[Artificial Intelligence] may well be the most vital of all commodities, surpassing water, food, heat and light. Without it, we will certainly not survive as a species.

One of our problems is data - masses of it. A few hundred years of scientific inquiry and the invention of the data-generating and sharing mechanism that is the internet has left reams of crucial information unused and unanalysed.

AI is not about sentient robots, but machines that mimic our organic intelligence by adapting to, as well as recognising, patterns in data. AI is about making machines understand.
Jamie Carter / Peter Cochrane, { South China Morning Post }

…real sharing is conscious sharing, a recommendation to read or not to read something rather than a data exhaust pipe of mental activity.

…what’s at stake is “intellectual privacy,” [Richards’] term for the idea that records of our reading and movie watching deserve special protection compared to other kinds of personal information.

“The films we watch, the books we read, and the websites we visit are essential to the ways we try to understand the world we live in,” he says.”

“Intellectual privacy protects our ability to think for ourselves, without worrying that other people might judge us based on what we read. It allows us to explore ideas that other people might not approve of, and to figure out our politics, sexuality and personal values, among other things.

Neil M. Richards
JD, privacy law expert and professor of law at Washington University in St. Louis.
via { Privacy perils of social reading }
May 11, 2012

••••••

I’ve been struggling with this, in some form, since first publishing artworks online in the early 2000’s. How much of the “data exhaust pipe of mental activity” do I want to publish? How much is necessary, desired, safe? Where’s the line between my self and my public avatar?

When Twitter and Foursquare were born, I declined altogether — I have no desire for people to know what my physical self is doing and thinking and where I’m doing and thinking it, every minute on the minute, no matter how non-private or mundane or benign the activity is anyway. The fact that there are now services, like Klout, that measure the amount of data any given person excretes, comparatively rates them based on that, and that this rating can apparently { have an effect } on one’s social/professional standing is sort of alarming.

Balance. Every “submit” or “create post” or “like” is considered. Certainly there are some intellectual properties I’d rather keep to myself, but I’ve also found comfort in time-stamped publishing: for a content creator, it can be a source of protection if used correctly.