Elon Musk Deletes His Facebook Pages

Facebook’s data breach has been the centre of attention for the last few days now. #deletefacebook has been all over Twitter over the past week and continues to dominate talking points all over the world. It was also caught up with two very big named CEO’s. Brian Acton, the Co-founder of WhatsApp – (who itself is a Facebook property when it was sold to the company for about $19 billion in 2014), tweeted the following:

Elon Musk apparently was not aware about his own company’s presence on Facebook, until the SpaceX and Tesla CEO responded to a tweet calling him out to delete the pages in regards to the sudden boycott Facebook movement.

Musk responded to the comments and in less than 20 minutes, he had taken down pages he didn’t even know he had. Both SpaceX and Tesla Facebook pages had over 2.6 million Likes and Follows, and very high engagement rates with the audience. Musk’s big statement on Facebook comes on what might just be one of the worst weeks for the social media company. Over the week, it was leaked that Cambridge Analytica (a consulting firm that closely works with data, and apparently also with United States president Donald Trump’s election campaign), had unethically gathered data from about 50 million Facebook users. People all over the world have then showed concern over the disregard for their private information. It was reported that Mark Zuckerberg had lost an estimated $5 billion in a matter of hours over the situation. On early Monday this week, politicians in the United States and the United Kingdom heavily criticized Facebook and demanded Zuckerberg to provide more explaination.

After proving in fact that he really is “the man” on Twitter, in another tweet, Musk wrote about using Instagram and that how he believes that the social media was “borderline” since Facebook’s “influence” is “slowly creeping in”, despite Instagram being owned by Facebook. Only a matter of time until both SpaceX and Tesla’s social media managers will have to go and find other platforms.

Uber’s Self Driving Vehicle Kills Pedestrian

Self Driving Vehicle

Last weekend, it was reported that Uber’s self driving vehicle had struck and killed someone. Police in Arizona confirmed that a woman identified as Elaine Herzberg was crossing a street with her bicycle when a self-driving Uber car had crashed into her. Police later identified that the car was traveling at 40 miles per hour. Uber has responded swiftly by suspending its self-driving vehicle program until further actions. Despite being in an autonomous mode when the crash happened, the vehicle was reported to have had a human safety driver behind the wheel to monitor  and retake control in case of an emergency. The crash has prompted different responses and will most likely affect the self-driving vehicle sector, which over the years has seen billions spent on research and development for a technology that can promise more efficient modes of transport.

Self Driving Vehicle

“Safety” and “Progress”: A Bad Will Smith Dystopian Movie

The incident has raised many pressing questions. How safe is it to test driverless vehicles on public roads? Crashes are very unpredictable, and unless the human behind the wheel is drunk, updating their snapchat or just very tired l, then you just can’t really predict how and when a crash may occur. About 40,000 people became casualties on American roads in 2017, and about 6,000 of them were pedestrians. According to statistics, human drivers kill about 1.16 people for every 100 million miles driven on roads. Self-autonomous vehicles are not even close to having that sort of distance, but they’ve already killed one.

Self Driving Vehicle
So what now? the words “safety” and “progress” will be thrown around quite a lot. Developers insist that their employees are perfectly trained to handle situations when needed by taking over from the self-driving software implanted in the vehicle. However, researchers continue to speculate about how imperfect that sort of technique can be when dealing with such a delicate software. The Arizona incident may have just shown the flaw in that system – a little glimpse as to what can go wrong as we step further into an AI influenced future.

The “Trolley Problem”

According to the Ryan Calo, a researcher looking into the implications of self-driving vehicles at the University of Washington, the ethical questions about self-driving vehicles can be linked to the “trolley problem” which look into the issue that the vehicle will need to choose between two potential victims in case of an incoming accident. The “trolley problem” is a thought experiment in the fields of ethics. You picture a runaway trolley barreling down the railway tracks. Ahead, on the tracks, there are 5 people tied up and they are unable to make a move. The trolley is directing towards them. You stand away from some distance and next to you is a lever. If you pull this lever, the trolley switches to a different set of tracks. However, you see that there is 1 other person tied up on that track and you presented with a dilemma:

1. Do nothing, and the trolley kills 5 people on the main track.
2. Pull the lever, diverting the trolley to the other track, but kill that 1 person.
Which is the more ethical choice?

