6th May 2016

Issue #48

This week – bringing frozen dead people back to life, AI on a USB stick, Google AI reads a lot of romances, humanoid robo-mermaid and robo-surgeon, human embryo grown in lab and more!


More Than A Human

Frozen Faith: Cryonics and The Quest to Cheat Death

What if we could use technology to cheat death? It’s an idea that seems like science fiction, but for a small group of people known as cryonicists, the hope of one day being able to successfully freeze and re-animate a person after death remains something worth fighting for. In Frozen Faith, Motherboard explores the world of cryonics, and meets the people who embrace the notion that one day technology will become sophisticated enough that we can actually cheat death.

If cryonics suddenly worked, we’d need to face the fallout

Imagine cryonics worked. We are bringing up the frozen dead people back to life decades or centuries after their death. How would they react? Would they find a place in a strange new world of the future? Rachel Nuwer on BBC Future tries to answer these “what if” questions.

Brain-Dead People Could be ‘Brought Back to Life,’ Thanks to New Biotech Experiments

The ReAnima Project, a project to assess the possibility of regenerating the brains of dead people was given the go-ahead to work with 20 patients already declared clinically dead from traumatic brain injury to test whether parts of their central nervous system can be brought back to life.

Google Wants to Inject Cyborg Lenses into Our Eyeballs

Google has filed a patent for a computerized lens that is inserted directly into the eye. This new tech could help those who suffer from common eye problems, but could also allow hackers a front row seat to our private lives. But it is worth noting that, just because Google is filing a patent for a new invention, that doesn’t mean it will be created.

Artificial Intelligence

Mark Zuckerberg thinks AI will start outperforming humans in the next decade

I don’t think Zuckerberg’s statement is far off. Right now computers can read, hear or act in some situation at a human level, if not better. When you take into account that technology advances at exponential rate it becomes clear that super-human AI is closer than most people think.

Can you teach a computer to play Doom deathmatches like a human?

The 2016 Computational Intelligence and Games (CIG) Conference will host a competition to determine the best bot that’s capable of winning a multiplayer round of Doom, while playing the way a human does.

The White House Has Realized Artificial Intelligence Is Very Important

The White House sees the importance of AI and decides to hold a couple of event focusing on using AI and machine learning in government agencies.

Artificial intelligence now fits inside a USB stick

Yup, you can now have an AI on a USB stick, which uses the same chip as the newest drones that can “see” and avoid obstacles.

Google’s AI has read enough romance novels to write one on its own

In an effort to make its apps more conversational, Google fed its AI engine a whopping 2,865 romance novels so it can improve its understanding of language.

Can artificial intelligence create the next wonder material?

Some researchers believe that machine-learning techniques can revolutionize how materials science is done. It most likely won’t look like in Iron Man 2 , but who knows what kind of new materials we can find with a little help from an AI.

Robotics

Humanoid Robo-Mermaid Dives For Lost Treasure

A team at Stanford University build OceanOne – a humanoid robot-mermaid initially designed to explore coral reefs, but recently was helping underwater archeology researchers explored a shipwreck near Frech coast. The robot is remotely controlled by a human on the surface and it is able to give haptic feedback to the operator.

Autonomous Robot Surgeon Bests Humans in World First

A robot named STAR (Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot) stitched up a pig’s small intestines using its own vision, tools, and intelligence to carry out the procedure and did it better than human surgeons who were given the same task.

Why An Autonomous Robot Won’t Replace Your Surgeon Anytime Soon

Instead, the robots will be helping surgeons, not replacing them.

Top Ten Robotics TED Talks

From friendly robots to exoskeletons and human-machine interaction to killer robots and merging humans with machines.

Meet Valkyrie—NASA’s Humanoid Robot for Future Space Missions

Valkyrie, a six-foot-tall, 300-pound humanoid robot is being programmed by MIT and other institutions to serve on future space missions.

Monospinner Is A Drone With One Moving Part

Monospinner is a drone that has only one moving part – itself. The whole drone is a rotor and a blade.

Biotechnology

Human Embryo Grown in Lab

Scientists reported Wednesday they had grown human embryos in the lab for nearly two weeks, an unprecedented feat that promises advances in assisted reproduction, stem-cell therapies and the basic understanding of how human beings form.

Is Diy Kitchen CRISPR A Class Issue?

Popular Science tells the story of Josiah Zayner, a biohacker who wants to make CRISPR available for everyone by selling DIY CRISPR kits. In doing so, he stirs biohacking community and challenges the way we do science.

Can Synthetic Blood Help The World’s Blood Shortage?

Trace Dominquez from Test Tube explains how synthetic blood can help the world’s blood shortage, why it would be cool to have it and where we are with synthetic blood development.

Outro

Build And Donate A Prosthetic Arm For Children Who Desperately Need It

I like this idea. You can download, 3D print and build a prosthetic arm, which then you can donate to children. Just go to this website and you can start right away. If you don’t own a 3D printer, don’t worry, these guys will help you find one near you.

Machines Won’t Replace Us, They’ll Force Us to Evolve

Interesting point on human-machine interaction, where the human is not the “operator”, but rather a “curator” or “mentor” for the machine. You just specify the problem, let the machine find solutions and pick the right one. This approach changes how we work with computers and how we design or solve problems in the future.

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