Artificial intelligence now used in new tools to sharpen your debating skills

artificial intelligence
The Center for Argument Technology (ARG-tech) located at the University of Dundee now provides tools based on in-house artificial intelligence designed for arguments. While that may sound completely useless given humans do extremely well at arguing each other, this AI is meant to make those arguments more productive, so everyone involved can reach an agreement.

According to ARG-tech director Chris Reed, his group first turned to the BBC’s Moral Maze 10 years ago. They created large “maps” based on every debate that took place on the show, and turned those maps into infographics using an algorithm to “determine the most central themes.” From that data, the team pulled important issues, where participants stood, the highest points in conflict, and more.

The first public look into ARG-tech’s argument technology appeared on a special edition of Moral Maze on BBC Radio 4 in October. It was followed by the team’s BBC-backed Argument Analytics page that digs into that specific episode along with a similar topic that aired five years ago. This page shows a timeline starting on October 11, the participants in the debate, a detailed map of all arguments made, a timestamped timeline of all recorded arguments, and a conflict hotspot timeline.

But you can also participate in virtual arguments to sharpen your skills. The Test Your Argument page on the BBC’s website pits you against virtual participants in a specific argument, and allows you to make three attempts to plead your case and convince others of your personal view. The current debate will last until around April and focuses on anti-abortion in the United Kingdom. You must argue in defense of this specific topic: “The unborn fetus should have human status in its own right.”

Another argument-based tool is called Debater, which is hosted by ARG-tech. Here, you sit in the middle of a virtual Moral Maze debate inhabited by virtual panelists and witnesses. The two available subjects also deal with abortion in the United Kingdom: this should be a decision made only by women, and a collection of cells create a human. After selecting the topic, you choose witnesses and/or panelists to virtually join the discussion.

“Ultimately, the goal is not to build a machine that can beat us at an argument. Much more exciting is the potential to have A.I. software contribute to human discussion — recognizing types of arguments, critiquing them, offering alternative views and probing reasons are all things that are now within the reach of A.I.,”  Reed said.

He views teams of humans and machines working together to intelligently combat complex issues, a move that could change the way humans interact with artificial intelligence. Relying on machines for points of view could be extremely helpful: Their analysis is based on data that is not intertwined with emotions. But that sterile input could also raise additional arguments, especially when topics involve morals and health.

Mobile

Qualcomm's 3D Sonic fingerprint sensor could make your next phone more secure

Almost exactly a year after the launch of the Snapdragon 845, Qualcomm took the wraps off of its next-generation mobile platform, the new Snapdragon 855. The new chip puts an emphasis on A.I. performance.
Movies & TV

'Prime'-time TV: Here are the best shows on Amazon Prime right now

There's more to Amazon Prime than free two-day shipping, including access to a number of phenomenal shows at no extra cost. To make the sifting easier, here are our favorite shows currently streaming on Amazon Prime.
Movies & TV

The best shows on Netflix, from 'Haunting of Hill House’ to ‘Twilight Zone’

Looking for a new show to binge? Lucky for you, we've curated a list of the best shows on Netflix, whether you're a fan of outlandish anime, dramatic period pieces, or shows that leave you questioning what lies beyond.
Emerging Tech

Nvidia’s new A.I. creates entire virtual cities by watching dash cam videos

Nvidia's groundbreaking new machine learning technology can generate a convincing virtual city simply by showing it car dashcam videos. Here's how it works and why that's so exciting.
Computing

Is your PC slow? Here's how to restore Windows 10 to factory settings

Computers rarely work as well after they accumulate files and misconfigure settings. Thankfully, with this guide, you'll be able to restore your PC to its original state by learning how to factory reset Windows.
Computing

The Titan RTX graphics card is nearly here. Here's what you need to know

The Nvidia Titan RTX is arguably the most powerful consumer graphics card ever made, even if it's not really aimed at consumers. It bridges the 2080 Ti and RTX Quadro cards with boat loads of power.
Computing

Leak reveals that Nvidia’s RTX 2060 gaming chipsets will be headed to laptops

The latest leaks of Nvidia's upcoming RTX 2060 have given performance benchmarks and further detail about the future chipset and its capabilities, while a RTX 2060 Max-Q variant has also been discovered for thin and light gaming machines.
Computing

Looking for an Apple MacBook below $900? Woot has you covered

If you're looking for a great deal on an Apple MacBook, then Amazon's Woot may just have what you have been seeking. It has Macbooks available for only $810 with Intel M3 CPUs, 8GB of RAM, and 256GB SSDs.
Computing

Want to save a webpage as a PDF? Just follow these steps

Need to quickly save and share a webpage? The best way is to learn how to save a webpage as a PDF file, as they're fully featured and can handle images and text with ease. Here's how.
Computing

New rumors say the Pixelbook 2 could show up at CES 2019

What will the Pixelbook 2 be like? Google hasn't announced it, but thanks to rumors and leaks, we think we have a pretty good idea of what the potential new flagship Chromebook will be like.
Computing

A dead pixel doesn't mean a dead display. Here's how to repair it

Dead pixel got you down? We don't blame you. Check out our guide on how to fix a dead pixel and save yourself that costly screen replacement or an unwanted trip to your local repair shop.
Computing

You could spend $1,000 on an iPhone, or buy one of these awesome laptops instead

Finding a decent laptop is easy, but finding one under $1,000 is a bit tricky. Luckily, we've taken some of the guesswork out of picking out a budget laptop. Here are some of our favorites, the best laptops under $1,000.
Computing

Don't know what to do with all your old DVDs? Here's how to convert them to MP4

Given today's rapid technological advancements, physical discs are quickly becoming a thing of the past. Check out our guide on how to convert a DVD to MP4, so you can ditch discs for digital files.
Computing

Here’s how to install Windows on a Chromebook

If you want to push the functionality of your new Chromebook to another level, and Linux isn't really your deal, you can try installing Windows on a Chromebook. Here's how to do so, just in case you're looking to nab some Windows-only…