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Russia

Does The Russian Protest Movement Have Legs?

News that Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party won 53% of the seats in parliamentary elections sparked protests in both Moscow and St. Petersburg. Unsure they can sustain a mass movement now, organizers have their sights set on Putin's upcoming r

MOSCOW The burst of protests this week against the contested Russia parliamentary election has pro-democracy activists focused on an even bigger target: next year's campaign for president.

"We don't have the numbers for some kind of permanent protest, so we still need to conserve our energy," said Mikhail Shneider, Solidarity's executive secretary. "Now we really need to prepare, not for a mass protest, but for a serious presence during the presidential election."

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Future

Robot Artists And Us: Who Decides The Aesthetics Of AI?

Ai-Da is touted as the first bonafide robot artist. But should we consider her paintings and poetry original or creative? Is this even art at all?

Ai-Da at work

Leah Henrickson and Simone Natale

Ai-Da sits behind a desk, paintbrush in hand. She looks up at the person posing for her, and then back down as she dabs another blob of paint onto the canvas. A lifelike portrait is taking shape. If you didn’t know a robot produced it, this portrait could pass as the work of a human artist.

Ai-Da is touted as the “first robot to paint like an artist”, and an exhibition of her work called Leaping into the Metaverse opened at the Venice Biennale.

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Central to the tragic absurdity of this war is the question of language. Vladimir Putin has repeated that protecting ethnic Russians and the Russian-speaking populations of Ukraine was a driving motivation for his invasion.

Yet one month on, a quick look at the map shows that many of the worst-hit cities are those where Russian is the predominant language: Kharkiv, Odesa, Kherson.

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