Thursday, March 29, 2012

Faster Than 50 Million Laptops

The Cray Jaguar supercomputer can perform more than a million billion operations per second. It takes up more than 5,000 square feet at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in the United States. In 2009 it became the fastest computer in the world.

Faster Than 50 Million Laptops -- The Race To Go Exascale -- CNN

(CNN) -- A new era in computing that will see machines perform at least 1,000 times faster than today's most powerful supercomputers is almost upon us.

By the end of the decade, exaFLOP computers are predicted to go online heralding a new chapter in scientific discovery.

The United States, China, Japan, the European Union and Russia are all investing millions of dollars in supercomputer research. In February, the EU announced it was doubling investment in research to €1.2 billion ($1.6 billion).

Read more

My Comment
: Now that is fast.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Telepresence Robots Will Soon Join Doctors On Their Rounds

CtrlWorks' Telepresence Puppet CtrlWorks

Telepresence Robots Will Join Doctors on Their Rounds in Singapore Next Month -- Popular Science

Deploying telepresence robots in a medical setting isn’t exactly a new notion, but a Singapore-based startup is easing the technology into the clinical setting in a clever way. While other telepresence platforms have largely focused on allowing doctors to examine patients and oversee care remotely, CtrlWorks envisions its Puppet as more of a remotely piloted assistant that will reduce doctor workloads, dutifully taking down case notes and filing them in the proper places as a doctor makes his rounds. And next month at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital in Singapore it will get a chance to prove its value.

Read more ....

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

AI Expert Ben Goertzel On Coast To Coast Radio

AI Expert Ben Goertzel On Coast To Coast Radio March 28 -- Kurzweilai

AI expert Dr. Ben Goertzel will be on Coast to Coast AM on March 28, talking about his work in AI and its applications in areas like financial prediction, gaming, and radical life extension. He will also discuss creating benevolent superhuman AI.

Dimitar Sasselov, Professor of Astronomy at Harvard University, will discuss thbreakthroughs in synthetic biology and exoplanetary astronomy, and how they will shed new light on our place in the universe.

The show airs nationwide nightly at 1am-5am EDT/10pm-2am PDT.

Read more ....

Monday, March 26, 2012

Can We Build Robots With Morals?

Artificial Intelligence Pioneer: We Can Build Robots With Morals -- Jewish World Review

Like it or not, we're moving computers closer to autonomy.

Judea Pearl, a pioneer in the field of artificial intelligence, won the Association for Computing Machinery's A.M. Turing award earlier this month, considered the highest honor in the computing world.

Pearl developed two branches of calculus that opened the door for modern artificial intelligence, such as the kind found in voice recognition software and self-driving cars.

Read more ....

My Comment: I am sure that we can build boundaries/morals for robots to function .... but then again .... we can also build robots with morals that are not to our liking.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Military Robot Shaves Human Head

Short-Circuit, Back And Sides: Military Robot Shaves Human Head -- Daily Mail

The drastic change of image that comes with having your head shaved is scary enough – but one man doubled the terror by letting a robot do the job for him.

The prototype robot was a Multi-Arm UGV (Unmanned Ground Vehicle) from U.S company Intelligent Automation Inc (IAI) in Maryland – and is designed to tackle IEDs, check backpacks for bombs and breach doors.

But on this occasion it was armed with multiple clippers to cut the hair of an IAI volunteer, who went through the ordeal to raise money for cancer charity the St. Baldrick's Foundation.

Read more ....

More News On Robots Being Able To Do tasks Like Cutting Our Hair

Unmanned Robot Ties Knots and Shaves Hair, Won't Cut Off Your Head
-- PC World
Robot shaves man's head for charity -- 9News
Robot barber shaves human head for charity -- MSNBC
Robot barber shaves heads for charity -- Ubergizmo

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

U.S. Navy Opens A 'Hunger Games' Arena For Military Robots

The Tropical High Bay, part of the Laboratory for Autonomous Systems Research, is a 60' by 40' greenhouse that contains a re-creation of a southeast Asian rain forest. In the Tropical High Bay, temperatures average 80 degrees with 80 percent humidity year round. CREDIT: U.S. Naval Research Laboratory

Navy Opens 'Hunger Games' Arena For Military Robots -- Live Science

A new U.S. Navy lab can track every movement of battlefield robots as they struggle to survive arenas built to resemble scorching deserts, wave-pounded shores and tropical rain forests.

The lab's biggest environment has high-speed video cameras that automatically swivel to follow up to 50 ground robots, flying drones and even human soldiers. Such intense surveillance of man-made survival settings may remind science fiction readers of "The Hunger Games" — a popular book series turned Hollywood film(s) where "game makers" construct huge, naturalistic arenas to feature reality television displays of battles to the death.

