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Researchers created a brain interface that can sing what a bird’s thinking

Researchers from the University of California San Diego recently built a machine learning system that predicts what a bird’s about to sing as they’re singing it. The big idea here is real-time speech synthesis for vocal prosthesis. But the implications could go much further. Up front: Birdsong is a complex form of communication that involves rhythm, pitch, and, most importantly, learned behaviors. According to the researchers, teaching an AI to understand these songs is a valuable step in traini...
Tags: Startups, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, University Of California San Diego, Birdsong, Neural, Next Featured

Is ‘brain drift’ the key to machine consciousness?

Think about someone you love and the neurons in your brain will light up like a Christmas tree. But if you think about them again, will the same lights go off? Chances are: the answer’s no. And that could have big implications for the future of AI. A team of neuroscientists from the University of Columbia in New York recently published research demonstrating what they refer to as “representational drift” in the brains of mice. Per the paper: Although activity in piriform cortex could be used to ...
Tags: Startups, New York, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Neural, University of Columbia

A quantum physics lullaby to ward off your killer robot nightmares

The reports of humanity’s imminent demise at the hands of sentient killer robots have been greatly exaggerated. Based on the current state of artificial intelligence – that is, it’s really good at sifting through data and it can usually tell the difference between a dog and a cat – we don’t have to worry about “conscious” AI anytime soon. I put “conscious” in quotes because, as every article you’re likely to read on the subject will point out, we don’t really understand consciousness. There’s a ...
Tags: Startups, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Robots, Neural, Next Featured

Decades-old ASCII adventure Nethack may hint at the future of AI

Machine learning models have already mastered Chess, Go, Atari games, and more, but in order for it to ascend to the next level, researchers at Facebook intend for AI to take on a different kind of game: the notoriously difficult and infinitely complex Nethack. “We wanted to construct what we think is the most accessible ‘grand challenge’ with this game. It won’t solve AI, but it will unlock pathways towards better AI,” said Facebook AI Research’s Edward Grefenstette. “Games are a good domain to...
Tags: Gaming, Facebook, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, NLE, Dota, ASCII, Facebook research, Facebook AI Research, Grefenstette, Nethack, Edward Grefenstette Games, Atari Dota, Grefenstette You

OroraTech’s space-based early wildfire warnings spark $7M investment

With wildfires becoming an ever more devastating annual phenomenon, it is in the whole planet’s interest to spot them and respond as early as possible — and the best vantage point for that is space. OroraTech is a German startup building a constellation of small satellites to power a global wildfire warning system, and will be using a freshly raised €5.8M (~$7M) A round to kick things off. Wildfires destroy tens of millions of acres of forest every year, causing immense harm to people and the pl...
Tags: Fundings & Exits, Startups, Space, Science, Funding, Tech, Earth, Artificial Intelligence, Wildfires, Satellites, Satellite Imagery, Aerospace, GreenTech, TUM, Earth imaging, Recent Funding

Anthropic is the new AI research outfit from OpenAI’s Dario Amodei, and it has $124M to burn

As AI has grown from a menagerie of research projects to include a handful of titanic, industry-powering models like GPT-3, there is a need for the sector to evolve — or so thinks Dario Amodei, former VP of research at OpenAI, who struck out on his own to create a new company a few months ago. Anthropic, as it’s called, was founded with his sister Daniela and its goal is to create “large-scale AI systems that are steerable, interpretable, and robust.” The challenge the siblings Amodei are tackli...
Tags: Google, Fundings & Exits, Startups, Science, Funding, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Pope, Shakespeare, Skype, Openai, Daniela, Jaan Tallinn, GPT, Amodei, Recent Funding

Zero-gravity space fridge could keep astronaut food fresh for years

Regular supply launches keep astronauts aboard the ISS supplied with relatively fresh food, but a flight to Mars won’t get deliveries. If we’re going to visit other planets, we’ll need a fridge that doesn’t break down in space — and Purdue University researchers are hard at work testing one. You may think there’s nothing to prevent a regular refrigerator from working in space. It sucks heat out and puts cold air in. Simple, right? But refrigerators rely on gravity to distribute oil through the c...
Tags: TC, Space, Science, America, Tech, Nasa, Mars, Iss, Purdue, Purdue University, SBIR, Air Squared, Leon Brendel

GPT-3’s ability to ‘write disinformation’ is being wildly overstated by the media

GPT-3, the highly-touted text generator built by OpenAI, can do a lot of things. For example, Microsoft today announced a new AI-powered “autocomplete” system for coding that uses GPT-3 to build out code solutions for people without requiring them to do any developing. But one thing the technology can not do is “dupe humans” with its ability to write misinformation. Yet, you wouldn’t know that if you were solely judging by the headlines in your news feed. Wired recently ran an article with the t...
Tags: Startups, Science, Microsoft, Opinion, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, GPT, Neural, Next Featured

What happens when computers can literally do everything?

