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Snapchat Spectacles and the Privacy Spectacle

You are being watched. Not by the security camera on the ceiling. Not even by the webcam on your laptop (though you should probably cover that). In fact, it is the preppy teenager wearing the oversized sunglasses who is recording you. This begs the question, how much does privacy cost to you? For the teenager, it cost just over a hundred dollars to buy Snapchat’s latest invention, Spectacles. As u...

Walk a Mile In My Shoes: The Virtual Body Swap

There’s no denying that the world runs on implicit bias. When we interact with others, we tend to mentally categorize them into stereotypes that shape our perceptions. The “boxes” that we put each other in may not be rational, but they exist nonetheless. Racism works in a similar way. In our minds, certain physical characteristics such as the color of a person’s skin become associated with racial ...

Virtual Realities in the Courtroom

A man enters the Auschwitz concentration camp. After surveying the area, he finds the watchtower he is looking for. He climbs up the tower, eager to uncover the truth. From the top, he faces surveys the camp and discovers what he’s there to learn. Satisfied with the information he gains, he takes off his headset to record his findings. The man is a Bavarian Nazi hunter. He has just discovered cruc...

The Potential Degradation of Local Commerce

Large companies such as Amazon, Ebay, and Newegg are dominating the shopping market with cutting edge prices and quick delivery times. However, these companies are bodiless, appearing to the consumer only in the form of a website. These companies define e-commerce, a recent economic development in which goods and services are sold over the Internet. Though e-commerce seems to be an overarching pos...

Algorithms: As Objective As They Seem?

Algorithms are everywhere, tirelessly learning our behaviors in order to predict our choices. As humans we love the convenience this provides, welcoming this new industrial revolution by applying the same “data oriented” mindset to every single aspect of our life with absolute trust. After all, if it’s based on math and scientific method, what could possibly go wrong? A few weeks ago, Cathy O’Neil...

Technically Van Gogh

An artist spent a decade meticulously studying Vincent Van Gogh, creating a series of imitations in Van Gogh’s distinctive style. In the above painting of the Golden Gate Bridge, we can observe the thick brush strokes, gentle dotting, and vibrant colors that emulate the Starry Night almost perfectly. The artist’s dedication to imitation clearly shows that hard work and attention to detail can trul...

The Civilization of Mars

‘History suggests some doomsday prophecy will happen.’ The words, uttered softly, ominously, seemed to hang above the heads of the hushed crowd. Yet the dead silence slowly gave way to gasps of awe as the speaker revealed his grand solution: a simple trip to Mars. On September 27th, Mr. Elon Musk revealed his revolutionary Interplanetary Transport System, the spaceflight system that would reduce t...

Smart Bodies: A Closer Look at Wearable Technology

Smart, multifunctional wearable devices are a relatively nascent innovation. Starting out in the world of fitness to monitor basic health levels and use GPS tracking for morning runs, they’ve branched out into business and everyday use, like directly communicating with employees and checking calendar events. Consumers seem to be excited about the idea and have been buying smartwatches, but are not...

AI Machine Learning Has Teething Problems

When a babies teeth first poke through their gums, they tend to experience teething problems such as drooling, irritability, and they try to bite on everything that they can get their hands on.  In a similar manner, the recent advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI) and especially Machine Learning are experiencing some serious teething problems that need to be acknowledged and resolved. First, le...

What Does Pokémon Go Tell Us About the Future of AR?

If you haven’t experienced the latest craze yet, you probably will soon. Pokémon Go is a spin on the beloved video game classic that features augmented reality (AR). Its “AR mode” allows players to attempt to catch Pokémon in real-time, as if the Pokémon was right there with them. The popularity of this app is unquestionable. Splotches of millennials can be seen anywhere from the local downt...

Is The Wall-E Future Closer Than We Think? (Part 2)

This is the second of several articles that hypothesize a possible future where people will spend a significant portion of their days inside their homes. This article in particular is about food. Let’s go back to Alex, our protagonist from the first article. He’s feeling a little hungry, yet he doesn’t feel like cooking and doing the dishes afterwards. He picks up his iPhone and texts a pizza emoj...

The Creation of Superman

It sees what most cannot see. It ventures where few dare to venture. It fails to shudder at the slew of bullets and is, for the most part, immortal. Created and controlled by man, this daring sketch of the human imagination has solidified into reality through the drone. With this manifestation comes controversy, perhaps from the complex nature of the drone: composed of a mind that belongs to man, ...

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