How Yuval Noah Harari Removed the History of Western Philosophy From his Transhumanist Propaganda Tale


The Israelian historian Yuval Noah Harari has achieved international fame for having written a history of Homo Sapiens (humankind), a prophetic prediction of its end, and the beginning of new species called Homo Deus: an immortal cyborg with divine powers. The book that started it all is called: Sapiens – A Brief History of Humankind. In her article, Yuval Noah Harari: The age of the cyborg has begun – and the consequences cannot be known, Carole Cadwalladr asks Harari: In some ways, I say, it struck me that Sapiens isn't actually a history book – it's a philosophy book that asks the big, philosophical questions and attempts to answer them through history. I think that I see history as a philosophy laboratory. Philosophers come up with all these very interesting questions about the human condition, but the way that most of them – though not all – go about answering them is through thought experiments. When I discovered Harari, I came to think about Stephen Hawking s book: A Brief History of Time. In the book Hawking seems to want to surpass Nietzsche s declaration: God is Dead! In the introduction he presents a variety of philosophical questions, whereafter he says: Traditionally these are questions for philosophy; but philosophy is dead.

History as a giant data set: how analysing the past could help save the future

The Guardian

In its first issue of 2010, the scientific journal Nature looked forward to a dazzling decade of progress. By 2020, experimental devices connected to the internet would deduce our search queries by directly monitoring our brain signals. Crops would exist that doubled their biomass in three hours. Humanity would be well on the way to ending its dependency on fossil fuels. It warned that all these advances could be derailed by mounting political instability, which was due to peak in the US and western Europe around 2020. Human societies go through predictable periods of growth, the letter explained, during which the population increases and prosperity rises. Then come equally predictable periods of decline. In recent decades, the letter went on, a number of worrying social indicators – such as wealth inequality and public debt – had started to climb in western nations, indicating that these societies were approaching a period of upheaval. The letter-writer would go on to predict that the turmoil in the US in 2020 would be less severe than the American civil war, but worse than the violence of the late 1960s and early 70s, when the murder rate spiked, civil rights and anti-Vietnam war protests intensified and domestic terrorists carried out thousands of bombings across the country. The author of this stark warning was not a historian, but a biologist.

Google AI Decodes Broken Greek Texts Better than Humans


Artificial Intelligence (AI) is expected to revolutionize the world in the coming decades. An example of this comes from Google's AI research division (DeepMind) which has used the technology to decipher broken and fragmentary ancient Greek texts. The DeepMind project has proven that it is superior to humans when it comes to understanding and deciphering ancient texts that have puzzled researchers for years. Google's artificial intelligence (AI) research arm, DeepMind, and the University of Oxford conducted a project that involved the analysis of Greek inscriptions . Many of them date back millennia and they are often broken and missing letters.

DeepMind AI Beats Human Historians at Deciphering Ancient Texts - VICE


It's pretty easy to figure out what I mean if __ few symbols are missing from this sentence. According to a new paper by researchers from DeepMind and the University of Oxford's Faculty of Classics, AI can help restore, understand, and recreate ancient Greek texts that have been damaged and left with gaps that make them nearly impossible to understand. The work will be presented next month at the Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing conference in Hong Kong. The researchers used an algorithm named after Pythia, the woman who in Greek mythology was a vessel for Apollo's prophecies. They found that it outperformed historians trained in restoring fragmented stone, clay, or metal tablets.

Google's DeepMind AI Beats Humans Again--This Time By Deciphering Ancient Greek Text


DeepMind's latest AI program is faster and better than humans in predicting the missing words in ancient Greek inscriptions. Google's artificial intelligence (AI) research arm, DeepMind, made an international name for itself in 2017 when its AlphaGo program consistently beat the world's best human Go players in the board game. Now, a new project borne out of the lab has proved that AI is also better than humans at learning words, including those long-forgotten ones dating back thousands of years. In a recent collaboration between DeepMind and the University of Oxford, a team of computer scientists trained a set of neural networks (algorithms) to recognize words inscribed on unearthed Greek stones that were between 1,500 and 2,600 years old. The neural networks were then asked to apply those learnings to predicting the missing characters or words on a new set of damaged relics.

Journey Toward the Cognitive Enterprise


Knowledge Lens, a relatively new company, participated as a Silver Sponsor at ARC's India Forum, Driving Digital Transformation in Industry and Cities. As a first-time participant, the Forum provided an ideal opportunity for the company to showcase its offerings. Started in Bangalore five years ago with no external funding, the company's vision is to build information technology products indigenously and provide gainful employment. Today, it has offices in the US and over 1,500 customers globally. The company's focus is on accelerating actionable insights from enterprise data using artificial intelligence (AI), Big Data analytics, cloud, Internet of Things (IoT), and blockchain technologies.

The Evil Robots of the Ancient World


This week, Oxford University announced that American billionaire and philanthropist Stephen A. Schwarzman had gifted the university with its largest cash donation ever--£150 million--to fund (among other things) an institution to investigate the ethics of artificial intelligence. Mr. Schwarzman said that universities need to serve as advisers on the ethics of artificial intelligence and technological advances. While it is certainly true that the technology has moved rapidly ahead of the legislation that patrols it, this is hardly the first time people have thought about the ethics of AI. As any sci-fi buff will tell you, we have been mulling over the ethical ramifications of technologies we didn't possess for a century. What they might not know, however, is that people have been thinking about the potentials and pitfalls of the robot world for thousands of years.

Can machine learning predict history?


Machine learning tools can be useful for historians to analyse large volumes of data and minimize noise, suggests a new study. How do we know if an event is historic? An event's historical significance depends on how it affects subsequent events in the future. But predicting this can be difficult: what may seem historic now may be deemed trivial by future generations. New research suggests that, even with machine learning tools, determining historical significance is difficult but these tools can still help historians.

Scientists Reveal Ancient Social Networks Using AI--and X-Rays


Folded and sealed with a dollop of red wax, the will of Catharuçia Savonario Rivoalti lay in Venice's State Archives, unread, for more than six and a half centuries. Scholars don't know why the document, written in 1351, was never opened. But to physicist Fauzia Albertin, the three-page document--six pages, folded--was the perfect thickness for an experiment. Albertin, who now works at the Enrico Fermi Research Center in Italy, wanted to read the will without unsealing it. In a 2017 demonstration, Albertin and her team beamed X-rays at the document to photograph the text inside.

Greek myths have some scary ideas about robots and A.I. - Futurity


You are free to share this article under the Attribution 4.0 International license. Thousands of years before machine learning and self-driving cars became reality, the tales of giant bronze robot Talos, artificial woman Pandora, and their creator, the god Hephaestus, filled the imaginations of people in ancient Greece. Historians usually trace the idea of automata to the Middle Ages, when humans first invented self-moving devices, but the concept of artificial, lifelike creatures dates to the myths and legends from at least about 2,700 years ago, says Adrienne Mayor, a research scholar in the classics department in the School of Humanities and Sciences at Stanford University. These ancient myths are the subject of Mayor's latest book, Gods and Robots: Myths, Machines, and Ancient Dreams of Technology (Princeton University Press, 2018). "Our ability to imagine artificial intelligence goes back to the ancient times…" "Our ability to imagine artificial intelligence goes back to the ancient times," says Mayor, who is also a fellow at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences.