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May 15th, 2018 by: Helga NowotnyJohan Schot

It could be otherwise: social progress, technology and the social sciences

The idea of social progress and the origins of modern science and technology are inextricably intertwined. Indeed, it was this idea that kept the entire enterprise of modern science and technology going. Reinforced by the actual scientific and technological practices, this belief became the open-ended, future-oriented project that was shared among a minority of (then…

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March 12th, 2018 by: Youjung Shin

Hangul and the “Spring” of Artificial Intelligence Research in South Korea

Artificial intelligence practitioners and commentators have regarded the late 1980s and early 1990s as an “Artificial Intelligence Winter” for the US, Europe, and Japan. However, this was a very prosperous period for South Korean researchers studying the brain, the computer, and artificial intelligence. As shown in Figure 1, the number of books and articles published…

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August 27th, 2017 by: Nathan Kapoor

Batteries Not Included

In 1881, Professor Silvanus Thompson, a physics lecturer at the University of Bristol applauded the development of accumulators (secondary batteries) and suggested that they offered a gateway to the future of railway transportation, demolition, telephony, wind/water power utilization, and lighting.[1] For Thompson, batteries were the obvious “next step,” or energy transition, in the expansion of…

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August 27th, 2017 by: Sarah Stanford-McIntyre

When Oil Was Modern

President Trump’s June 2017 decision to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord has once again placed oil and fossil fuels in the political crosshairs.[1] A recent article in MIT’s Technology Review describes oil companies as a hindrance – representatives of a dinosaur industry that perpetuates dependence and encourages monopoly.[2] The UK think tank Chatham House…

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