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Archive for the ‘robotics/AI’ category

Jun 14, 2019

Boston Dynamics: New Robots Now Fight Back

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Haha this is great!

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Jun 14, 2019

AI Superpowers

Posted by in categories: humor, robotics/AI

Turns out that last one was a CGI joke but this one isn’t. Facebook wouldn’t let me delete the post.


Recently, I picked up Kai-Fu Lee’s newest book, AI Superpowers.

Kai-Fu Lee is one of the most plugged-in AI investors on the planet, heading management of over $2 billion AUM between six funds, and over 300 portfolio companies in the U.S. and China.

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Jun 13, 2019

Terrifying AI Matches DNA to Facial Recognition Databases

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, information science, robotics/AI

Cops would love to have a system that uses DNA from a crime scene to generate a picture of a suspect’s face, but that tech is still restricted to science fiction.

That technology may never exist, but a team of Belgian and American engineers just developed something similar. Using what they know about how DNA shapes the human face, the researchers built an algorithm that scans through a database of images and selects the faces that could be linked to the DNA found at a crime scene, according to research published Wednesday in the journal Nature Communications — a powerful crime-fighting tool, but also a terrifying new way to subvert privacy.

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Jun 13, 2019

PatcherBot robot frees humans from laborious lab work

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, robotics/AI

Automatic system could speed up drug discovery by conducting time-consuming single-cell electrophysiology measurements without human supervision.

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Jun 13, 2019

How to Build a Self-Conscious Machine

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

To replicate ourselves in AI, we first have to embrace human error—and as sci-fi writer Hugh Howey argues, we probably shouldn’t.

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Jun 13, 2019

Sensitive Whiskers Could Make Small Drones Safer

Posted by in categories: drones, robotics/AI

Animals of all shapes and sizes have whiskers of some sort. Cats and dogs and rodents have them. Seals have them too. Some birds have them, as do insects and fish. Whiskers have shown up across such a diversity of animals because they’re an efficient and effective method of short range sensing. Besides just being able to detect objects that they come into direct contact with, whiskers can also sense fluid flows (like the speed and direction of moving air or water), and they work even if it’s dark or foggy or smoky.

While we’ve seen some research on whiskers before—I’m sure you remember the utterly adorable ShrewBot—there hasn’t been too much emphasis on adding whiskers to robots, likely because lidar and cameras offer more useful data at longer ranges. And that’s totally fine, if you can afford the lidar or the computing necessary to make adequate use of cameras. For very small, very cheap drones, investing in sophisticated sensing and computing may not make sense, especially if you’re only interested in simple behaviors like not crashing into stuff.

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Jun 13, 2019

Amazon conference showcases robots and social uses of artificial intelligence

Posted by in categories: business, drones, employment, health, robotics/AI, space travel

Thousands of tech fans descended on the Mojave desert for the conference, a public offshoot of Amazon Chairman Jeff Bezos’ previous invitation-only MARS conferences (the acronym stands for “Machine Learning, Robotics, Automation and Space”).

It resembled a tech summer camp, replete with offerings of cutting-edge technology demos, talks and social events.

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Jun 12, 2019

Why the singularity is certain to happen in my own lifetime

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, singularity

I recently came to an important realisation: I will most likely see the so-called Singularity happen in my own lifetime. I’m 56, at this time, and I believe that the inflection point at which computers, ‘thinking machines’ and AI may become infinitely and recursively powerful is no more than 20–25 years away, at most — and it might be as soon as 12–15 years from today.

We are at ‘4’ on the exponential curve, and this matters a lot because doubling a small number such as 0.01 does not make much of a difference while doubling 4–8–16–32–64 is another story altogether: timing is essential, and the future is bound to increasingly happen gradually, then suddenly.

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Jun 12, 2019

NASA Invests in Concepts Aimed at Exploring Craters, Mining Asteroids

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, space travel

Robotically surveying lunar craters in record time and mining resources in space could help NASA establish a sustained human presence at the Moon – part of the agency’s broader Moon to Mars exploration approach. Two mission concepts to explore these capabilities have been selected as the first-ever Phase III studies within the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) program.

“We are pursuing new technologies across our development portfolio that could help make deep space exploration more Earth-independent by utilizing resources on the Moon and beyond,” said Jim Reuter, associate administrator of NASA’s Space Technology Mission Directorate. “These NIAC Phase III selections are a component of that forward-looking research and we hope new insights will help us achieve more firsts in space.”

The Phase III proposals outline an aerospace architecture, including a mission concept, that is innovative and could change what’s possible in space. Each selection will receive as much as $2 million. Over the course of two years, researchers will refine the concept design and explore aspects of implementing the new technology. The inaugural Phase III selections are:

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Jun 12, 2019

Lyft has completed 55,000 self-driving rides in Las Vegas

Posted by in categories: robotics/AI, transportation

Lyft and Aptiv completed 55,000 self-driving vehicle rides in their first year.

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