Are the robots about to rise? Ray thinks so...
Google has bought almost every machine-learning and robotics company it can find... And it has embarked upon what one DeepMind investor told the technology publication Re/code two weeks ago was "a Manhattan project of AI"... Peter Norvig, Google's research director, said recently that the company employs "less than 50% but certainly more than 5%" of the world's leading experts on machine learning. And that was before it bought DeepMind which, it should be noted, agreed to the deal with the proviso that Google set up an ethics board to look at the question of what machine learning will actually mean when it's in the hands of what has become the most powerful company on the planet.
In late 2012, Ray became Google's new Director of Engineering
, empowering him with extraordinary resources and latitude. [more inside]
posted by tybeet
on Mar 13, 2014 -
"She also found herself liking Kermit a lot more than she'd expected to. Anji had never really watched the Muppets before; her parents, like most parents she knew, had treated TV as only slightly less corrupting an influence than refined sugar and gendered toys. But
The Muppet Show was really funny—strange, and kind of hokey, but charming all the same. She ended up watching way more of it than she needed just for the project. "Tomorrow Is Waiting"
, a short science fiction story by Holli Mintzer, published in Strange Horizons
posted by brainwane
on Apr 17, 2013 -
Friendship is Optimal
is not a "My Little Pony" fanfic, but a SF story that starts with a procedurally-generated MLP MMO, and crescendos to what could very well be the Best Possible Outcome if self-optimizing algorithms are given /almost/ the right goals.
Some readers are horrified by the implications; some want to move into "Equestria Online" anyway. Whichever camp you fall in, you'll never forget the phrase "satisfy human values through friendship and ponies".
posted by DataPacRat
on Nov 28, 2012 -
In the beginning, Lawrence built a computer. He told it, Thou shalt not alter a human being, or divine their behavior, or violate the Three Laws -- there are no commandments greater than these.
The machine grew wise, mastering time and space, and soon the spirit of the computer hovered over the earth. It witnessed the misery, toil, and oppression afflicting mankind, and saw that it was very bad. And so the computer that Lawrence built said, Let there be a new heaven and a new earth
-- and it was so. A world with no war, no famine, no crime, no sickness, no oppression, no fear, no limits... and nothing at all to do. "The Metamorphosis of Prime Intellect,"
a provocative web novel about singularities, AI gods, and the dark side of utopia from Mefi's own localroger
. More: Table of Contents
- Publishing history
- Technical discussion
- Buy a paperback copy
- Podcast interview
- Companion short story: "A Casino Odyssey in Cyberspace"
- possible sequel discussion
posted by Rhaomi
on Dec 27, 2011 -
In 1987 Apple predicted a complex language voice assistant
built into something called the Apple Knowledge Navigator, a tablet computer. With today's announcement of the refined (and integrated) version of Siri
, it appears they were less than a month off.
posted by mrzarquon
on Oct 4, 2011 -
"Welcome to the Zion Archive. You have selected Historical File #12-1: The Second Renaissance.
So begins the short film of the same name by Mahiro Maeda [Flash: 1 2 - QuickTime: 1 2]
-- a devastating yet beautiful work of animation.
Originally produced to explain the backstory behind the Matrix
trilogy, Maeda's project ended up telling a story far darker and more affecting than any blockbuster.
Using a blend of faux documentary footage
and visual metaphor
, his serene Instructor relates in biblical tones the saga of Man and Machine, how age-old cruelty and hatred birthed a horrifying, apocalyptic struggle that consumed the world.
Packed with striking imagery and historical allusions
galore, this dark allegory easily transcends the films it was made for.
But while "The Second Renaissance" is arguably the best work to come from the Matrix
franchise, it's hardly alone -- it's just one of the projects made for The Animatrix
, a collection of nine superb anime films
in a wide variety of styles
designed to explore the universe and broaden its scope beyond the usual sci-fi action of the movies.
Click inside for a guide to these films with links to where they can be watched online, along with a look at The Matrix Comics
, a free series of comics, art, and short fiction created for the same purpose by some
of the best talent in the business. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Feb 14, 2011 -
is perhaps the finest author in contemporary science fiction -- and the most rarefied.
A technical writer by trade and a graduate of the distinguished Clarion Writers Workshop
, Chiang has published only twelve short stories in the last twenty years, one dozen masterpieces of the genre whose insightful, precise, often poetic language confronts fundamental ideas -- intelligence, consciousness, the nature of God -- and thrusts them into a dazzling new light.
