International Business Times


United Nations Should Ban AI-Powered Military Weapons, Elon Musk, AI Experts Urge

International Business Times

Autonomous weapons refer to military devices that utilize artificial intelligence in applications like determining targets to attack or avoid. "We should not lose sight of the fact that, unlike other potential manifestations of AI which still remain in the realm of science fiction, autonomous weapons systems are on the cusp of development right now and have a very real potential to cause significant harm to innocent people along with global instability." For observers like the letter's signees, much of their concern over artificial intelligence isn't about science fiction hypotheticals like Gariepy alludes to. On Musk's part, the Tesla CEO has been a longtime supporter of increased regulation for artificial intelligence research and has regularly argued that, if left unchecked, it could pose a risk to the future of mankind.


Total Solar Eclipse Weather Forecast: Will Clouds Block Your View?

International Business Times

There's a chance clouds will obscure your view of the total solar eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017, according to this map of typical cloudiness on that date through history. If clouds obscure this total solar eclipse, there won't be another one visible in the lower 48 states until April 2024, according to NASA. There will also be an annular solar eclipse, when the moon passes in front of the sun but not at the right distance to completely block it out, viewable in the continental U.S. in 2023. The last time a total solar eclipse moved through the mainland United States was in February 1979.


How Self-Driving, AI And Robotics Will Transform The Auto Industry

International Business Times

It is an industry that has functioned largely without changes for the past hundred years, but with the emergence of technologies such as artificial intelligence, self-driving and robotics, the basic paradigm of the industry is expected to change. While the Tesla Gigafactory 1 is just one of many examples of auto companies increasingly employing robots in production, it is the strongest indication that as the auto industry moves toward automation and robotics, human employment in the industry is set to decrease. According to the Information Handling Services (IHS) Technology's Automotive Electronics Roadmap Report, the use of AI based driver-assistance systems in vehicles is set to jump from 7 million a couple of years ago to 122 million by 2025. Since cars are increasingly expected to be equipped with hardware such as camera-based machine units, radar-detection units and driver evaluation units, AI will serve as the connecting interface between the regular car machinery and such hardware -- e.g., advance brake warnings using object detection feedback from the onboard cameras.


Free Amazon Echo Dot: Apparent Promo Gives Away Alexa Devices

International Business Times

Amazon's Echo Dot was made available for free through Amazon.com The apparent promo appeared to shut down around 4 p.m. EDT, with some users showing notifications that the product was no longer available. There is no listing of the promotion, which is applied at checkout and is listed as an "Audible Promo," presumably in reference to Amazon's audiobook service Audible. It is unclear if the deal or apparently giveaway was intended solely for Amazon Prime customers, but customers without Prime were also able to order the product for free as of Friday afternoon. Amazon message that Echo Dot is no longer available.


Is It Possible To Wipe Out Those Bad Memories?

International Business Times

So, weakening these connections can help in erasing the memories, the research published Thursday in the journal, Neuron, reveals. The findings of the research -- conducted using the mouse as a model -- offers insight into the treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and specific phobias. In a study published in 2014 in journal Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience, the researchers suggested a simple strategy to reduce the negative effects of these memories. "Looking away from the worst emotions and thinking about the context, like a friend who was there or what the weather was like, will rather effortlessly take your mind away from the unwanted emotions associated with a negative memory," psychology professor Florin Dolcos of the Cognitive Neuroscience Group, who led the research at the Beckman Institute at the University of Illinois, said.


Smart Cars Suffer From Hacker Vulnerability That Can't Be Patched

International Business Times

A new vendor-neutral vulnerability discovered by security researchers affects a number of smart cars and could put drivers and passengers in the vehicle at risk of "dangerous" or "fatal" outcomes if exploited. By standardizing how certain systems within smart cars operate, it makes it possible for vehicles from different manufacturers to communicate with one another. Typically in order to exchange information, the communications systems write a frame--a message encoded in binary, a series of ones and zeros. Trend Micro researcher Federico Maggi warned the attack could be used to shut down operations like antilock braking systems or the car's accident responses like deploying airbags.


Strange Storm-Chasing Autonomous Aircraft Collects Weather Data For NASA

International Business Times

NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration are working together to study the way severe storms form and intensify and they're using their odd-looking Globe Hawk autonomous aircraft to do so. NASA's autonomous Global Hawk aircraft collects data during storms. The scientific payload the craft carries includes instruments designed to measure wind velocity, pressure, temperature, humidity, moisture levels in clouds and the structure of storm systems while flying. The Global Hawk craft is an autonomous NASA craft that can measure temperature, humidity, pressure and more factors of storms.


Will Self-Driving Cars Come Without Steering Wheel, Pedals? Yes, Suggests Ford Patent

International Business Times

According to the patent titled, "Removable Steering Wheel and pedals for autonomous vehicle," the steering would remain only for development purposes and be available as a customer-requested option. A new Ford patent has hinted at a removable steering wheel and pedals in self-driven cars. What this means, in simple terms, is that the ability of a self-driven vehicle response in an emergency, such as making rapid lane changes to avoid a collision cannot be fully assessed without a human at the wheel ready to take over when needed. The steering one will deploy when the car is under human control, while the dashboard one will deploy when the car is driving autonomously.


Why You Should Be Excited About Blockstack And The Decentralization Movement

International Business Times

Many of blockchain technology's true believers already see the next reincarnation of the internet on the horizon: A decentralized web where direct peer-to-peer interactions, fueled by digital sovereignty, replace many of the business models we know from Uber to Twitter. The New York-based tech company Blockstack just launched a $25 million venture capital fund for startups and projects working to create a decentralized internet. Shea and Ali are just two prominent members of a wider movement for decentralization, according to Colin Pape, project lead at the decentralized search engine project Presearch. Google dominates internet searches, monopolizing global access to information in an almost unprecedented way.


Richard Branson Says He Supports Universal Basic Income, Robots Taking Jobs

International Business Times

Billionaire and Virgin Group founder Richard Branson is the latest businessman to say that universal basic income (UBI) can help people as jobs are lost to automation. Other locations in Italy, Canada and Scotland are also experimenting with UBI, while cities in the Netherlands are set to launch their first universal basic income trials later this year. Other tech leaders have embraced UBI, including Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Tesla CEO Elon Musk. Back in May, Zuckerberg called for a universal basic income in a commencement speech at Harvard University saying: "We should explore ideas like universal basic income to give everyone a cushion to try new things."