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Jul 22, 2016

Let’s all move to Mars! The space architects shaping our future

Posted by in categories: food, habitats, space travel, sustainability

We’ve had starchitects. Now we’ve got space architects. Oliver Wainwright meets the people measuring up the red planet for inflatable homes and farms made of moondust concrete.

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Jul 22, 2016

Getting robots to listen: Using Watson’s Speech to Text service

Posted by in category: robotics/AI

Overview

This is the third article in a series of posts documenting how a team of six interns used IBM Watson to program robots to play poker.

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Jul 22, 2016

New paper: “A formal solution to the grain of truth problem” — By Rob Bensinger | Machine Intelligence Research Institute

Posted by in category: economics

GrainofTruth

“Future of Humanity Institute Research Fellow Jan Leike and MIRI Research Fellows Jessica Taylor and Benya Fallenstein have just presented new results at UAI 2016 that resolve a longstanding open problem in game theory: “A formal solution to the grain of truth problem.””

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Jul 22, 2016

Google Sprints Ahead in AI Building Blocks, Leaving Rivals Wary — By Jack Clark | Bloomberg

Posted by in categories: machine learning, robotics/AI

-1x-1

“There’s a high-stakes race under way in Silicon Valley to develop software that makes it easy to weave artificial intelligence technology into almost everything, and Google has sprinted into the lead.”

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Jul 22, 2016

Facebook Test-Flies Drone to Bring Internet to Remote Areas

Posted by in categories: drones, internet, solar power, sustainability

US social networking giant Facebook announced on Thursday a successful test of its solar-powered Aquila drone, which will beam Internet to people in remote areas.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — Facebook has been working on Aquila Project with leading experts in aerospace and communication technologies, from NASA’s jet propulsion lab to a small UK firm that created one of the world’s longest flying solar-powered drones.

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Jul 21, 2016

Landscape architect Bradley Cantrell on his “cyborg ecologies”

Posted by in categories: biological, cyborgs

“As our technologies have gotten more advanced, [we have] more and more control over…deeper levels of biological life.” — Bradley Cantrell.

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Jul 21, 2016

MP scamsters find a way to clone thumbprint, beat biometric test

Posted by in categories: privacy, security

Why biometrics will need and form of id to properly perform security checks.


Impersonators in many cases apparently had used synthetic bandages bearing thumb impressions of actual candidates. “Traditionally, fingerprints were used as evidence in court cases and even in high-tech security systems. But revelations by those arrested for impersonation in Bihar are proving to the world of forensic sciences that creating forged, latent fingerprints is relatively easy,” claims Dr Anand Rai, whistle-blower in the MPPEB scam. In the past, Rai had requested STF officials to look into interrogation reports of 140 impersonators arrested by the Bihar police during a constable recruitment exam.

Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/city/bhopal/MP-scamsters-…311540.cms

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Jul 21, 2016

Amazon wants to turn street lights and even church steeples into drone docking stations

Posted by in category: drones

Hmmm.


Amazon’s Prime Air drone delivery service, if it ever gets off the ground, could one day use the top of street lights, cell towers, and even church steeples as docking stations for its flying machine.

The stations would serve as charging points for the drones, enabling them to stop off at multiple points for a battery boost thereby giving them a much greater flying range. Such a system could, in theory, open up pretty much the whole of the country to the possibility of drone delivery, as a single drone could hop from point to point on its way to an address.

Continue reading “Amazon wants to turn street lights and even church steeples into drone docking stations” »

Jul 21, 2016

Mining Black Hole Collisions for New Physics

Posted by in categories: cosmology, particle physics

The physicist Asimina Arvanitaki is thinking up ways to search gravitational wave data for evidence of dark matter particles orbiting black holes.

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Jul 21, 2016

We’ll Only Have a Year to Prepare For a Cataclysmic Super-Eruption

Posted by in category: existential risks

Volcanic super-eruptions are bad. Like really bad. Scientists warn of such a potentially civilization-ending catastrophe in our future, but as a new study shows, we’ll only have a year to prepare once the signs of an impending eruption become visible.

A new microscopic analysis of quartz crystals taken from the site of a massive volcanic eruption that occurred 760,000 years ago in eastern California suggests we’ll only have about a year’s worth of advance warning before a devastating super-eruption. In a paper published in PLOS ONE, Guilherme Gualda from Vanderbilt University and Stephen Sutton from the University of Chicago show that super-eruptions don’t require much time to blow their tops, even though they’re tens of thousands of years in the making.

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