content, Insights, Podcast

Wavelength - Chip wars and Robot gardeners

Daniel Harrington

19 October, 2022


12th October, 2022 – This week, your hosts Daniel Harrington and Rob Preston discuss the biggest B2B technology news over the last fortnight, and predict which headlines you should look out for next in the latest episode of Wavelength.

Find our last episode here.

Please enjoy and stay tuned for our next episode on the 2nd of November!



  1. The chip war between the U.S. and China reaches new heights.
  2. The US's new AI Bill of Rights.
  3. The European Commission makes it easier for you to sue AI.
  4. Tesla presents its humanoid, plant-watering robot: Optimus.
  5. A roundup of previous stories.


  1. The chip war between the U.S. and China reaches new heights.

The United States has recently restricted the exporting of semiconductor chips to China, aiming to prevent China from using these vital building blocks of technology to develop everything from supercomputing to guided weapons. This follows the CHiPs act and previous regulations on the sale of advanced computing hardware to China in the last few months. Businesses can still export semiconductors made with U.S technology – as long as they're willing to apply for an export license.

Sources: WIRED, Commonwealth Telecommunications Organisation, Swiss Info


2. The US's new AI Bill of Rights.

On October the 4th, the White House released a Blueprint for an AI Bill of Rights, following consultation with businesses like Microsoft and Palantir,  start-ups, human rights groups, and the general public. The main aim is to safeguard people's personal data from being (mis)used in AI algorithms without their knowledge or consent. However, these guidelines don't include enforcement measures, so many critics doubt how effective this 'Bill of Rights' will prove to be.


Sources: WIRED, Wall Street Journal, TechMonitor, Science Business


3. The European Commission makes it easier for you to sue AI.

Under new rules proposed by the European Commission, people would find it easier to sue when harmed by digital devices or products using AI. Named the 'AI Liability Directive', it would reduce the burden of proof for the claimant. The list of devices and products that fall under these rules would include self-driving cars, voice assistants, and search engines.


Sources: BBC News, Diginomica, European Commission, TechCrunch


4. Tesla presents its humanoid, plant-watering robot: Optimus.

At Tesla's "AI Day" event, CEO and serial headline-maker Elon Musk showed off the company's humanoid 'Optimus' robot. Having previously said that a robot business will be worth more than a car business, it looks as though Tesla is trying to capture that market. Despite promises that this model is made for mass production, that it can be scaled up to millions of units, and that is is very capable, its somewhat uninspiring showcase included carrying a box, moving things around a warehouse, and watering office plants. This model is not expected to reach commercial standard for quite some time.


Sources: BBC News, CNN, The Guardian, The Verge, Engadget, Interesting Engineering


5. Roundup of previous stories:

  • Doreen Bogdan-Martin wins the UN's International Telecommunications Union (ITU) election, and becomes its first female General Secretary.
  • The UK's Online Safety Bill looks set to go ahead despite the turmoil in government over recent weeks.
  • Musk's Twitter deal is back on. With $10 billion dollars on the line, the unhappy marriage is reaching its day at the altar.
  • ARM and Softbank reel after rounds of cuts and layoffs.
  • DALL-E 2's doors are thrown open to the public – but maybe too late to prevent Midjourney and Stable Diffusion from taking their audience.


Where can I find Wavelength?

Wavelength is available on all major podcast platforms. 



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Music used under Creative Commons license: Covert Affair by Kevin MacLeod