Issue #34

A lot of things happened this week! Google’s AI mastered Go, home-made exoskeletons, AI’s writing stuff, patent war on CRISPR, biohackers, robots and more!

More Than A Human

10 Biohackers Who Turned Into Superhumans

A video that showcases 10 biohackers, who are right now experimenting with upgrading their bodies using technology.

Here’s a Homemade Exoskeleton Jacking Up a Small Car

This guy made an Elysium- -inspired exoskeleton in his shop capable of lifting a Mini Cooper.

And another DIY exoskeleton

This partially paralysed Bali man created a bionic arm from scrap metal. Very impressive!

Could Super Soldiers Exist in Real Life?

Scott Niswander from NerdSync wants to know how scientifically accurate super soldiers like Bloodshot are. How do Bloodshot’s nanites stack up against the real-world nanoparticles? Is it possible to plant false memories into our brains? Check the video to find out!

The Neurologist Who Hacked His Brain—And Almost Lost His Mind

A story of Phil Kennedy, a neurologist, who wanted tap into a healthy human brain – his own brain, to be precise – and how it almost cost him his mind.

Singularity or Transhumanism: What Word Should We Use to Discuss the Future?

Singularity. Posthuman. Techno-Optimism, Cyborgism. Humanity+. Immortalist. Machine intelligence. Biohacker. Robotopia. Life extension. Transhumanism. Zoltan Istvan tries to find the right word to discuss the future.

Artificial Intelligence

Google’s AI Masters the Game of Go a Decade Earlier Than Expected

Google achieves one of the long-standing “grand challenges” of AI by building a computer that can beat expert players at the board game Go.

The race for the master algorithm has begun

The master algorithm, the ultimate algorithm describing the human mind, is the Holy Grail of AI research. Pedro Domingos explains five different approaches to tackle the same problem.

Microsoft’s Cortana is Now a Chinese TV Weather Anchor

Xiaoice, the Chinese alter-ego of Microsoft’s Cortana, is the new weather girl for a Chinese morning TV show, making it the first AI to ever take on a job of this kind. Eliza Cassan anyone?

Marvin Minsky, Pioneer in Artificial Intelligence, Dies at 88

Marvin Minsky, the pioneer in artificial intelligence, died last Sunday at 88.

We Asked a Robot to Write an Obit for AI Pioneer Marvin Minsky

The Wired asked AI system to write an obituary for Marvin Minsky. You can compare it with the New York Times obituary linked above and decide, which one is better.

This Guy Built a Robot to Write New Episodes of Friends

He fed a recurrent neural network with the scripts of every episode of Friends and it learned to generate new scenes.

How an AI Algorithm Learned to Write Political Speeches

Here’s an overview of an algorithm trained to write political speeches.

This A.I. sends the nasty emails you wish you could write

And here’s an AI that writes mean emails.

Obsessing Over AI Is the Wrong Way to Think About the Future

The article clarifies the difference between artificial intelligence and intelligence amplification, which is, according to the article’s author, more appropriate word to describe our current AI systems. He also emphasises that the future is not humans vs machines, but humans with machines.

How ‘artificial swarm intelligence’ uses people to make better predictions than experts

While AI focuses on creating intelligent machines that perform human tasks, a human-based algorithm, harnessing the power of the crowd to make predictions, shows remarkable accuracy.


World’s Fastest Rubik’s Cube Solving Robot

And it is freaking fast! Don’t blink or you will miss it!

Should We Make Robots That Die Like Humans?

Scientists are developing cutting-edge technology to make robot inter and external structures decomposable. Would like to have a robot that rots?

After 30 Days, The FAA Has Now Registered Almost 300K Drone Owners

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced that almost 300,000 drone owners have now used its online registration system.

There’s now a drone racing league that feels like pod racing from Star Wars

The Drone Racing League (DRL) announced its inaugural racing season. The league hopes to be the Formula 1, NASCAR and MotoGP of drone racing, and has secured backing from venture capital firms and celebrities to make that a reality.

Should We Outsource Emotional Labor to Robots?

“Emotional labor”—the performance of feelings that service workers must provide to their customers is exhausting and stressful for people, who need to do it on a daily basis. And there are companies that try to outsource that job to cute, cuddly robots.

What If: Robots Go to War?

A hour-long discussion panel recorded during World Economic Forum in Davos on the question “What if autonomous weapon systems replace both soldiers and generals?”.

Will Humans Be Obsolete After The New Industrial Revolution?

The world has undergone three industrial revolutions that have dramatically impacted the way we live. So what will happen during the fourth industrial revolution?

Why Robots Can’t Be Funny…Yet.

Trace Dominquez from DNews analyses why robots, which can create recipes, play games and even think for themselves to a certain extent, can’t be funny.


The Battle Over CRISPR Could Make Or Break Some Biotech Companies

The patent war between discoverers of CRISPR might have some unexpected casualties in the form of companies which licenced the technology from the losing side of the war.

BioViva CEO Liz Parrish on Becoming Gene Therapy Test Subject

Here’s a full, almost one-hour long interview with BioViva CEO Liz Parrish where she’s asked about being a gene therapy test subject developed by her company.

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