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Monthly Archives: March 2017

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Can Futurists Predict the Year of the Singularity?

The end of the world as we know it is near. And that’s a good thing, according to many of the futurists who are predicting the imminent arrival of what’s been called the technological...

This Is What Makes Quantum Computers Powerful Problem Solvers

In a previous article, I introduced the recent open-sourcing of quantum computing software by DWave. DWave is the maker of a quantum computer being used and studied by a number of groups, including NASA...

Google Chases General Intelligence With New AI That Has a Memory

For a mind to be capable of tackling anything, it has to have a memory. Humans are exceptionally good at transferring old skills to new problems. Machines, despite all their recent wins against humans, aren’t....

How to Feed 9.7 Billion People? CRISPR Gene Editing For Crops

It’s no secret that we’re going to struggle to feed the rapidly expanding global population. New genome editing technologies could hold the answer, according to scientists. The number of humans on this planet is expected...

These 6 Trends Are Retooling Manufacturing as We Know It

Let’s be honest — sometimes manufacturing gets a bad rap. The industry can be seen as a behemoth — stuck in the past and slow to innovate, the victim of outsourcing and the purveyor...

Why the Rise of AI Makes Human Intelligence More Valuable Than Ever

In the popular TV show Sherlock, visual depictions of our hero’s deductive reasoning often look like machine algorithms. And probably not by accident, given that this version of Conan Doyle’s detective processes tremendous amounts...

The Rise of a New Species of Human Being

Today, what survives on Earth can be determined entirely by human beings. We can alter the genetics of almost any life form and potentially design entirely new ones. According to renowned physicist Freeman Dyson,...

Automation Could End Meaningless Jobs—And None Too Soon

What makes your work valuable? Does it fulfill you? Allow you to connect with or help people? Contribute to a greater good? Or does its value come from your income, which allows you to do other...
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This Week’s Awesome Stories From Around the Web (Through March 25)

ROBOTICS NASA's Origami Robots Can Squeeze Into Places Rovers Can't Mariella Moon | Engadget “Imagine a Martian rover that can send small robotic minions to crawl into crevices or climb steep slopes—everywhere a full-sized vehicle can't go...

The Weird World of Cyborg Animals Is Here

Roboticists frequently turn to nature for inspiration for their inventions, reverse engineering the traits that evolution has developed over millennia. Others are taking a shortcut by simply integrating modern technology with living animals. The idea...

Arianna Huffington’s 10 Ways to Make a Big Impact and Stay Sane While You Do

How do top CEOs lead during this exponential age? How do you manage the explosion of information and onslaught of increasing competition? How do you prevent yourself from getting burned out? How do you...

Is the Brain More Powerful Than We Thought? Here Comes the Science

If you’ve ever played around with an old music amplifier, you probably know what a firing neuron sounds like. A sudden burst of static? Check. A rapid string of pops, like hundreds of bursting balloons?...

The Power of VR as an ‘Empathy Machine’ and Office Holodeck

Virtual reality has a long history in science fiction. From the Lawnmower Man to the Matrix, the idea of VR has inspired artists and gamers alike. But it’s only very recently that the technology...

The Body Is the Missing Link for Truly Intelligent Machines

It’s tempting to think of the mind as a layer that sits on top of more primitive cognitive structures. We experience ourselves as conscious beings, after all, in a way that feels different to...

How All Leaders Can Make the World a Better Place

This article is part of a new series exploring the skills leaders must learn to make the most of rapid change in an increasingly disruptive world. The first article in the series, “How the...

This Is What Happens When We Debate Ethics in Front of Superintelligent AI

Is there a uniform set of moral laws, and if so, can we teach artificial intelligence those laws to keep it from harming us? This is the question explored in an original short film...
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This Week’s Awesome Stories From Around the Web (Through March 18)

DRONES Airbus Swears Its Pod/Car/Drone Is a Serious Idea Definitively Jack Stewart | WIRED "Airbus came up with a crazy idea to change all of that with Pop.Up, a conceptual two-passenger pod that clips to a set...

