A job that Artificial Intelligence can’t replace. A potential court ruling that could shake the foundations of the web as we know it. And, how good is the mileage on your supercomputer?
Welcome to Hashtag Trending for Thursday, February 23rd.
I’m your host Jim Love, CIO of IT World Canada and TechNewsDay in the US – here’s today’s top tech news stories.
How many employees does it take to equal the salary of one CEO?
According to an article in the Register, HPE’s latest 10k filing shows that the answer is 271. The value of CEO Antonio Neri’s compensation package was just over 17 million dollars in 2022 much of that in option awards. The average salary of an HPE employee being about 64,000 dollars. gap
Neri, who replaced Meg Whitman took a pay cut from his 19 million dollar compensation in 2021.
Tarek Robbiati, HPE’s CFO earned just over 8 million and Chief Operating Officer John Schulz was just shy of 8 million last year. Chief People Officer Alan May made just under 5 million.
What did they do to earn that? Well, HPE increased revenues 3 percent year-on-year to $28.5 billion which is up from previous years. Not as good as the 29 percent gains seen by AWS in calendar 2022 but significant.
Although HPE suffered somewhat from supply chain issues, it’s as-a-service offering Greenlake did achieve 17 percent growth to $936 million. Not as strong as the 36 percent growth in the prior year but a healthy increase in an area that HPE hopes will compete with the other major cloud players.
Source: The Register
Looking for a new job for when AI replaces you? How about “prompt engineer.” That’s what Sam Altman, CEO of ChatGPT recommended in an interview with Axios.
As everyone who has played with ChatGPT knows, the results you get vary measurably with the quality of the questions you ask.
ChatGPT agrees and told us: “A prompt engineer in the context of ChatGPT and generative AI would be someone who has expertise in crafting effective prompts to guide the output of a language model and achieve a desired outcome.”
Job’s are already being posted with prompt engineer as the function or as an important skill. There are number of platforms that are set up as “prompt search engines” such as Prompt Hero, Promptist and Krea. Remote course company Udemy is also offering classes.
Stephen Fragg the founder of chatbot-training business Prompt Yes!, told Axios,
“It’s kind of like selling jeans during the gold rush. It’s not actually going out and digging up gold.”
This is an allusion to the fact that overall, the merchants who supplied the gold miners in the Klondike Gold Rush made more money than the miners themselves. While some miners did strike it rich and found significant amounts of gold, the vast majority did not and struggled to make ends meet.
On the other hand, merchants like Levi Strauss who sold supplies to the miners, such as clothing, tools, and food, made significant profits.
How’d we know that? Apparently, we might have a career as a prompt engineer.
Google’s lawyers have warned that a potential ruling by the US Supreme Court could “reshape the internet.”
The case, Gonzalez vs Google, was brought by the family of a terrorist victim. They argue that YouTube violated the federal Anti-Terrorism Act because its algorithm recommended ISIS videos to users and helped spread the terrorist group’s message.
Google maintains that it is protected by Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, which protects platforms from legal action over user-generated content. It also protects them if they remove content. Section 230 has withstood court challenges more than 25 years since it was passed in 1996.
But there are signals from the Court that the judges may be questioning this immunity from prosecution, echoing similar questions from the US Congress. Internet firms are, understandably, concerned about loss of that protection and the potential liability for the results of their algorithms.
Experts argue that the issues raised are not simple and any decisions could have real repercussions which lawmakers and even Supreme Court judges may be highly unqualified to judge. This was made clear in an exchange between Google’s lawyer and Chief Justice John Roberts who asked. “Would Google collapse and the internet be destroyed if Google was prevented from posting what it knows is defamatory?”
“Not Google,” answered Blatt, but other, smaller websites, yes. Blatt was referring to the fear that removing Section 230 provisions, if done as a way of reigning in an increasingly unpopular “big tech” could have inadvertently impact everything from a simple one person WordPress blog all the way up to sites like Reddit or the new open source Mastodon.
In a digital economy, justice may be blind, but can it afford to be technologically illiterate?
In a related story, Twitter CEO Elon Musk has promised to make Twitter’s algorithm Open Source by next week. This isn’t a new idea, Musk has been advocating it for some time. It might seem to be counter-intuitive for a company to make public what some regard as a company secret. Google, for instance has strictly guarded the secret of its algorithm.
It’s also strange, given recent claims that Musk has allegedly asked developers to adjust Twitter’s code to favour his tweets and claims that Musk has allegedly threatened to sue any Twitter employee who violates their NDA.
But as the Register article reported, the Brookings Institute has said that Open Source algorithms could be a “boon for tech sector competition, help define AI standards and, as Musk has implied, help fight algorithmic bias.”
And of course, Twitter is also facing a case similar to Google’s where it might be held responsible for the results of its algorithm. Would it hurt their defence if they no longer controlled the algorithm?
Source: The Register
How good is the mileage on your supercomputer?
Auto giant Mercedes Benz has teamed up with Google to offer “supercomputer-like performance” in every car. Benz is in a race to match and exceed the software powered features of its competitors, Tesla, the big 5 automakers and a fast growing and already large Chinese car manufacturing industry which is already dwarfing even Tesla, despite its early lead in this area.
Benz is also partnering with chip manufacturer Nvidia, investing heavily to bring down the cost of new semi-conductors and chips that will be needed in these cars. They’ve also enlisted Luminar Technologies, which Benz has a small investment and struck a multi-billion dollar deal with the company to provide it with sensors needed for its fleet of intelligent automobiles.
The Google partnership is not unique. Several auto manufacturers including GM and Nissan have included Google Maps, Google Assistant and other features. Benz will add he ability to view You Tube in self driving mode on a cabin wide screen.
The move is not just a competitive race for features. Benz plans to offer some of the premium features at an additional cost. The time-honoured tradition of upselling on options makes its way into the digital era.
And that’s the top tech stories for today. Hashtag Trending is produced by the ITWC podcast network and is heard Monday to Friday with a special weekend edition where we feature interviews on key subjects in technology.
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I’m Jim Love, have an awesome Thursday.