Web Finds – January 23, 2023

I Was Nearly Phished

“I nearly fell for a run of the mill phish recently. Just goes to show that they can get anyone. Just to give you some context before we get into this, I’m a senior leader at Bank of America, where I work in the information security team. The team I run is in the identity space and one of the things we’re interested in is phishing attacks. So although I’m no expert, I do like to think of myself as a person who knows a thing or two about phishing attacks.”

ChatGPT passes Wharton Business School test: research paper

“The new artificial intelligence system ChatGPT has passed an exam at the Wharton Business School, according to a new research paper, signaling the potential of the controversial chatbot. Research from Wharton professor Christian Terwiesch found that the AI system “has shown a remarkable ability to automate some of the skills of highly compensated knowledge workers in general and specifically the knowledge workers in the jobs held by MBA graduates including analysts, managers, and consultants.” On the final exam of Operations Management, a core course in the Wharton MBA program, ChatGPT did “an amazing job” and gave answers that were correct and “excellent” in their explanations.” This seems to add some credibility to ChatGPT.

Microsoft invests billions more dollars in OpenAI, extends partnership

“Microsoft today announced that it’s extending its partnership with OpenAI, the startup behind art- and text-generating AI systems like ChatGPT, DALL-E 2 and GPT-3, with a “multi-year, multi-billion-dollar” investment. OpenAI says that the infusion of new capital — the exact amount of which wasn’t disclosed — will be used to continue its independent research and develop AI that’s “safe, useful and powerful.””

U.S. Treasury's Yellen says IRS needs to be 'completely redone'

“Yellen told Reuters in an interview on her way to Zambia that she was thrilled that Congress had approved $80 billion in new funding to help the agency reduce a huge backlog of tax returns and better hunt down $600 billion in unpaid tax bills.” There coming for the cheats.

Forget Google Maps: Why Paper Map Sales Are Booming

“Digital maps, while powerful, aren’t perfect navigational tools: Phone batteries die, cell signals fail. And though a smartphone can easily direct you to the quickest route, taking it often means you’ll miss the best scenery. A paper map, more like those made by early humans, can provide a bigger picture. You can think of them less like comprehensive guides to reaching your destination, and more like detailed portraits of areas of interest, created by someone with deep, experiential knowledge. After all, while a satellite can highlight unpaved paths, cartographers actually walk down them.”

Back to the future: how Mastodon is restoring the lost art of online conversation

“So is it a substitute for Twitter? I don’t think so, any more than avocados are a substitute for mangoes. Twitter is really for broadcasting – for letting the world at large know what you think, or alerting people to your forthcoming book/event/podcast, or complaining about potholes, Rishi Sunak, Brexit, the metaverse and the general awfulness of everything. At its best, Mastodon seems to be more about conversation rather than shouting, and in that sense reminds me of the early internet – in the 1980s, before the world wide web – and in particular of Usenet, the network’s first global online discussion space. In which case, wouldn’t it be ironic if the Martian adventurer Musk’s chaotic ownership of Twitter turned out to be bringing us back to the future?”

On Joining Mastodon

“I wrote a detailed email in response that I thought it might be useful to others. I’m also going to teach a master class in Mastodon at my school on Dec. 5 — much interest, I’m told — so here is my preparation on the practical stuff.” If you're considering joining Mastodon this guide by Jeff Jarvis is a good guide.

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