The Coming Data Wars

by | Nov 28, 2023 | Artificial Intelligence

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: The Coming Data Wars

In the ever-evolving landscape of artificial intelligence, the quest for new data sources is akin to the uncharted exploration of a digital frontier, promising to redefine the capabilities of Large Language Models (LLMs) in profound ways.

As we uncover and integrate diverse and unconventional streams of data, from the intricacies of human biometrics to the vast expanse of interstellar communications, AI systems will transition from being mere repositories of information to dynamic entities capable of understanding and engaging with the world in multidimensional ways.

This proliferation of data sources will not only enhance the cognitive depth of AI but also broaden its application across domains, allowing it to make connections and generate insights that are currently beyond our comprehension.

The introduction of these novel data wellsprings stands to dramatically alter the AI landscape, infusing LLMs with an unprecedented level of sophistication. For instance, by tapping into environmental sensors, an LLM could predict natural disasters with greater accuracy, or by analyzing real-time human emotional cues, it could offer empathetic support, simulating a degree of social intelligence that has been the sole purview of humans.

As AI begins to interface more intimately with the physical world through these diverse data points, its utility will expand, becoming an indispensable tool that transcends conventional use, influencing everything from policymaking to personal wellness. The horizon of AI’s potential is set to expand exponentially as it evolves to not only interpret and respond to the data it encounters but also to anticipate and shape outcomes in proactive, beneficial ways.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: 24 Future Sources of AI Data that don’t Exist Today

Data captured from the operation of autonomous vehicles!

24 Future Sources of AI Data that Don’t Exist Today

In 20 years, as AI systems evolve, they will likely ingest a far broader spectrum of data types. Here are 24 unconventional data sources that will likely provide unique inputs to future AI systems, along with a brief explanation of how they might influence the outcomes.

1. Drone-Captured Data:

Drones could be ubiquitous, not just for delivery and photography, but for monitoring agriculture, infrastructure, environmental changes, and even everyday city dynamics. The high-resolution video and other sensory data they collect would be invaluable for AI in tasks ranging from traffic management to disaster response.

2. Autonomous Vehicles:

The fleets of self-driving cars, trucks, and perhaps even flying vehicles will generate massive amounts of video and sensor data. AI could use this information for real-time traffic analysis, urban planning, and improving autonomous navigation systems themselves.

3.Satellite Surveillance:

Enhanced satellite imaging technology will likely provide global coverage with unprecedented resolution, including video. This data could help AI monitor environmental changes and urban development and even provide insights into socio-economic patterns on a global scale.

4. Personal Video Feeds:

With the potential expansion of wearable technology, personal live video feeds could become as common as social media updates are today. AI systems might process these feeds for a variety of applications, including personalized recommendations, augmented reality (AR) overlays, and social interaction analysis.

5. Quantum Fluctuation Monitoring:

AI could use data from quantum fluctuation events to improve randomness in algorithms, potentially enhancing cryptographic security or simulation realism.

6. Dream Interpretation Streams:

By analyzing data from devices that interpret dreams, AI might uncover insights into human psychology, influencing developments in mental health treatments and human-computer interaction.

7. Nano-Scale Fabric Sensors:

Data from clothing with embedded nano-sensors could provide health metrics and environmental data, refining personalized healthcare and local environmental forecasts.

8. Microbiome Sequencing:

Regular sampling and sequencing of human microbiomes could give AIs information on well-being and lifestyle, possibly affecting nutritional advice and health diagnostics.

9. Atmospheric Electromagnetic Field Sensors:

AIs could use this data to predict geological and weather events, even potentially providing early warnings for earthquakes or tsunamis.

10. Affective Computing Data:

AI systems could process data on human emotions from affective computing, tailoring media content, marketing strategies, or even social policies to emotional well-being.

11. Blockchain Analytics:

Beyond financial transactions, blockchain data could inform AI on societal trends and trust networks, impacting economic forecasting and governance models.

