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At various times throughout the year, our Faith Lab technology columnist,
Arnold Schuchter, has written articles in the St. James Sunday bulletin about
technology, technological trends, 
and how these ideas, trends,
and products will reshape our world in  
the coming decades—
and how St. James Faith Lab can utilize
technologies to empower and help others. 
MAY 20, 2018

AI will reshape the world order. Are we ready for it?

Henry Kissinger, the former U.S. secretary of state, has written a highly provocative article in The Atlantic  warning anyone who will listen against the threat of “unstable” artificial intelligence (ai). In his essay Kissinger fears that the rapid rise of machines could lead to questions and consequences that humanity is not ready to tackle.

MAY 27, 2018

St. James Faith Lab proposes test bed for Kadho’s AI project

Early in 2015, as part of the “Vicar’s Vision” for leveraging technology to spread the Gospel to the world, Rev. Cindy and myself decided to create an experimental early childhood education program at then-St. James the Great Church (a “Child Discovery Center”) that would incorporate the latest cognitive and neuroscientific research findings.

JUNE 3, 2018

Data privacy, data protection: It’s even important for churches

Most of us have received a seemingly endless stream of emails in our inbox in recent weeks with “urgent” notices from social media and other companies about privacy settings updates. What accounts for this sudden inbox clutter? On May 25, the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR), a sweeping new European data privacy law, went into effect. Why should that impact us in the U.S., and even at St. James? 

JUNE 10, 2018

AI, deep learning, and the coming revolution in health care

Around the world there is a revolution going on in the use of AI and deep learning in healthcare. In the next few years we will see a profound and lasting transformation in medical diagnosis of all types of diseases and ailments. 


JUNE 17, 2018

Genomics, precision medicine: The next healthcare revolution

Fifteen years ago this month, the full human genome sequence was published for the first time, heralding a new era of medicine. This was one of the most important events in the history of genetics and molecular biology. But why was it so important? And have the hoped-for medical breakthroughs actually materialized? And what is the potential importance of AI technology for speeding up genomic sequencing and significantly reducing its cost? 

JUNE 24, 2018

Blockchain: the unhackable ledger transforming transactions

Blockchain first attracted attention almost ten years ago when bitcoin was first released. The relationship that started in 2009 has grown exponentially as cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin and others have flourished. What’s the connection between bitcoin, the cryptocurrency, and blockchain technology? The simplest explanation is that blockchain is the technology underpinning a unique international electronic cash system (whose creator, Satoshi Nakamoto, still remains unknown). Also think of blockchain as a completely decentralized electronic ledger in which entries cannot be changed or altered in any way.

JULY 1, 2018

The fintech revolution: More than just another Venmo-type app

The future of financial services is dependent on partnering with “fintechs” (businesses that aim to provide financial services by making use of software and modern technology) to reinvent themselves as digital businesses. This mean much more than simply launching more mobile payment apps like PayPal’s Venmo. It means that everything involving currency, from banking transactions to mortgages and insurance claims, will involve new digital initiatives that incorporate AI-based predictive analytics designed to keep and strengthen customer engagement and loyalty.

JULY 8, 2018

Personalized learning: AI in the classrooms of the future

To date there is no single accepted definition of personalized learning (PL) and no consensus on the uses of AI to achieve it. There is a consensus, however, that PL prioritizes the needs and goals of each individual student and that data-driven AI appears to be the most effective way to tailor instruction to address those needs and goals. 

JULY 15, 2018

AI and mental health: Meet the chatbot therapist

The state of mental health in America is not good according to annual national surveys by the National Institute of Mental Health, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Access to mental-health care is poor, varying only a little state by state. Insurance coverage for mental health care has been decreasing.

JULY 22, 2018

AI in the classrooms of the future, part II: Reading students’ emotions

Envision attending a symposium in which the founder of a well-funded startup company talks about the uses of “machine vision” to detect human emotion and the business value for enterprises of using cameras and facial-recognition technology to gain an understanding of customer engagement and emotions. Partway through the presentation, however, this CEO casually drops a prediction, without any embellishment or hype, that high-tech cameras of the future probably will be an integral part of K–12 classrooms so that teachers can use the facial expressions and emotions of students to evaluate their educational experiences.

JULY 29, 2018

Using artificial emotional intelligence in educational settings

The goal of education is to provide rich learning experiences for each student that build on and shape one another in ways that help children make sense of their lives and the world. Education also should provide an intimate social experience and experiential context. Education’s focus on development of cognitive skills occurs in a social context that can vary considerably, but nevertheless each individual’s learning experiences usually are as much the product of social interaction as the result of thought-provoking curriculum.

AUGUST 5, 2018

The AI and value-based healthcare revolution: an end to fee-for-service?

The healthcare industry, including hospitals, doctors, insurance companies, pharmaceutical companies, government regulatory agencies, et al., currently and in the future will be more impacted by AI, machine learning, natural-language processing (NLP) and other technology than any other industry. As context, healthcare expenditures in the U.S. amount to almost 20% of GDP. Still, based on numerous surveys, patient dissatisfaction with healthcare and its providers is rampant. 

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