Read more ....

Update: The Navy's New Autonomous Research Lab is a 'Hunger Games' Arena for Robots -- Popular Science

My Comment: Hmmmm .... so The "Hunger Games" may not be so sci-fi afterall.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Here Comes The U.S. Navy's Robot Jellyfish

Robotic Jellyfish Fuelled By Hydrogen Invented -- BBC

Engineers in the US say they have invented a hydrogen-powered robot that moves through water like a jellyfish.

Development of the robot, nicknamed Robojelly, is in the early stages but researchers hope it could eventually be used in underwater rescue operations.

Writing in Smart Materials and Structures, Yonas Tadesse said the jellyfish's simple swimming action made it an ideal model for a vehicle.

Being fuelled by hydrogen means, in theory, it will not run out of energy.

Mr Tadesse, the lead author of the study, said: "To our knowledge, this is the first successful powering of an underwater robot using external hydrogen as a fuel source."

Read more ....

More News On The US Navy's Development Of The Robot Jellyfish

Just when you thought it was safe to go back in the water: American scientists unleash robotic jellyfish -- Daily Mail
Jellyfish-Inspired Robot Runs on Hydrogen -- Discovery News
Robotic jellyfish may never run out of energy -- MSNBC
Ocean-powered robotic jellyfish could theoretically run forever -- Gizmag
Jellyfish inspires latest ocean-powered robot -- e! Science News
Robot jellyfish fuelled by hydrogen -- Physics World
Robot jellyfish sucks up power from the water -- New Scientist
Robojelly is a robot jellyfish -- UberGizmo
When the Earth is uninhabited, this robotic jellyfish will still be roaming the seas -- io9

Monday, March 19, 2012

Robots And Kids

Robots Could Be Future Playmates For Kids -- Live Science

As technology continues to improve, humanlike robots will likely play an ever-increasing role in our lives: They may become tutors for children, caretakers for the elderly, office receptionists or even housemaids. Children will come of age with these androids, which naturally raises the question: What kind of relationships will kids build with personified robots?

Children will view humanoid robots as intelligent social and moral beings, allowing them to develop substantial and meaningful relationships with the machines, new research suggests.

Read more ....

My Comment: My best friend is my robot .... oh oh.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Robotic Subs May One Day Span The Oceans

A mine-hunting robot is lowered from the U.S.S. Avenger into the Strait of Malacca, May 2011. Photo: U.S. Navy

Navy Chief: Robotic Subs Might Span Oceans. (Someday.) -- Danger Room

It’s been the Navy’s dream for years: undersea drones that can swim entire oceans. But it’s been thwarted by science’s inability to build propulsion and fuel systems for a journey of that length. Still, the Navy’s top officer and its mad scientists think that some recent research could help turn the dream into an ocean-crossing reality.

“I’m very much desirous of that end-state, cross-ocean, as feasible,” Adm. Jonathan Greenert, the chief of naval operations, told reporters on Friday. “There are a few propulsion systems that can give you that range — 30-day, 45-day. The fuel needed, regrettably, is extensive, and that drives the size, so we’re not there yet.”

Read more

My Comment: This is one of the Navy’s many dream .... undersea drones that can swim entire oceans.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Computer’s Next Conquest: Crosswords

Matthew Ginsberg with a puzzle from The New York Times that Dr. Fill, the computer program he created, is solving. Dr. Fill will compete this weekend at a Brooklyn crossword tournament. Chris Pietsch for The New York Times

The Computer’s Next Conquest: Crosswords -- New York Times

What’s a 10-letter word for smarty pants?

This weekend the world may find out when computer technology again tries to best human brains, this time at the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament in Brooklyn.

Computers can make mincemeat of chess masters and vanquish the champions of “Jeopardy!” But can the trophy go to a crossword-solving program, Dr. Fill — a wordplay on filling in a crossword and the screen name of the talk show host Dr. Phil McGraw — when it tests its algorithms against the wits of 600 of the nation’s top crossword solvers?

Read more

My Comment: Chess is hard .... but crosswords? Now that is going to be a challenge for the programmers.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Navy’s Firefighting Robot

Meet The Navy’s Firefighting Robot -- Defense Tech

This is wild. We’ve been writing a ton about robots and drones lately because, well, it seems that the pace at which they’re becoming a fundamental part of warfare increases with each month.

Whenever we hear about Navy drones we tend to think of underwater robots or things like the Fire Scout chopper. The Navy Research Lab s working on a humanoid shipboard robot that would be sent in to fight fires on ships.

Read more ....

