Nathana O’Brien Sharma

Nathana O’Brien Sharma is Faculty at Singularity University in artificial intelligence, blockchain technology and the future of law and governance. Nathana is General Counsel at Labelbox, a leading artificial intelligence software company backed by Andreeson Horowitz, Kleiner Perkins, First Round and Gradient, Google’s AI focused venture fund. She advises companies and governments on the application of blockchain technology and artificial intelligence.

Nathana worked as an Intellectual Property Associate at Gunderson Dettmer, a leading emerging company and venture capital law firm. She has also worked at the Israeli Supreme Court and the Center for Creative Technologies.

Nathana is a JD/MBA graduate of Yale Law School and the Yale School of Management, as well as Singularity University’s 2012 Global Solutions Program.

Sample Topics

An Introduction to Blockchain Technology: The Decentralized Future

Our world faces key problems of fraud, cyber crime, and identity and asset management. Blockchain technology represents a radical new opportunity to solve those problems. This talk includes an overview of how blockchain technology works and how it can be used to solve these problems, including a variety of examples.

Blockchain and Human Rights

Many technologies have both tremendous power for good and tremendous potential for evil. This talk examines the potential benefits and disadvantages for blockchain technology as it effects human rights and democracy.

How We Can Train Artificial Intelligence Algorithms to Make Ethical Decisions

When faced with the choice of saving the life of the passenger or the pedestrian passing by, how should an autonomous car be programed to act? In many scenarios, the most logical decision isn’t always the most ethical one, which is why objective decision-making alone in algorithms is not enough. As machine learning and advanced artificial intelligence algorithms become more prevalent in our daily lives, it becomes increasingly important to address the inherent biases and ethical blind spots built into these systems. In fact, when we don’t, we risk unleashing systems that may have far-reaching and disastrous consequences across many areas of society, from medical diagnoses to judicial decisions.

Nathana Sharma talks about the importance of designing AI algorithms that are capable of making decisions that are not just rationally correct, but also ethically right. In this talk, you will:

  • Unpack implicit biases in artificial intelligence algorithms and in the data they capture
  • Discover the implications of hidden ethical biases in real-world systems such as self-driving cars, medical diagnoses, and judicial systems
  • Understand the significance of designing ethical reasoning into artificial intelligence algorithms, and how to balance this with logical reasoning
  • Learn actionable ways to participate in this critical conversation

Introduction to Cryptocurrencies, i.e. Digital Assets

A introduction to thinking about digital assets and tokens that are more commonly known as cryptocurrencies with a focus on the relationship between blockchain technology and digital assets. NOTE: this talk can also be given as a more informal workshop.

Law Privacy Identity: The Future of our Hyper-Connected World

This talk examines the importance of collecting data in light of the rise of machine learning, and examines new surveillance technologies from mini-drones to genome sequencing, our mobile phone and smart home devices and discusses the privacy implications, comparing the regulatory landscape in the US and Europe and then addresses new technologies that can help to solve some of these problems, including tokenization and the blockchain.

The Exponential Future of Global Finance

Blockchain, Smart Contracts and AI: Blockchain technology provides a revolution in information distribution. Coupled with smart contracts that can be securely entered into and executed by autonomous agents, we stand at the forefront of a radical change in the future of global finance. The convergence of AI technology with blockchain, the natural platform for AI governance, will lead to a future of efficient, smart, globally connected financial networks with the power to combat fraud and cyber-crime and lead to abundance on a global scale.

The Exponential Future of Governance

A discussion of new challenges facing democracy and other forms of governance in light of exponential technologies and an overview of innovative technologies in governance, including open sourcing crafting of laws, changes in constructing and protecting digital identity for citizens and the future of smart contracts built on the blockchain (with a brief overview of what blockchain technology is).

The Future of Security

Explore the current and future effects of security. This session addresses the criminal applications of robotics, virtual worlds, nanotechnology, ubiquitous computing, artificial intelligence, cloud computing, bio-hacking, social data and location-based crime. Finally, the session closes with a discussion of the latest cybersecurity trends and what we can do about cyber crime.

What Happens When Our Brains Merge With Computers

How could we be communicating with each other, ten years from now? Will we still be using low-bandwidth cognitive abilities to transmit information, or will we be able to hack evolution, and merge with computers to access unlimited bandwidth and processing power?

Nathana Sharma walks us through exponential advancements in brain-machine interfaces, and talks about a future, where humans would be able to communicate through their brains, and experience a higher form of consciousness.

In this talk, you will:

  • Explore the ongoing developments in brain-machine interfaces, and understand their effectiveness in enhancing cognitive abilities
  • Learn about the technologies used in building highly sophisticated brain-machine interfaces
  • Discover the limitless possibilities that will be unlocked by the convergence of exponential technologies, like, artificial intelligence, virtual reality, and brain-machine interfaces
  • Analyze the impact of brain-machine interfaces on societies, and how it will transform the way we share, interpret and collect information
  • Get acquainted with new mediums of expression that will enable humans to experience others’ point-of-view, and relive their imagination in a virtual world

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