Collaborating Authors


Fears AI may create sexist bigots as test learns 'toxic stereotypes'

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Fears have been raised about the future of artificial intelligence after a robot was found to have learned'toxic stereotypes' from the internet. The machine showed significant gender and racial biases, including gravitating toward men over women and white people over people of colour during tests by scientists. It also jumped to conclusions about peoples' jobs after a glance at their face. 'The robot has learned toxic stereotypes through these flawed neural network models,' said author Andrew Hundt, a postdoctoral fellow at Georgia Tech who co-conducted the work as a PhD student working in Johns Hopkins' Computational Interaction and Robotics Laboratory in Baltimore, Maryland. 'We're at risk of creating a generation of racist and sexist robots but people and organisations have decided it's OK to create these products without addressing the issues.'

MIT scientists create robotic FIREFLIES that could help search-and-rescue missions

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Tiny robotic fireflies that weigh barely more than a paper clip and glow as they fly could be used to aid search-and-rescue missions, researchers claim. Engineers at MIT previously developed insect-sized robots with tiny artificial muscles that allow them to zip around with bug-like agility by rapidly flapping their wings. The engineers have now found a way to embed minuscule electroluminescent particles into these artificial muscles, meaning they emit coloured light during flight. The robots can use this light to communicate with each other, and could even use it to signal for help in emergency situations, according to the researchers. For example, if sent on a search-and-rescue mission into a collapsed building, a robot that finds survivors could use lights to signal others and call for help.

How can AI help with space debris management? - Actu IA


Sputnik, in 1957, opened the way to the conquest of space. Since then, many satellites have been launched, either for scientific research like the ISS or for commercial purposes, like Quantum. Some have exploded, collided with others: objects ranging from the last stages of launchers to simple bolts are currently in orbit. The European Space Agency's (ESA) Space Debris Office at ESOC in Darmstadt, Germany, has estimated that there are a million of those measuring at least 1 cm, and that a collision with active satellites could not only cause great damage to them but also their destruction. ESA is relying on AI to prevent these risks.

Climate research now looks at the carbon footprint of artificial intelligence


For three decades now, carbon emissions from cars have been a political and social issue; there are reporting obligations for manufacturers, government regulation, and much accompanying research. A similar approach might be taken with a modern product that is spreading at an enormous pace and also has an impact on the climate: "artificial intelligence" (AI), software based on adaptive algorithms for various purposes, from self-driving cars to automatic image recognition and translation tools to optimizing logistics. Here, too, climate research is now beginning to measure the carbon footprint. A framework for this is provided by a new study with contributions from the Berlin-based climate research institute MCC (Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change). The study is published in the journal Nature Climate Change.

Three opportunities of Digital Transformation: AI, IoT and Blockchain


Koomey's law This law posits that the energy efficiency of computation doubles roughly every one-and-a-half years (see Figure 1–7). In other words, the energy necessary for the same amount of computation halves in that time span. To visualize the exponential impact this has, consider the face that a fully charged MacBook Air, when applying the energy efficiency of computation of 1992, would completely drain its battery in a mere 1.5 seconds. According to Koomey's law, the energy requirements for computation in embedded devices is shrinking to the point that harvesting the required energy from ambient sources like solar power and thermal energy should suffice to power the computation necessary in many applications. Metcalfe's law This law has nothing to do with chips, but all to do with connectivity. Formulated by Robert Metcalfe as he invented Ethernet, the law essentially states that the value of a network increases exponentially with regard to the number of its nodes (see Figure 1–8).

Protecting computer vision from adversarial attacks


Advances in computer vision and machine learning have made it possible for a wide range of technologies to perform sophisticated tasks with little or no human supervision. From autonomous drones and self-driving cars to medical imaging and product manufacturing, many computer applications and robots use visual information to make critical decisions. Cities increasingly rely on these automated technologies for public safety and infrastructure maintenance. However, compared to humans, computers see with a kind of tunnel vision that leaves them vulnerable to attacks with potentially catastrophic results. For example, a human driver, seeing graffiti covering a stop sign, will still recognize it and stop the car at an intersection.