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Ocean-Crossing Robots Reach Hawaii

The Wave Glider from Below Liquid Robotics

Ocean-Crossing Robots Reach Hawaii, Setting a New Distance Record -- Popular Science

The four Wave Glider robots that set out from San Francisco in November on an unprecedented robotic crossing of the Pacific have arrived at the big island of Hawaii for a quick systems check-up. Their arrival marks the shattering of the world distance record for unmanned wave powered vehicles, as the PacX Wave Gliders, built by California-based Liquid Robotics, have now traveled 3,200 nautical miles (that’s more like 3,700 normal, in-your-car miles)--and that’s just a third of the total 9,000 nautical miles they will cover in their journeys.

Read more ....

Friday, March 9, 2012

The Secret To Smarter Computers

Scientists think adding a baby's imaginative powers and all-around braininess to computers would make these machines smarter and more human. CREDIT: Aphichart | Shutterstock

Baby Brains May Be The Secret To Smarter Computers -- Live Science

Cognitive scientists hope to bottle up a baby's brain — and the imagination and air of possibility that comes with it — and use the result to make computers smarter.

"Children are the greatest learning machines in the universe," Alison Gopnik, a developmental psychologist at the University of California at Berkeley, said in a statement. "Imagine if computers could learn as much and as quickly as they do," said Gopnik, author of the books "The Scientist in the Crib" (William Morrow, 2000) and "The Philosophical Baby" (Picador, 2010).

Read more ....

My Comment: A unique and different way to look at making computers "smarter".

Thursday, March 8, 2012

A Robot In Every Home Within The Decade?

Simon the Robot, created in the lab of Andrea Thomaz (School of Interactive Computing), learns a new task from a participant in a study seeking to determine the best questions a robot learner can ask to facilitate smooth human-robot interaction. (Credit: Image courtesy of Georgia Institute of Technology)

Teach Your Robot Well -- Science Daily

ScienceDaily (Mar. 8, 2012) — Within a decade, personal robots could become as common in U.S. homes as any other major appliance, and many if not most of these machines will be able to perform innumerable tasks not explicitly imagined by their manufacturers. This opens up a wider world of personal robotics, in which machines are doing anything their owners can program them to do -- without actually being programmers.

Read more

My Comment: I think we are still far away from having 'crude personal robots' in our homes .... but we will one day get there.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

The One-Trillion-Bits-Per-Second Chip is Here

IBM's Holey Optochip IBM

Holey Optochip! The One-Trillion-Bits-Per-Second Chip Is Here -- Popular Science

The high data loads of the future--and even the present--require that optical communications platforms continue to get faster, leaner, and cheaper. At the Optical Fiber Communication Conference in Los Angeles today, IBM will report on a prototype optical chip it has developed that has hit a significant milestone in optical data transfer: one terabit--that’s one trillion bits--per second.

Read more

Saturday, March 3, 2012

A Robot Cosmonaut For The International Space Station

The S-400 robot will be sent to the International Space Station (ISS) within two years' time. RIA Novosti

Russia Unveils Android for Space Missions -- RIA Novosti

Russia has built a space android to work in orbit, its first space robot in more than two decades, Izvestia daily said on Tuesday.

The robot, S-400, can perform simple tasks such as screwing bolts and searching the spacecraft for damage.

It will be sent to the International Space Station (ISS) within two years' time, and will also be joining future missions to the Moon and Mars, the paper said.

Read more ....

Friday, March 2, 2012

Control Dangerous AI Before It Controls Us

A killer robot from the 2009 film "Terminator Salvation" — exactly the type of future we don't want to see. Warner Bros.

Control Dangerous AI Before It Controls Us, One Expert Says -- MSNBC/Innovation

He believes super-intelligent computers could one day threaten humanity's existence

Super-intelligent computers or robots have threatened humanity's existence more than once in science fiction. Such doomsday scenarios could be prevented if humans can create a virtual prison to contain artificial intelligence before it grows dangerously self-aware.

Keeping the artificial intelligence genie trapped in the proverbial bottle could turn an apocalyptic threat into a powerful oracle that solves humanity's problems, said Roman Yampolskiy, a computer scientist at the University of Louisville in Kentucky. But successful containment requires careful planning so that a clever breed of artificial intelligence cannot simply threaten, bribe, seduce or hack its way to freedom.

Read more

Humanity Must 'Jail' Dangerous AI to Avoid Doom, Expert Says -- Live Science

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Darpa's Robot Sets Racing Record

Video: Darpa’s Robotic Cheetah Sets Racing Record -- Danger Room

Trust me, gym rat. Your outrageously badass treadmill workout has nothing on this.

The Pentagon’s far-out research agency, Darpa, has just released a new video of its Cheetah ‘bot — designed to mimic the rapid movements of cheetahs, the speediest animals in nature — absolutely killing it on a laboratory treadmill.

Read more

My Comment: That's fast .... and I am sure with time they will develop new robots that will be even faster.