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The Turing Fest Newsletter #10 – 23rd March 2023

March 23, 2023

Hey Gang 👋

AI and banking are two topics that have dominated a lot of headlines in the past two weeks: firstly within the bubble that is the tech industry, and then both seeped into the wider world beyond.

Most people had never heard of Silicon Valley Bank until a few weeks back. Now there are genuine fears that the collapse of tech’s favourite bank may have been the beginning of a wider unravelling within global finance. Whatever may be in store for the wider world here, our Bonus link wonders whether SVB’s demise may herald the end of an era for tech.

AI continues to unfold around us at an astonishing pace. Even at this extremely early phase, it is hard to recall a technology that has inspired awe, excitement, and fear in equal measure – even amongst those at the forefront of developing it. Perhaps the Manhattan Project is a salient analogy – AI certainly seems to have the potential to alter the dynamics of the 21st century as much or even more than nuclear technology changed the 20th.

Whilst AGI still seems some way off, AI – in the form of chatbots like ChatGPT – is beginning to creep into our everyday world. Two of our links this week explore these intersections: Build looks at how AI is helping to make software engineers more productive by taking some mundane tasks off their hands, whilst our Lead post explores what disruption may be coming down the track, and how widely it might be felt across society.

Feeling slightly prosaic by comparison, but no less pertinent for those of us charged with connecting our organisations with their users and customers, our Grow link offers some very interesting thoughts on the use of “fractional” workers, arguing that this kind of resource is best used at a lower, and therefore more hands-on level, than that of CMO. Particularly relevant to early-stage businesses.

📚 [BUILD] GitHub Copilot X: The AI-powered developer experience

Two years ago GitHub introduced Copilot – an AI-powered paired programming tool to enhance developer productivity. Now Copilot X has been released, leveraging OpenAI’s ChatGPT4 to redefine developer productivity. We’re beginning to see the next frontier in software development unfold.

📖 Read the full article here

[Thomas Dohmke, GitHub]

📚 [GROW] Maybe you need a fractional Marketing Director — not a fractional CMO

Fractional CMO’s have come into vogue over the past year or two, but depending on the size of the org they may not be what is needed.

SparkToro’s Amanda Natividad argues that what many companies – especially smaller ones – are more likely to need is someone more hands-on: a fractional Marketing Director. She suggests a fractional Marketing Director can be a more effective way for smaller businesses to access the hands-on marketing execution skills they need.

📖 Read the full article here

[Amanda Natividad, SparkToro]

📚 [LEAD] Secret cyborgs: The present disruption in three papers

We’re not sure yet where the incredibly fast developments in AI are taking us, but it does seem clear that, with recent Large Language Models (LLM), the world has changed in a fundamental way. One of the areas that will be disrupted first – it’s already happening – is knowledge work. In a complementary post to our Build link, this article explores what that disruption might look like, and where AI is already being used.

📖 Read the full article here

[Ethan Mollick, One Useful Thing]

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📚 [BONUS] The demise of Silicon Valley Bank, and what it may mean for the disruption of tech.

Renowned analyst and thinker Ben Thompson has looked at the extraordinary collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and what it means for the tech industry. In this post, he speculates that the true cost may end up being much more than we can see so far: that the end of SVB might also be the beginning of the end of Silicon Valley itself.

📖 Read the full article here

[Ben Thompson, Stratechery]

🎥 [ARCHIVE – TF21] Dr Suzanne Brown – From the inside out: mastering the art of emotional fitness.

In her talk at Turing Fest in 2021, Dr. Suzanne Brown dives into the importance of our emotional fitness, and how some of the most impactful leaders are those who embrace their emotions and strike the balance between head and heart.

With over 14 years of experience in clinical psychology, Suzanne has spent a number of years working with some of the greatest athletes across the UK, spending a number of years at Arsenal FC and now Sunderland AFC.

In her talk, Suzanne talks about our emotional systems; love & attachment, pain & grief, anger, desire, play & joy, guilt, and pride. Walking through each system, Suzanne gives meaningful explanations for how and why most of us handle each of these systems in such common ways. She gives practical yet effective tactics and exercises that we can use to reframe our response to each of these emotional systems.

Not just for founders and leaders, this session can benefit individuals across the board on both a personal and professional level. Suzanne unpacks our emotions and shares her valuable insights and techniques to improve our emotional fitness.

Suzanne Brown will be speaking at TF23 this June, find out more.

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