⏱ More Than Robots #70 October 2023


This edition of More Than Robots has been delayed longer than HS2, NHS appointments and autumn due to illness and other facts of life. But it’s here and it’s packed.

📖 Research

The Good Childhood Report

A larger proportion of females than males was unhappy with their friendships, appearance, and life as a whole, while a larger proportion of males than females was unhappy with schoolwork.

Coded Companions: Young People's Relationships With AI Chatbots

Young people are being exposed to risky behaviours from AI chatbots, including sexually charged dialogue and references to self-harm

Girls' Attitudes Survey

81% of girls and young women aged 11-21 have experienced some form of threatening or upsetting behaviour online, compared to 65% in 2018

Testing Multimodal Generative AI: Generating Election Mis-and-Disinformation Evidence

Midjourney, DALL-E 2, and Stable Diffusion accepted more than 85% of prompts looking to generate evidence for mis-and-disinformation claims

Growing Up Online: Children's online activities harm and safety in Northern Ireland

27% of 8-13 year-olds and 46% of 14-18 year-olds felt that reports of negative experiences online were not dealt with well at all

Loot box engagement: relationships with educational attainment, employment status and earnings

The demographic associations of video game loot box engagement (younger age, male sex, non-university educational attainment and unemployment) mirror those of other addictive and problematic behaviours, including disordered gambling, drug and alcohol misuse

‘Don’t make assumptions about me!’: Understanding  Children’s Perception of Datafication Online

Children between 12-17 demonstrated some awareness of ‘data traces’ they left online and of device tracking but found it hard to make a personal connection or apply such knowledge to themselves

Digital Poverty in the UK: A socio-economic assessment of the implications of digital poverty in the UK

Approximately 20% of children are in digital poverty.

🧰 Resources

State of the Nation 2023: data about social mobility in the UK

See how 41 areas of the UK are ranked for 5 different measures of social mobility.

Geographies of Digital Exclusion: Data and Inequality

Open access book exploring ‘the key contours of information inequality, and who, what and where gets left out’.

Age appropriate digital services framework

The set of processes by which engineers and technologists can consider children’s rights and well-being throughout the stages of concept exploration and development

Upsetting news and media online

Some ideas and advice for helping children deal with upsetting news and media.

🗳 Take part

The Big Ambition

A survey by the Children’s Commissioner for England to ‘hear from all children and young people in England aged between 6 and 18 years old’

💡Inspiration and opinion

The Screens are the Symptom

The badness of screens are not about screens themselves but the social configuration that made screens the dominant social, entertainment, and interactive outlet.

Computational Power and AI

There are probably between 10,000 and 30,000 data centers in the world, and only about 325–1400 of these could host an AI supercomputer

Why Silicon Valley’s biggest AI developers are hiring poets

Contractors will write short stories on a given topic to feed them into AI models. They will also use these workers to provide feedback on the literary quality of their current AI-generated text.

…and finally

The Clock as a musical

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Jamie Larson