The US Department of Transportation has announced the selection of 10 designated “proving ground” test pilot sites for autonomous vehicles, which are intended to play host to the rapid in-depth testing of the technology.
According to the department’s press release, these sites will “foster innovations that can safely transform personal and commercial mobility, expand capacity, and open new doors to disadvantaged people and communities. These designations are a logical next step in the Department’s effort to advance the safe deployment of automated technology.”
In one experiment, researchers at the Google Brain AI research group had software design a machine-learning system to take a test used to benchmark software that processes language. What it came up with surpassed previously published results from software designed by humans.
In recent months several other groups have also reported progress on getting learning software to make learning software. They include researchers at OpenAI, MIT, the University of California, Berkeley, and DeepMind.
An emerging technology called in vitro gametogenesis (IVG) could provide a way to create large numbers of both eggs and sperm in the lab, which the authors of an editorial in the journal Science Translational Medicine last week say could have serious scientific, ethical and legal ramifications.
“IVG may raise the spectre of ’embryo farming’ on a scale currently unimagined, which might exacerbate concerns about the devaluation of human life,” wrote Harvard Law School Professor I. Glenn Cohen, Dean of Harvard Medical School George Daley and professor of medical science at Brown University Eli Adashi.
A team of researchers has developed a smartwatch application capable of verifying handwritten signatures by gathering data from a person’s wrist movement during the signing process. The new software, which was the outcome of a collaboration between researchers at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev and Tel Aviv University, uses motion sensors already found in smart wristband devices popularly worn today. Using data compiled by the device’s accelerometer and gyroscope sensors, the app is able to sense changes in rotational motion and
orientation, thereby training a machine-learning algorithm to distinguish between genuine and forged signatures, the researchers said.
Some chemists believe they’ve found a new strategy that may help solve their drug discovery woes. They think that a serendipitous combination of computer processing advances, access to huge chemical data sets, and a groundbreaking computational strategy called deep learning could usher in a way to quickly and efficiently teach computers to find successful drugs in ways that far surpass current computer-based methods.
Financial giant AMP is dipping its toe into virtual technology and has begun testing an online chatbot platform from fintech Flamingo as it joins the sector-wide push to try to convert website visitors into committed customers. Flamingo, which was founded by Sydneysider Catriona Wallace in 2014, said that its virtual assistant platform, dubbed Rosie, was a way for financial institutions to assist and retain customers or potential customers as they consider which “complex financial products” were right for them. “It is an AI engine that guides customers through their financial services product purchase, or through onboarding or inquiries,” said Ms Wallace, who is also Flamingo’s chief executive.
This 3-hour course (video + slides) offers developers a quick introduction to deep-learning fundamentals, with some TensorFlow thrown into the bargain. To help more developers embrace deep-learning techniques, without the need to earn a Ph.D., Martin Görner has attempted to flatten the learning curve by building a short crash-course (3 hours total). The course is focused on a few basic network architectures, including dense, convolutional and recurrent networks, and training techniques such as dropout or batch normalization.
An internet mortgage broker that aims to shake up the convoluted process of securing a home loan has raised £5.5m from a Silicon Valley investor. Habito, a London start-up, allows homebuyers to find a mortgage using an AI chatbot instead of a series of meetings or phone call with a broker. It claims to find the right loan within minutes and send an application without the need for any paperwork or a broker’s fee.
Imagine a machine that can evaluate your frame of mind and select music accordingly. Design and innovation studio Uniform has developed such a machine – Solo, the ‘emotional radio’. Combining facial recognition technology with Spotify, it selects a track to suit your emotional state. Solo’s developers tell Dr Hannah Fry
how AI technology could soon move beyond data-driven applications