12. Plant Communication Signals:

Studying inter-plant chemical signaling could help AI optimize agricultural practices or even contribute to bio-hybrid communication systems.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: Plant Communication Signals

Data captured from plant communication networks!

13. Dark Web Monitoring:

By analyzing patterns and metadata from the dark web, AI could predict cybersecurity threats and illegal trade trends, aiding law enforcement and security protocols.

14. Urban Acoustic Patterns:

Sound data from cities could help AI in urban planning by identifying areas of high noise pollution influencing building designs and public space layouts.

15. Astrophysical Data:

Deep space measurements could train AI to improve navigation systems for space exploration and inspire new physics algorithms in other domains.

16. Synesthetic Data:

Devices that convert data types, like turning images into sounds, could train AI to assist people with disabilities or create new types of multimedia content.

17. Neural Dust:

Tiny, implanted sensors could provide real-time data on neural activity, potentially improving AI in areas such as neurotechnology and human augmentation.

18. Electroceutical Feedback:

Information from electronic medical devices that use electrical signals to affect and monitor bodily functions could refine AI-driven treatments and health monitoring.

19. Subvocalization Detection:

AI could analyze unspoken words captured by throat sensors, improving silent communication technologies or offering new interfaces for the disabled.

20. Human Energy Output:

Data on the energy expenditure of individuals could lead AI to personalize fitness programs work schedules, and even influence urban transportation planning.

21. Cross-Cultural Interaction Patterns:

AI could use data from global communication networks to understand cultural dynamics, enhancing translation services and international relations algorithms.

22. Smart Dust:

Swarms of microscopic sensors could monitor environments at a granular level, providing AI with data for ecological management or disaster mitigation.

23. Personal Biometric Maps:

Constant monitoring of individual biometrics could give AI insights into personal health trends, predict medical events, or tailor user experiences.

24. Interstellar Object Tracking:

As space monitoring improves, AI could use data from passing comets or asteroids to learn more about solar system formation and, potentially, for space mining ventures.

Each of these data sources provides a unique perspective that can refine AI’s understanding in specific domains. From enhancing personal health and security to steering societal-scale policies and even informing interstellar exploration, the blend of these diverse data streams will likely make future AI systems extraordinarily versatile and insightful.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: Using AI to Manage Our Health

With enough physiological data and advanced predictive analytics, an AI system will become an indispensable tool in managing your health

Using AI to Manage Our Health

In the 2040s, an AI system that focuses on capturing and interpreting data from your body could potentially serve as a highly personalized health expert, providing insights that were previously unattainable or required extensive medical testing. Here are several ways in which such a system could benefit your understanding and management of personal health:

1. Early Disease Detection:

The LLM could analyze real-time data streams from wearable sensors tracking vital signs like heart rate variability, blood oxygen levels, and sleep patterns. By detecting subtle deviations from your baseline that may indicate the onset of conditions such as heart disease or sleep apnea, the LLM could prompt early medical intervention.


2. Nutritional Optimization:

With data from sensors analyzing your blood chemistry and gut microbiome, the LLM could determine which nutrients you may be lacking and recommend a personalized diet plan. It might tell you that your body optimally metabolizes certain types of food at specific times of the day, leading to better health outcomes.


3. Mood and Mental Health Monitoring:

By assessing data from voice tonality, facial expression, and perhaps even neurochemical sensors, the LLM could detect patterns associated with mental health states. It could suggest activities or interventions to improve mood and well-being, such as when you might benefit from exposure to natural light to counteract symptoms of depression.


4. Customized Exercise Regimes:

The LLM, using data from motion sensors and muscle activity trackers, could craft a bespoke fitness program that aligns with your body’s recovery state and muscle growth patterns. It could optimize the timing and type of exercise to enhance performance and reduce the risk of injury.


5. Personalized Medicine:

Genomic sequencing combined with real-time health monitoring could allow the LLM to predict your response to various medications, enabling truly personalized medicine. It would advise on the most effective drugs with the least side effects for your genetic makeup and current health status.


