Hybrid Futures Hackathon
Films & Team Statements
Yan G Cheng
AI Moral Investigation
[joint 3rd place - HF Hackathon winner!]
1822, the first computer invented. ARPANET adopted TCP/IP on January 1, 1983, and from there, researchers began to assemble the “network of networks” that became the modern Internet. August 31, 1955, the term “artificial intelligence” is coined in a proposal.
Human civilisation widely spread because of science and technology. But the original desires in humanity have also been infinitely amplified by the Internet in modern society. The discussion is that when AI without restricting by the social hierarchy of human, is soberer and just than human on the moral level, are humans still qualified to judge it?
Will AI have autonomy and emotion eventually? In the film, based in 2050, a virtual jury meeting starts in a secret trial room. Three human and three self will AI against each other and stand on different positions and judgments to discuss a case. It is a debate about Pelas, AI-Courier, leaked and spread personal information about a human female and caused serious social harm.
We hope that people can think and judge more calmly about facts and technology through it.
’Are you a robot?’
[joint 3rd place - HF Hackathon winner!]
‘Are you a robot?’ is a speculative short film that takes place in a world, where AI has learned all informational knowledge and all that is left for them to reach singularity is to learn how human feel emotion.
This film references CAPTCHA to highlight the double-edged sword side of the test. For most people, CAPTCHA is just an everyday-life annoying login test to eliminate bots to enter. However, often what they do not realize is whilst users take the test, in the backend, the encrypted code pulls the user’s data, which includes screen-resolution, date, language, plug-ins, IP and more. The creators have gained knowledge of the architecture of data processing of machine learning through ‘Scripted performances’ talk and ‘Diagrams for Critical Algorithmic Practice’ talk. In this film, the AI would have gained more surveillance authority and would track mouse, gaze and face and detect optical flow and contours of the user.
In the end, the AI has to answer the final question and with this, the creators want to leave the questions to the viewers – “Would the AI be able to answer the last question?”, “Would the AI successfully learn human emotion?”, “Would they reach the goal of singularity?”.
[2nd place - HF Hackathon winner!]
Aurelia is a beautiful and non-invasive headpiece that monitors neuron health and stimulates the brain to self-heal. It is inspired by and named after the self-repairing Moon Jellyfish “Aurelia Aurita”. Based on research from the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke and MIT on sonic waves for brain repair, Aurelia projects sonic waves to break down amyloid plaque, which is responsible for causing dementia. These waves also stimulate notch proteins on the surface of the brain, which stimulates the growth of stem cells
to form new neurons. Thus, ‘Aurelia’ is preventive and curative, designed to both maintain neural health and combat dementia. It evolves with your brain, growing to target identified areas of damaged neurons.
Aurelia is aimed at anyone over the age of 18 for early prevention. We believe we can use Aurelia to improve quality of life in a way that isn’t ‘unfashionable’. We hope you enjoy learning more about how this device works in our video.
The Bureau of the Octopi Organisation – A Hybrid Future Manifesto
‘Dreams Rewired’1 presents today’s world as having been created in a linear fashion: infrastructure, products and even humans are programmed to obey the Tayloristic concepts of perfectionist productivity. Every interaction is designed to lift humanity one bit further away from the perceived flaws and limitations of nature. As if it was trying to defy its host, humanity strives to achieve a godlike dominance over earth, whilst fulfilling its capitalistic needs.
The key to human flourishment lies in accepting our mortal fates and living in symbiosis with nature. Inspired by ‘Hybrid Futures - of Algos, Plants and the Vegetariat’ and using the ‘FPP’2 to frame our vision, we have taken this concept one stage further by looking beyond the plant world to imagine a hybrid future between nature and technology.
Octopi took a different route on the tree of life to most organisms, and our presentation imagines potential applications of their highly evolved and unique characteristics to create sustainable cities (per ‘UN SDG #11’3).
The time is now to learn from an overlooked branch of evolution and alter our destructive destiny before it’s too late.
1 Dreams Rewired (2015). M. Luksch, M. Reinhart & T Tode. Icarus Films, Polyfilm.
2 The Future Philosophical Pills (2021). Fuel 4 Design. Available at: http://www.fuel4design.org/index.php/future-philosophical-pills/
3 UN Sustainable Development Goals (2021). Available at: https://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/cities/
Zhilin (Grace) Xu
Dasm is a changemaker community idea where you can sense your mental state and activate everyday. Marking the time passing by and entering your own realness status. By using data collection technology to help us keep track on life. The aim is to compensate the online dissociation experience. Your senses, your emotions and desires are transformed to a holographic projection generated by AI which translate your facial expressions. Honest emotions are visualized privately or shared.
-Talk "Dreams rewired" with Betti and Manu
Alex Kipman's TED talk: https://www.ted.com/talks/alex_kipman_a_futuristic_vision_of_the_age_of_holograms#t-9335
Agathe de Meherenc de Saint Pierre
Working across three extremely different time zones, we started researching and experimenting with how mycelium networks might benefit humans. By visualising the voice of a mushroom with an arduino, a galvanic sensor, and simple synthesiser, we began to realise the mushroom’s agency in the network we may impose upon. We saw this network being implemented continent wide due to a dramatic rupture in the current infrastructure. Inspired by the Hybrid Future’s talks, this would lead to a post digital narrative in which a mycologist and repairing his analog machines make the first connection in an otherwise silent world. Mycelium is an extremely comprehensive underground fungal network which communicates with each other and other species by relaying information. For the human machine to survive, we consider nature and the mycelium as an equal partner, showing their perspective and evolution through time on the right side of the screen. The 3D Mycelium model was directly inspired by a talk from Alessandro Zomparelli, who created a robust module for Computational Design in Blender. It uses fractal-like pattern sequences, allowing for dynamic and creative editing of simple shapes into what is seen in the video.
Should we apply the Turing test to nature?
What’s in that drawer?
[1st place - HF Hackathon winner!]
As our cognition and selfhood continue to extend into technology-mediated processes and external repositories, our digital imprints coincide as the dataset. A data collective stored outside of our bodies that is subsumed to train algorithms. Algorithms owned by techno-capitalist organisations.
This process of training AI is recursive—an algorithmic ouroboros—where our physical environment and bodies respond materially and biologically to computation which in turn responds to the data generated.
So what would happen if we removed ourselves from this dataset? What if we become black boxes and through technology or legislation embody our data, only accessible to those we choose. After this point, would the algorithms continue to consume historical data, generating increasingly distorted and incomprehensible artefacts? Or would there be enough data available on a defunct “internet” for a flourishing ecosystem that feeds upon itself and generates something new?
What’s in that drawer? has no answer. Instead, it explores a fractal path of techno-diversity, using absurdity and speculation to explore themes of data-governance and techno-determination.