Our future entwined – robots are comingwith Larni Salathiel and James Mullins
A world where robots are common-place is almost here, as technology is no longer the limiting factor. Associate Prof James Mullins suggests where we'll see robots, how they'll benefit us and the ethical questions we need to consider.Listen to "Our future entwined – robots are coming" on Spreaker.
Autonomous vehicles, robot-assisted rehabilitation, robot companions… A world where robots are common-place is just around the corner. In fact, technology is no longer the limiting factor. Haptics pioneer Associate Professor James Mullins says the limitations today are more to do with ideas and inspiration than technical capacity.
An applied robotics engineer and entrepreneur, James is based within Deakin University’s Institute for Intelligent Systems Research and Innovation. He tells Larni where we can expect to see robots in the near future and discusses the social and ethical implications of AI, suggested by Isaac Asimov’s “three laws of robotics” (1942), which still influence thought on ethics and robots.
After building robots for security, medical, industrial and other uses, James has achieved spectacular success with his haptic firefighter training tool, FLAIM Trainer. The VR system gives firefighters all the sensations of fighting a fire – including force kickback and heat – in a safe environment. It has been embraced by emergency services globally and led to a spin-out company FLAIM Systems (with James Mullins as CEO), which was recently named “Small Business Exporter of the Year” at the Victorian Governor’s Export Awards.
Prepare to glimpse the future.
Inspiration for the 21st Century:
- Popular Mechanics Robots: A New Age of Bionics, Drones & Artificial Intelligence, by Daniel H Wilson, author of “The New York Times” bestselling “Robopocalypse”, and its sequel, “Robogenesis”, and seven other books.
- FLAIM: Victoria’s Small Business Exporter of the Year – FLAIM Systems
- FLAIM Systems wins national Startup of the Year Award – FLAIM Systems
- Start-up marks new phase for FLAIM Trainer – disruptr
- The AI dilemma: can we trust robots? – disruptr
- ManuFutures marks new phase in innovation at Waurn Ponds – disruptr
- IISRI signs major research contract with Australian Navy – disruptr
- OzBot Titan: the lifesaving police robot – disruptr
- FLAIM Systems – Developing and supporting the next step in skills training for emergency services.
- Institute for Intelligent Systems Research and Innovation – Deakin University
- “Three Laws of Robotics”, from short story “Runaround” (1942), by one of the 20th century’s most influential science fiction authors, Isaac Asimov.
Including all abilities – the world can be made to fitwith Larni Salathiel and Nicole Rinehart
Nicole Rinehart is living proof that one person can make a difference. Hear how her AllPlay social movement is giving children with disabilities access to organised sport and cultural opportunities that most children take for granted.Listen to "Including all abilities – the world can be made to fit" on Spreaker.
Nicole Rinehart is living proof that one person can make a difference to the lives of many. Director of the Deakin University Child Study Centre and a world expert on autism spectrum disorder, Nicole founded the AllPlay social movement to give children with disabilities access to organised sport and cultural opportunities that most children take for granted.
“One in five children has developmental challenges or disabilities,” she said. “This is a huge number of children who have been excluded from normal parts of life that play a major role in well-being. I realised that I could only solve these problems by stepping out of the research lab and connecting with the world.”
In this podcast, Nicole shares her inspirational personal and professional journeys. She tells Larni about the recent leaps in scientific understanding of neurodevelopmental disorders, such as autism, Asperger’s Disorder and ADHD, and how, when she was a mother of young children, she was shocked by the absence of children with disabilities in her children’s sporting club.
Drawing on her expertise as a professor of clinical psychology, she started a crusade for inclusion that began with NAB AFL Auskick and led to partnerships with Moose Toys, the National Disability Insurance Agency, Queensland Ballet and its Director, “Mao’s Last Dancer” author Li Cunxin, the Victorian Department of Education and Training, and many other organisations.
The community response has been phenomenal. The evidence-based, user-friendly AllPlay program is now the world’s biggest game changer for children with a disability in sport. It is also being taken up by education systems, from early learning through to secondary schools, as AllPlay Learn.
Inspiration for the 21st Century:
- “Mao’s last dancer” (2003), a Memoir written by Chinese-Australian author Li Cunxin, released as a film in 2009.
- All Playing Together, Nicole Rinehart – TedX Deakin University (YouTube video).
- Making science real for all children – disruptr
- Deakin program helps kids with disabilities hit the dancefloor – disruptr
- Levelling the field so all can play – disruptr
- Trial to address sleep problems in children with autism – disruptr
- Autism research leads to start-up – disruptr
- Global partnership to improve children’s lives – disruptr
Cybercrime – Is this the battle we are destined to lose?with Larni Salathiel and Damien Manuel
Australians lost $10 million to scammers last year. Cybercrime seems headed in one direction, but Damien Manuel is bringing together the best minds and best ideas to combat threats to our wallets, privacy and national security.Listen to "Cybercrime – Is this the battle we are destined to lose?" on Spreaker.
Australians lost $10 million to scammers last year. One in three Australians were impacted. Cybercrime seems headed in one direction – and we need the best brains to combat threats to our wallets, privacy and national security.
At age eleven, Damien Manuel joined a hacker collective with some friends. This sparked his interest in breaking systems to see how they work and discover their flaws. From those humble beginnings, Damien turned his cyber super-smarts to security and is now Director of Deakin University’s Centre for Cyber Security Research and Innovation.