Calo says the accident that killed the woman “may have just been prompted by the sensors not being able to pick her up”, or that the algorithm “didn’t understand what it’s seeing”. Calo also adds that those creating AI-based vehicles should really think about the potential dangers on human lives. A professor at the Arizona State University, Subbarao Kambhampati, who is a specialist in AI, claims that the incident raises serious questions about the ability of safety drivers in really monitoring systems, especially after long hours of testing and learning. Other researchers aim to look at the challenge of creating efficient communications between self-driving vehicles and pedestrians.

Self Driving Car

Mysterious Japanese Game: Yume Nikki

About the Game

Yume Nikki is an adventure game from the Japanese indie developer Kikiyama. Yume Nikki was first created in 2004, however, Kadokawa Corporation and Active Gaming Inc. have recently announced the plan on releasing an official reboot of the cult horror game. It is scheduled to be launched on Steam and Playism at the end of February this year.

Yume Nikki is Japanese for “Dream Diary”, the game itself is about a Japanese woman named Madotsuki, who goes out and explores surreal out of this world landscapes in her dreams. In these dreams, Madotsuki can collect various
“effects” that will then change her appearance and sometimes even give her some sort of ability. There is however, no actual goal to the game itself, but players will try to collect all of these effects. While in these dreams, Madotsuki will encounter a series of hostile beings and abstract psychological art.

For quite some time, Yume Nikki was shared in English through different fansites or even through direct download links. It is also a game that can be found quite difficult to really wrap your head around on how to really “win”. Yumme Nikki isn’t really a complicated game per say, its just that there is no actual direction or actual “goal”. Once the player jumps into the first dream, the player is on their own. From snowscape mountains, pitch black darkness to spectrums of colourful symbols, players are expected to just explore and try to find something.

Marketing Brilliance and the Classic Cult Scheme

Now heres where the game gets branded as a cult classic. Over the years, Yume Nikki’s developers, known only as Kikiyama, released new builds on their website. Once Yume Nikki teached version 0.1 back in 2007, Kikiyama disappeared and the website suddenly stopped updating. A year later, Yume Nikki took off in the west and collected a cult fanbase due to its unique, unusual visual effects and the very oppressive,terrifying tone which creates a mysterious mix.

Nobody really knows about Kikiyama, nobody knows the company’s whereabouts, age, or even who the people actually are. Fans have only found a contact for them and an email address from a readme file encrypted in an earlier version of Yume Nikki. Despite the mysterious whereabouts and lack of actual updates from the company, fans still post and write about the game. Fan art, blogposts and even reaction videos about Yume Nikki can be found throughout the internet, theres even a cozy subreddit thread.

The reboot of Yume Nikki appears to be a 3D adventure game that contains the influences from the original Yume Nikki game and other recent indie horror games. It will feature returning characters aas well as characters that the creator, Kikiyama cut from the original game.

The game is said to also contain no actual dialogue, just like the classic 2004 original. Yume Nikki’s release has built up the topic for some fans, but people still are unaware about who Kikiyama really is.

 

 

 

Before the big news of this long awaited reboot, it was thought that this Kikiyama may have died in the 2011 Tohoku earthquake as people claim that their last ever reply to an email was before the earthquake hit.

A couple weeks ago, a countdown timer for the official release of Yume Nikki’s reboot has already started and has at least made fans know that the creator is at least active. Whether or not dissapearing for over a decade was all part of Kikiyama’s plan to create hype, it is still something big for the fans. The mysterious question mark on the whole point of the game along with the question mark on the actual creators, has probably added fuel to the fire.

Yume Nikki: Dream Diary will officially launch on the 23rd of February, after 16 years of wait. RPG Makers Kadokawa has stated that they are collaborating closely with the original creator, Kikiyama. Exactly how much Kikiyama is involved with them is still a mystery. Without a doubt, the original and reboot will always be something to try out.