Technology never exists in isolation. Every advance is shaped by what has gone before.
As part of the Today in Technology series, Microsoft President Brad Smith and Carol Ann Browne, Senior Director of External Relations and Executive Communications, have listened to different perspectives and explored lessons from history.
Here’s a glimpse into some of their videos:
Lessons on protecting privacy
The explosion of data in recent years means that agreeing on how best to protect our privacy is more relevant than ever. A visit to a former prison in Berlin served as a powerful reminder of the importance of getting that right.
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During the Cold War, the East German secret police, the Stasi, spied on millions of people, keeping files on their activities. Hohenschoenhausen was where those that were suspected of holding outlawed beliefs and opinions were imprisoned.
How the spirit of Louis Braille lives on in today’s AI innovators
In the 19th century, a young French boy named Louis Braille developed a system of reading through touch. His work transformed the way millions of people who are blind or have low vision perceive the world. The same passion that inspired him lives on in the work undertaken today by engineers, programmers and technicians to create accessible technology that can help unleash everyone’s potential.
The Human Cost of Cyberattacks
Interconnected digital infrastructure is vulnerable to an entirely new form of attack – cyberwarfare. To fight this, we need to update the international rules of allowable behavior – and work toward a Digital Geneva Convention.
There is no playbook for addressing challenges such as privacy, cybersecurity, the moral conundrums of AI or the relationship between technology and inequality, but Smith and Browne examine these challenges, and more, in their new book, Tools and Weapons: the Promise and the Peril of the Digital Age.