We’ve got computers inside of our smartphones that can perform massive calculations. An iPhone, for example, could oversee 120 million Apollo moon landing missions simultaneously. But you know what computers can’t do? 3D-print me a pizza or plant a tree. Sure, we can use our devices to order a pizza or to sponsor a charity that plants trees. But the idea of a computer that could literally do anything is preposterous. Isn’t it? Science fiction The Star Trek universe has a machine called a “replic...
Tags: Google, Startups, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Neural, Next Featured

What would happen if we connected the human brain to a quantum computer?

Brain-computer interfaces are slowly beginning to take form, and here at Neural we couldn’t be more excited! Elon Musk’s Neuralink claims it’s on the cusp of a working device and Facebook’s been developing non-invasive BCI tech for years. If everything goes according to plan, we could be wearing doo-dads or getting chip implants that allow us to control machines with our minds in a decade or less. That’s a pretty cool idea and there are innumerable uses for such a device, but who knows how usefu...
Tags: Startups, Facebook, Elon Musk, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Neural, Next Featured

New superstring theory says black holes may be portals to other universes

We don’t know very much about our universe. We’re fairly certain it exists, but we don’t know how it got here, how long it’s been here, or how big it is. Heck, we don’t even know if our universe is unique. Ever since Albert Einstein came up with the theory of relativity and other scientists realized that classical physics and quantum mechanics don’t really line up, we’ve been trying to reconcile those worlds. Many theoretical physicists believe that bridging the gap between obvious reality (clas...
Tags: Startups, Space, Science, Tech, Albert Einstein, Neural, Next Featured

Scientists: NASA better hurry up and put people on the Moon, bad space weather’s coming

Outer space is so often called a “cold void” that it’s easy to forget there’s weather up there too. You won’t see any thunderstorms or tornadoes in space, but our sun’s been cycling through various “seasons” for millions of years and scientists think they’ve figured out how to predict “extreme” weather events in our neck of the universe. A team of researchers from the University of Reading today published research indicating the window for good weather might be closing for NASA’s plan to send a ...
Tags: Startups, Space, Science, Tech, Nasa, Artificial Intelligence, University of Reading, Neural, Next Featured

Can Google really build a practical quantum computer by 2029?

Google pulled off I/O, its developers conference, without a hitch yesterday. The Mountain View company retook the stage in grandiose fashion with a bevvy of announcements ranging from the much-ballyhooed new LaMDA AI system that has eerily human-like conversations to the new Wear OS update that has my editor in chief hyped about smart watches again. But, by far, the most interesting news we heard at I/O has to be the announcement that Google intends to build a new quantum AI center in Santa Barb...
Tags: Google, Startups, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Santa Barbara, Neural, Next Featured

Liquid Instruments raises $13.7M to bring its education-focused 8-in-1 engineering gadget to market

Part of learning to be an engineer is understanding the tools you’ll have to work with — voltmeters, spectrum analyzers, things like that. But why use two, or eight for that matter, where one will do? The Moku:Go combines several commonly used tools into one compact package, saving room on your workbench or classroom while also providing a modern, software-configurable interface. Creator Liquid Instruments has just raised $13.7 million to bring this gadget to students and engineers everywhere. ...
Tags: Fundings & Exits, Startups, TC, Gadgets, Science, Hardware, Education, Funding, Stem, Tech, Engineering, Phillips, FPGA, Anzu Partners, Liquid Instruments, ANU Connect Ventures

Google is making a 3D, life-size video calling booth

Google is working on a video calling booth that uses 3D imagery on a 3D display to create a lifelike image of the people on both sides. While it’s still experimental, “Project Starline” builds on years of research and acquisitions, and could be the core of a more personal-feeling video meeting in the near future. The system was only shown via video of unsuspecting participants, who were asked to enter a room with a heavily obscured screen and camera setup. Then the screen lit up with a video fee...
Tags: Google, TC, Gadgets, Science, Hardware, Tech, Augmented Reality, Sundar Pichai, Pichai, Lytro, Light Field, Google I/O 2021, Google Io 2021

