Robots find new way to suck the fun out of living

A couple of dudes named Ben Katz and Jared Di Carlo “have smashed the previous record for solving the Rubik’s cube robotically. Their machine solved the puzzle in 0.38 seconds—a 40-percent improvement over the previous record of 0.637.”

Story on Gizmodo

Below is the old record from 2016. Slackers.

Why It’s Hot

This has obvious implications for the future of work. Imagine how many iPhones this thing will be able to crank out in the future.

Google’s Newest Machine Learning A.I. experiment: AutoDraw

“Drawing on your phone or computer can be slow and difficult—so we created AutoDraw, a new web-based tool that pairs machine learning with drawings created by talented artists to help you draw.”

Using machine learning, Google’s new A.I. experiment can predict what you are trying to draw. It’s like auto-complete for drawing icons.


Give it a try here:

Another A.I. Google experiment that uses the same tech but in more of a gamified way:

Why it’s hot: Our designers will soon be replaced by robots.


TechDay NYC:

ALSO! TechDay, an expo of 600-ish disruptive NYC startups, is on Tuesday at Pier 84 from 10am to 5pm. It’s free but you have to register on the site first! A few of us will be going be going around 3pm if you want to join then or go on your own earlier in the day. It’ll be a good source for some local hotsauce 😉

“Run for your life, the robots are coming”

Image result for bicentennial man

Boston Dynamics’ next generation robot, Atlas, feels almost too human, even with his clunky walk and lack of facial features. This anthropomorphic adaptation to tech has many functional implications in the workforce, as well as being an impressive feat of engineering. However, an unexpected “side effect” becomes apparent towards the end of this demo when Atlas is being knocked off balance to showcase his superior build…it actually elicits empathetic emotions from the human viewer. It feels as if he is being bullied.

This caught us off-guard – although robots are increasingly common in our daily lives, and we are even used to technologies having their own personalities (ala Siri sassy retorts), sympathy for a robot was a visceral response that was totally unexpected. The feeling was driven by instinct rather than logic.

As strategists, we know how powerful these emotions can be, and in fact, it is our job to tap into them, making us believe robots like Atlas can never replace us. Yet, a recent AdAge article makes us question the safety of our jobs in this robot-filled-future.

The author has no doubts that robotics of some kind will play a role in all jobs, one way or another, sooner than later. In this article, he suggests that the last jobs to go will be those with a “unique combination of human intuition, reasoning, empathy, and emotion”, but in spite of this, advertisers are not on the list. Coke’s recent efforts further validate his conclusion.

As of today, we don’t know what the future of our industry will look like, but we do know this: It is our job to stay ahead of all innovations and technologies and to learn everything we can about how our jobs will evolve to include our new robotic co-workers.


  • The anthropomorphic applications to robotics serve a much higher purpose that just functionality – these techniques are being applied to help us embrace them (figuratively and literally)
  • Technology is evolving to a place where it is not only poised to replace humans in the workplace but is also driving us to discover a new connection to robotic objects on a mass scale
  • The future of man and machine will likely depend on being able to co-exist, which begs the question – How we can we as advertisers get ahead of the game and prepare for this type of collaboration?

Liz Medina & Rachel Schneer