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Social Machines - 2017 Update (University of Iowa)

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This is an update to the talk entitled "Social Machines: the coming collision of artificial intelligence, social networks and humanity." It was presented as an ACM Distinguished Speaker lecture at the "University of Iowa Computing Conference" 2017-02-24

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Social Machines - 2017 Update (University of Iowa)

  1. 1. The Distinguished Speakers Program is made possible by For additional information, please visit http://dsp.acm.org/
  2. 2. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Social Machines: The Coming Collision of Artificial Intelligence, Social Networking and Humanity Jim Hendler Tetherless World Professor of Computer, Web and Cognitive Sciences Director, Institute for Data Exploration and Applications Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute http://www.cs.rpi.edu/~hendler @jahendler (twitter)
  3. 3. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Social Machines … Not!
  4. 4. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI What is a social machine? • 3 definitions of “Social Machine” – Cooler name than social media analytics
  5. 5. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI What is a social machine? • 3 definitions of “Social Machine” – Cooler name than social media analytics – Machines increasingly entering our social sphere 1968 2010 Today
  6. 6. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI What is a social machine? • 3 definitions of “Social Machine” – Cooler name than social media analytics – Machines increasingly entering our social sphere – Networks of machines supporting networks of people working together in ways that impact the real world
  7. 7. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI What is a social machine? Real life is and must be full of all kinds of social constraint – the very processes from which society arises. Computers can help if we use them to create abstract social machines on the Web: processes in which the people do the creative work and the machine does the administration… The stage is set for an evolutionary growth of new social engines.. Berners-Lee, Weaving the Web, 1999 Combination of all three
  8. 8. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Social networking consumes huge amounts of human (humanity’s!) time
  9. 9. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Time spent online
  10. 10. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Time spent online Economist, 2014
  11. 11. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Using this time Imagine • Hundreds of millions of people • Effectively able to network together • Working with the data archives of science, govts, NGOs, etc. Working together on the Web to cure disease, to feed the hungry, and to empower the powerless… How could we do this?
  12. 12. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Idea 1, do this by “accident” Being explored, but how do we make this purposeful?
  13. 13. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Harnessing the power for “fun” Von Ahn, 06
  14. 14. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI GWAP (ESP ca. 2006)
  15. 15. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Harnessing this power “unknowlingly” You have likely helped to make Optical Character Recognition better! Von Ahn et al, 08
  16. 16. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Duolingo (2012)
  17. 17. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Harnessing human knowledge for problem solving Raddick et al, 07
  18. 18. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Millions of galaxies classified
  19. 19. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI 16: Hanny’s Voorwerp (A digression or maybe the whole point)
  20. 20. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI The Zooniverse
  21. 21. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Social machines for Social Good
  22. 22. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Social machines for Social Good
  23. 23. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI AI and Social Machines
  24. 24. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Today: We gain benefit from AI
  25. 25. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI But, the machines still need us…
  26. 26. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI But, the machines still need us…
  27. 27. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI The “AI revolution” needs Social Machines!
  28. 28. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Embracing the blur
  29. 29. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Embracing the blur
  30. 30. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Embracing the blur
  31. 31. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Wikipedia needs technology (enabled by humans) How do you prevent people from ruining articles? (Defacement or vandalism) Software robots automatically reverse obvious defacement immediately. Moreover, there are hundreds of people who spend a little time each day watching the list of recent changes on Wikipedia (see Wikipedia:Recent changes patrol)... (Wikipedia FAQ, 2010)
  32. 32. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Wikipedia Needs humans (enabled by technology)
  33. 33. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Studying Social Machines is Inherently Multidisciplinary
  34. 34. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Distribution Statement Wikipedia as Social Mechanism
  35. 35. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Distribution Statement Slashdot (and Reddit) mechanism
  36. 36. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Galaxy Zoo communities Bipana Bantawa, OII
  37. 37. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI 22: Social Challenges include • Keys to understanding on-line communities include – dynamics of online communities • Incentives unclear • Information flows between online and offline are largely unstudied • We can no longer assume an expert -> novice continuum, but what replaces it? – Trust (and distrust) on Web-based communities • Goal is to share information, not hide it – but how do we prevent abuses? • Who do you trust (really)? – Governance is a critical factor • HFS is “self organizing,” which limits its scale
  38. 38. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Example: Governance • Wikipedia includes a lot of rules and privileged people to adjudicate/enforce them – Study in 2008 (Butler etal, CHI, 08) • 44 policies (now 51) • 248 guidelines (now over 400)
  39. 39. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI 23: Technical Challenges include • Heavy programming burden – Costs a lot to build/support a scalable, governed platform • Compare Wikipedia to HFS – Designing a successful GWAP still a black art • And a large programming challenge – How can we create tools that a community can use by itself? • 80% solution for everyone >> 99% for some • Underlying models – How do we define Social Machines more rigorously?
  40. 40. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Engineering challenges • Creating tools that allow groups of users to create, share and evolve a new generation of open and interacting social machines – Declarative mechanism for sharing – Read/write mechanism for both information and “governance” • Creating the underlying architectural principles to guide the design and efficient engineering of new Web infrastructure components for this new generation of social software – Distributed, open and dynamic (aka Web-like) • Creating mechanisms to guarantee that use protocols are explicit and conform to the relevant social policy expectations of the users. – Transparency, accountability, policy awareness
  41. 41. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Why this REALLY matters • Humanity faces huges challenges – eg. Our knowledge of cancer genomics is being outpaced by mutations as cancer continues to spread – eg. Healthcare continuing to rise as %age of GDP while cheaper preventive measures remain unused – eg. Our neighborhoods degrade as wealth disparity grows – eg. Our climate warms as we argue about the causes without changing behaviors
  42. 42. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Attacking these problems require the best minds we have working together: Human and AI! Social Machines give us an approach to attacking the big problems facing humanity
  43. 43. Tetherless World Constellation, RPI Social Machines • We are on developingnew technologies to create Web-based systems that will transform society by: – Creating new systems that allow large numbers of users to interact over the Web to collectively solve problems. – Creating and disseminating new Web application development technologies aimed at letting communities build and run their own social machines • AI may be an important part of this • There are some important examples out there – But there’s a lot of important science to be done • This is a truly interdisciplinary challenge in which computing, social science, informatics and communications work is all required
  44. 44. About ACM  ACM, the Association for Computing Machinery (www.acm.org), is the premier global community of computing professionals and students with nearly 100,000 members in more than 170 countries interacting with more than 2 million computing professionals worldwide.  OUR MISSION: We help computing professionals to be their best and most creative. We connect them to their peers, to what the latest developments, and inspire them to advance the profession and make a positive impact on society.  OUR VISION: We see a world where computing helps solve tomorrow’s problems – where we use our knowledge and skills to advance the computing profession and make a positive social impact throughout the world.

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