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— Human Words VS Automatic Words?

Their names are Berti, Cyborg, Heliograf. Their job is to write articles. Are they journalists? More or less. The only difference is that they are not people, but software. These “robot-journalists” are part of prestigious editorial offices such as the Associated Press, the Bloomberg News and the Washington Post for which they write hundreds of articles. 

Everything starts from the templates. The more data available, the more interesting and well-written the article will be, especially when deep learning is activated. But after all, this also happens to us human beings. The real difference is that the robot article never ends with a full stop.

In fact, these are living stories, they change in progress with continuous updates. A robot reporter, Heliograf, had been tested during two macro events to be followed in their evolution as a commentary: the Rio Olympics and the presidential elections.

“Are you afraid that one day artificial journalists may completely replace you?” an actual reporter in flesh and blood was asked. “It won’t happen if we’ll manage to combine excellence on the one hand, and to divide skills on the other. They will give readers more and more correct information and we will give them increasingly true and intense emotions.”


— The Third Way of Smart Working

The question of the year, but perhaps also of the century, is: better to go back to work in the office or to continue working from home? For all the wavering and fearful today there is a third possibility, dedicated to those who have discovered that “from home, you can”, but at the same time don’t want to leave the advantages of the office behind. 

And so? There’s nothing left but to replicate your office in online simulations, “SimCity” style. Just as WeTransfer has just done. 

The giant we all abused in this period, after closing its offices in New York, Los Angeles and Amsterdam, opened its mega virtual space in May. A perfect graphic representation of the company’s headquarters but with something more.

Because while there were, in addition to offices and meeting rooms, 3D designers designed billiard tables, two bar lounges, a large library and a music room. Everything always tidy, clean and highly interactive.

It seems that this virtual office, where everyone has his desk (and can even put the family photo on it) is not only a “divertissement” but, as WeTransfer CEO Gordon Willoughby says, “also a strategy aimed at feeling more focused on work, creating more cohesion among the collaborators and making the new resources, those who have never been physically in the office, feel less bewildered”.


— From King Arthur to Big Data

In the luggage that after this period we brought back home, or rather, that we brought back out there, there is the awareness that we are all interconnected. 

“Our health is a system made up of communicating vessels in which one depends on the other. And today big data is the glue that holds them all together”, says Ilaria Capua, director of the One Health Center of Excellence at the University of Florida. The scientist – who has always claimed the importance of having open access scientific data and analysis methods that do not look at the single data but at the patterns that are created on the whole – has fought during these months of lockdown to optimize the digital scientific accessibility.

It is the so-called open-source science, based on a construction of the future through multidisciplinary knowledge increasingly accessible to all.

“The moment is favourable for this transformation, big data are there waiting for us. We just have to believe in interdisciplinarity and push it in every area”, says the scientist, launching a new challenge for everyone, a common horizon to strive for. This seems to be the good face of the network, and of those who want to use it to change the world. But come to think of it, in all this technological innovation, there is something very ancient.

Transparency, loyalty, and collaboration. These are the values ​​that underlie this new 2020 awareness, but which basically seem to have come out of a chivalric romance from a thousand-year ago.