October 18, 2018

    Artificial intelligence learns to compromise. Image by pixabay.com
    Could Artificial intelligence strike a bargain better than humans?

    Artificial intelligence has made major advances and is now able to beat humans in Chess and also at Go. However, could we teach AI to also co-operate and compromise? Researchers at Brigham Young University have developed an algorithm to do just that. Using an algorithm S# they programmed machines for a two-player game to see how they would cooperate with humans. The machines were programmed to use common phrases like, 'Sweet. We are getting rich', or 'In your face!' and the human counterparts in the game at times couldn't distinguish between a machine and a human. The use of cheap talk by the machines surprisingly increased the level of cooperation. This shows that using simple algorithms machines can be trained to cooperate with humans which might be at times better than humans themselves.

    Read the full story: www.neurosciencenews.com
    Scientific publication: www.nature.com

    Source: Лечение Наркомании via pixabay.com
    A greedy cryptocurrency miner might be a bigger threat than spyware or viruses

    Coinhive, the software that uses the computational processing power of other people's devices to mine cryptocurrency is becoming the most prevalent form of malware on the internet. This practice of secretly mining cryptocurrency on others' hardware has affected 55% of all organizations globally and has overtaken ransomware as a tool of choice to extort money. Further, researchers at the security firm Wandera have claimed that such exploitation on mobile devices has increased by 250%. Also, such attacks are becoming more sophisticated since some of these could be detected only by Darktrace, a program which uses artificial intelligence to identify cyber threats and went unnoticed by the usual detection tools.

    Read the full story: https://www.technologyreview.com/

    Source: Gerd Altmann from pixabay.com
    Google's Could AutoML is bringing AI to the masses

    The major hindrance to the democratization of artificial intelligence (AI) is that only big companies can afford to build their own AI algorithms since they scoop up the limited pool of talent available. Chief Scientist at Google Cloud, Fei-Fei Li says that it is high time that 'we need to scale AI out to more people'. Hence, Google has launched a new service called 'Cloud AutoML' which provides several machine learning algorithms to their cloud services so that anyone with basic coding skills can harness the power of AI. Several other companies like Amazon and Microsoft are also rushing to add to their cloud services the machine learning capabilities.

    Read the full story: https://www.technologyreview.com/

    Source: typographyimages via pixabay.
    Bitcoin and Ethereum might not be as decentralized as you think

    Bitcoin has been the darling of the previous year showing a meteoric rise in its 'virtual' value. The dreamy view of Bitcoin and for that matter, Ethereum is based on the idea that they are decentralized giving power back to the people. However, cryptocurrency expert Emin Sirer and colleagues from Cornell University says that no one has even bothered to fact check as to how truly decentralized these systems are. They found that 4 Bitcoin mining operations accounted for 53% of its mining capacity while 3 miners accounted for 61% of Ethereum's mining. The beg the question to be asked: 'Are these cryptocurrencies truly decentralized?'

    Read the full story: https://www.technologyreview.com/

    CSIRO via Wikimedia Commons
    China looking to built yet another giant telescope to detect aliens

    China plans to build the world’s largest steerable telescope in a quest to detect dark matter, gravitational waves and possible alien signals. China already has the world’s largest telescope, the Five hundred meter Aperture Spherical Telescope (FAST). The new telescope will be located in the Xinjiang Autonomous Region and will be named as the Qitai 110m Radio Telescope (QTT). FAST covers lower frequencies as proposed for QTT, however both the telescopes will have an overlapping coverage of 150 MHz to 3GHz. This would mean that signals detected by one telescope could be confirmed by the other provided data is being analysed in real time.

    Read the full story: https://www.cnet.com/

    Falcon rocket family, Image by: Lucabon via commons.wikimedia.org
    Elon Musk’s SpaceX to test fire Falcon Heavy’s 27 engines

    While the first demonstration of the biggest ever rocket launch might be several days in the future, SpaceX is planning to do an initial test to launch Falcon Heavy’s 27 engines at the NASA’s Kennedy Space Center on Tuesday. The Falcon Heavy is composed of 3 Falcon 9 rockets put together and is supposed to be the most powerful rocket ever fired since the Saturn V rocket which took Apollo astronauts to the moon. The most exciting is the static fire test in which all 27 Merlin engines are fired simultaneously. The current proposed time of firing is 1 pm PT.

    Read the full story: https://www.cnet.com/

    Baidu driverless car
    Baidu Driverless car

    Baidu which is the largest search company in China, is focusing its resources on developing high definition maps which will become obligatory for autonomous cars to ride safely.  Baidu, who is a recent entrant in the driverless cars sector is in talks with Apollo for developing an open source approach and also has partnerships with over 90 companies including Ford and Nvidia. However, the Chief Operating Officer Qi Lu, believes that the HD maps will be a much bigger business as compared to Baidu’s current search business as of today and aims to sell these HD maps to customers like car manufacturers.

    Read full story: https://www.technologyreview.com/

    Intel Chip's are getting closer to the human brain
    Intel Chip's are getting closer to the human brain
    Intel has developed a neuromorphic chip. As the name suggests, a neuromorphic chip mimics the functioning of the neurons and synapses of the human brain. These chips also go a step further and inscribe the work of the neural networks it runs, onto silicon thereby generating a memory. Intel’s device, ‘Loihi’ which it displayed at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, uses the chip to identify objects which are recorded by a webcam. Also, at the show, Intel announced that it is also building a large quantum computing chip which would have the capacity to do computations at tremendous speed.

