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Jan 20, 2022

Meta researchers build an AI that learns equally well from visual, written or spoken materials

Posted by in categories: materials, robotics/AI

Advances in the AI realm are constantly coming out, but they tend to be limited to a single domain: For instance, a cool new method for producing synthetic speech isn’t also a way to recognize expressions on human faces. Meta (AKA Facebook) researchers are working on something a little more versatile: an AI that can learn capably on its own whether it does so in spoken, written or visual materials.

The traditional way of training an AI model to correctly interpret something is to give it lots and lots (like millions) of labeled examples. A picture of a cat with the cat part labeled, a conversation with the speakers and words transcribed, etc. But that approach is no longer in vogue as researchers found that it was no longer feasible to manually create databases of the sizes needed to train next-gen AIs. Who wants to label 50 million cat pictures? Okay, a few people probably — but who wants to label 50 million pictures of common fruits and vegetables?

Currently some of the most promising AI systems are what are called self-supervised: models that can work from large quantities of unlabeled data, like books or video of people interacting, and build their own structured understanding of what the rules are of the system. For instance, by reading a thousand books it will learn the relative positions of words and ideas about grammatical structure without anyone telling it what objects or articles or commas are — it got it by drawing inferences from lots of examples.

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Jan 20, 2022

Humans Didn’t Invent Mathematics, It’s What the World Is Made Of

Posted by in categories: mathematics, physics

Many people think that mathematics is a human invention. To this way of thinking, mathematics is like a language: it may describe real things in the world, but it doesn’t “exist” outside the minds of the people who use it.

But the Pythagorean school of thought in ancient Greece held a different view. Its proponents believed reality is fundamentally mathematical. More than 2,000 years later, philosophers and physicists are starting to take this idea seriously.

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Jan 20, 2022

Researchers take small step toward silicon-based life

Posted by in category: futurism

Circa 2016 o.o!


A ruby that formed in Earth’s crust 2.5 billion years ago encases evidence for early life, wriggling around in the planet’s mud.

Jan 20, 2022

Physicists Discover a New Photonic Effect That Could Accelerate the Discovery of Life-Saving Medicines

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

Keeping up with the first law of robotics: a new photonic effect for accelerated drug discovery. Physicists at the University of Bath and University of Michigan demonstrate a new photonic effect in semiconducting nanohelices. A new photonic effect in semiconducting helical particles with nanos.


California has more rooftops with solar panels than any other state and continues to be a leader in new installations. It is also first in terms of the percentage of the state’s electricity coming from solar, and third for solar power capacity per capita. However, former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has expressed concerns that California.

Continue reading “Physicists Discover a New Photonic Effect That Could Accelerate the Discovery of Life-Saving Medicines” »

Jan 20, 2022

Is The California Solar Dream Fading Fast?

Posted by in categories: solar power, sustainability

California has more rooftops with solar panels than any other state and continues to be a leader in new installations. It is also first in terms of the percentage of the state’s electricity coming from solar, and third for solar power capacity per capita. However, former California governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has expressed concerns that California solar — once the model for other US states — is on a precipice. In an opinion piece for the New York Times this week, Schwarzenegger has unpacked a new California Public Utilities Commission proposal which, if approved, would discourage progress being made in the transition to clean energy and grid resilience.

What’s the problem, then? The California Public Utilities Commission is threatening solar progress. But this “hard-earned and vitally important accomplishment” may succumb as the Commission considers a plan that has the potential to make California solar too costly for its citizens.

Jan 20, 2022

Intel has placed an order for the next-gen High-NA EUV tools to fabricate 1.8nm chips

Posted by in categories: computing, innovation

ASML President and CTO Martin van den Brink said:

“Intel’s vision and early commitment to ASML’s High-NA EUV technology is proof of its relentless pursuit of Moore’s Law. Compared to the current EUV systems, our innovative extended EUV roadmap delivers continued lithographic improvements at reduced complexity, cost, cycle time and energy that the chip industry needs to drive affordable scaling well into the next decade.”

Intel plans to start high-volume manufacturing (HVM) in 2025, which is also when the company will be using its 18A (1.8nm) fabrication technology. To do so, Intel has been experimenting for quite a while when it first obtained ASML’s Twinscan EXE:5000, which was the industry’s first EUV scanner with a 0.55 numerical aperture. Today, the company ordered ASML’s next-generation High-NA tool, the Twinscan EXE:5200.

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Jan 20, 2022

Synchronizing time in modern warfare — down to billionths and trillionths of a second — is critical for mission success

Posted by in categories: energy, military, satellites

High-tech missiles, sensors, aircraft, ships, and artillery all rely on atomic clocks on GPS satellites for nanosecond timing accuracy. A timing error of just a few billionths of a second can translate to positioning being off by a meter or more. If GPS were jammed by an adversary, time synchronization would rapidly deteriorate and threaten military operations.

To address this scenario, DARPA has announced the Robust Optical Clock Network (ROCkN) program, which aims to create optical atomic clocks with low size, weight, and power (SWaP) that yield timing accuracy and holdover better than GPS atomic clocks and can be used outside a laboratory. ROCkN will leverage DARPA-funded research over the past couple decades that has led to lab demonstration of the world’s most precise optical atomic clocks. ROCkN clocks will not be as precise as the best lab optical clocks, but they will surpass current state-of-the-art atomic clocks in both precision and holdover while maintaining low SWaP in a robust package. https://www.darpa.mil/news-events/2022-01-20

Jan 20, 2022

Jeff Bezos Startup Hires Top Scientist to Defeat Death

Posted by in category: life extension

Jeff Bezos has backed anti-aging startup Alto Labs, which has recently hired former chief scientific officer of GlaxoSmithKline Hal Barron as its CEO.

Jan 20, 2022

China makes world’s most space launches in 2021

Posted by in category: space travel

At this rate the CCP will be launching everyday by the end of the decade. Wow.


China became the country that has carried out the most space launch missions in the world over the past year.

The combination of the Shenzhou-13 manned spaceship and a Long March-2F carrier rocket is transferred to the launching area of Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in northwest China, Oct. 7, 2021. (People’s Daily Online/Liu Huaiyu)

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Jan 20, 2022

This 22-Year-Old Builds Chips in His Parents’ Garage

Posted by in category: computing

Sam Zeloof combines 1970s-era machines with homemade designs. His creations show what’s possible for small-scale silicon tinkerers.

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