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Mar 19, 2023

Bees learn to dance and to solve puzzles from their peers

Posted by in categories: biological, climatology, neuroscience

Social insects like bees demonstrate a remarkable range of behaviors, from working together to build structurally complex nests (complete with built-in climate control) to the pragmatic division of labor within their communities. Biologists have traditionally viewed these behaviors as pre-programmed responses that evolved over generations in response to external factors. But two papers last week reported results indicating that social learning might also play a role.

The first, published in the journal PLoS Biology, demonstrated that bumblebees could learn to solve simple puzzles by watching more experienced peers. The second, published in the journal Science, reported evidence for similar social learning in how honeybees learn to perform their trademark “waggle dance” to tell other bees in their colony where to find food or other resources. Taken together, both studies add to a growing body of evidence of a kind of “culture” among social insects like bees.

“Culture can be broadly defined as behaviors that are acquired through social learning and are maintained in a population over time, and essentially serves as a ‘second form of inheritance,’ but most studies have been conducted on species with relatively large brains: primates, cetaceans, and passerine birds,” said co-author Alice Bridges, a graduate student at Queen Mary University of London who works in the lab of co-author Lars Chittka. “I wanted to study bumblebees in particular because they are perfect models for social learning experiments. They have previously been shown to be able to learn really complex, novel, non-natural behaviors such as string-pulling both individually and socially.”

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Mar 19, 2023

The Little-Known Origin Story behind the 2022 Nobel Prize in Physics

Posted by in category: physics

In 1949 physicist Chien-Shiung Wu devised an experiment that documented evidence of entanglement. Her findings have been hidden in plain sight for more than 70 years.

Mar 19, 2023

A Historian of the Future: Five More Questions for Stephen Kotkin

Posted by in categories: education, energy

Recorded on February 10th, 2023.

Historian Stephen Kotkin became the Kleinheinz Senior Fellow at the Hoover Institution in 2022. He taught at Princeton for more than 30 years, and is the author of nine works of history, including the first two volumes of his biography of Joseph Stalin, Paradoxes of Power, 1,878 to 1928 and Waiting for Hitler, 1929 to 1941. He is now completing the third and final volume. Since the war in Ukraine broke out a year ago, Kotkin has appeared regularly on Uncommon Knowledge with Peter Robinson to offer his unique perspective on the Russian aggression and answer five questions for us. This is the third installment.

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Mar 19, 2023

Team develops a system of robots that use teamwork to pick fruit and transport it autonomously

Posted by in categories: food, robotics/AI, sustainability

A system of robots that harvest and transport crops on their own without human assistance has been developed for use in agricultural facilities such as smart farms.

The research team under Choi Tae-yong, principal researcher at the AI Robot Research Division’s Department of Robotics and Mechatronics of the Korea Institute of Machinery and Materials, an institution under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Science and ICT, has developed a multiple-robot system for harvesting crops.

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Mar 19, 2023

Verses Technologies (VERS) Launching Proprietary General Intelligence Agent (GIA) — CEO Gabriel Rene

Posted by in categories: business, robotics/AI

Verses Technologies Inc. (VERS) :
Gabriel Rene CEO
Chief Scientist CSO — Karl Friston.
Dan Mapes — Founder & President.
Capm Peterson — Chief Innovation Officer.
Scott Paterson Director.

VERSES Technologies Inc. (NEO: VERS) (OTCQX: VRSSF), a cognitive computing company specializing in the next generation of artificial intelligence, has announced a breakthrough in AI with the world’s first General Intelligent Agent, codenamed GIA™, (‘jee-yah’) designed to offer a new human-centered way for businesses and individuals to interact with technology.

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Mar 19, 2023

The Extinction of Death

Posted by in categories: computing, existential risks, life extension, media & arts

Billionaires like Jeff Bezos, Peter Thiel, and Sam Altman want to live forever, here’s how they’re planning on doing it and what it could mean for society.

First ‘long form’ video I have made in awhile. Very excited to get back into it and play around with different ways of styles and editing. Excited to hear what you guys think!

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Mar 19, 2023

The very real threat of Super-Intelligence

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

This video is about the very real threat that artificial intelligence can surpass human intelligence and very soon. ChatGPT and OpenAI have shown what can be achieved by scaling models up and GPT4 just showed multi-modality. How close are we to general intelligence (AGI) and how will that impact humanity?

Mar 18, 2023

Study examines how our native language shapes our brain wiring

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

Scientists at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences in Leipzig have found evidence that the language we speak shapes the connectivity in our brains that may underlie the way we think. With the help of magnetic resonance tomography, they looked deep into the brains of native German and Arabic speakers and discovered differences in the wiring of the language regions in the brain.

Xuehu Wei, who is a doctoral student in the research team around Alfred Anwander and Angela Friederici, compared the of 94 of two very and showed that the language we grow up with modulates the wiring in the brain. Two groups of native speakers of German and Arabic respectively were scanned in a imaging (MRI) machine.

The high-resolution images not only show the anatomy of the brain, but also allow to derive the connectivity between the using a technique called diffusion-weighted imaging. The data showed that the axonal white matter connections of the language network adapt to the processing demands and difficulties of the mother tongue.

Mar 18, 2023

Evidence for the existence of a deeply bound dibaryon, built entirely from beauty quarks

Posted by in categories: cosmology, particle physics

Dibaryons are the subatomic particles made of two baryons. Their formations through baryon-baryon interactions play a fundamental role in big-bang nucleosynthesis, in nuclear reactions including those within stellar environments, and provide a connection between nuclear physics, cosmology and astrophysics.

Interestingly, the , which is the key to the existence of nuclei and provides most of their masses, allows formations of numerous other dibaryons with various combinations of quarks. However, we do not observe them abound—deuteron is the only known stable dibaryon.

To resolve this apparent dichotomy, it is essential to investigate dibaryons and baryon-baryon interactions at the fundamental level of strong interactions. In a recent publication in Physical Review Letters, physicists from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) and The Institute of Mathematical Science (IMSc) have provided strong evidence for the existence of a deeply bound dibaryon, entirely built from bottom (beauty) quarks.

Mar 18, 2023

“Off Switch” Makes Explosives Safer

Posted by in categories: materials, military

An explosive material fabricated with a highly porous structure is inactive but is easily “switched on” when filled with water.

Despite great effort, researchers have failed to find ways to make explosives entirely safe during storage yet still easily usable when needed. Now a research team has demonstrated an explosive with these properties by creating a highly porous structure for their explosive material [1]. The voids prevent the structure from supporting a sustained propagating wave of detonation, but filling the voids with water can quickly restore the explosive capacity. The researchers hope this technique can provide safer explosives for use in areas such as mining and oil exploration.

Storing highly explosive materials is inherently risky—in the military world, for example, over 500 accidental explosions occurred at munitions sites between 1979 and 2013, according to a survey [2]. These materials could be safer if they could be easily switched between an explosive-ready state and a “safe” state. “A switchable explosive is the holy grail of explosives research,” says chemist Alexander Mueller of the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. He and his colleagues believe that they are the first to achieve it.

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