    Read full story https://www.technologyreview.com/s/609909/intels-new-chips-are-more-brain-like-than-ever/

    Artificial Intelligence doubts itself
    Artificial Intelligence news
    Deep learning, the most refined approach of AI has had tremendous success in the last few years which has enabled machines to recognize objects, faces, voices and translate languages. However, AI is now gaining another capacity of having a sense of uncertainty. Uber has recently released Pyro, a new programming language which integrates deep learning with probabilistic programming. With Google having rebuilt its entire business model around AI and deep learning, this is an interesting development since it means that the AI systems will get smarter by understanding what they don’t know.

    Read full story: https://www.technologyreview.com/

    Mind controlled bionic arm
    Mind controlled bionic arm
    The field of Bionic limbs has undergone massive strides of improvement in the recent years. These include mind controlled limbs which can ‘feel’ using a technology called M.A.S.S (Muscle Activity Sensor Strip) which utilizes pressure sensors to monitor the movements in the limb muscles. However, they had a limitation since the computers which were needed to operate these limbs were bulky and hence restricted to labs. However, Rome based neurologist Professor Paolo Rossini and researchers in Europe have developed a system which picks up signals from the hand and transmits it to a portable computer which then converts these signals which the brain can decode. This increases the possibility of using this technology more in real life situations.

    Read full story: https://www.cnet.com/news/

    A globe could improve the efficiency of nuclear fusion energy production
    A globe could improve the efficiency of nuclear fusion energy production
    The classical deuterium-tritium reactors used in nuclear fusion are inefficient since sustaining the superheated plasma which is necessary for energy production consumes more electricity than the amount of electricity produced. This is because, tremendous amount of energy gets wasted when the atoms release neutrons and also that the remaining energy cannot be directly converted to electricity. However, a recent model proposed by Dr. Heinrich Hora from Australia shows that the energy of the plasma could be directly converted to electricity and not spent on wastefully heating up the water along the way since the release charged particles can be directly converted to current in a wire. Also, the spherical shape of the reactor proposed could efficiently retain the energy produced.

    Read the full story: https://www.livescience.com/

    Scientific publication: https://www.cambridge.org/ 

    Let's hack the brain and create a superintelligence to beat the AI. Image credit: GerryShaw, EnCor Biotechnology.
    Let's hack the brain and create a superintelligence to beat the AI. Image credit: GerryShaw, EnCor Biotechnology.
    Bryan Johnson and his company Kernel are developing brain augmentation tools. The vision is to download our brains onto chips and find ways to enhance its functioning very much similar to the company launched by Elon Musk in 2017. This will then pose the new dilemma to distinguish between humans and machines.

    Read full story: https://www.cnet.com/news.

    May the force be with you - But does it actually exist? - Image source: Wikimedia Commons
    May the force be with you - But does it actually exist? - Image source: Wikimedia Commons
    The protagonist of Stars Wars: The Last Jedi, Rey, seeks to understand the FORCE, which brings us to a real scientific question- do we have something in quantum physics which might resemble it. Quantum mechanics does describe a concept where two objects are truly connected to each other and affecting one has a ripple effect on the other. This so-called entanglement has been shown to be real in modern physics experiments.

    Read full story: https://www.livescience.com/61177-could-star-wars-force-exist.html

    Plants emitting light powered by their own energy metabolism.
    Plants emitting light powered by their own energy metabolism. - life science news
    A team of MIT researchers with funding from US Department of Energy have developed plants that emit light which is powered by their own energy metabolism. They used the enzyme luciferase, which is the same enzyme which makes fireflies glow. If things go as plan, maybe someday plants emitting light could illuminate entire living rooms and sidewalks. How cool would that be?

    Read the full story: https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/vbz78j/researchers-are-working-on-bioluminescent-plants-that-glow

    Play a game build a quantum computer. Image by: Pixabay.com
    Play a game build a quantum computer
    Quantum physics is confusing enough, rest alone quantum computers which look like highly complex messy machines from the future. However, Piotr Migdal, a Polish programmer has released The Quantum Game making building of a quantum computer a fun-filled experience. Players have several 'levels' in which they are presented with a grid in which they can assemble several parts to create a virtual quantum computer.

    Read the full story: https://motherboard.vice.com/

    Cryptocurrencies were mined using customers laptops using Starbucks wifi © pixabay.com
    Cryptocurrencies were mined using customers laptops using Starbucks wifi
    Visiting Starbucks for his daily caffeine dose, Stensul CEO Noah Dinkin realized that his laptop power was being used to mine cryptocurrencies via a hacked WiFi network. However, Starbuck's spokesperson has stated that the incident was restricted to the Buenos Aires location and has been resolved. It was further stated that the problem was with the service provider and not within the control of Starbucks.

    Read the full story: https://motherboard.vice.com/

    AI porn is here and it's scarry
    Artificial inteligence porn is here and it's scarry
    A person who goes by the handle DEEPFAKES, has developed an AI algorithm in which he could seamlessly superimpose the faces of famous Hollywood actresses like Gal Gadot on hardcore porn videos. This is making it scarily simple to make believable videos of people who might have never been involved in the activity. DEEPFAKES claims that his algorithm is similar to the one used by Nvidia in which they could instantly turn a summer video into a winter one.

    Read the full story: https://motherboard.vice.com/en_us/article/gydydm/gal-gadot-fake-ai-porn

    Using old tires as energy source to mine Cryptocurrencies
    Using old tires as energy source to mine Cryptocurrencies
    The major concern with cryptocurrencies is that they require a tremendous amount of energy for operations. An American company based in North Carolina, Standard American Mining has partnered with PRTI a tire thermal demanfacturing company have partnered to solve this problem. They intend to use the energy generated from PRTI to power mining several cryptocurrencies like Ethereum.

    Read the full story: https://motherboard.vice.com/

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