#ThinkPH Live: Putting the spotlight on responsible technology
MANILA, Philippines – Since 2013, #ThinkPH has been bringing people together to inspire Filipinos to think and talk about issues that matter.
This year, we want to bring people even closer. What used to be a big summit is now a more intimate gathering of like-minded people. And instead of just a one-time thing, it will now happen once every quarter and in different parts of Metro Manila.
On October 23, the first season of #ThinkPH Live is happening right at the Rappler HQ. This time around, expect more than just talks. Besides learning from thought leaders, you’ll also be able to support proudly-Filipino merchants participating in the sustainability fair. And finally, cap the day with a Live Jam session.
We don’t just want you to learn, we also want you to meet and collaborate with people who share the same values, advocacies, and beliefs – and have fun, too!
The format may be new but as it always has been, #ThinkPH Live will still be about tech for good. But instead of focusing on buzzwords like AI, VR, and big data, we are putting the spotlight on simple, responsible tech. We want to remind everyone of what the role of tech should really be – and that's improving the lives not just of a few but of many.
Why responsible tech?
A lot of the advancements we’re enjoying now is thanks to modern technology.
There are now more innovative ways to diagnose and treat patients than ever. For instance, Blueprint Genetics, a company based in Finland and San Francisco has been using artificial intelligence (AI) to prescribe personalized medicine and understand why human bodies react to different drugs and viruses.
Virtual reality has also been helping students have a high-impact learning experience. “From taking a guided tour of the Great Wall of China to examining world-renowned art in a museum halfway around the globe, these micro-experiences can shape student learning far more than an in-class lecture,” said Dr Matthew Lynch, an award-winning writer and tech advocate.
Even shopping now is made easier because brands understand their consumers better. They have learned how to effectively respond to our needs. EBay and Myer’s first virtual reality shop, for example, allows customers to shop just by using their eyes with Sight Search.
But as they say, progress always comes at a cost. These same technological leaps are also being used for selfish and sometimes, even evil reasons.
Deepfake is probably one of the scariest. It’s an AI-based technology that can alter photos and videos to make it look like something it’s really not. Hao Li, a tech expert who analyzes deepfake, said that "perfectly real, digitally manipulated videos are just 6 to 12 months away from being accessible to everyday people.” This means that our feeds, which are already clogged with fake news, will also begin showing us fake photos and videos – and it will be hard for us to tell the difference.
But forget about 6 to 12 months, here’s something we’re already part of now: Facebook continues to deal with privacy issues and data breaches since 2018 – the year we all discovered that the private data of over 87 million users were sold to consulting firm Cambridge Analytica. The data, which they harvested through cute personality quizzes on Facebook, were used to influence the U.S. elections.
But despite all these atrocities, there’s still good in technology. And we want to highlight that – how it enables us to discover our communities, showcase our talents, pursue our passions, help those who are in need, voice our opinions, and even create movements that spark change.
In the Philippines, we’re happy to say that we’ve been doing just that.
BukidFresh, a small start-up company, has been leveraging tech to help farmers increase their profits by directly connecting them with the consumers. Large corporations like Coca-Cola have been going beyond digital platforms and using the simplest but most effective technology to produce packaging made up of 100% recycled plastics.
And we want more and more organizations and companies, big or small, to follow suit.
If you or your organization would like to be part of #ThinkPH Live as part of the panel or the sustainability fair, please send us an email at email@example.com.
Admission to #ThinkPH Live is free but seats are limited! Register now! – Rappler.com