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Humanist Archives: Aug. 30, 2019, 7:31 a.m. Humanist 33.219 - an ethnography of AI systems?

                  Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 33, No. 219.
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        Date: 2019-08-30 05:59:50+00:00
        From: Willard McCarty 
        Subject: Iyad Rahwan Is the Anthropologist of Artificial Intelligence | Quanta Magazine

Thanks to Bill Benzon I've come across an article on someone with 
anthropological inclinations who proposes to do an ethnography of 
AI systems: Iyad Rahwan, Director of the Center for Humans and Machines 
at the Max Planck Institute for Human Development 
(https://www.mpib-berlin.mpg.de, Berlin). The article may be found 


and note the article in Nature to which the above refers,

Iyad Rahwan et al, "Machine behaviour". Nature 568

His work may well be worth watching. Of course AI is all the rage, 
and often 'AI' seems little more than handwaving at something or 
other. What seems promising to me here is the anthropological perspective, 
which in this case just may work somewhat to discourage the assumption 
that the entities being observed are on the way to being like ourselves. 
Their defamiliarising otherness is important for all sorts of reasons.



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Editor: Willard McCarty (King's College London, U.K.; Western Sydney University, Australia)
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