Collaborative Ideation

Welcome to Digitally Literate, issue #373.

I worked on the following this week:

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Star Wars 1923

Creative artist Douggy Pledger made some images using Midjourney and fed them through Pika Labs, did a lot of editing, and this is the result.

63% of Americans believe that regulation should aim to prevent AI superintelligence

A new poll, commissioned by the think tank AI Policy Institute and conducted by YouGov, surveyed 1,118 Americans from across the age, gender, race, and political spectrums in early September. It reveals that 63 percent of voters say regulation should aim to actively prevent AI superintelligence.

Many major AI companies are racing to build superintelligent AI, which they claim will benefit humanity. However, Americans are questioning the potential risks and costs that come with developing such technology and are increasingly distrusting tech executives.

Why this matters The public’s general wish for technology should not be ignored or overridden by tech billionaires, and policymakers should ask what direction society wants to go in.

The American classroom is changing

With the increasing number of school shootings and a lack of meaningful legislation to address gun violence, American schools are taking safety measures into their own hands.

Why this matters. The new American classroom is adapting to the reality of the rising gun epidemic.

Google’s Struggle to Deliver

Google Search has evolved from a simple list of blue links into a multifaceted platform that encompasses mapping, a predictive engine, an encyclopedia, a chatbot, and a shopping mall. However, it has become bloated and over-monetized, making it harder to find authoritative and uncompromised answers.

Google is currently facing an antitrust trial, which questions whether its dominant position in the search engine market is due to superior technology or deals to protect its monopoly.

Why this matters. Although the company constantly updates and tweaks its algorithms, which are powered by natural-language-processing AI tools, there is a creeping sense that the site is no longer as useful or intuitive as it once was.

Unrealistic Optimism

Nate Bear discusses the concept of unrealistic optimism and identifies four cognitive factors that contribute to it. Bear suggests that people’s brains are wired to ignore the risks of certain events and that some individuals are better able to accurately assess risk.

Why this matters. Thinking more about the need for optimism while also accurately assessing risk in a world filled with challenges.

Friends don’t let friends ideate collaboratively

Collaborative ideation, such as brainstorming sessions and group activities, has been widely embraced, but scientific research suggests that individual ideation is more effective in terms of generating both quantity and quality of ideas.

While collaboration can stimulate associative power, there are social and cognitive factors that hinder the ideation process in groups. Social dynamics, hierarchies, and the bystander effect can all inhibit creativity in collaborative settings. To support effective idea generation, it is recommended to stimulate pattern recognition, utilize vaguely relevant prompts, avoid judicial thinking, and avoid fixating on particular patterns or ideas.

Why this matters. Idea generation may be a mix between the diverging and converging parts of the process. There is a need to pay attention to who is around you in the process.

Be humble

Humility helps us stay grounded in the face of adversity and injustice. Cultivating a sense of common humanity, and feeding it with our actions, despite differences of opinion, is important. Humility has many forms and benefits, such as increased empathy, relatedness, and collaboration.

In this post, eight varieties of humility are identified, including cultural, familial, intellectual, knowledge, skill, wisdom, awe, and suffering. Each variety of humility has its limitations.

No matter how tired you get, no matter how you feel like you can’t possibly do this, somehow you do.

Octavia Butler

Cover Photo CC BY using Playground AI

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