Four Things I Wish I’d Known Before Starting a PhD (Some Of Which I Probably Could Have Guessed And Most Of Which I Was Probably Told At Some Point, But Now Know For Sure)

I’m coming to the end of my first year* as a PhD student at Oxford University’s Internet Institute. It has been a challenging year, in ways both foreseen and not, but it has also been an endlessly fascinating, thought-provoking and perspective-shifting experience. … Here are four things I wish I’d known before starting a PhD.

Deciding how to decide: Six key questions for reducing AI’s democratic deficit

Artificial intelligence (AI) has a “democratic deficit” — and maybe that shouldn’t be a surprise. As Jonnie Penn and others have argued, AI, in conception and application, has long been bound up with the logic and operations of big business. Today, we find AI put to use in an increasing array of socially significant settings, from sifting through CVs to swerving through traffic, many of which continue to serve these corporate interests. (We also find “AI” the brand put to use in the absence of AI the technlogy: a recent study suggests that 40% of start-ups who claim to use AI do not in fact do so.) Nor are governments of all stripes lacking interest in the potential power of AI to patrol and cajole the movements and mindsets of citizens.

Read more at Medium.

“Free Solo” Review: A human-nature documentary as grounded as it is gripping

Rare is the film review that needs to start with a spoiler alert for something which *doesn’t* happen. But so it is for Free Solo, the extraordinary new documentary profiling lifelong climber Alex Honnold as he embarks on an unprecedented feat: scaling Yosemite’s daunting, thousand-metre-high El Capitan Wall without ropes, harnesses, or any other lifeline.

Read more at Medium.

Review: By Chloe’s meat mimicry mostly misses the mark

Between stories of animal rights abuses, health concerns and climate change, there have never been more reasons to cut out meat and dairy products entirely and take on a purely plant-powered lifestyle. From meatless Mondays to glossy vegan cookbooks, embracing a plant-only diet is becoming both easier and much more appetizing. Hopping aboard this trend is By Chloe …

Read more at MIT’s The Tech.

Review: Meju’s Seoulful fare is worth a trip to Davis Square

At first glance, Meju bears all the hallmarks of the several hip bars that surround it in Davis Square. Meju is a relatively new Davis tenant, spinning out from Allston sibling Bibim last year, and is clearly dressed to fit in with its immediate surroundings: delicate lighting and a partial exposed-brick interior contribute to a familiar, though inviting, atmosphere. …

Read more at MIT’s The Tech.