Issue #105

This week – Softbank acquires Boston Dynamics and Schaft; Andrej Karpathy explains what AlphaGo really is; yet another creepy GAN generator; and more!


More than a human

Leader of the Bionic Age’ Suggests New Amputation Process

Amputations are messy. A study has suggested a way to improve upon antiquated amputation procedures. This could result in better functioning prosthetic limbs that can be used without having to be looked at.

 

What Happens When Cyborg Tech Goes Beyond Medicine?

The age of the cyborg may be closer than we think. Rapidly improving medical robotics, wearables, and implants means many humans are already part machine, and this trend is only likely to continue. Eventually, the cyborg tech will go beyond medicine and start to augment healthy people.

 

Brain Controlled Movie

Richard Ramchurn created a movie where you’re deciding the edits, consciously and subconsciously. All you need to have is a brain-computer interface and think.

 

Artificial Intelligence

AlphaGo, in context

Andrej Karpathy takes AlphaGo and explains in technical terms what it is (a narrow AI with some clever tricks) and what it isn’t (a general AI).

 

Don’t fear intelligent machines. Work with them

Garry Kasparov is probably the most famous example of a human beaten by a machine. Despite him losing to a computer in a game of chess, he’s not an AI/robotics fearmonger. Instead, Garry Kasparov argues that we should work with machines, learn from and with them. It resonates nicely with what founders of DeepMind wrote not so long ago.

 

Nightmare Hellface Generator is Cutting-Edge Machine Learning

Yet another creepy generative adversarial network generator. This time, you try to draw a human face and the AI tries to make it look “realistic”.

 

DeepMind Shows AI Has Trouble Seeing Homer Simpson’s Actions

“AI systems are now very good at recognizing objects in images, but still have trouble making sense of videos. One of the main reasons for this is that the research community has so far lacked a large, high-quality video dataset.”, said DeepMind and then they released a dataset consisting of 300,000 video clips and 400 human action classes to help AI understand human actions. In the process, guys from DeepMind discovered that Homer Simpson confuses AI.

 

Apple Just Joined Tech’s Great Race to Democratise AI

Hello, Apple. Welcome to the club. It’s sometimes better to be late that never join.

 

What Intelligent Machines Need to Learn From the Neocortex

Machines won’t become intelligent unless they incorporate certain features of the human brain – learning by rewiring, sparse representations and embodiment.

 

Robotics

SoftBank Acquires Boston Dynamics and Schaft

SoftBank, who already is the owner of Aldebaran Robotics (creators of Nao and Pepper robots), acquired two more robotic companies from Google – legendary Boston Dynamics and Schaft.

 

Robot Tries to Escape from Children’s Abuse

Don’t let your robot come close to children. It might not end well for it.

 

Iran Demonstrates Humanoid Robot Surena III

Humanoid robots are not only developed in US or Japan. It’s nice to see other countries trying to build such machines. Here’s one from Iran.

 

Biotechnology

CRISPR’s Next Big Debate: How Messy Is Too Messy?

A group of scientists used CRISPR to change some genes in mice. Later, they decided to check what else had changed. To their surprise, a lot had changed. Then they wrote a short paper describing their research and it blew up even more.