NPR


No Rock 'Em Sock 'Em Here: Behold A U.S. Vs. Japan Giant Robot Duel

NPR

Matt Oehrlein and Gui Cavalcanti, co-founders of the robotics company, MegaBots, with giant robots MK2 (left) and Eagle Prime. Matt Oehrlein and Gui Cavalcanti, co-founders of the robotics company, MegaBots, with giant robots MK2 (left) and Eagle Prime. Two years ago an American robotics company challenged a Japanese robotics company to a duel. This long-awaited match between the monstrous robots -- built by MegaBots Inc. of the U.S. and by Suidobashi Heavy Industry of Japan -- will be broadcast on Tuesday via the online steaming site, Twitch. It's billed as the "first ever giant robot fight."


How To Make AI The Best Thing To Happen To Us

NPR

From my perspective as a physicist and AI researcher, intelligence is simply a certain kind of information processing performed by elementary particles moving around, and there's no law of physics that says one can't build machines more intelligent than us in all ways. That helped us win the wisdom race with less powerful technology: We messed up with fire and then invented fire extinguishers, and we messed up with cars and then invented seat belts. So what can we do to keep future AI beneficial? We're on the verge of starting an out-of-control arms race in AI-controlled weapons, which can weaken today's powerful nations by making cheap, convenient and anonymous assassination machines available to everybody with an axe to grind, including terrorist groups.


Should You Leave Grandma With The Robot?

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She is a brilliant scientist who works on giving computers the ability recognize the emotions of humans they interact with. El Kaliouby is CEO of Affectiva, a company whose "AI humanizes how people and technology interact." The essence of the technology that Affectiva pioneers is the ability of computers to recognize human emotions based on the "activation" of muscles in the face. The assumption that lies behind emotional computing technologies is that facial states capture emotions.


Lawmakers: Don't Gauge Artificial Intelligence By What You See In The Movies

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A full-scale figure of a "T-800" terminator robot used in the movie Terminator 2, is displayed at a preview of the Terminator Exhibition in Tokyo in 2009. A full-scale figure of a "T-800" terminator robot used in the movie Terminator 2, is displayed at a preview of the Terminator Exhibition in Tokyo in 2009. On Elon Musk's warnings of AI disrupting jobs and even a war fought over control of AI Olson: I think Elon is playing to the exact fears that John mentioned -- change. And as it relates to jobs, there's no questions it's going to disrupt a lot of jobs, but historically, innovation has always created more jobs than it's taken away.


Quantity Of 'Skills' Doesn't Mean Quality In Amazon Echo's Alexa

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Amazon Echo's Alexa has helped people do all sorts of tasks. Although Alexa now has more than 15,000 so-called "skills," critics say that many of Amazon's skills are low-quality.



Sam Harris: What Happens When Humans Develop Super Intelligent AI?

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Does superhuman artificial intelligence sound like science fiction? He says it's not a question of if but when -- with potentially destructive consequences. Sam Harris is a writer, neuroscientist, philosopher, and host of the podcast, Waking Up With Sam Harris. He has written five New York Times best-sellers, and his writings cover a range of topics from neuroscience and religion to violence and human reasoning.


Department Of Transportation Rolls Out New Guidelines For Self-Driving Cars

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A Ford Fusion development vehicle equipped with autonomous controls, seen at a test facility Tuesday in Ann Arbor, Mich. A Ford Fusion development vehicle equipped with autonomous controls, seen at a test facility Tuesday in Ann Arbor, Mich. The Department of Transportation released its revised guidelines on automated driving systems Tuesday, outlining its recommended -- but not mandatory -- best practices for companies developing self-driving cars. On the same day the new plan relaxed guidance on Level 2 vehicles, the National Transportation Safety Board faulted a Tesla automated driving system for playing a "major role" in a collision that killed its test driver last year. "Just as the NTSB says the government and industry should be stepping up its efforts to ensure the safety of Level 2 automated vehicles," he added, "the Department of Transportation and Secretary Chao are rolling back their responsibility in that space."


Telecom Companies Turn To Drones For Help After Hurricanes

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A drone is flown during a property inspection following Hurricane Harvey in Houston. The mass destruction brought on by Harvey has been a seminal moment for drone operators, proving that they can effectively map flooding, locate people in need of rescue and verify damage to speed insurance claims. The mass destruction brought on by Harvey has been a seminal moment for drone operators, proving that they can effectively map flooding, locate people in need of rescue and verify damage to speed insurance claims. According to Kate Harris, a spokesperson for Verizon, the company began using drones last October during Hurricane Matthew to inspect cell towers in North Carolina.


Scanning The Future, Radiologists See Their Jobs At Risk

NPR

He's sitting inside a dimly lit reading room, looking at digital images from the CT scan of a patient's chest, trying to figure out why he's short of breath. Health care companies like vRad, which has radiologists analyzing 7 million scans a year, provide data to partners that develop medical algorithms. Chief Medical Officer Eldad Elnekave says computers can detect diseases from images better than humans because they can multitask -- say, look for appendicitis while also checking for low bone density. Radiologist John Mongan is researching ways to use artificial intelligence in radiology.