6. Health Span and Aging:

By tracking age-related biomarkers and integrating longevity research, the LLM could offer strategies to slow down the aging process at a cellular level, such as suggesting specific antioxidants or telomerase activators that are most effective for you.


7. Stress Management:

The system might notice correlations between certain activities, heart rate patterns, and cortisol levels, providing insights on stress triggers and recommending personalized stress-reduction techniques, which could include mindful breathing exercises or time management strategies.


8. Disease Progression Monitoring:

For chronic conditions, the LLM would track disease progression meticulously, allowing for timely adjustments in treatment. It could foresee exacerbations of conditions like asthma or diabetes and prompt preemptive measures.


9. Environmental Interactions:

The LLM could correlate environmental data (like air quality) with your physiological data to determine if you are particularly sensitive to certain conditions, guiding you to make lifestyle changes or avoid exposures that could impact your health.


10. Surgical and Recovery Outcomes:

For surgical procedures, the LLM could predict outcomes based on your unique health profile, helping doctors customize surgical techniques and post-operative care to ensure the best recovery.

In essence, with comprehensive physiological data and advanced predictive analytics, an LLM could become an indispensable tool in managing your health, offering tailored advice that evolves with your changing physiological needs and environmental interactions.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: Understanding the Relationship Between Cause and Effect

We currently understand less than one-thousandth of one percent of all cause-and-effect relationships in the world!

Understanding the Relationship Between Cause and Effect

AI, empowered by vast datasets, can unravel the complex tapestry of cause and effect in ways that human analysis alone cannot. Through its capacity to process and analyze large volumes of data rapidly, AI can identify patterns and correlations that may be indicative of causal relationships.

Machine learning models, particularly those using algorithms designed to tease out causal inferences like Bayesian networks or causal discovery algorithms, can suggest hypotheses about which factors are likely causes and which are likely effects. This form of analysis can be invaluable in fields ranging from epidemiology, where understanding the spread of disease is critical, to marketing, where it’s important to know which strategies lead to increased sales.

By leveraging AI, we can begin to predict outcomes and make more informed decisions, whether it’s anticipating the ripple effects of economic policy, mitigating the impact of climate change, or tailoring medical treatments to individuals. AI acts as a force multiplier for human cognition, giving us the tools to see the invisible threads that connect actions to outcomes in the intricate dance of causality.

Here are six distinct cause-and-effect perspectives that each of these unconventional data sources could reveal about how the world works:

Quantum Fluctuation Monitoring

  • Cause: Variations in quantum fluctuations could cause subtle changes in the computational processes of quantum computers.
  • Effect: This could lead to the discovery of new patterns in quantum computing errors, influencing error correction methods and potentially leading to more stable quantum algorithms.
  • Cause: Quantum fluctuations may affect the decay rates of isotopes used in scientific experiments.
  • Effect: This could change the way we understand radioactive decay and influence the calibration of instruments used in dating archaeological finds, altering historical timelines.
  • Cause: Quantum fluctuations might influence the entanglement properties in quantum encryption methods.
  • Effect: This might lead to more secure communication networks, affecting the way sensitive data is transmitted and potentially reducing cyber threats.

Dream Interpretation Streams

  • Cause: Analysis of dream content could reveal common themes related to daily activities or global events.
  • Effect: This might offer new insights into collective unconscious processing, affecting approaches in media, advertising, and even public policy to align with psychological well-being.
  • Cause: Recurrent patterns in dreams could correlate with neurological disorders.
  • Effect: This could lead to early detection and treatment of such disorders, transforming mental health care practices.
  • Cause: Emotional responses in dreams might relate to real-world stressors.
  • Effect: Understanding this relationship could affect workplace designs and the structuring of work schedules to improve mental health and productivity.

Nano-Scale Fabric Sensors

  • Cause: Changes in body temperature and sweat composition detected by nano-sensors in clothing could indicate health fluctuations.
  • Effect: This could allow for preemptive healthcare interventions, shifting the focus from treatment to prevention in medicine.
  • Cause: Nano-sensors might detect environmental toxins absorbed by clothing.
  • Effect: This could lead to real-time monitoring of pollution levels, influencing environmental regulation and urban planning.
  • Cause: The data from fabric sensors could provide insights into individual fitness levels and movement patterns.
  • Effect: This could cause a shift in personalized fitness and wellness programs, potentially reducing healthcare costs by promoting healthier lifestyles.