Prism AI Software Accelerates Thermal Camera Integration for ADAS & Autonomous Vehicles


Teledyne FLIR has announced the release of Prism AI, a software framework that provides classification, object detection, and object tracking, enabling perception engineers to quickly start integrating thermal cameras for Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS) and Autonomous Vehicle (AV) systems. Built for automotive perception system developers, Prism includes features such as visible-and-thermal image fusion and advanced thermal image processing capabilities that provide superior pedestrian and animal detection in challenging lighting conditions, especially at night. "The Prism AI software model has performed successfully in third-party, NCAP Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) tests and will now help perception engineers create more effective systems," said Michael Walters, vice president product management, Teledyne FLIR. "Combining the Prism AI development tools, plugins, and dataset development offers integrators a route to quickly test and decrease development cost for thermal-enabled ADAS or AV that will help save lives." Developers can use Prism AI as the primary perception software or as reference software during in-house development.

Hitting the Books: Why lawyers will be essential to tomorrow's orbital economy


The skies overhead could soon be filled with constellations of commercial space stations occupying low earth orbit while human colonists settle the Moon with an eye on Mars, if today's robber barons have their way. But this won't result in the same freewheeling Wild West that we saw in the 19th century, unfortunately, as tomorrow's interplanetary settlers will be bringing their lawyers with them. In their new book, The End of Astronauts: Why Robots Are the Future of Exploration, renowned astrophysicist and science editor, Donald Goldsmith, and Martin Rees, the UK's Astronomer Royal, argue in favor of sending robotic scouts -- with their lack of weighty necessities like life support systems -- out into the void ahead of human explorers. But what happens after these synthetic astronauts discover an exploitable resource or some rich dork declares himself Emperor of Mars? In the excerpt below, Goldsmith and Rees discuss the challenges facing our emerging exoplanetary legal system.

The Safest New Cars of 2022 - Kelley Blue Book


Why publish a list of our picks for the best new cars that are the safest? Don't confuse "safe" with "safer." Manufacturers make vehicles that are safer than those from 10 years ago, for sure. However, some are safer than others. Both organizations put new car models through a battery of crash and safety tests, scoring each for the degree of protection they provide for occupants. If you choose a car on this list, you can be assured you will likely survive a crash, but in many cases avoid it altogether. We pulled together a collection of the best 2022 models made the safest for you to drive and what earns them that distinction. In a nutshell, these car models go above and beyond government-mandated safety features and manufacturer norms. Read on to learn more. What we looked for were cars with perfect scores in both IIHS and NHTSA testing. With those in hand, we narrowed the field among the trim levels within each model based on standard and available active safety features such as forward collision warning with automatic emergency braking. Several safety features we've grown accustomed to are actually government-mandated. In other words, the federal government made them standard by law. These include antilock brakes, stability control, traction control, rearview cameras, tire pressure monitors, and so forth.

Swaayatt Robots: Pioneering Reinforcement Learning in Autonomous Driving


The startup focuses on developing self-driving technology for unstructured environment conditions and India's road network is full of such environments. In the thick of it is founder and CEO Sanjeev Sharma, whose interest in the field of robotics was born way back in 2009, when he watched the videos of Team MIT at the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge. With time, he knew that he wanted to hone in on research to enable autonomous driving in the most difficult traffic environmental scenarios, but it wasn't until 2014, when Sharma deferred his PhD at the University of Massachusetts for a year, that he established Swaayatt Robots. Fast forward eight years and, despite knowing much more about autonomous mobility than in 2014, safety continues to be a huge challenge. Even before we think of the purchasing and operational cost, we're quite some time away from solving for driver safety in an uncontrolled and unstructured environment -- but Swaayatt Robots is trying to fix that.