Documenting the Coming Singularity

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Check out this huge, terrifying robot karate kid

MailOnline - 11.10.14 by Mark Prigg

The robo karate kid! Terrifying two legged giant robot being developed by Google learns to stand on one leg - and recreates scene from cult film
For fans of the cult film the Karate Kid, it is a familiar pose.

However, in the latest video from the US military team developing a two legged fighting robot, the buildup to 'crane kick' is seen in a new way.

The researchers taught the robot to stand on one leg - recreating a key scene from the film in the process.

The Atlas robot created by Google-owned firm Boston Dynamics is a formidable figure at 6ft 2in tall and weighing in at 330lb.

The robot boasts 28 hydraulically actuated joints and stereo vision, and is one of the most advanced robots ever created.

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Monday, November 10, 2014

New Estimate for Human-Level Artificial Intelligence - 25 Years!

The Grid - 11.10.14 by Tom Randall

Computers are improving at an exponential rate. In many areas -- chess, for example -- machine skill is already superhuman. In others -- reason, emotional intelligence -- there’s still a long way to go. Whether human-level general intelligence is reached in 15 years or 150, it’s likely to be a little-observed mile marker on the road toward superintelligence.
We’ve been wrong about these robots before.

Soon after modern computers evolved in the 1940s, futurists started predicting that in just a few decades machines would be as smart as humans. Every year, the prediction seems to get pushed back another year. The consensus now is that it’s going to happen in ... you guessed it, just a few more decades.

There’s more reason to believe the predictions today. After research that’s produced everything from self-driving cars to Jeopardy!-winning supercomputers, scientists have a much better understanding of what they’re up against. And, perhaps, what we’re up against.

Nick Bostrom, director of the Future of Humanity Institute at Oxford University, lays out the best predictions of the artificial intelligence (AI) research community in his new book, “Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers, Strategies.” Here are the combined results of four surveys of AI researchers, including a poll of the most-cited scientists in the field, totalling 170 respondents.

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Sunday, November 02, 2014

Self-Replicating Machines - The Last Thing We'll Ever Build

CNN - 10.30.14 by Kieron Monks

We can develop material compositions that could self-optimize based on logic and sensing
From the single, centrally-positioned seat to the crash-proof frame, this Formula One-like car is an alluring piece of kit. It would make any driver stand out in a traffic jam, and it's completely road legal.

But the truly ground-breaking feature of BAC's ultra-sleek design is still under wraps. The company are developing an autonomous rear wing that self-transforms according to the conditions. In rainy weather it curves to increase downforce for a safer drive, and straightens out when the downpour clears. This process is powered by the rain itself.

The startling concept is the result of collaboration with MIT's pioneering Self-Assembly Lab, which seeks to programme materials to build themselves, and transform how we make things.

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Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Forget Wearables. Get Ready for Implantables

Yahoo News - 10/19/14 by MIKE EDELHART

Given the frenzy of interest following the announcement of the Apple Watch, you might think wearables will be the next really important shift in technology.
Wearables will have their moment in the sun, but they're simply a transition technology.

Technology will move from existing outside our bodies to residing inside us.

That's the next big frontier.

Here are nine signs that implantable tech is here now, growing rapidly, and that it will be part of your life (and your body) in the near future.

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Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Pushing the Humans Out of the Driver's Seat

Time - 10.21.14 by Sam Shank

Roughly 10 years from now we will see the End of Human Driving — a seminal moment of the first half of the 21st century. I’m guessing my young sons will not need to learn how to drive.
I’ve long been fascinated by the idea of technology replacing human drivers.

Let’s be honest: people aren’t always great drivers. They get distracted, tired and make mistakes. Technology can simply do a better job. This is a subject I’ve thought about deeply for the past 20 years. I believe it will have as much impact on the world as the switch from horse transport to automobiles.

The consensus opinion is that safe and reliable driverless cars will be available within a few years. Tesla just announced “Autopilot,” which will be available soon via a software update, and will allow for autonomous driving on freeways – an amazing first step.

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