Watch: This is how stars are born

How are stars made? Why do they form in clusters? Why does it take so long? Why are some stars larger than others? Finding the answers to these questions is no small challenge. It takes millions of years to make a star. That means we can’t just stake some cameras out in space and wait to compile the time-lapse footage. Basically, we have no way of watching actual stars grow from inception. And that’s why astrophysicists rely on simulations to try and figure out what’s really going on in the cosm...
Tags: Startups, Space, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Neural, Next Featured

Crunch kills: Nearly 750,000 deaths linked to ‘overwork’ every year

In a massive study spanning 194 countries and accounting for billions of people, the World Health Organization (WHO) has compiled incredible evidence linking as many as 750,000 deaths per year to overwork. Here’s the scary part: The WHO defines “overwork” as spending more than 55 hours per week on the job. That makes it a very serious issue for employees in industries that experience crunch such as STEM and gaming, and for entrepreneurs who think the key to success is putting in long hours. Per ...
Tags: Startups, Gaming, Science, Tech, Who, World Health Organization WHO

With $21M in funding, Code Ocean aims to help researchers replicate data-heavy science

Every branch of science is increasingly reliant on big data sets and analysis, which means a growing confusion of formats and platforms — more than inconvenient, this can hinder the process of peer review and replication of research. Code Ocean hopes to make it easier for scientists to collaborate by making a flexible, shareable format and platform for any and all datasets and methods, and it has raised a total of $21M to build it out. Certainly there’s an air of “Too many options? Try this one!...
Tags: Fundings & Exits, Startups, Cloud, Science, Cloud Computing, Funding, Tech, Ocean, SaaS, Biotech, Battery Ventures, Recent Funding, Code Ocean, Digitalis Ventures EBSCO, Vaal Partners

Teach AIs forgetfulness could make them better at their jobs

While modern machine learning systems act with a semblance of artificial intelligence, the truth is they don’t “understand” any of the data they work with — which in turn means they tend to store even trivial items forever. Facebook researchers have proposed structured forgetfulness as a way for AI to clear the decks a bit, improving their performance and inching that much closer to how a human mind works. The researchers describe the problem by explaining how humans and AI agents might approach...
Tags: TC, Facebook, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Facebook Each, Facebook AI, Angela Fan

How AI could steal your data by ‘lip-reading’ your keystrokes

Facial recognition isn’t the only scary thing bad actors and governments can use computer recognition for. What if an AI could watch a video of us tapping on our touchscreen phones and infer exactly what app we’re using and what we’re typing? Modern computer vision techniques have the ability to imbue us with the kind of technological super powers typically only seen in the movies. We can load video into an AI system and tell it to zoom in on a low-resolution frame and, with a little training an...
Tags: Security, Startups, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Neural, Next Featured

Could quantum neural networking lead to human immortality?

There’s no proof you’re going to die. Don’t take that the wrong way; there’s a lot of evidence. But proof is for math, and death is only certain in retrospect. That’s why any research that pushes the boundaries of what we can observe, test, and replicate when it comes to the wacky world of quantum mechanics is exciting. Spooky action at a distance could be our ticket to immortality. An international team of researchers recently published work demonstrating quantum entanglement at an unprecedente...
Tags: Startups, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, David Nield, Neural, Next Featured

Researchers say this combo of old-school invisible ink and AI is ‘uncrackable’

A team of researchers from the Harbin Institute of Technology in China have developed a system by which invisible ink and a basic cipher can be combined with relatively simple AI to create an ‘uncrackable’ offline encryption method. Up front: Remember when you learned that you could use lemon juice and water to write invisible messages on paper? Well, this is a lot like that. The researchers then take the invisible ink and use it to write a code that only an AI can break. Per the team’s paper: T...
Tags: Security, Startups, Science, China, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Harbin Institute of Technology, Neural, Next Featured

Carnegie Mellon researchers trained AI to simulate our universe on a GPU

Simulating the universe is difficult. There are, after all, potentially infinite variables to consider. Scientists typically use supercomputers to crunch data at the cosmological level, but a team of researchers from Carnegie Mellon recently figured out a way to use the same machine learning technology used to teach AI to paint or create music like a human to run advanced simulations on graphics processing units (GPUs). Yes, the same hardware and neural networking technology that powers “This Pe...
Tags: Startups, Space, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Gpu, Carnegie Mellon, Neural, Next Featured

