Student 24601

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On November 15, 2018, Student 24601 commented on Canada: Flexport’s next AI-first office?  :

When I think of the meccas of shipping, Toronto does not immediately come to mind, but rather large port cities like Amsterdam, Shanghai, Busan etc where there already exist operational offices for Flexport. On the operation side, one could also consider the largest shipments by air, which in the USA come out of Memphis. However, when we consider that we want to bring machine learning capabilities to multiple offices around the world, it seems prudent to select a single office for this venture as opposed to opening additional ML capabilities everywhere.

Toronto is quickly becoming well known for the AI industry with many companies opening up AI centers there, such as Samsung in 2018. The idea of separating an AI lab from the general operation of the core business is a strategy that is being followed by Samsung because that is where they feel the best talent is to be found. If Flexport believes in the long term benefit of using AI to supplement their business, it seems reasonable to consider the AI hub cities such as Toronto for a foothold.

When it comes to core competency for Flexport, the operations need to be there first, and I would suggest Flexport consider additional operational offices where the largest air shipments are conducted and in tandem find the most reasonable location to for AI talent that can communicate with all the regional operational offices around the world.

On November 15, 2018, Student 24601 commented on Chanel has a magic wand for beautiful eyelashes, thanks to 3D printing :

Customize customize customize! Though I am not a user of Chanel products, I believe the biggest benefit of additive manufacturing at its core is the ability to customize at low cost – i.e without having to retool. Imagine if you could tell a potential customer to come to your store try an item and then have it perfectly re-sized just to their liking beyond make-up? If you could do this for more products in the line it would be phenomenal. Normally, this would likely be prohibitively expensive in a luxury industry where materials are extremely expensive. As was also mentioned, Chanel can take advantage of fast retooling to tackle trend changes and fight off upstart companies who innovate on design. Upon writing the previous sentence, it does make me slightly worry for competition, though.

On November 15, 2018, Student 24601 commented on Print-a-Part: How 3D Printing is transforming Medical Device Manufacturing :

Thank you for you insightful essay. Having looked at 3D printing in my own essay, I find that the best use cases are those where customization is required. Since many medical devices that are implanted in people likely need to be customized, there should be a serious market for the use of additive manufacturing in medicine. To remain competitive, Stryker should at first identify the firms that are capable of actually producing medical grade parts and accurately modifying them, and then consider buying up these firms to maintain a competitive advantage. While I was originally fearful that 3D printing would “democratize” manufacturing and drive prices down, the actual files required and the machinery needed to produce a part are still very expensive and require significant technical knowledge. As such, the medical industry is a place I see additive manufacturing playing a large role in the near future.

On November 15, 2018, Student 24601 commented on Shooting for the Stars :

Thank you for this essay – it is both inspirational and worrisome. It always amazes me to think about what NASA is attempting to do and how far we still need to go in so many different domains to figure out how to get humanity off of planet Earth. So much of what we focus on as individuals is near term, related to our work and possibly our country and rightly so – there are huge issues facing all the societies we come from and most of us do not have time to think about the universe. NASA is rightly seeking alternative ways to get around funding issues by outsourcing activities to the general population. This causes me some concern however, as there is merit in having an official backing for projects as opposed to relying on the crowd. Is it really possible to get a nation, or many nations, behind a crowd sourced idea? How will you know if an idea that really has potential gets the resources it needs? While I was not alive during the space race era, I hope to experience an age where humanity aspires to greatness beyond this world and if that is inspired by a crowd sourced idea, it would be even better.

Thank you for your essay, Ankur. Having worked with Amazon Studios in some capacity at my previous job on their blockbuster “The Grand Tour” show, I can assure you that big ticket releases are not necessarily the answer to high viewership. While official data to my knowledge is not available, there is some question as to whether this investment really paid off for Amazon. Given all the work they did crowd sourcing thousands of scripts, I wonder if machine learning could be applied to scripts of top streamed shows and compared to the crowd sourced scripts to understand if there is a way to determine the potential success of a new show. Of course there will be many things that affect the performance, such as the actors, the set design, the release timing and so on, but script should play a significant percentage.

On November 15, 2018, Student 24601 commented on The long awaited tech disruption of the legal sector :

Thank you for your essay – I find this touches many different fronts of AI including replacement of jobs in general and integration of AI into critical civil services such as medicine, law, and banking. My main concern is how the use of AI could propagate throughout the legal system. Would we allow AI to determine fair sentencing of crimes to remove bias of judges, for example? There are many issues surrounding the ethics of AI that still have not been solved or debated by academia let alone the general public. Just because we can do something does not mean that we should. For now, removing the burdensome tasks of paralegals seems great, but there seems to be little checks and balances on the speed with which this technology is spreading, and I would hope that people remain vigilant and prudent when it comes to AI applications, and always consider the long term ramifications of these changes to society.

On November 15, 2018, Student 24601 commented on Fighting Fake News with AI :

Very thought provoking article. My main concern is what data will be used to train the AI to learn on? For example, if one were to read the websites for Fox News, Al Jazeera, and MSNBC it would be possible to come away with very different conclusions about what reality is. Who is getting to decide what is a fact or what is reality? The AI machine, might well suggest 2/3 are fake! None of these sites would be considered fake by the constituents who read them, but may well be filtered out by a machine AI that is trained in a specific manner. It may once have been the case that the news reported facts, but these days so many things are driven by the news cycle and a soundbite. I believe that more sources of news are better as they allow readers to make up their own minds, but filtering out “obvious” fake news seems quite troublesome.