Damien and Larnie consider new trends in cybercrime, the best ways to thwart the criminals and the reams of new honest jobs emerging in the cyber world.
Reading for the 21st Century:
- 21 Lessons for the 21st Century (2018) by Yuval Noah Hararis, historian, philosopher and the bestselling author of “Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind” and “Homo Deus: A Brief History of Tomorrow.”
- Seven things small businesses must do to prevent cyber-attacks – disruptr
- Staying ahead of cybercrime – disruptr
- Accelerating cyber security – Deakin Research Showcase
- Think your metadata is only visible to national security agencies? Think again – The Conversation
Movies, popcorn and pop stars – why celebrity matterswith Larni Salathiel and Professor Sean Redmond
We love them, we hate them, or they might be our guilty pleasure, but do celebrities and popular culture really matter? Prof Sean Redmond explains why they do and we should all be celebrity literate.Listen to "Movies, popcorn and pop stars – why celebrity matters" on Spreaker.
We love them, we hate them, or they might just be our guilty pleasure, but do movie stars, movies and popular culture really matter? Is there more than entertainment and escapism to the delirious dreams and fantasies they offer us? One of Australia’s leading cinephiles, Sean Redmond, Professor of Screen and Design at Deakin University, tells Larni why taking popular entertainment seriously does matter and why we should all be celebrity literate.
Sean’s own boyhood enchantment with the likes of Laurel and Hardy, Elvis Presley and David Bowie led him on a lifelong quest to understand the role celebrity plays in our lives. “It’s on our screens, devices, newspapers and social media. Its writ large across our everyday lives,” he says. “It matters because it matters to people and if we don’t try to understand it, then we’re doing a disservice to culture, to reality, to how knowledge is increasingly communicated.”
From body image, to the Kardashians, to loneliness and science fiction, Sean unpacks the seductive power of cinema, stardom and celebrity, including its role as “social glue” – connecting people and providing meaning in a time when buffers like religion and community have vanished for swathes of people across society.
Be dazzled by Sean and Larni’s wide-ranging, deep-dive discussion into cinema, stardom and celebrity and the highs and lows of modern life.
Beyond the smoke and mirrors:
- “Station 11” (2014) by Emily St. John Mandel, winner of Arthur C. Clarke Award (2015) – book.
- “What My Fingers Knew: The Cinesthetic Subject, or Vision in the Flesh” by Vivian Sobchack (screen phenomenologist) – article.
- The loneliness of science fiction – disruptr
- The art of science – disruptr
- “Celebrity” (2018) – book
- “Liquid Space: Digital Age Science, Film and Television” (2017) – book
- David Bowie (2015, Bloomsbury) co-edited with Toija Cinque and Christopher Moore – book
- Constellations Bladerunner (2016) – book
- “Sounding Loneliness in Under the Skin” – article
- “Celebrity Studies,” peer-reviewed journal, Sean Redmond, founding editor
- “The Ear That Dreams: Eye Tracking Sound in the Moving Image” – video essay
- Michael Rogin: American, University of California, Berkeley, with interests in American literature and cinema.
- “Sleeping with the enemy: Audience studies and critical literacy” by Professor Joke Hermes, Professor of Media and Culture at University of Amsterdam (Netherlands) – article.
Trials and tribulations – energy and lawwith Larni Salathiel and Professor Samantha Hepburn
Prof Samantha Hepburn is a modern-day ‘Athena’ – wielding the law to protect nature. Hear how she became an expert on Queensland’s Adani coal mine case and why we all need to care about climate change.Listen to "Trials and tribulations – energy and law" on Spreaker.
Larni meets a modern-day “Athena,” Deakin University Law Professor Samantha Hepburn, who wields the law to protect nature. You will be shocked, yet galvanised by this frank conversation with Samantha.
“The Gladiator” movie, starring Russell Crowe, is her favourite and you can see why. Hero General Maximus Decimus Meridius wins over the Colosseum crowd. With similar heroism, Samantha takes on heavy hitters like Adani – projecting her voice and knowledge in the courts and news media.
As a student, Samantha saw how law could improve land rights and protect the environment. The Mabo case was pivotal – showing Australia wouldn’t be “frozen in an age of discrimination”. Now she is Director of Deakin’s Centre for Energy and Natural Resources Law and a world expert on the environmental and energy frameworks governing the Adani approval to mine coal in Queensland. She can explain the science behind the dire straits facing Australia’s World Heritage-listed Great Barrier Reef, and the food / water / energy nexus associated with the worstening impacts of global Climate Change – from droughts in Africa, to sea level rises in the Pacific, to loss of sea ice – and fish.
Be stirred to find your own inner warrior.
Reading to fire your soul:
- “The Road” (2006) by Cormac McCarthy, winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction.
- The morality of Adani – disruptr
- In their own words – Professor Samantha Hepburn – disruptr
- Adani’s new mini version of its mega mine still faces some big hurdles – The Conversation
- It’s clear why coal struggles for finance – and the government can’t change that – The Conversation
- With a billion reasons not to trust super trustees, we need regulators to act in the public interest – The Conversation
- Explainer: what is energy security, and how has it changed? – The Conversation
- Edmund Rice Foundation – Sustainable community-based education programs in developing countries and projects for marginalised and disadvantaged groups in Australia.
- “Our Planet,” with David Attenborough