Cognixion’s brain-monitoring headset enables fluid communication for people with severe disabilities

Of the many frustrations of having a severe motor impairment, the difficulty of communicating must surely be among the worst. The tech world has not offered much succor to those affected by things like locked-in syndrome, ALS, and severe strokes, but startup Cognixion aims to with a novel form of brain monitoring that, combined with a modern interface, could make speaking and interaction far simpler and faster. The company’s One headset tracks brain activity closely in such a way that the wearer...
Tags: Startups, TC, Gadgets, Wearables, Science, Hardware, Tech, Accessibility, Artificial Intelligence, Disability, Hud, Fda, Disabilities, Brain-computer Interface, Alexa, Eeg

How politicians manipulate the masses with simple AI

We’re three and a half years away from electing another president here in the US, but it’s never to early too prepare ourselves for the impending crapshow that is US politics. The good news is, going forward, you won’t have to think so much. The age of data-based politics is coming to a close thanks to the innovations created by the 2016 Donald Trump campaign and the counteracting tactics employed by the Biden team in 2020. Data used to be the most important commodity in politics. When Trump won...
Tags: Startups, Politics, Science, US, Insights, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Biden, Donald Trump, Trump, Neural, Next Featured

Starlink could help fund Elon Musk's Mars development plans, according to SpaceX's president

SpaceX rocket takes off. SpaceX Starlink could help fund Elon Musk's long-term Mars ambitions, says SpaceX's president. Gwynne Shotwell said funding development meant going into markets bigger "than the one you're in." Musk wants to get humans to Mars by 2026 but experts are wary. See more stories on Insider's business page. SpaceX's president Gwynne Shotwell has discussed how its Starlink satellite broadband company could help Elon Musk realise his much-discussed Mars...
Tags: Spacex, Elon Musk, Science, Trends, Tech, Mars, Musk, Red Planet, Gwynne Shotwell, Shotwell, StarLink, Tech Insider, Dave Mosher, SpaceX Starlink, Weekend BI UK, Zahra Tayeb

A scientist created emotion recognition AI for animals

A researcher at Wageningen University & Research recently published a pre-print article detailing a system by which facial recognition AI could be used to identify and measure the emotional state of farm animals. If you’re imagining a machine that tells you if your pigs are joyous or your cows are grumpy… you’re spot on. Up front: There’s little evidence to believe that so-called ’emotion recognition’ systems actually work. In the sense that humans and other creatures can often accurately recogn...
Tags: Startups, Science, Opinion, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Wageningen University Research, Neural, Next Featured

Computer vision inches toward ‘common sense’ with Facebook’s latest research

Machine learning is capable of doing all sorts of things as long as you have the data to teach it how. That’s not always easy, and researchers are always looking for a way to add a bit of “common sense” to AI so you don’t have to show it 500 pictures of a cat before it gets it. Facebook’s newest research takes a big step toward reducing the data bottleneck. The company’s formidable AI research division has been working for years now on how to advance and scale things like advanced computer visio...
Tags: Social, TC, Facebook, Wtf, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Computer Vision, Facebook It, Facebook This

Computer vision inches towards ‘common sense’ with Facebook’s latest research

Machine learning is capable of doing all sorts of things as long as you have the data to teach it how. That’s not always easy, and researchers are always looking for a way to add a bit of “common sense” to AI so you don’t have to show it 500 pictures of a cat before it gets it. Facebook’s newest research takes a big step towards reducing the data bottleneck. The company’s formidable AI research division has been working on how to advance and scale things like advanced computer vision algorithms ...
Tags: Social, TC, Facebook, Wtf, Science, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Computer Vision, Facebook It, Facebook This

Materials Zone raises $6M for its materials discovery platform

Materials Zone, a Tel Aviv-based startup that uses AI to speed up materials research, today announced that it has raised a $6 million seed funding round led by Insight Partners, with participation from crowdfunding platform OurCrowd. The company’s platform consists of a number of different tools, but at the core is a database that takes in data from scientific instruments, manufacturing facilities, lab equipment, external databases, published articles, Excel sheets and more, and then parses it a...
Tags: Startups, Science, Tel Aviv, Tech, Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Nanotechnology, Science and Technology, Anderson, Ourcrowd, Materials Science, ML, Insight Partners, Recent Funding, Materials Zone, Assaf Anderson

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