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Apr 13, 2018

Using an algorithm to reduce energy bills—rain or shine

Posted by in categories: information science, robotics/AI, solar power, sustainability

Researchers proposed implementing the residential energy scheduling algorithm by training three action dependent heuristic dynamic programming (ADHDP) networks, each one based on a weather type of sunny, partly cloudy, or cloudy. ADHDP networks are considered ‘smart,’ as their response can change based on different conditions.

“In the future, we expect to have various types of supplies to every household including the grid, windmills, and biogenerators. The issues here are the varying nature of these power sources, which do not generate electricity at a stable rate,” said Derong Liu, a professor with the School of Automation at the Guangdong University of Technology in China and an author on the paper. “For example, power generated from windmills and solar panels depends on the weather, and they vary a lot compared to the more stable power supplied by the grid. In order to improve these power sources, we need much smarter algorithms in managing/scheduling them.”

The details were published on the January 10th issue of IEEE/CAA Journal of Automatica Sinica, a joint bimonthly publication of the IEEE and the Chinese Association of Automation.

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Apr 13, 2018

Looking to Listen: Audio-Visual Speech Separation

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

People are remarkably good at focusing their attention on a particular person in a noisy environment, mentally “muting” all other voices and sounds. Known as the cocktail party effect, this capability comes natural to us humans. However, automatic speech separation — separating an audio signal into its individual speech sources — while a well-studied problem, remains a significant challenge for computers.

In “Looking to Listen at the Cocktail Party”, we present a deep learning audio-visual model for isolating a single speech signal from a mixture of sounds such as other voices and background noise. In this work, we are able to computationally produce videos in which speech of specific people is enhanced while all other sounds are suppressed. Our method works on ordinary videos with a single audio track, and all that is required from the user is to select the face of the person in the video they want to hear, or to have such a person be selected algorithmically based on context. We believe this capability can have a wide range of applications, from speech enhancement and recognition in videos, through video conferencing, to improved hearing aids, especially in situations where there are multiple people speaking.

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Apr 13, 2018

How to Travel Across the USA on Bitcoin

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, business, cryptocurrencies

James Grand and Thomas Hezlett expected to find the United States filled with Bitcoin, cryptocurrency and blockchain-powered businesses. Instead, they realized that despite a surging price in tokens, the payments system in the wider world has stayed the same.

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Apr 13, 2018

Google is Pursuing the Pentagon’s Giant Cloud Contract Quietly, Fearing An Employee Revolt

Posted by in categories: military, robotics/AI

A fierce internal debate may undermine the company’s bid for the JEDI program.

Last August, U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis made a journey to the West Coast and met with Google founder Sergey Brin and CEO Sundar Pichai. Over a half day of meetings, Google leaders described the company’s multi-year transition to cloud computing and how it was helping them develop into a powerhouse for research and development into artificial intelligence. Brin in particular was eager to showcase how much Google was learning every day about AI and cloud implementation, according to one current and one former senior Defense Department official who spoke on condition of anonymity.

It wasn’t an overt sales pitch, exactly, say the officials. But the effect of the trip, during which Mattis also met representatives from Amazon, was transformative. He went west with deep reservations about a department-wide move to the cloud and returned to Washington, D.C., convinced that the U.S. military had to move much of its data to a commercial cloud provider — not just to manage files, email, and paperwork but to push mission-critical information to front-line operators.

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Apr 13, 2018

Announcing The Blockchain $5,000 Essay Prize

Posted by in categories: bitcoin, education, transhumanism

$5,000.00 USD will be awarded to the winner. $1,000.000 USD will be awarded to three runner-up papers, one of which could be the final winner.

About the Prize:

Humanity+, a 501©3 non-profit educational organization is sponsoring the Blockchain essay prize for papers that cover the topic of “Mutual Benefits of Blockchain and Transhumanism”.

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Apr 12, 2018

How Lyft, Mastercard, and Drone Companies Are Experimenting With Artificial Intelligence

Posted by in categories: business, drones, robotics/AI

Lyft, Mastercard, and drone companies are experimenting with artificial intelligence technologies to improve their businesses.

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Apr 12, 2018

US astronaut sends Holocaust remembrance message from space

Posted by in category: space

American astronaut Andrew “Drew” Feustel recorded a video message aboard the International Space Station commemorating Holocaust Remembrance Day.

In the video released on Thursday, the NASA geophysicist, who is not Jewish, displayed a replica of a drawing titled “Moon Landscape” by Petr Ginz, a Czech teen with Jewish roots who was killed at Auschwitz. Feustel, who received the drawing from the Yad Vashem Holocaust museum in Jerusalem, noted that late Israeli astronaut Ilan Ramon had brought a replica of the very same drawing with him on board the Space Shuttle Columbia in 2003.

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Apr 12, 2018

This NASA Video Tour of the Moon in 4K Is Simply Breathtaking

Posted by in categories: futurism, space travel

A new look at the moon via 4-k video fly-throughs from LRO data and imaging. The finale is a drop down to Taurus-Littrow to see a highly magnified image of the…Apollo 17 LM descent stage. Stunning! #NASA #Apollo #LunarReconnaissanceOrbiter #moon https://www.space.com/40274-nasa-moon-in-4k-video-tour.html


Images from NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter (LRO) are not only helping planners with future human missions to the moon, but they are also revealing new information about the moon’s evolution and structure.

A new NASA video, posted on YouTube, features more than half a dozen locations of interest in stunning 4K resolution, much of it courtesy of LRO data. NASA also highlighted the individual sites in a Tumblr post that delves deeper into their geology, morphology and significance.

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Apr 12, 2018

Sensor-carrying drones ‘talk’ to each other

Posted by in categories: drones, mapping

The software and hardware platform could make drones useful in natural disaster relief, mapping areas in 3D, and more.

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Apr 12, 2018

Brain adapts after rare dementia attacks language center

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience

People with a rare kind of dementia that initially attacks the language center of the brain end up recruiting other areas of the brain to decipher sentences, according to a new study.

The study is one of the first to show that people with a neurodegenerative disease can call upon intact areas of the brain for help. People who have had strokes or traumatic brain injuries sometimes use additional regions of the brain to accomplish tasks that were handled by the now-injured part.

“We were able to identify regions of the brain that allowed the patients to compensate for the dying of neurons in the brain,” says first author Aneta Kielar, an assistant professor of speech, language, and hearing sciences and of cognitive science at the University of Arizona.

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