robots
This Artificially Intelligent Robot Composes and Performs Its Own Music

Shimon — a four-armed marimba playing robot — has been around for years, but its developers at Georgia Tech have recently taken this futuristic musical machine to the next level. Using deep learning, the robot can now study large datasets from well-known musicians, and then produce and perform its own original compositions. Read More >>

rip
Charles Thacker Dies Aged 74: You Wouldn’t Be Online Without Him

Charles Thacker, the man who helped create graphical operating systems, the laser printer and tablet computers has died aged 74. Read More >>

watch this
These Freaky Robots Were Built From Drinking Straws and Inspired by Spiders

Emulating spiders and bugs, and using drinking straws as basic building blocks, a research team from Harvard University has developed a type of semi-soft robot capable of standing, walking, and even striding across a liquid surface. Say hello to the “arthrobots.” Read More >>

reviews
UrbanEars Should Stick to Headphones Because Its Wi-fi Speakers Are Garbage

I have this vision of waking up in the morning, and pressing a button that plays music everywhere in my house. Sonos was the original pioneer that built a speaker system to get this multiroom job done, and it remains the best option for a number of reasons: The starting price point is reasonable, the system sounds phenomenal, and most importantly, it’s reliable and easy to use. Copycat products from Denon, Polk, Samsung, and other manufacturers have never made a compelling case for themselves in the face of Sonos’ success. Now, flashy headphone maker UrbanEars is the latest brand to leap into the mix with a multiroom system of its own, and since I’m a big fan if the company’s products, I had to give it a chance. Read More >>

research
Digital Footprints Paint an Eerily Accurate Picture of Europe’s Refugees

Using search data collected by Google, researchers at the Pew Research Center have reconstructed the journeys taken by refugees flowing into Europe from the Middle East. It represents a new way of tracking migration patterns—but the technique could eventually lead to misuse. Read More >>

artificial intelligence
Would You Feel Safer If Your Self-Driving Car Could Explain Itself?

With each passing breakthrough in artificial intelligence, we’re asking our machines to make increasingly complex and weighty decisions. Trouble is, AIs are starting to act beyond our levels of comprehension. In high frequency stock trading, for example, this had led to so-called flash crashes, in which algorithms make lightning-quick decisions for reasons we can’t quite grasp. In an effort to bridge the growing gap between man and machine, the Pentagon is launching a new program to create machines that can explain their actions in a way we puny humans can understand. Read More >>

futurism
When Will Robots Deserve Human Rights?

Films and TV shows like Blade Runner, Humans, and Westworld, where highly advanced robots have no rights, trouble our conscience. They show us that our behaviours are not just harmful to robots—they also demean and diminish us as a species. We like to think we’re better than the characters on the screen, and that when the time comes, we’ll do the right thing, and treat our intelligent machines with a little more dignity and respect. Read More >>

technology
Researchers Discover a Method That Could Triple Our Screen Resolutions

A research team at the University of Central Florida has developed a new surface that allows the tuning of individual subpixels on a display. The breakthrough might mean the potential display resolutions on LCD TVs could triple, virtually overnight. Read More >>

education
iPads in Schools are not the Nightmare Dad Imagines

iPads in primary schools are not the learning-ending, gateway into adult iTunes dependency, Apple brand loyalty and sedentary health crisis trigger that dad thinks they are, with a survey of young kids in Northern Ireland finding that the key skills of children rose across the board after the tablets were introduced. Read More >>

microsoft
What Happened to the Amazing HoloLens Future We Were Promised?

Microsoft overhauled its fading corporate image nearly three years ago with that announcement of a its powerful new operating system, Windows 10. The most surprising facet of this rebranding effort was a promising augmented reality headset, HoloLens, shown off at a press conference in January 2015. When it debuted, HoloLens felt like it could genuinely change the world. Read More >>

science
The Body is Not a Computer – Stop Thinking of It as One

When former DARPA chief Regina Dugan announced on stage last month that Facebook planned to build a brain computer interface to allow users to send their thoughts directly to the social network without a keyboard intermediary, it had all the Silicon Valley swagger of Facebook circa “move fast and break things.” With the same audacity that any other Facebook product might be announced, Dugan explained that the company hopes to have this revolutionary brain-hack ready to ship “within a few years.” Read More >>

science
How Smart Watches Might Actually Improve Your Health

If you sacrifice style to strap a clunky Apple Watch or Fitbit to your wrist, one of the tradeoffs is supposedly the ability to better monitor your health. But so far, the health benefits of tracking your step count or heart rate are mostly unproven. In fact, some research has suggested the benefits are actually nil. Read More >>

nvidia
Nvidia’s Volta GV100 GPU Is Ridunkulous

Announced at GTC 2017, the Tesla V100 is an enterprise-level processor powered by the Volta GV100 GPU: the first chip in the world built with a 12nm FFN process. A single Volta GV100 packs in 21 billion transistors, 5120 CUDA cores, 320 texture units and a 4096-bit HBM2 memory interface with a boost clock speed of 1455MHz. It's equipped with 640 Tensor Cores capable of providing 120 teraflops of tensor operations. (And yes, it will totally play Crysis - one day.) Read More >>

robots
Robots Have Started Teaching Other Robots New Skills

In an important advance that takes us one step closer to the inevitable robopocalypse, MIT researchers have developed a system that teaches robots how to acquire new skills—and then teach those skills to different types of robots. Read More >>