WiTT’s October 2017 meeting featured a screening of selected presentations from TED, TED Global, and TEDx events that look at how women use, influence, and create technology and technology-based solutions. We focused on some of the challenges of social media, addictive apps, and machine intelligence. Here are the talks we screened:
How boredom can lead to your most brilliant ideas
Do you sometimes have your most creative ideas while folding laundry, washing dishes or doing nothing in particular? It’s because when your body goes on autopilot, your brain gets busy forming new neural connections that connect ideas and solve problems. Learn to love being bored as Manoush Zomorodi explains the connection between spacing out and creativity. 18 minutes
Machine intelligence makes human morals more important
Machine intelligence is here, and we’re already using it to make subjective decisions. But the complex way AI grows and improves makes it hard to understand and even harder to control. In this cautionary talk, techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufekci explains how intelligent machines can fail in ways that don’t fit human error patterns — and in ways we won’t expect or be prepared for. “We cannot outsource our responsibilities to machines,” she says. “We must hold on ever tighter to human values and human ethics.”
Your company’s data could help end world hunger
Your company might have donated money to help solve humanitarian issues, but you could have something even more useful to offer: your data. Mallory Soldner shows us how private sector companies can help make real progress on big problems — from the refugee crisis to world hunger — by donating untapped data and decision scientists. What might your company be able to contribute?
How online abuse of women has spiraled out of control
Enough with online hate speech, sexual harassment and threats of violence against women and marginalized groups. It’s time to take the global crisis of online abuse seriously. In this searching, powerful talk, Ashley Judd recounts her ongoing experience of being terrorized on social media for her unwavering activism and calls on citizens of the internet, the tech community, law enforcement and legislators to recognize the offline harm of online harassment.
A political party for women’s equality
Women’s equality won’t just happen — not unless more women are put in positions of power, says Sandi Toksvig. In a disarmingly hilarious talk, Toksvig tells the story of how she helped start a new political party in Britain, the Women’s Equality Party, with the express purpose of putting equality on the ballot. Now she hopes people around the world will copy her party’s model and mobilize for equality.