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Meta Announces New Virtual Event to Share How it’s Using AI to Build for the Metaverse Shift

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Meta Announces New Virtual Event to Share How it's Using AI to Build for the Metaverse Shift


Looking to get your head around the metaverse concept, and what it could mean for the future of digital connection?

This could help – later this month, Meta is hosting a virtual event where various internal experts will discuss their approaches to utilizing AI in building the metaverse, and what role machine learning systems will play in the process.

The speakers, including Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, will explore the varying applications of the metaverse, and what it will take to get there.

As explained by Meta:

Building for the metaverse is the most ambitious long-term bet we’ve ever made as a company. The experiences we’re envisioning will require massive technological progress over the coming years, and our continued advancements in AI will be core to our success. The breakthroughs we’re making now in AI are happening thanks to the long-term bets we made in the early days of our research, in areas like computer vision, speech and translation, and our developer community.”

Meta will explore each of these elements specifically in this virtual event, with sessions including Delivering Inclusive Technologies Through Translations’, ‘Building Responsible AI at Meta’ and ‘The Path to Human Level Intelligence’.

That last one will no doubt freak out folk like Elon Musk, who has repeatedly warned of the potential dangers of AI advancement.

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But whether you like it or not, this research is in progress, and Meta’s looking to build this into the broader metaverse scope, in order to facilitate the next level of digital connection.

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Though it is interesting, once again, to note how Meta is looking to take ownership of broader tech conversations and development by placing them all under the ‘metaverse’ banner. By re-naming the company in line with this, and re-aligning every new advance as a metaverse addition, the company’s seeking to stake its claim to the next stage of connection, by making Meta synonymous with any such advances.

Is AI really a key part of the metaverse? Well, that depends – what even is the metaverse, exactly? Because it’s as yet undefined, Meta can attach anything that it likes into the project, and then position itself as the leading platform for the space, and each development, by being ‘Meta’, the originator of the term.

It reminds me of how regulators in some regions told Meta – then Facebook – that it needed to shut down its Free Basics internet access program, because to many people who had signed up to the initiative, who hadn’t had access to the internet in the past, they had eventually come to see Facebook as the internet. They didn’t differentiate between web access and the Facebook platform, which gave the company a significant market advantage by skewing perceptions of what exactly the web can be.

It seems to now be doing the same on a much larger scale, by making everything about the metaverse, which, for all intents and purposes, Meta itself will own. You want to connect in VR, you’ll do that in Meta’s metaverse, you want to build new AR experiences, they’ll need to be aligned with the metaverse shift, under Meta management. In this sense, Meta’s corporate name change serves a far broader purpose than simply re-aligning the company’s focus, or potentially distancing itself from the controversies of the past.

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So how will AI play into this? You can tune into this virtual event on February 23rd for more insight, direct from Meta’s AI leadership team.

You can sign up to get reminders for the event here.



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Elon Musk’s Team Asks for More Data to Complete Assessment of Twitter Bots

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Elon Musk's Team Asks for More Data to Complete Assessment of Twitter Bots

Okay, let’s just check in on the latest with the Twitter/Elon Musk takeover saga, and where things are placed to close out the week.

According to the latest reports, Musk’s team recently asked Twitter for more tweet info, in order to help it make an accurate assessment of bot activity in the app. This comes after Musk questioned Twitter’s claim that bots and fake accounts make up only 5% of its active user base, and said that his Twitter takeover deal could not go ahead unless Twitter could produce more evidence to support this figure.

Which Twitter did, by providing Musk with access to its ‘full firehose’ of tweets over a given period, which it shared with Musk’s team back on June 8th. Musk’s group has now had that data for a couple of weeks, but this week, it said that this info is not enough to go on, and that it needs even more insight from Twitter to make its judgment.

And after initially resisting calls for more data access, Twitter has now reportedly relented and handed over more tweet data access to Musk’s team.

Which may or may not be a concern, depending on how you see it.

In its initial data dump, Twitter reportedly gave Musk’s team info on:

  • Total user tweets (within a given time period)
  • Data on which devices were used

As noted, Musk’s team says that this has not provided it with the insight that it needs to conduct an accurate analysis of potential bot activity, so Twitter has now provided Musk with more ‘real-time API data’.

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It’s not clear whether that means that Twitter has provided everything that its API systems can provide, but that could mean that Musk’s team can now access:

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  • Real-time info on tweet text and visual elements/attachments
  • Data on retweets, replies, and quote Tweets for each
  • Data on tweet author, mentioned users, tagged locations, hashtag and cashtag symbols, etc
  • Date, time, location, device info

That should satisfy any analytical needs to uncover potential bot trends, and get a better handle on Twitter’s bot problem, though it also means that Musk has all your tweet info – which, again, it’s worth noting, Twitter up till now had been hesitant to provide.

I’m sure it’s fine. Musk’s team is beholden to disclosure laws around such, so it’s not like they can do anything much with that info anyway, in a legal sense. But the idea that the sometimes erratic Elon Musk now has all the tweets could be a little concerning for some.

But Twitter likely had to provide what it can, and if Musk is going to become CEO of the app soon anyway, he’s going to have access to all of that data either way.

But still, given Musk and Co’s past history of undermining and attacking critics, sacking trouble maker employees and digging up potential dirt on rivals, it sits a little uneasy.

Should be fine. No problems – no need to go deleting all your DMs (which are likely not included in the data that Twitter has provided at this stage).

According to reports, Musk’s team says that it now has the info it needs to make its assessment of bot activity, which should see the deal move forward (or not) sometime soon.

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Of course, no one knows what exactly is going to happen next, and whether Musk’s team will look to renegotiate, or even back out of the deal entirely as a result of its bot analysis. But it does seem like, one way or another, Musk will be forced to go ahead with the $44 billion transaction, with Twitter’s past bot reporting methodology already accepted by the SEC, giving it legal grounding to argue that it’s acted in good faith, regardless of what Musk’s team finds.

The next steps then, according to Musk, would be securing debt financing and gaining Twitter shareholder approval, clearing the last hurdles for Musk to change the app’s name to ‘Telsla Social’, and add a million references to ‘420’ into the platforms various terms and conditions.

Because of the memes, because weed jokes are still funny to the richest man in the world – because he vacillates between inspired genius and a massive nerd who now gets to play out some fantasy of being cool.

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Or something. Who knows what goes on in Elon Musk’s head – which is also why most are hesitant to bet against him, as nobody knows if and how he might be able to fix Twitter, and whether this is a great investment or a massive disaster.

It seems like we may soon find out. Maybe. Who knows. Either way, the memes should be great.



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