AI

The Download: tech help for herders, and bacteria clean-ups


1 AI is unleashing a data center goldrush
It could rise from 2% of the global data center footprint to 10% by 2025. (NYT $)
AI’s carbon footprint is bigger than you think. (MIT Technology Review)

2 Emissions reached a record high in 2023
A big driver of that increase was extreme drought, which cut hydropower production in some countries. (Bloomberg $)
And forecasters predict we’re in for a very hot 2024. (The Verge)
ExxonMobil is suing investors who want quicker climate action. (NPR)

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3 GoFundMe donations to campaigns in Gaza keep being frozen
Legitimate concerns over money laundering and terrorist financing are blocking desperate civilians from getting aid. (The Verge)

4 Can we control AI’s hallucinations?
It’s possible that we can’t. And in that scenario, it’ll remain risky to use AI for any important tasks. (The Economist $)
Google’s problem isn’t that its AI is ‘woke’. It’s that it’s being rushed out into products too quickly. (Bloomberg $)
The SEC is investigating whether OpenAI misled investors. (WSJ $)
Generative AI is challenging the very notion of copyright. (The Atlantic $)
Your posts are being used to train AI. Yes, even the ones you would imagine are safe. (Vox)

5 A humanoid robots startup got $675 million from tech investors 🤖
But can it really succeed where so many others have failed? (FT $)

6 More than one billion people now have obesity 
It’s shocking how big this public health problem has become now. (Axios)
+ However, weight loss drugs are poised to potentially help alleviate it. (MIT Technology Review)

7 Conspiracists are obsessing over Kate Middleton online
These people seem to just have way too much time on their hands. (The Atlantic $)

8 The FBI is using push alerts to catch suspects
But it’s a privacy nightmare, and could include people seeking abortions. (WP $)

9 A viral photo of a guy smoking in McDonald’s was made by AI
There are ways to tell, but they’re tricky to spot at a glance. (Quartz)

10 Zuckerberg is having a bit of a PR moment
Enjoy it while it lasts, Mark. (Axios)

Quote of the day

“I’m totally 100%, sadly addicted to this.”

—Artist and musician Laurie Anderson tells The Guardian she can’t stop talking to an AI version of her late husband Lou Reed.

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