Neuralink and the Brain's Magical Future - Wait But Why


So instead of arranging themselves in a net shape, the flatworm's nervous system all revolved around a central highway of messenger nerves that would pass messages back and forth between the boss and everyone else: The flatworm's boss-highway system was the world's first central nervous system, and the boss in the flatworm's head was the world's first brain. As time passed and Earth's animals started inventing intricate new body systems, the bosses got busier. He turned each human's head into a little world of its own, making humans the first animal that could think complex thoughts, reason through decisions, and make long-term plans. Not only had he made the human head a wondrous internal ocean of complex thoughts, his latest breakthrough had found a way to translate those thoughts into a symbolic set of sounds and send them vibrating through the air into the heads of other humans, who could then decode the sounds and absorb the embedded idea into their own internal thought oceans.

John McAfee: What if advanced artificial intelligence hacks itself? Opinion.


On March 9, 2017, ZT, an underground technologist and writer, read his upcoming novella: Architects of the Apocalypse, to a group of his adherents in the basement of an abandoned bar in Nashville, Tennessee. The occasion was the Third Annual Meltdown Congress--an underground, invitation-only organization dedicated to the survival of the human species in the face of near certain digital annihilation. I was present, along with three of my compatriots, plus about 30 gray hat hackers (hackers or cybersecurity experts without malicious intent) who represent the cream of the American hacking community. It chronicles an age in which artificial intelligence and its adjutant automata run the world--in which humanity is free and is cared for entirely by the automata. The artificial intelligence in this novella has organized itself along hierarchical lines, and the ultimate decision-making function is called "The Recursive Decider."

The Morning After: Friday, April 21st 2017


A few changes are afoot at Engadget, Elon Musk has plans for brain-machine interfaces in a few years, and HTC made a phone that is rumored to be squeezable. Meanwhile, a high-end, WiFi-connected juicer with mountains of funding is also feeling the squeeze. Changes aheadWe're learning from our past to inform our future. It's not the weekend yet, but we have a letter from the new editor-in-chief, Christopher Trout walking down memory lane and laying out what you can expect from Engadget in the future. That's one way to sell more camerasGoPro's Fusion spherical camera is six GoPros in one Facebook, isn't the only one with a new 360-degree camera, as GoPro is announcing its 5.2K VR-capable Fusion camera.

Neuralink and the Brain's Magical Future - Wait But Why


Okay maybe that's not exactly how it happened, and maybe those weren't his exact words. But after learning about the new company Elon Musk was starting, I've come to realize that that's exactly what he's trying to do. When I wrote about Tesla and SpaceX, I learned that you can only fully wrap your head around certain companies by zooming both way, way in and way, way out. In on a snapshot of the world right now, out on the big story of how we got to this moment and what our far future could look like. Not only is Elon's new venture--Neuralink--the same type of deal, but six weeks after first learning about the company, I'm convinced that it somehow manages to eclipse Tesla and SpaceX in both the boldness of its engineering undertaking and the grandeur of its mission.

Artificial Intelligence Market Growing at 63%, Expected to Reach $16B by 2022: Report


The Artificial Intelligence market is expected to reach $16 billion by the year 2022 and will continue to grow at a projected rate of 63% over the next five years. The proliferation of Artificial Intelligence across industries is ushering in an age of rapid digital transformation and disruption. Old paradigms are being tossed aside and what was once thought impossible is becoming the everyday norm. "According to a 2016 Markets and Markets Report, the artificial intelligence (AI) market is expected to be worth $16.06 Billion by 2022, growing at a CAGR of 62.9% from 2016 to 2022," reported hiring agency Paysa. Amazon leads the way by far investing almost $100 billion more than that of runner-up, Google.

Thinking in the age of cyborgs


We have our clearest indication yet that the cyborgs are coming. Elon Musk has formally accepted his invitation to the AI party the only way he knows how: by founding a company. Neuralink will create brain-enhancing digital implants; the first step on the road to merging humans with software. Musk has taken on the mantel of preserving the human race, and he believes the only way to counter the threat of AI's rapid ascent is by meshing together biological and digital forms of intelligence. To date, cyborgs have been the preserve of Sci-Fi.

If this is the future utopia Elon Musk wants, be very afraid


Neural lace: it sounds like something a cyborg might wear to a wedding, but it's also yet another future technology Elon Musk has added to his eccentric potential inventions list. Just one problem with that: the fictional sci-fi series that coined "neural lace" doesn't suggest we'll have a fine time with such brain implants -- and it also represents exactly the kind of future that Musk himself has said he's trying to avoid. SEE ALSO: What we know about Elon Musk's plan to go full super villain and play with your brain The Tesla, SpaceX and Solar City founder has already inspired testing of the high-speed Hyperloop and quietly put thousands of potentially self-driving cars in users' hands. His brain, though unenhanced, never quits. If he isn't rhapsodizing about terraforming Mars, or sending tourists to the moon, or promising to fix a state's energy crisis, or wondering whether we might all be living in a computer simulation, he's fretting about how artificial intelligence might become self-aware and powerful enough in the next decade to make human beings obsolete.

Chinese company Tencent picks up five percent of Tesla


March 28, 2017 --The race to develop electric autonomous cars might have just become more interesting: Chinese internet giant Tencent has acquired a 5 percent stake in Tesla, becoming the fifth largest shareholder of the US electric car maker. The Shenzhen-based company, known for messaging app WeChat, paid $1.78 billion for 8.2 million shares through a recent stock offering and open-market purchases, according to a regulatory filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission on Tuesday. The investment – the largest by a Chinese company in the market of self-driving vehicles and related services – provides Elon Musk's Tesla with an additional boost as it prepares to launch its mass-market Model 3 electric sedan this year. "Tesla is a global pioneer at the forefront of new technologies," a Tencent spokesperson said Tuesday, MarketWatch reported. "Tencent's success is partly due to our record of backing entrepreneurs with capital; Elon Musk is the archetype for entrepreneurship, combining vision, ambition, and execution."

Jeff Bezos suits up in giant robot armor as Amazon prepares to take over the world


Looking for another terrifying 2017 moment to keep you up at night? We can't imagine why, but here ya go: Jeff Bezos in a giant mechanical robot suit. The filthy rich Amazon CEO and Oscars attendee (lol) suited up in the 13-foot-tall mechanical armor to get a taste of the supervillain life and I guess try to ease everyone into this new weird world we live in where very little makes sense. SEE ALSO: Moon missions continue Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk's rocket-measuring contest Anyways, Bezos hopped in this mechanical robot, known as the Method-2, and went full-on Avatar to demo the technology at Amazon's annual MARS conference -- an elite gathering that offers a glimpse at innovative Machine-Learning Automation, Robotics and Space Exploration technology. I just got to pilot an awesome (and huge) robot thanks to Hankook Mirae Technology.

Hi-tech dealing: the connections that led to Google buying DeepMind

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There can't be many events where Neelie Kroes, vice-president of the European commission, rubs shoulders with Duran Duran's Simon Le Bon, or Google bon vivant Eric Schmidt with the reliably delightful Grayson Perry. For the one percenters who get an invitation to Founders Forum, the event is like the Davos of the tech industry. For an observer, the atmosphere combines the congratulatory backslapping of intense power network with an undercurrent of feisty rivalry. Secrets are told, processes explained, deals done late at night over very expensive drinks. There are modest panel discussions (not everyone goes; the best discussions are alwaysin the corridors, near the bar or clustered under an accommodating willow tree in the grounds), but even these sessions open the kimono a little wider than usual.