Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Humans in Artificial Intelligence

We kick off the new season of The Sniffer with a machine learning twofer for you. Cathi Bond talks about this New York Times look at the workers who label the data that machine learning is trained on, in particular, in a medical context.  Nora Young talks about machine learning hype and this article on how to spot "AI Hype". She also mentions this Atlantic article by the excellent tech writer Sidney Fussell. [iframe style="border:none" src="//html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/11250224/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/render-playlist/no/theme/standard/tdest_id/237069" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

Learn to Meditate and Subscription Fee Hell

This time, Cathi Bond talks about subscription fee creep, where inch by inch your monthly subscriptions are piling up. Here's Gizmodo's interesting take. How about you? Do you find the number of services you're subscribed to creeping up?

Meanwhile, Nora Young talks about this lovely and helpful post over at Legal Nomads. It's a curated 10 week introduction to meditation, that gives you a taste of a number of mainstream meditation approaches, so you can see what works for you.

And, are you having a bad day? Could you use a little sweetness in your life? Check out these Swiss cat ladders over at Core 77!


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Machine Learning in Africa and Tesla Surfboards

Hope you're having a good summer! This time, Nora Young talks about this Technology Review article on advances in machine learning in tech hubs in Africa, such as Accra and Nairobi. 

Cathi Bond has some summer fun for you! Tesla came out with this limited edition, super stylish surfboard (via New Atlas). And, looking for a little, um, calm water fun? How about this? The Wheeebo disc that lets you glide, slowly, along the water.


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Next Gen Skyscrapers and AI in Hollywood

This time around, Cathi Bond talks about this project by celebrated Canadian architect, Moshe Safdie (you can read more about it in this release).

Nora Young raises this article in The Verge on the use of AI in the design of Hollywood film.

Over the summer, we'll be releasing new episodes once a month, and then back to a proper bi-weekly schedule after Labour Day. Have a great summer!


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Surveillance Special: smart doorbells and drones

On this podcast, Nora Young talks about technologies of home surveillance. As this article in The Outline discusses, are these home security features just making us more paranoid? And who gets to decide what constitutes "suspicious" activity?

Cathi Bond looks at this review of the EEGSmart Udrone, which lets you control a drone's flight with your mind. It also contains features that enable facial and gesture recognition. As drones get 'smarter' and more popular, are we enabling a surveillance culture?


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Next Gen Retail and Mad Men Hotel

On this podcast, Cathi Bond talks about Stitchfix, and their data-driven approach to retail. Based on your extensive profile, clothes are selected for you and delivered to your door. You have three days to return or buy whichever items you want. Would you opt for this? Super convenient, or would you miss the 'retail therapy'? Read more at Fast Company.

Are you in a Mad Men mood? How about a visit to the TWA Hotel? A development company is opening a hotel built around Eero Saarinen's vintage hotel at JFK airport. It comes equipped with Florence Knoll furniture, and even rotary dial phones (via Quartz).


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Streaming Movies and Cool New Housing for Old Buildings

Hi all! Thanks for coming back! We've been a long time gone, but we are at it again! This time, Nora Young talks about the challenges streaming film services have, and this Forbes article about how two niche movie streaming services have managed -- or not -- to make a go of it. Cathi Bond thinks there's a lot to be learned from the cable world in the form of Turner Classic Movies. Cathi looks at a really cool idea in place in China: dropping small, modernist, smartly designed housing 'inserts' called "Plugin Houses into dilapidated buildings. Check out the story and lots of images at New Atlas. Could this be a model for elsewhere? Also, super snappy recommendation: this Vox explainer on those iconic Blue Note album covers! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNgA7dDs90E&feature=youtu.be [iframe style="border:none" src="//html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/7900466/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/render-playlist/no/theme/standard/tdest_id/237069" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

Cool Ear Buds and Super Smart Wind Turbines

On this podcast episode, Nora Young talks about a super smart idea for capturing the wind energy created by passing vehicles: small wind turbines along the roadside. See more at Core77.

Meanwhile Cathi Bond has two cool earbud designs for you. Firefly are quick charging, inexpensive wieless earbuds with long battery life (via NewAtlas). Then there's Bose's innovation: sleepbuds, designed to be noise cancelling and super comfortable to help you sleep (via Engadget)


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The Future of the Mall and Super Efficient Batteries

Battery life can be a real problem. Cathi Bond tells Nora about research out of Cornell, suggesting a proming model based on a more complex, folded shape. Best of all, it charges almost immediately. Read more at New Atlas here. What would it take to get you into a mall in 10 years? One vision from British retail development group, Westfield, is for a sort of one-stop retail, wellness entertainment hub (via Springwise). It's actually really quite cool. Check out the interactive images here. [iframe style="border:none" src="//html5-player.libsyn.com/embed/episode/id/6760954/height/100/width/480/thumbnail/no/render-playlist/no/theme/standard/tdest_id/237069" height="100" width="480" scrolling="no" allowfullscreen webkitallowfullscreen mozallowfullscreen oallowfullscreen msallowfullscreen] Download MP3

IKEA Goes Big(ger) and Audio Sleep Aids

On this podcast, Nora Young talks about a few different stories about IKEA's expansion plans and new lines, including partnerships on surprising products like fragrance, expansion plans for Indian cities, and modular pieces that can be re-assembled into different kinds of furniture for small spaces.

Cathi Bond points us to this Gizmodo article about the late painter, Bob Ross, whose PBS instructional show was a surprising hit. Now, his soothing voice is being used as a sleep aid. Apparently, Calm.com has added the audio from one of his episodes to their 'sleep tracks' series.

 

Article Links

IKEA partnerships: http://fortune.com/2018/06/12/ikea-partner-lego-adidas-sonos/

IKEA expands in India: https://www.fastcompany.com/40584160/ikea-is-swapping-swedish-meatballs-for-samosas-in-its-india-stores

Rumtid line borrows from design for outer space: https://www.psfk.com/2018/06/ikea-rumtid-urban-space.html

Bob Ross sleep aid: https://gizmodo.com/this-bob-ross-sleep-mediation-is-the-mental-escape-i-ne-1826796037


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