A newly founded artificial intelligence lab, called Vicarious, wants to build the world’s first, unified artificial intelligence that can match human intelligence. This is not the first time we’ve heard companies or universities trumpet such ambitious goals, but considering who’s backing the project I can only entertain the possibility Vicarious might just do it. Entrepreneurs with great vision and a track record of backing successful companies have all hopped aboard, like Elon Musk (SpaceX, Tesla), Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), Peter Thiel (Paypal, founder of venture capital and hedge funds worth billions), Jerry Yang (Yahoo! founder), Jeff Bezos (Amazon founder) and more.
With Virtual Reality headsets coming out right around the corner, how can the gap with experience become more immersive? A couple of technologies on the horizon and currently under development may be the key.
Quantum computing is one of the future’s transitional technologies destined to transform human society, along with advanced materials like graphene and metallic glass or advances in space propulsion. Imagine what the transition from vacuum tubes to transistors did for computing, scale that a couple of folds and you might somewhat be close to what quantum computers are capable of. Operations that today’s supercomputers require days even weeks to crunch, would be completed immediately by leveraging the quantum weirdness that happens below the nano scale. All of this is theoretically possible – but in practice building a working quantum computer that doesn’t disintegrate information has proven to be an immense challenge. We’re still far from there, but advances reported by Australian researchers hint that quantum computers aren’t a pipe dream.
A recent study, described in the Sept. 17 edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences and co-authored by postdoctoral fellow Steven Frankland and Professor of Psychology Joshua Greene, takes a look at exactly how the human brain creates new thoughts. Their findings indicate that two adjacent brain regions are the cornerstone of the process, using a sort of conceptual algebra similar to the workings of silicon computers that represent variables and their changing values.
Despite decades worth of research, unbelievable computing power and sophisticated algorithms, one of today’s best artificial intelligence can’t score better than a four year old on a standard IQ test.
For most people listening to music or playing an instrument is a great way to relax, unwind, have fun, and express themselves. But not everybody is able to perceive, appreciate or memorize music, to sing or to dance. Monica is one such person, and to her, any kind of music is just a bunch of noise that makes her head ache and feel stressed.
Material scientists at Oxford University, collaborating with experts from Karlsruhe, Munster and Exeter, have developed the world’s first light-based memory banks that can store data permanently. The device is build from simple materials, in use in CDs and DVDs today, and promises to dramatically improve the speed of modern computing.
Two drugs, currently prescribed to organ transplant patients to suppress their immune system after the procedure, show great promise as birth-control medicine for men, according to a study published in the journal Science.
While everyone from Google, to Tesla, to BMW is engineering driverless cars, gearing up for an impeding auto revolution, a Chinese company went directly for a niche market: driverless buses.
After the recent Volkswagen fiasco which revealed that their cars emit much more than they should (and claimed), a new study revealed that diesel cars made by Renault, Nissan, Hyundai, Citroen, Fiat, Volvo and many others also emit more.