Innovation Cycle, TikTok, Google, Meta, Whitepages

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The State of Cryptocurrency and Artificial Intelligence

I have been lucky enough to see a fellow self-proclaimed nerd, JD Dillon, speak multiple times over the years at conferences. His story is pretty neat to listen to, having worked in the education space for Disney. However, since moving on, he shares yearly updates on his website for something he calls the LearnGeek Innovation Cycle. Here, he lists the major current technological advances and charts them based on their level of: emergence, hype, reality, integration, and impact. This is based on the Gartner Hype Cycle which uses other terms I think are important for what I’d like to share. Including: the peak of inflated expectations, the trough of disillusionment, and the slope of enlightenment.

Before we continue, two points to make.

First, from personal experience, crypto seems to be viewed as: a toy, something used for illegal activities, or a dystopian future for governmental control. I’ve heard many people say something along the lines of, “When I can use it to pay for a drink at the gas station, then I’ll believe it.”

Second, from personal experience, AI seems to also be viewed as a toy, something for a very niche group of people that will never hit the masses, or a dystopian future where all of our jobs are taken over. Alternatively, I’ve heard some say, “Everyone is ‘implementing’ AI somehow. And it doesn’t ever do anything useful.”

For both schools of thought, I believe there’s a bit of truth there. However, I also believe crypto and AI are similar in their placement on the graphs. And that is on the downside of the hype area, or on the other side of the peak of inflated expectations pushing towards reality - but more accurately, the trough of disillusionment. Crypto has been there for a few years, but AI is just approaching. Meaning, both of these tools have already shown the masses what they’re capable of, and the ‘cool’ factor has now worn off.

It seems as if many have started to doubt crypto. However, it’s only a matter of time before it proves its usefulness as a tool and begins to take over the backend of all fiscal processing (read: integration or slope of enlightenment). That is in my opinion. I believe the fun factor has worn off, and crypto will become a useful tool in the commercial space before being accepted by the masses in the consumer space. To be fair, I still think this will take a few years.

On the other hand, I believe AI will move much quicker. There appears to be much more of a tangible use case for AI across a swath of business purposes. AI hits every facet of a business, not just the financial side, giving it much more power to move quicker and gain acceptance. It will reach the area of impact or plateau of productivity without many people even realizing it. I’ve talked about AI already working in your email’s spam filter, and as a base level of your phone’s virtual assistant. Many of our tools will slowly begin to evolve into more powerful AI tools and start to become second nature. Microsoft’s newest version of Clippy, called Co-Pilot, could very well pop-up and say something to the tune of, “It looks like you’re writing an essay on the impact of AI across businesses, would you like me to provide you an outline or first draft copy?”

With that in mind, I have said and will continue to say - AI is a tool and should be used as such. Not used as a replacement, but an aide.

ICYMI: TikTok plans to ban external links

It’s no secret every social media platform wants their users to stay in their app as long as possible. Allowing posts to include links outside their platform takes them away, and no one can be sure they’ll return. That’s one reason Twitter’s CEO wants to turn it into the “everything app”, a reason Instagram doesn’t allow links in their descriptions, and Google is removing clickable links from comments in Shorts. It appears sooner than later TikTok will ban all links with exception to their Shop. This is not anything out of the ordinary, but looks to be coming at a time when they’re looking at a monetary loss. Let this also stand as a reminder to be careful clicking on links on random social media posts - especially those in the comments not from the original author of the post.

Read more at TechCrunch

ICYMI: Google Cancelling Older Accounts

As security issues arise across the web, Google has announced they will begin to close any inactive accounts that fall under their free tiers. Meaning, if you pay for G-Suite, or have a business or educational account, they’re safe. Keep in mind, this is good practice and in the long run is safe for all users. If you have any secondary Google Accounts that you use for backup purposes, here’s your reminder to make login to those accounts at least once every 2 years to keep them active. A small price to pay for something you don’t pay for - even though it costs them. And remember, if you don’t have to pay for something, more than likely - you’re the product.

Read more at CNBC

ICYMI: Meta Availability in Canada

Months ago, Meta (Facebook and Instagram’s parent company), announced they would essentially block any news posts on their Canadian sites that would otherwise require them to pay news publishers. I don’t think this is the right move but charging them flat out isn’t either. To my knowledge, there’s no method in place for ‘News Organizations’ to monetize their content on social that is available to content creators. It’s a slippery slope - especially in a world where potential fake news articles could garner a lot of money.

Well, now the Canadian Government is demanding Facebook lift the ban as wildfires are spreading. The lack of news on the social media site could slow communication and prevent other potential fires and losses. Read more on Reuters.

Let this stand as a reminder from Weekly Wheaties #2310:

With no moderation there would be no internet as we know today.

With strict moderation, there would be no internet as we know today.

Also in the Meta world, Threads now has a web app!

POTW: Whitepages Opt-out

Are you tired of receiving spam calls? What if the “spam” call was in fact someone who called the exact number they were looking for? Or the number they paid for? Whether they actually know you or care to know you. That’s right! For the low low price of $5/month, you can access the phone numbers for up to 20 people each month! To be clear, this is every phone number AND address that’s ever been associated with their account. Their higher tier gives up to 200 contacts a month. These can be people you are actively searching for, or random names found by browsing the site. Don’t believe me? Go watch this video on YouTube, and then go search for you and your family member’s names on the Whitepages website. And before you say, “I don’t care who has my number.” This is more about having to opt-out instead of being forced to opt-in.

Opt-out at Whitepages.com