A paperback copy of the book Crime and Punishment, propped up on two throw pillows.

Artificial Intelligence is all around. Literally. Every conference and keynote this busy fall focused on the who, what, when, where, how of AI. And my email inbox pings dozens of times a day with new AI-powered offerings from vendors that range from network infrastructure to school cafeteria management systems. I’m curious about the efficiency and multiplier these tools will bring to my team’s operational flow. And, I’m excited by the promise they bring for classrooms and teachers and students. There is a lot of stuff to figure out on student data privacy, human safety, and the like. Important stuff. But, this fall, I’m starting to see examples of technologies that very soon can have us able to personalize learning in a way we’ve only dreamed about the past decades.

This year’s OETC CIO Summit included a keynote by Kevin Roose, journalist and author of Futureproof: 9 Rules for Humans in the Age of Automation. It was a simultaneously frightening and reassuring assessment of where we are in the current AI bloom. Roose shared tips on how to stay calm, learn, and lead in the uncertain years ahead.

During his talk, he showed a short video clip he recorded of himself and then used HeyGen—a video AI platform that includes avatars, language translations, and a growing suite of production tools—to translate into multiple languages. I was intrigued by this. The translated copies of his original (in a handful of languages), didn’t just dub his speech. That’s been possible forever (hyperbole). In the videos, his jaw and lip movements were subtly shifted match to match the translated speech. And the audio matched his voice, not a human interpreter or a robotic computer voice. It was startling good and he indicated it took only minutes.

This is my first test of the same, using the first paragraph from Crime and Punishment. It was fast, mostly accurate, and easy. So, I’m sitting here now, typing this and freaking out about deep fakes and election years and this global revolutionary season. And, I’m marveling about the promise and good that this weaves into our teaching and learning.

The playlist and slide deck below contain the original ~1 min video and then the translations to French, German, Mandarin, and Turkish. I was finished with recording, downloading, and posting here within thirty minutes. 

The Playlist

The Slide Deck