Issue #145

This week – burger-flipping robot got fired; a case for human-chimp; a bionic girl comes to Xbox as an avatar; a robot-cat learns to walk; a mind-uploading startup that needs to kill you first; and more!


More than a human

The new Xbox One avatars include a girl with a bionic arm

Cyborgs and wannabe cyborgs worldwide can choose this girl with an awesome robotic arm as an avatar on Xbox.

 

How Long Can You Be Healthy?

The life extension is about extending the period when you are healthy, says RealLifeLore in his video about our efforts to cure ageing and shows three ways we can extend our healthspan.

 

It’s Time to Make Human-Chimp Hybrids

The author of this article proposes to make human-chimp hybrids but the argument he uses to convince us to do so is rather odd. He would not do that for medical research or for organ harvesting. He would do that to “teaching human beings their true nature” and to remove our “specialness”.

 

Brain implants are happening — are you ready for yours?

Many big players are working right now to make brain implants a reality. On paper everything looks great – enhance your mind and be a better human (or not, it depends). This article, however, focuses on the possible negative effect of brain implants, like losing our humanity or being forced to have one.

 

A startup is pitching a mind-uploading service that is “100 percent fatal”

“So you want to upload your mind? Great! But first, we need to kill you”. Nectome promises to preserve your brain long enough for other people to figure out how to upload minds.

 

Artificial Intelligence

Waiting For the Robot Rembrandt

Machine learning algorithms can produce music and paintings but are they art? The conclusion of the article is interesting. True AI fine art “will also be a triumph of materialism, further eroding the specialness of the human species and unveiling a world that has neither mystery nor God in which humans are merely machines made of inanimate materials”

 

Is AI a reflection of the good, the bad, and the ugly side of humanity?

“The inconvenient truth is that the internet is the greatest reflection of humanity. Online users turned Microsoft’s innocent and helpful Twitter chatbot, Tay, into a racist troll within 24 hours. We have also created cyberbullying, trolling, and cyberstalking. These are the real reasons that big thinkers are nervous about AI. We can create the machines and design them with the greater good in mind or add the darker elements of the human condition.”

 

Robotics

Burger-flipping robot taken offline after one day

Turns out that Flippy, a burger flipping robot that was meant to replace humans, was worse than humans. Humans vs robots – 1:0 (for now at least).

 

What happens when AI meets robotics?

A team of researchers from University of Texas, Austin, was asking the same question and decided to set the challenge of bringing robots out of their comfort zone and into our messy world with different experiments, like teaching robots how to play football.

 

The Quest to Make a Robotic Cat Walk With Artificial Neurons

There is a cat named Kleo living in USC. Well, actually, it is a biomechanical robot which uses artificial neurons to become a cat.

 

The Most Realistic Robots

Some robots are getting better at looking and behaving like a human. This video showcases some of them – Geminoids, Nadine, Sophia and Avatar Shaman (which is not a human at all but still looks pretty convincing).

 

Robotic Tortoise Helps Kids to Learn That Robot Abuse Is a Bad Thing

Shelly is a cute tortoise robot which likes to play, but if you hit it, it’ll hide inside its shell until it’s safe to come out again. The primary purpose of this robot was to teach kids to be less abusive. The secondary I suspect could be to avoid another innocent robot being beaten by children.

 

Toyota AI-equipped robot shoots hoops better than professional basketball players

Humans vs robot at throwing a basketball – 0:1