Archive for the ‘robotics/AI’ category

Apr 20, 2014

Seven A.I. Movies That Are Better Than Transcendence

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Joaquin Phoenix talking to his iOS girlfriend Samantha in Her.

Johnny Depp dies and is reborn as a computer brain in Transcendence, the latest science-fiction thriller about artificial intelligence. Smart machines that may serve or dominate mankind are as old as Samuel Butler’s 1872 novel Erewhon, or Karel Capek’s 1920 play R.U.R. — and as recent as this week’s episode of The Simpsons, in which Dr. Frink revives the dead Homer as a chatty screensaver. They have also inhabited some of the finest SF movies, including Dark Star, Star Wars, Star Trek the Motion Picture, Alien, Blade Runner, The Terminator and RoboCop. The list is inspiring and nearly endless.

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Apr 8, 2014

Microsoft hopes to counter Apple with AI-driven ‘invisible user interfaces’ on future devices

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

AppleInsider Staff
Cortana, the Halo character after which Microsoft's Siri competitor is named
“User interface started with the command prompt, moved to graphics, then touch, and then gestures,” Microsoft research executive Yoram Yaakobi told the Wall Street Journal. “It’s now moving to invisible UI, where there is nothing to operate. The tech around you understands you and what you want to do. We’re putting this at the forefront of our efforts.”

With the push, dubbed “UI.Next,” Microsoft is pursuing a future in which users do not need to tell their device what to do — by touching or speaking to it, for instance — and instead passively consume information that the device has already prepared in anticipation of their needs.

Both Apple and Google have nodded in this direction already, though the technology is far from mature. Apple’s Passbook, for instance, can dynamically surface information like event tickets based on the user’s location, while Google’s Google Now will adjust a user’s schedule based on traffic conditions.

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Apr 1, 2014

The White Swan’s Beyond Eureka and Sputnik Moments! [Treatise Excerpt] By Mr. Andres Agostini

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, aging, alien life, astronomy, augmented reality, automation, big data, biological, biotech/medical, business, climatology, complex systems, computing, cosmology, counterterrorism, cybercrime/malcode, cyborg, defense, disruptive technology, driverless cars, economics, education, energy, engineering, environmental, ethics, existential risks, finance, futurism, genetics, geopolitics, government, hardware, health, human trajectories, information science, innovation, internet, law, law enforcement, life extension, lifeboat, medical, military, mobile phones, nanotechnology, neuroscience, philosophy, physics, policy, posthumanism, privacy, robotics/AI, science, scientific freedom, security, singularity, space, supercomputing, surveillance, sustainability, transhumanism, transparency, transportation

The White Swan’s Beyond Eureka and Sputnik Moments: How To Fundamentally Cope With Corporate Litmus Tests and With The Impact of the Dramatic Highly Improbable And Succeed and Prevail Through Transformative and Integrative Risk Management! [TREATISE EXCERPT]. By © Copyright 2014 Mr. Andres Agostini — All Rights Reserved Worldwide — « »

(An Independent, Solemn, Most-Thorough and Copyrighted Answer. Independence, solemnity, thoroughness, detail, granularity of details, accuracy and rigor, hereunder, will be then redefined by several orders of nonlinear magnitude and without a fail).


To Nora, my mother, who rendered me with the definitiveness to seek the forethoughts to outsmart any impending demand and other developments. To Francisco, my father: There is no one who has taught me better. There is no one I regard most highly. It is my greatest fortune to be his son. He endowed me with the Agostini family’s charter, “…Study and, when grown up, you will neither be the tyrants’ toy, nor the passions’ servile slave…” I never enjoyed a “…Mom…”, but enjoyed a gargantuan Mother, Father, Grandparents and Forebearers.

Continue reading “The White Swan's Beyond Eureka and Sputnik Moments! [Treatise Excerpt] By Mr. Andres Agostini” »

Apr 1, 2014

The Future of Your Productivity Is in Artificial Intelligence

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

For years, authors like David Allen and Tim Ferriss have researched and written about productivity. But judging from the high tech trends in the field, the best efficiency practices are yet to be discovered.

That’s because productivity is on the brink of transformation via Artificial Intelligence (A.I.), according to Colin Lewis, who provides consulting services in automation, robotics and Artificial Intelligence. In a recent blog post on Harvard Business Review, Lewis looked at the research and development trends among big tech companies and concluded that it’s only a matter of time before virtual assistants start to revamp your daily routine.

