “A Puzzling Primate”, in “The Secret of our Success” Henrich, Joseph Patrick. The Secret of Our Success: How Culture Is Driving Human Evolution, Domesticating Our Species, and Making Us Smarter. Princeton University Press, 2016.Continue reading
We have a new essay published by Deloitte Insights, Flourishing in ambiguity, a collaboration between C4tE and the Deloitte Human Capital team. In a somewhat oblique way this builds on Strategy and the art of the possible by teasing out the idea that you need to act to decide in a complex and rapidly evolving environment rather than decide to act, as is our usual predilection.Continue reading
We have a new essay published in Deloitte Insights, How tax can help untangle the Gordian sustainability knot, a collaboration between C4tE and the tax team at Deloitte. The essay emerged from conversations about how tax teams want to do more to support sustainability, but it’s not clear what to do as the team’s day-to-day operations have little impact their organisations sustainability footprint. What we realised is that tax is in a unique position to help untangle the gordian knot of sustainability.Continue reading
We have a new essay published on Deloitte Insights, Why hasn’t AI delivered on its promise?, a collaboration between the Centre for the Edge and and the AI Institute. This time we’re smashing together the ideas from The real landscape of technology-enabled opportunity and Reconstructing jobs to see if they can help us understand why, despite recent advances in AI, adoption seems to be lacking.Continue reading