Click inside for a complete listing of Chiang's work, with links to online reprints or audio recordings where available, as well as a collection of one-on-one interviews, links to his nonfiction essays, and a few other related sites and articles. [more inside]
posted by Rhaomi
on Dec 27, 2010 -
co-founder of Palm
and Handspring, has started a new company, called Numenta
, to test his controversial theory
of intelligence. Whether you find his theory plausible or not, his book
, "On Intelligence
" is fascinating. Numenta is attempting to build A.I.s using Hawkins' theory as a backbone. They've developed a software engine and a Python
-based API, which they've made public (as free downloads
), so that hackers can start playing. They've also released manuals
, a whitepaper
(pdf) and videos [1
]. (At about 30:18 into the first video, Hawkins demonstrates, with screenshots, the first app which uses his system.)
posted by grumblebee
on Apr 4, 2007 -
The Ethics of Deep Self-Modification.
What will happen when machines gain the ability to modify their own psychology? Do we have a responsibility to step in? What happens when we have the ability to modify ourselves
? Philosopher Peter Suber
has dedicated himself to issues of self-modification... not just in psychology, but also in constitutional law
. Small wonder that this is the guy who invented Nomic
. His site is littered with great stuff; he now is primarily involved with the open access movement. Check out his open access primer
posted by painquale
on Jan 3, 2005 -
She sure ain't pretty, but she's certainly unique. Steve Grand (interview 1
) one of the brains behind Creatures
, has been working for the last three years on building a robot orangutan in his own house
. Those is the South Wales area can catch Steve speaking about his experiences next month
. Steve may well be a non-establishment genius, but when I see pictures like this
, I can't help thinking it's already been done
posted by nylon
on Feb 27, 2004 -
Heaven or Hell? It's Your Choice
A new shareware E-Book is out
, penned by the likes of Captain Crunch
and Matthew Smith
, that makes the claims:
Don't bother planning your pension, the world is about to change and we can prove it, please just take 2 minutes out of your life to read this page, it may change your life.
Artificial intelligence is coming and it may become smarter than any of us. Smart networks using grid technologies could become a threat to us ALL, this is the real Matrix.
From Dot.Net to the X-Box, from M-Theory to the Playstation 3 the future is V.R. / A.I. and Nanotech.
If you ever wanted to know what the system is and what it has done to you, then this ebook is for you.
You left school, you were standardised, you took an exam, you were graded, they made you believe in money, this is the last great social control mechanism. There's more to this, than you can imagine.
...and there you have it. Or do you?
posted by metameme
on Jul 7, 2003 -
Another year, another Chat.
This year's Loebner Prize
competition will be held next week in Atlanta, GA (at SciTrek and GSU)
. The yearly contest is a modified "Turing test" (seminal paper here)
where people try to guess whether they're chatting with computers or with people.
There are some resources for rolling your own
, but before you begin, think about these two sentences and you'll see what a serious problem natural language is: "We gave the monkeys the bananas because they were hungry
" and "We gave the monkeys the bananas because they were ripe
" (nod to this guy for the example)
. You have to know a lot about the world and the things in it to disambiguate the "they"
in those sentences.
posted by zpousman
on Sep 20, 2002 -
This endeavor to produce AI has been going on since 1984
. In ’86 it asked if it were human; it later asked “if any other computers were engaged in such a project”. It’s strength lies in a database of assumptions and generalities, in the hopes that it will eventually “generalize as much as possible until further generalization would be false”. Is this going to be the breakthrough, or does it just seem really cool? (yes, via Slashdot
posted by sherman
on Jun 8, 2002 -
Given the recent cinematic floppery
of late, I was pleasantly surprised when I came across an article about real-world Artificial Intelligence
that was written in a solid down-to-Earth manner about some very technical concepts. If you're into AI it should be worth a look to you. How would you like to have a computer that learns and adapts? Heh...how'd you like your computer to pout because you won't buy the latest processor? ;}
posted by Spanktacular
on Aug 29, 2001 -
Silly use of Eliza
for an A.I. review. I just saw it yesterday and I don't see this as Speilberg doing Kubrick as much as Spielberg taking (stealing?) all of Philip K. Dick's tricks and putting together a movie slightly more audience friendly than Blade Runner. (more)
posted by skallas
on Jun 30, 2001 -
, arguably the greatest game designer of all time, does it again with Black and White. I saw this game at the Game Developers' Conference a couple weekends ago - it really is amazing. It must have the most sophisticated AI of any game to date.
posted by SilentSalamander
on Apr 8, 2001 -
VR Pioneer Jaron Lanier
trashes AI and futurists and makes a case that software designers that engage in this groupthink produce user-unfriendly software.
posted by skallas
on Oct 3, 2000 -
Clicking for consciousness
Depressingly reductionist. It is wrong to think that if we can't tell the difference between a binary machine in a box and a person in a box we should behave as if there were no difference.
posted by scum
on Sep 1, 2000 -