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Mar 31, 2014

Why Asimov’s Three Laws Of Robotics Can’t Protect Us

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

George Dvorsky — i09
It’s been 50 years since Isaac Asimov devised his famous Three Laws of Robotics — a set of rules designed to ensure friendly robot behavior. Though intended as a literary device, these laws are heralded by some as a ready-made prescription for avoiding the robopocalypse. We spoke to the experts to find out if Asimov’s safeguards have stood the test of time — and they haven’t.

First, a quick overview of the Three Laws. As stated by Asimov in his 1942 short story “Runaround”:
1. A robot may not injure a human being or, through inaction, allow a human being to come to harm.

2. A robot must obey the orders given to it by human beings, except where such orders would conflict with the First Law.

3. A robot must protect its own existence as long as such protection does not conflict with the First or Second Law.

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Mar 28, 2014

Will You Obey Your Robot Boss?

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Jessica Leber — Fast Company

People are always joking about our robot overlords, but before robots become the world’s rulers, they’re probably going to be our bosses at work first. Either way, it’s important to know how pliable we humans are going to be.

Researchers at the University of Manitoba were curious about how far people would go in obeying the commands of a robot, so they designed an experiment that echoes Stanley Milgram’s infamous obedience studies, in which many participants obeyed an authority figure who told them to administer painful electrical shocks to strangers.

Substitute a small but slightly evil-sounding humanoid robot for the lab-coated researcher, and give the participants a really, really boring task rather than a morally fraught one, and you have the set up below. It’s actually a little uncomfortable to watch.

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Mar 25, 2014

More News Is Being Written By Robots Than You Think

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

— Jason Dorrier
robot-scribe-pens-gutenberg-bible (1)
It’s easy to praise robots and automation when it isn’t your ass on the line. I’ve done it lots. But I may have to eat my own Cheerios soon enough.

Software is writing news stories with increasing frequency. In a recent example, an LA Times writer-bot wrote and posted a snippet about an earthquake three minutes after the event. The LA Times claims they were first to publish anything on the quake, and outside the USGS, they probably were.

The LA Times example isn’t special because it’s the first algorithm to write a story on a major news site. With the help of Chicago startup and robot writing firm, Narrative Science, algorithms have basically been passing the Turing test online for the last few years.

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Mar 21, 2014

Zuckerberg, Musk Invest in Artificial-Intelligence Company

Posted by in category: robotics/AI
Elon Musk made the electric car cool. Mark Zuckerberg created FacebookFB +0.40%. Ashton Kutcher portrayed AppleAAPL +0.79% founder Steve Jobs in a movie. Now, the three are joining in a $40 million investment in Vicarious FPC, a secretive artificial-intelligence company.

The funding round, the second major infusion of capital for the company in two years, is the latest sign of life in artificial intelligence. Last month, GoogleGOOG –1.18% acquired another AI company called Deep Mind for $400 million.

Vicarious has an ambitious goal: Replicating the neocortex, the part of the brain that sees, controls the body, understands language and does math. Translate the neocortex into computer code and “you have a computer that thinks like a person,” says Vicarious co-founder Scott Phoenix. “Except it doesn’t have to eat or sleep.”

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Mar 20, 2014

A Robot Worthy of a Standing Ovation? There’s an X Prize for That

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

By James Eng — NBC News

Many a human genius has taken the stage at TED, the annual big-idea-sharing conference for techies and innovators, and wowed audiences with thought-provoking talks. Now what if a robot were able to do the same, and earn a standing ovation for its effort?

Farfetched, you say? Not for the folks at X Prize, which on Thursday announced it was partnering with TED to create a competition “for the development of artificial intelligence (AI) so advanced that it could deliver a compelling TED Talk with no human involvement.”

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Mar 19, 2014

DARPA’s Newest X-Plane Concepts Are All Robots

Posted by in categories: defense, military, robotics/AI

By Evan Ackerman — IEEE Spectrum

Yesterday, DARPA announced the four companies that’ll be competing to develop a new experimental aircraft that combines the efficiency of an airplane with the versatility of a helicopter. It’ll be something like a V-22 Osprey, except that DARPA is hoping for “radical improvements in vertical and cruise flight capabilities.” Three of the companies provided concept art to DARPA; Boeing’s Phantom Swift is pictured above. And the thing that every proposal has in common? They’re all robots.

Robots weren’t a specific requirement for the VTOL X-Plane, but DARPA says that the best proposals ended up being unmanned. It shouldn’t be a surprise that this is the case; in a contest based on speed, efficiency, and payload, including a human pilot would be a significant disadvantage: humans are fragile and require a lot of maintenance, and it’s becoming increasingly arguable that a human in an aircraft has the potential to be more of a liability than an asset, at least in some cases, which may include (say) cargo delivery into dangerous areas.

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