Issue #69

Inside – on enhancing humans, Google deploys neural network to translate languages, Yann LeCun talks about the future of AI, giant battle robot has a hard time and more!


More Than A Human

Here’s What the Future of Human Modification Might Look Like

In this discussion (47 minutes long), British philosopher David Pearce, Sci-fi author Richard Morgan, and Nicky Ashwell (who is a pioneering user of a new kind of bionic prosthetic) talk about how our technology will impact the future of society and transform what it means to be human. Very interesting, I recommend watch it.

Brain-Sensing Implant Lets Monkeys Transcribe Shakespeare

After being fitted with implants that read brain signals, monkeys in a Stanford study were able to transcribe segments of Hamlet at a rate of 12 words per minute. The tech could eventually lead to a new means of communication for the severely disabled.

Biohacking superhumans: Future of Human Evolution

Human body might become the next great operating system that future hackers (or biohackers) will tinker with. From nanomachines flowing inside our veins to replacing organs to enhancing brains and senses, this article outlines possible way we can soon engineer superhumans.

Artificial Intelligence

Prof. Yann LeCun – Deep Learning and the Future of AI

Interesting talk by Yann LeCun, one of the pioneers of deep learning. He explains how deep learning and deep convolutional networks work in more technical details. He also shows how deep learning is used in the wild world and then tells what does the future hold for the AI.

Google unleashes deep learning tech on language with Neural Machine Translation

The new technique beats current translation algorithms and are very close to a human-like level of translation.

Three Challenges for Artificial Intelligence in Medicine

According to this article, AI is not widely used in medicine, where correct pattern recognition decides between life and death. There are three central challenges that have plagued past efforts to use artificial intelligence in medicine: the label problem, the deployment problem, and fear around regulation.

Is Artificial Intelligence Permanently Inscrutable?

Neural networks are complex. So complex that we might never understand how they generated the answer for given problem. Nobody knows quite how they work. And that means no one can predict when they might fail. The article also points out that there is a trade-off between high accuracy and transparency or understanding the algorithm, which reminds me of Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle from quantum mechanics. Or just abandon computer science approach to understand AI and use techniques used by biologists.

AI Are People, Too — It’s Time We Recognize Their Human Rights

What do you think – should a sufficiently advanced AI be granted “human” rights? Or is still just a machine? Advancements in AI might soon force us to redefine the concept of personhood to include or exclude artificial beings. Glenn Cohen briefly explains what the problem looks like and gives some possible answers.

Where will Artificial Intelligence come from?

Where will the next major advance towards general purpose artificial intelligence come from, asks Sebastian Nowozin in his article and provides seven possible places the artificial general intelligence might come from.

Robotics

D-Wave Founder’s New Startup Combines AI, Robots, and Monkeys in Exo-Suits

A new startup called Kindred, founded by a group of quantum computing pioneers, wants to develop an advanced AI system to control and train robots. The system consists of an exoskeleton that tracks human (or monkey) movement and then translates it into movement of the robot. Eventually, the system will learn from its operators and be autonomous.

How to Destroy a Giant Robot

Watch how guys from Megabots test their giant battle robot if it is able to stand some hits and punches. It’s quite entertaining seeing a $200,000, 6-ton, 4.5 meters tall robots being beaten up.

DARPA Wants A New Anti-drone Weapon By 2020

And it might be some kind of laser gun.

Soft Robots

In this video (five minutes long), we will meet researchers from BioRobotics Institute, explaining what soft robotics is and what are advantages of these robots. Personally, I liked their vision of the future, where traditional, “hard” robots merge with soft robots.

A brief history of robotics

Here’s a quick and refreshing timeline of key achievements in the fields of robotics and AI, from Asimov to AlphaGo.

Biotechnology

Can CRISPR–Cas9 Boost Intelligence?

Maybe, one day. There are many problems to solve before we can boost our intelligence. These are not only technical problems but also ethical, social and even personal problems.

Regenerative Biology: Scientists Discovered A New Molecule That Regenerates Bone Tissue

Researchers from California discover the key to simplifying the creation of engineered bones: adenosine. This naturally occurring molecule can be injected into bone tissue to coax human pluripotent stem cells to regenerate.

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