Morning Brew: Finland Expands AI Basics Course to EU. “Finland will relinquish the rotating presidency of the Council of the EU at the end of the year. Its outgoing gift = expanding Elements of AI to 1% of the EU population by 2021. Starting next year, the course will be available in all 24 official EU languages. But since there are no restrictions on who can take the course, this is basically a Christmas present to anyone who speaks one of those languages. Since it launched, over 220,000 people from 110 countries have signed up to take the class (it was available online in English). ” I signed up, said I lived in the United States, no problem.
Daily Finland: Finnish missions abroad expand historical archives. “As part of its centenary celebration in March 2018, the Foreign Ministry published reports from the Finnish diplomatic missions abroad dating from before 1927. The Ministry has now expanded its digitised service to include reports from the missions until 1945, when the Second World War ended.”
CNN: Finland is winning the war on fake news. What it’s learned may be crucial to Western democracy. “Finland has faced down Kremlin-backed propaganda campaigns ever since it declared independence from Russia 101 years ago. But in 2014, after Moscow annexed Crimea and backed rebels in eastern Ukraine, it became obvious that the battlefield had shifted: information warfare was moving online.”
EurekAlert: Finnish school students outperform US students on ‘fake news’ digital literacy tasks. “A recent study revealed students at an international school in Finland significantly outperformed U.S. students on tasks which measure digital literacy in social media and online news. The researchers suggest this may be due to the Finnish and International Baccalaureate curricula’s different way of facilitating students’ critical thinking skills compared to the US system and curriculum. The results of this study were published in the Journal of Research in International Education in April.”
The Verge: Inmates in Finland are training AI as part of prison labor. “‘Prison labor’ is usually associated with physical work, but inmates at two prisons in Finland are doing a new type of labor: classifying data to train artificial intelligence algorithms for a startup. Though the startup in question, Vainu, sees the partnership as a kind of prison reform that teaches valuable skills, other experts say it plays into the exploitative economics of prisoners being required to work for very low wages.”
Helsinki Times: An Almanac dedicated to the Sami culture will be released in Russia this year. “The United Nations General Assembly has proclaimed 2019 as the International Year of Indigenous Languages. UNESCO keeps reporting that approximately 600 languages disappear each year. As a result, world globalization smashes many cultures and people literally lose their roots. The Sami is a unique example of indigenous people and culture uniting mainly six countries—Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Ukraine and the USA. They speak six dialects of Sami language. The Zhivaya Classica Foundation from Russia took the initiative to unite the work of Sami authors and poets from different countries in one almanac to be released in May 2019.”
Yle Uutiset: Public slams Finnish Transport Safety Agency for privacy breach. “Trafi’s database required nothing more than a name to pull up a person’s driving information. The Finnish Transport Safety Agency (Trafi) on Sunday said it had suspended the service while it investigates whether the tool infringes on people’s data privacy and security. The database went public last July.”