Microbiome Sequencing

  • Cause: Fluctuations in the microbiome composition could correlate with dietary changes or the onset of illness.
  • Effect: This might inform individualized nutrition and prompt early intervention in diseases, significantly altering healthcare approaches.
  • Cause: The presence of certain microbes might be linked to improved cognitive function or mood.
  • Effect: This could lead to probiotic treatments for mental health conditions and enhance performance in educational or professional settings.
  • Cause: The introduction of novel microbes into an environment could affect local ecosystems.
  • Effect: AI could predict and manage environmental impact, leading to new strategies in conservation and agriculture.

Affective Computing Data

  • Cause: Real-time monitoring of emotional responses to specific events or products could reveal unconscious preferences or aversions.
  • Effect: This might refine marketing strategies and product designs, leading to highly personalized consumer experiences.
  • Cause: Patterns of emotional response across different demographics could signal societal stress points.
  • Effect: This could influence public policy, aiming to address underlying causes of societal discontent.
  • Cause: Changes in a population’s emotional state could be an early indicator of mental health trends.
  • Effect: This could shift public health priorities, leading to early interventions and support for mental well-being on a large scale.

Blockchain Analytics

  • Cause: Trends in blockchain transactions might reflect shifts in economic stability or consumer confidence.
  • Effect: This could offer early warning signs for economic downturns, leading to preemptive fiscal policies and stability measures.
  • Cause: Analysis of smart contract interactions could reveal inefficiencies or new patterns in business operations.
  • Effect: This might revolutionize business process management, leading to more streamlined operations across various industries.
  • Cause: Patterns of blockchain usage might correlate with technological adoption or literacy in different regions.
  • Effect: This could inform educational initiatives and governmental investment in technology infrastructure.

Each of these data sources, when tapped by future AI systems, could reveal layers of complexity in our biological, emotional, and economic landscapes, leading to more nuanced and anticipatory responses in healthcare, public policy, and business strategy.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: The Coming AI Data Wars

The changing face of war!

The Coming AI Data Wars

At the intersection of artificial intelligence and global espionage, a revolution simmers that could redefine the paradigm of modern warfare. As nations pivot to embrace the transformative power of next-gen AI systems, the world’s elite spy agencies will find themselves in a covert but fierce competition not just for information but for the raw data that fuels the engine of these emergent technologies.This race for the new oil of the digital era — data — is setting the stage for an arms race unlike any we have witnessed before, where the victor holds the key to a form of warfare that is invisible yet all-pervading.

The data amassed by nations will not merely inform but will be instrumental in teaching AI systems to predict, decide, and act. With such capabilities, these advanced systems promise to deliver strategic advantages that could eclipse the power of conventional forces.This is a race where collecting data is only the precursor; the true contest lies in the mastery of algorithms that can sift through this digital expanse to extract patterns and insights capable of guiding political, economic, and military decisions.

The implications stretch beyond the mere enhancement of existing espionage tactics, gesturing towards a future where autonomous systems could dictate the terms of engagement without a human fingerprint. Cyber operations, disinformation campaigns, and digital surveillance might soon be orchestrated by machines honed by the vast swathes of data harvested across the globe. The traditional spymaster’s toolkit is being rapidly supplemented, if not replaced, by a digital arsenal that operates at the speed of light and can be as elusive as the data it seeks to control.

 This is not just a race for dominance in the shadows; it is a struggle for the future direction of humanity, mediated by the silent war machines of the 21st century. Welcome to the dawn of AI-powered espionage — a new form of warfare where data is the territory, artificial intelligence the weapon, and knowledge of the digital realm the ultimate power.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: Welcome to the Dawn of AI-Powered Espionage

The coming fog of our data wars!

