Tech

The best of Emtech 2022, and US midterm misinformation


Last week, the MIT Technology Review brought together some of the world’s sharpest minds dedicated to developing technologies that are changing the way we live. EmTech, our annual flagship event featuring cutting-edge developments and global trends, hear from experts working in fields as diverse as space commercialization to editing gene CRISPR, helping to set the agenda for next year and beyond. A big thank you to everyone who attended in person and online!

Here are just a few highlights from the action-packed show:

+ Kiran Musunuru, a leading American cardiologist, is pioneering the use of gene editing to treat heart disease. He sat down with Antonio Regalado, our biotech senior writer, to discuss the clinical trial he is overseeing to assess whether regulatory cholesterol-regulating genes may help prevent future heart disease deaths.

+ Alla Weinsteinco-founder of offshore wind company Trident Winds, discussed the ocean’s incredible potential for clean energy generation — an area The Biden board is particularly excited about. “The ocean itself has more energy than we need, as long as we can capture it,” she told the audience.

+ Frank McCourta civilian entrepreneur and CEO of the investment firm McCourt Global, took the stage to outline his vision for a new internet focused on equality, rather than the current model, which he believes is built on an unequal distribution of power. He explains why the US needs to look to Europe for data privacy lessons, why the status quo is affecting democracy, and why now is the perfect time to try and repair our broken model.

+ Hugh Herr is a professor of media arts and sciences at the MIT Media Lab and co-director at the K. Lisa Yang Center for Biology. He gave us a preview of the fascinating projects he and his lab are working on, including help people who have lost limbs people in need of prostheses in Sierra Leone and the exciting future of The outside skeleton.

+ Will Douglas Heaven, our senior editor for AI, chaired an endorsement panel with Ashley Llorensvice president and chief executive officer of Microsoft Research, Yann LeCunVice President and Chief AI Scientist at Meta, and Raia HadsellSenior director of robotics research and engineering at DeepMind. They discussed everything from the definition of AI, to the importance of reinforcement learning.

If you missed it, you can read it again live blogs are from both days live event or sign up EmTech Digitalour featured AI conference, starting in March 2023.

Things to read

I scoured the internet to find you today’s most interesting/important/scary/striking stories about tech.

1 Misinformation is spreading on social media ahead of US midterm exams
Despite the repeated promises of the major platforms, they are trying to fight it. (WP $)
+ Twitter, in particular, runs the risk of hosting political misinformation. (FT $)
+ How Republicans reinforced each other’s lies about the Pelosi attack. (NYT $)
+ The US economy could prove its biggest tipping point this week. (BBC)

2 Twitter is asking some laid-off employees back to work
Some workers were allegedly fired “by mistake”. (Bloomberg $)
+ Obviously Jack Dorsey apologizes for growing Twitter so quickly. (The Verge)
+ The Mastodon founder is not a huge fan of Elon Musk. (Time $)
+ Here’s how to find your favorite Twitter accounts on Mastodon. (Wired $)

3 What’s next for the covid vaccine?
Not many needles, potentially. (Magazine worth knowing)
+ Two inhaled covid vaccines have been approved. (MIT Technology Review)

4 Crypto is trying to revive English football in the lower leagues
A Crypto Millionaire Wants To Play Ted Lasso Against Low Rated Crawley Town. (NYT $)
+ The boss of Binance is selling his tokens on rival exchange FTX. (CoinDesk)

5 TikTok’s Algorithm Is Not As Strong As You Think
A huge part of its stickiness lies in our reliance on our phones. (Wired $)
+ What it serves you depends on unknown factors. (Guardians)
+ How aspiring influencers are forced to resist the algorithm. (MIT Technology Review)

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