TradeBriefs Editorial

From the Editor's Desk

Survivorship Bias: The Tale of Forgotten Failures

Survivorship bias is a common logical error that distorts our understanding of the world. It happens when we assume that success tells the whole story and when we don't adequately consider past failures.

There are thousands, even tens of thousands of failures for every big success in the world. But stories of failure are not as sexy as stories of triumph, so they rarely get covered and shared. As we consume one story of success after another, we forget the base rates and overestimate the odds of real success.

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TradeBriefs Editorial

From the Editor's Desk

The Ethical Dilemma at the Heart of Big Tech Companies

If it seems like every week there's a new scandal about ethics and the tech industry, it's not your imagination. Even as the tech industry is trying to establish concrete practices and institutions around tech ethics, hard lessons are being learned about the wide gap between the practices of "doing ethics" and what people think of as "ethical". This helps explain, in part, why it raises eyebrows when Google dissolves its short-lived AI ethics advisory board, in the face of public outcry about including a controversial alumnus of the Heritage Foundation on it, or when organized pressure from Google's engineering staff results in the cancellation of military contracts.

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TradeBriefs Editorial

From the Editor's Desk

This tech company is aiming to plant 500 billion trees by 2060- using drones

Dendra estimates it would take just 400 teams of two drone operators, with 10 drones per team, to plant 10 billion trees each year - and at a much lower cost than the traditional method of planting by hand.

The target is to plant 500 billion trees by 2060, in often hard-to-reach places.

Susan Graham, CEO of Dendra Systems, says, "The challenge that we're tackling is a complex one and working with a team of passionate engineers, plant scientists, drone operators, we came up with this idea to use automation and digital intelligence to plant billions of trees."

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