The arms race for AI-driven data supremacy is not just a contest of collection but also of manipulation and obfuscation. As nations and organizations amass vast quantities of data to feed and refine their AI systems, a parallel need emerges: the need to protect one’s own data from adversarial AI while disrupting the opponents’. This landscape fosters a fertile ground for the rise of sophisticated roles and technologies—cyberfog machines, data distortionists, and AI mirage-makers—dedicated to the art of information warfare.

Cyberfog Machines:

In an environment where clarity of data equates to power, creating confusion—or “fog”—becomes a strategic imperative. Cyberfog machines would be systems designed to inject volumes of chaff data into the data streams that enemy AI relies upon, thus degrading its ability to make accurate predictions or assessments. Such machines would generate noise and false patterns to confound enemy algorithms, making the task of filtering signals from noise incredibly taxing for AI systems.

Data Distortionists:

These would be the digital-era saboteurs, experts in subtly altering data in ways that are hard to detect but have cascading effects on the output of AI models. They could work by introducing biases or shifting data sets just enough to skew AI decisions, leading to misinformed strategies or misjudged situations. Over time, even small distortions could lead to significant strategic miscalculations by an adversary.

AI Mirage-Makers:

Just as a mirage distorts perception in the physical world, AI mirage-makers would create illusions in the digital realm. They would craft sophisticated simulations or deepfakes to deceive both AI systems and human analysts, crafting believable yet entirely artificial scenarios. These mirages could misdirect resources, trigger false alerts, or camouflage actual operations under the guise of fiction.

As this arms race intensifies, the demand for such roles and technologies is likely to expand, drawing in a variety of actors. Beyond state-sponsored agencies, private contractors, hackers-for-hire, and even rogue states may enter the fray, each seeking to advance their agendas or sell their services to the highest bidder.

The potential for an ecosystem of offensive and defensive measures surrounding AI data is vast. Defensive countermeasures will also evolve, with AI systems designed to detect and counteract these distortions and deceptions, leading to a continual cat-and-mouse game between data purists and data disruptors. The ethical and legal implications of this new form of warfare will be profound, raising questions about accountability, the nature of conflict, and the rules of engagement in a world where seeing should no longer be synonymous with believing.

Futurist Speaker Thomas Frey Blog: The Data Wars Are Coming

The data wars are coming, and only the super-responsible will learn to transcend the quest for power!

Final Thoughts

As we step into 2024, the breakneck pace of generative AI’s evolution shows no signs of slowing down. Its capabilities today seem almost magical but will become table stakes in short order. What we have witnessed so far is merely a prelude to this technology’s disruptive potential across every industry.

The unprecedented scale of investments into generative models and applications already exceeds the research budgets of most nations. This highlights how decisively some tech giants are betting on AI’s ascendance. Open-source ecosystems and startups are poised to drive equally exciting breakthroughs.

But with such power comes the responsibility to steer its influence prudently. As generative AI infiltrates our creative pursuits, business operations, public discourse and indeed daily lives, maintaining its societal benefit will require deliberate efforts.

Ethical considerations surrounding data sourcing, model transparency, system accountability and misuse prevention warrant urgent attention. Policies, norms and technical safeguards today will shape this technology’s trajectory for decades hence.

As citizens, we must develop our understanding of generative AI’s capabilities and limitations, shed our awe of its magic, and hold institutions deploying it accountable. Media literacy, as these synthetic creations blend increasingly seamlessly into our information diet, is crucial.

There are certainly risks to be mitigated proactively. But approached thoughtfully, generative AI can augment human creativity, efficiency and insight in wondrous ways. The extent of its lasting positive impact will come down to collective responsibility and wisdom.

The genie is undoubtedly out of the bottle, and the technology’s progress is unrelenting. 2024 promises to be a landmark year as generative AI’s transformation of society comes into fuller view. The actions we take today, as individuals and together, will write the human story of this historic technological flowering. There are causes for concern but also tremendous grounds for hope as we guide these transformative tools toward empowering our future.

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