Meet the Godfather of AI, Geoff Hinton

From Youtube: For nearly 40 years, Geoff Hinton has been trying to get computers to learn like people do, a quest almost everyone thought was crazy or at least hopeless - right up until the moment it revolutionized the field. In this Hello World video, Bloomberg Businessweek's Ashlee Vance meets the Godfather of AI.

Your Brain's Reins

From SETI Institute: You are your brain. But what happens when your brain changes for the worse – either by physical injury or experience? Are you still responsible for your actions? We hear how the case of a New York man charged with murder was one of the first to introduce neuroscience as evidence in court. Plus, how technology hooks us – a young man so addicted to video games, he lacked social skills, or even a desire to eat. Find out how technology designers conspire against his digital detox. Also, even if your brain is intact and your only task is choosing a sock color, are you really in control? How your unconscious directs even mundane behavior … and how you can outwit it.

You and AI – the history, capabilities and frontiers of AI - Demis Hassabis

From Youtube: Demis Hassabis, world-renowned British neuroscientist, artificial intelligence (AI) researcher and the co-founder and CEO of DeepMind, explores the groundbreaking research driving the application of AI to scientific discovery. The talk launches the Royal Society’s 2018 series: You and AI, a collaborative effort to help people understand what machine learning and AI are, how these technologies work and the ways they may affect our lives.

Marc Raibert, Boston Dynamics CEO, on being acquired and selling the SpotMini

From Youtube: Marc Raibert, Boston Dynamics CEO, on being acquired and selling the SpotMini. Boston Dynamics’ rocked the world with the DARPA-funded Big Dog, and founder Marc Raibert showed off its latest creation, the SpotMini at TC Sessions Robotics 2018 at UC Berkeley.

Force Jacket - Pneumatically-Actuated Jacket - Disney Research

From aeon.co magazine: Immersive experiences seek to engage the full sensory system in ways that words, pictures, or touch alone cannot. With respect to the haptic system, however, physical feedback has been provided primarily with handheld tactile experiences or vibration-based designs, largely ignoring both pressure receptors and the full upper-body area as conduits for expressing meaning that is consistent with sight and sound. We extend the potential for immersion along these dimensions with the Force Jacket, a novel array of pneumatically-actuated airbags and force sensors that provide precisely directed force and high frequency vibrations to the upper body. We describe the pneumatic hardware and force control algorithms, user studies to verify perception of airbag location and pressure magnitude, and subsequent studies to define full-torso, pressure and vibration-based feel effects such as punch, hug, and snake moving across the body. We also discuss the use of those effects in prototype virtual reality applications.

Escape the echo chamber

From aeon.co magazine: First you don’t hear other views. Then you can’t trust them. Your personal information network entraps you just like a cult. Something has gone wrong with the flow of information. It’s not just that different people are drawing subtly different conclusions from the same evidence. It seems like different intellectual communities no longer share basic foundational beliefs. Maybe nobody cares about the truth anymore, as some have started to worry. Maybe political allegiance has replaced basic reasoning skills. Maybe we’ve all become trapped in echo chambers of our own making – wrapping ourselves in an intellectually impenetrable layer of likeminded friends and web pages and social media feeds.

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Why symmetry gets really interesting when it is broken

From aeon.co magazine: Anthony Phillips is a lecturer in condensed matter and materials physics at the Materials Research Institute of Queen Mary, University of London. A hypothetical alien visitor, sent to observe all of human culture – art and architecture, music and medicine, storytelling and science – would quickly conclude that we as a species are obsessed with patterns. Symmetry is at the core of my own work as a materials physicist. When atoms aggregate to make a material, they naturally arrange themselves into symmetrically repeating patterns. More than this, when we want the resulting material to be useful for a particular purpose – say, if we’re designing a touch sensor or an element of computer memory – these patterns must have the right symmetry to produce these useful properties.

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