Each week on a Wednesday Nikolas Badminton, Futurist highlights the top stories from the past week relating to the incredible rise of artificial intelligence and its application in society, the workplace, in cities, and in our lives.
In Artificial Intelligence Bulletin – Mobile AI we see how Facebook is putting AI into mobile apps, Kevin Warwick talking about cybernetics, the future of work, Elon Musk, and more developments from Google.
Facebook’s tech boss on how AI will transform how we interact
Making your clips look like an episode of The Simpsons or a Van Gogh painting may seem gimmicky, but the artificial intelligence required to do this would usually need to run on massive servers. Google squeezed a neural network into its Google Translate app last year. Now, Facebook has developed a deep learning system called Caffe2Go that is condensed enough to run directly in mobile apps on iOS and Android. The style transfer technique will be the first opportunity for users to try it out.
New Scientist spoke to Facebook’s chief technology officer, Mike Schroepfer, about the company’s work in AI and how it will affect the way we communicate, from the existing Facebook newsfeed to the future of virtual reality and increasing global connectivity
Read more at New Scientist
The Future of Artificial Intelligence and Cybernetics By Kevin Warwick
Science fiction has, for many years, looked to a future in which robots are intelligent and cyborgs — human/machine amalgams — are commonplace: The Terminator, The Matrix, Blade Runner and I, Robot are all good examples of this. However, until the last decade any consideration of what this might actually mean in the future real world was not necessary because it was all science fiction and not scientific reality. Now, however, science has not only done a catching-up exercise but, in bringing about some of the ideas thrown up by science fiction, it has introduced practicalities that the original story lines did not appear to extend to (and in some cases have still not extended to).
What we consider here are several different experiments in linking biology and technology together in a cybernetic fashion, essentially ultimately combining humans and machines in a relatively permanent merger. Key to this is that it is the overall final system that is important. Where a brain is involved, which surely it is, it must not be seen as a stand-alone entity but rather as part of an overall system, adapting to the system’s needs: the overall combined cybernetic creature is the system of importance.
Each experiment is described in its own section. Whilst there is a distinct overlap between the sections, they each throw up individual considerations. Following a description of each investigation, some pertinent issues on the topic are therefore discussed. Points have been raised with a view to near term future technical advances and what these might mean in a practical scenario. It has not been the case of an attempt here to present a fully packaged conclusive document; the aim has rather been to open up the range of research being carried out, to see what is actually involved and to look at some of its implications.
Read more at BBVA Open Mind
Prof. Moshe Y. Vardi – Humans, Machines and Work: The Future is Now
Why the Artificial Intelligence Community Doesn’t Like Elon Musk
Elon Musk is a polarizing figure. He’s promised that, with his two companies, his sole interest is to free humanity from its current tethers — Tesla, with its autonomous electric cars, and SpaceX, with its plans for Mars-bound spacecraft. Together, these companies have the potential to release us from our dependence on fossil fuels, virtually eliminate car accident fatalities, and get us off Earth. Musk’s vision for the future of the species is bright. As long as you don’t let him talk about artificial intelligence.
When he does bring up A.I., people start to don tin foil hats. He’ll invoke Skynet, call it “our greatest existential threat,” and say that, by developing A.I., “we are summoning the demon.” These claims ensure that Musk and A.I. remain in the headlines and that the possibility of an A.I.-wrought apocalypse does not go ignored. But many, if not most actual A.I. experts aren’t too happy about the de facto poster boy’s tendencies. And that’s putting it nicely.
Google’s DeepMind AI grasps basic laws of physics
Google DeepMind’s artificial intelligence team, alongside researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, has trained AI machines to interact with objects in order to evaluate their properties without any prior awareness of physical laws.
The research project drew inspiration from child development and sought to train AI to mirror human capacity to interact with physical objects and infer properties such as mass, friction, and malleability.
The study, entitled Learning to perform physics experiments via deep reinforcement learning, explained that while recent advances in AI have achieved ‘superhuman performance’ in complex control problems and other processing tasks, the machines still lack a common sense understanding of our physical world – ‘it is not clear that these systems can rival the scientific intuition of even a young child.’
Lead researcher Misha Denil and his team set about various trials in different virtual environments in which the AI was faced with a series of blocks and tasked with assessing their properties.
Read more at The Stack
Nikolas Badminton is a world-respected futurist speaker that researches, speaks, and writes about the future of work, how technology is affecting the workplace, how workers are adapting, the sharing economy, and how the world is evolving. He appears at conferences in Canada, USA, UK, and Europe. Email him to book him for your radio, TV show, or conference.