Daily Mail - Science & tech


Google's latest Translate function turns speech of one dialect directly into another

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Google has announced a new translate tool which convert sone language into another and preserves the speaker's original voice. The tech giant's new system works without the need to convert it to text before. A first-of-its-kind, the tool is able to do this while retaining the voice of the original speaker and making it sound'more realistic', the tech giant said. Google claims the system, dubbed'Translatotron', will be able to retain the voice of the original speaker after translation while also understanding words better. Google has announced that their new translate tool will convert one language into another without the intermediate text-based process.


Alphabet-owned Wing will begin making drone deliveries in Finland next month

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Wing, an offshoot of Google's parent company, Alphabet, will launch drone deliveries to one of Finland's most populous areas next month according to a recent blog post from the company. Pilot deliveries will be rolled out in the Vousari district of Finland's capital, Helsinki, and will deliver products from gourmet supermarket Herkku foods and Cafe Monami. As noted by Wing, deliveries will include'fresh Finnish pastries, meatballs for two, and a range of other meals and snacks' that can be delivered in minutes. Wing will launch deliveries for customers in Finland starting next month. Wing, the first commercial drone company approved by the FAA in the U.S. will start delivering in Virginia.


Why the Pentagon is interested UFOs: Former Air Force security advisor explains

Daily Mail - Science & tech

U.S. Navy pilots and sailors won't be considered crazy for reporting unidentified flying objects, under new rules meant to encourage them to keep track of what they see. Yet just a few years ago, the Pentagon reportedly shut down another official program that investigated UFO sightings. Is the U.S. military finally coming around to the idea that alien spacecraft are visiting our planet? The answer to that question is almost certainly no. Humans' misinterpretation of observations of natural phenomena are as old as time and include examples such as manatees being seen as mermaids and driftwood in a Scottish loch being interpreted as a monster.


Teaching AI how to feel FEAR could make autonomous cars better drivers, study suggests

Daily Mail - Science & tech

'Physiological changes are correlated with these biological preparations to protect one-self from danger.' According to the researchers, teaching the algorithm when a person might feel more anxious in a given situation could serve as a guide to help machines avoid risks. 'Our hypothesis is that such reward functions can circumvent the challenges associated with sparse and skewed rewards in reinforcement learning settings and can help improve sample efficiency,' the team explains. The researchers put the autonomous software through a simulated maze filled with walls and ramps to see how they performed with fear instilled in them. And, compared to an AI that was trained based only on wall proximity, the system that had learned fear was much less likely to crash. 'A major advantage of training a reward on a signal correlated with the sympathetic nervous system responses is that the rewards are non-sparse - the negative reward starts to show up much before the car collides,' the researchers wrote. 'This leads to efficiency in training and with proper design can lead to policies that are also aligned with the desired mission.'


Hear Joe Rogan's voice duplicated by an AI: Startup unveils system that can mimic celebrity voices

Daily Mail - Science & tech

A new startup has created an artificial intelligence system capable of mimicking voices that are unprecedentedly close to the real thing. In a video from Dessa, an AI company staffed by former employees of Google, IBM, and Microsoft, multiple audio clips demonstrate a machine-learning software that parrots the voice of popular podcaster, Joe Rogan to a degree that's almost indiscernible from the real thing. In the clips, the computer-generated Rogan muses on topics like chimpanzee's who can play hockey; it pulls off some adept tongue-twisters; and it even pontificates theories about how we're all living in a simulation, which as noted by The Verge, are some of Rogan's favorite topics. Joe Rogan is one of the most popular podcasters in the world, giving AI plenty of data to choose from when trying to mimic the host's voice In a response, even Rogan himself called the demonstration'terrifyingly accurate' reports CNET. What makes the demonstration more intriguing, or perhaps scary, according to Dessa is that software like the one demonstrated channeling Rogan could soon be commonplace.


Spotify unveils a voice-controlled smart device, dubbed 'Car Thing'

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Spotify has launched a new voice-controlled smart device, marking a debut in the hardware industry. Dubbed'Car Thing,' it plugs into a vehicle's cigarette lighter and allows users to turn on their favorite playlist hands-free while they're driving. The device is being rolled out among a small group of test users in the coming weeks, according to the Verge. Spotify has launched a new voice-controlled smart device, marking a debut in the hardware industry. It allows users to turn on their favorite playlist hands-free while they're driving Users plug it into their car's 12-volt outlet, or cigarette lighter.


First AI that sees like a human could lead to automated search and rescue robots

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Computer scientists have taught an artificial intelligence agent how to take in its whole environment by just taking a few snapshots. The new technology can gather visual information that can be used for a wide range of tasks including search-and-rescue. Researchers have taught the computer system how to take quick glimpses around a room it has never seen before to create a'full scene'. The scientists used deep learning, a type of machine learning inspired by the brain's neural networks, to train their agent on thousands of 360-degree images of different environments. They say that their research could aid effective search-and-rescue missions by making robots that could relay information to authorities.


NYPD uses photos of celebrities like Woody Harrelson to help find suspects using facial recognition

Daily Mail - Science & tech

A new report details what privacy experts are calling a dangerous misapplication of facial recognition that uses photos of celebrities and digitally-doctored images to comb for criminals. According to a detailed investigation by Georgetown Law's Center on Privacy and Technology, one New York Police Department detective attempted to identify a suspect by scanning the face of actor Woody Harrelson. After footage from a security camera failed to produce results in a facial recognition scan, the detective used Google images of what he concluded to be the suspects celebrity doppelganger -- Woody Harrelson -- to run a test. The system turned up a match, says the report, who was eventually arrested on charges of petit larceny. In a new report from Georgetown University, an investigation shows that police have used celebrities to help its facial recognition software identify suspects.


Can YOU tell which if these women are ill just by looking at them?

Daily Mail - Science & tech

It may be possible to spot if your relative, friend or colleague is ill just by looking at them, research suggests. Scientists injected volunteers with either E.coli or a placebo before asking others how sick they looked two hours later. The infected patients were judged to look'significantly worse', with people noticing their drooping eyelids and mouths. They also showed more negative facial expressions, which may be brought on by inflammation as the immune system fights off the infection. Researchers believe humans may have evolved the ability to pick up on subtle cues that suggest someone is contagious to avoid getting ill.


US government looking to develop AI that can track people across surveillance network

Daily Mail - Science & tech

An advanced research arm of the U.S. government's intelligence community is looking to develop AI capable of tracking people across a vast surveillance network. As reported by Nextgov, the Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) has put out a call for more information on developing an algorithm that can be trained to identify targets by visually analyzing swaths of security camera footage. The goal, says the request, is to be able to identify and track subjects across areas as large as six miles in an effort to reconstruct crime scenes, protect military operations, and monitor critical infrastructure facilities. To develop the technology, IARPA will collect nearly 1,000 hours of video surveillance from at least 20 camera networks and then, using that sample, test various algorithms effectiveness. The agency's interest in AI-based surveillance technology mirrors a broader movement from governments and intelligence communities around the globe, many of whom have ramped up efforts to develop and scale systems.