weird
Does Uber’s Fired Self-Driving Car Guru Really Believe This Shit?

Anthony Levandowski is the artificial intelligence whiz at the heart of the nasty legal dispute between Waymo and Uber. Following his unceremonious firing from Uber, he’s been keeping himself busy by founding a church based on the idea of worshipping a future AI deity. As he shares more details about his philosophy, we have to ask: Is this guy for real? Read More >>

ai
Artificially Intelligent Drones Become Terrifying Killing Machines in Dystopian Short Film

In preparation for this week’s UN Convention on Conventional Weapons in Geneva, Switzerland, the Future of Life Institute has released a disturbing sci-fi short that shows what might happen if we fail to place an international moratorium on autonomous killing machines. Read More >>

science
Can Artificial Intelligence Really Identify Suicidal Thoughts? Experts Aren’t Convinced

Australian experts have spoken out about a recent US study that claimed to show artificial intelligence can identify people with suicidal thoughts - by analysing their brain scans. Read More >>

artificial intelligence
Dominos Is Using Artificial Intelligence To Check Pizza Quality Because This Is Clearly What It Was Made For

On a scale of "surely this isn't a real thing" to "what is actually happening right now" this latest announcement from professional pizza pushers Domino's is definitely a "wait, what?". Read More >>

artificial intelligence
Japanese Researchers Trick AI Into Thinking 3D-Printed Turtle Is a Rifle

Japanese researchers have used a startlingly simple exploit to trick object recognition AI into classifying a 3D-printed turtle as a rifle. Incredibly, they did it by changing a single pixel. Read More >>

science
Artificial Intelligence Detects Suicidal Tendencies in People Using Brain Scans

Recent scientific progress has allowed us to begin decoding the significance of many different patterns of activity in the brain. Researchers have begun to understand patterns associated with disorders such as depression, in hopes of correcting it. Other research has zeroed in on how language and speech is signalled in the brain. In one often-cited experiment, researchers were even able to convert the MRI readouts of the test subjects’ brains into approximate renditions of the movie clips shown to participants. Read More >>

security
Negligent Employees Are Stoked About Facial Recognition

A recent survey reveals why corporate password policies are doing very little to stop employees from mishandling their passwords. It also finds most employees favour biometric security and that Apple’s new Face ID feature is widely trusted—even though almost no one has actually used it yet. Read More >>

ai
New AI System Makes CAPTCHAs Even More Vulnerable to Hacks

Computer scientists have developed an artificially intelligent system that’s an improvement over existing techniques used to crack CAPTCHAs, those super-annoying prompts that check to see whether you’re a human or a bot. For security experts, it means that existing CAPTCHA-based systems may soon be obsolete—if they aren’t already. Read More >>

robots
Saudi Arabia’s Robot Love Is Getting Weird

In the latest example of “Philip K Dick-inspired nightmare becomes real life,” Saudi Arabia just became the first nation to grant citizenship to a robot. The robot’s name is Sophia. It is artificially intelligent, friends with CNBC’s Andrew Ross Sorkin, and, arguably, a glimpse into the dark future that will kill us all. Read More >>

artificial intelligence
Powerful Lobby Group Wants to Keep AI Unregulated

On Tuesday, the Information Technology Industry Council (ITI) released its “AI Policy Principles,” in which the lobby group outlined “specific areas where industry, governments, and others can collaborate, as well as specific opportunities for public-private partnership.” In the new document, ITI acknowledged the need for the tech sector to promote the responsible development and use of AI, while calling upon governments to support, incentivise, and fund AI research efforts. But as for letting governments take a peek at an ITI client’s source code, or enact laws to steer the safe and ethical development of AI, that’s something it’s a bit less enthused about. Read More >>

science
Stunning AI Breakthrough Takes Us One Step Closer to the Singularity

Remember AlphaGo, the first artificial intelligence to defeat a grandmaster at Go? Well, the program just got a major upgrade, and it can now teach itself how to dominate the game without any human intervention. But get this: In a tournament that pitted AI against AI, this juiced-up version, called AlphaGo Zero, defeated the regular AlphaGo by a whopping 100 games to 0, signifying a major advance in the field. Hear that? It’s the technological singularity inching ever closer. Read More >>

ai
This App for Automatically Hiding Your Nude Pics Could Use An Anatomy Lesson

There’s a new app that uses machine learning to mine your camera roll for explicit images. The purpose of the app, Nude, is to file these sensitive photos into a for-your-eyes-only folder, and then help you wipe the pics from your camera roll and iCloud. But algorithms are still not very good at picking up on the nuances of human behaviour—and after letting Nude troll through my camera roll, I’m not convinced this algorithm has ever seen a naked body. Read More >>

ai
New All-Seeing Billboard Uses Hidden Cameras to Show Adverts Based on Age, Emotions

London’s famous Piccadilly Circus is getting an immense and terrifying new video display called Piccadilly Lights. According to its maker, the enormous 790-square-metre screen can detect the vehicles, ages, and even emotions of people nearby, and respond by playing targeted adverts. Imagine New York’s Time Square with a makeover from John Carpenter’s They Live—but without any pretence of deception. Read More >>

ai
China’s Most Popular App Apologises After Translating ‘Black Foreigner’ as the N-Word

The translation service in China’s biggest messaging app, WeChat, is being retooled after offering a racist slur as a translation for the phrase “black foreigner.” Read More >>

booze
Finally, The First Beer Named By Neural Network Is Here

Neural networks have important purposes that people are excited about. But that’s not really what I’m interested in, and probably not how you’re familiar with the technology anyway. When I think of neural networks, I think of horrible drawings of cats, trippy visuals, and guinea pig names. That list now also includes beer names. Read More >>