Maybe Computers Could Conquer Us All

“An invasion led by artificially intelligent machines. Conscious computers. A smartphone virus so smart that it can start mimicking you. You might think that such scenarios are laughably futuristic, but some of the world’s leading artificial intelligence (AI) researchers are concerned enough about the potential impact of advances in AI that they have been discussing the risks over the past year. Now they have revealed their conclusions.”

HBO Scores Highest In Tally Of GLBT Content

“In its third annual Network Responsibility Index, the Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation found that of HBO’s 14 original prime-time series, 10 included content reflecting the lives of gay, bisexual and transgender people. That totaled 42 percent of the network’s programming hours…. By contrast, on NBC and CBS only 8 percent and 5 percent, respectively, of prime-time hours included them, the report said.”

Attacked By Fundamentalists, Arts In Pakistan Persevere

Since the bombing last November of Pakistan’s Lahore International Arts Festival, “targets have included a cafe belonging to the Peerzada family who stage the festival, and theatres across the city in co-ordinated overnight raids.” Despite the sense that “every time people go out for the evening, there is a danger that was not there a couple of years ago,” the arts are persevering in Lahore, with both artists and audiences united against the fundamentalists who seek to stop them.

The Grim Parallels Between Brandeis And Barnes Fights

“Ever since news of the Brandeis scheme rocked the art world six months ago, the tragic fate of the Barnes Foundation outside Philadelphia has been rumbling around in my head. … Myriad details between the Barnes and the Rose are different, including the apparent participation of their respective state attorneys general, but the basic principle is the same. Donor intent is at issue.”

Wagners, At Bayreuth, Vow To Address The Nazi Issue

“The two great-granddaughters of the composer Richard Wagner held their first Bayreuth Festival this weekend — and have promised to reveal the Wagner family’s link to the Nazis. They even want to tackle the question of whether their grandmother, Winifred Wagner, slept with Hitler.” They also say they plan to modernize the festival and “make it less elitist and less secretive.”