You Can Ban a Person, But What About Their Hologram?

If you think augmented reality is only fun and games, consider that we’ve already witnessed the first known police action taken against hologram technology. During the summer of 2015, a performance by controversial gangster-rapper,...

The Brain: A Radical Rethink Is Needed to Understand It

Understanding the human brain is arguably the greatest challenge of modern science. The leading approach for most of the past 200 years has been to link its functions to different brain regions or even...

Matchmaker, Make Us the Perfect Love Algorithm

We live in a hyper-connected world where communication is almost effortless. And yet, despite abundant connection, we still lack interpersonal fulfillment. The next challenge, then, is not increasing the number of relationships possible, but...

New Artificial Synapse Bridges the Gap to Brain-Like Computers

From AlphaGo’s historic victory against world champion Lee Sedol to DeepStack’s sweeping win against professional poker players, artificial intelligence is clearly on a roll. Part of the momentum comes from breakthroughs in artificial neural networks,...

If We Can See the Future We Want, We Can Shape It Too

Alida Draudt and Julia Rose West are not only co-authors, business partners, and best of friends, but most importantly, they have differing points of view—which is ideal for two budding Silicon Valley futurists. Alida currently...

Long Extinct Species to Be Revived in the Lab With Powerful New Tools

Bringing extinct species back to life isn’t a science fiction fantasy anymore, even if the technology isn’t quite ready for prime time. The newest buzz around the topic of de-extinction is actually a revival of...

How Fully Synthetic Complex Life Just Got a Lot Closer

From domestication to selective breeding and right up to DNA editing, humans have long sought to bend the genetic makeup of animals and plants to our needs. Now an international team has taken a...
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This Week’s Awesome Stories From Around the Web (Through March 11)

ROBOTICS Humans Can Now Scold a Robot With Their Minds Samantha Cole | Vice MOTHERBOARD "Researchers at MIT's Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL), with Boston University, developed a feedback system for humans to mentally change a...

How Google Is Revealing Unmapped Areas of the World in Virtual Reality

Technology companies left and right are developing new gadgets to advance virtual reality as an immersive entertainment and gaming platform. Others however, like VR producer Chris Milk, have hopes that the technology’s potential will...

Are These Giant Neurons the Seat Of Consciousness in the Brain?

The towering trees with their sprawling branches in the redwood forests have always reminded me of neurons in the brain. Like trees, each neuron extends out tortuous, delicate branches in a quest to make contact...

8 Principles for Leaders to Make the Most of the Exponential Age (Part 2)

How do top CEOs lead during this exponential age? How do you manage the explosion of information and onslaught of increasing competition? How do you sort through the abundance of opportunity and avoid getting...

New Burger Robot Will Take Command of the Grill in 50 Fast Food Restaurants

Would your burger taste as delicious if it was made by a robot? You’ll soon be able to find out at CaliBurger restaurants in the US and worldwide. Cali Group partnered with Miso Robotics to develop...

4 Ways Scientists Hope Nanobots Will Make You Healthier

For most people the phrase “medical robot” probably brings to mind the ground-breaking da Vinci surgical system that has revolutionized minimally-invasive surgery. Either that or the 2-1B droid from Star Wars: the Empire Strikes...

3 Exciting Biotech Trends to Watch Closely in 2017

As I start to look at the emerging trends of 2017 from the vantage of IndieBio, where we see hundreds of biotech startup applications and technologies per year, a few key themes are already emerging....

See How This House Was 3D Printed in Just 24 Hours

3D printing is being used to produce more and more novel items: tools, art, even rudimentary human organs. What all those items have in common, though, is that they’re small. The next phase of...

Are We Ready for Cyborgs? The Tech Is on Its Way

Are we ready for cyborgs? More specifically, people with implants that enhance beyond the superficially cosmetic and into the realms of evolved beings? Jorge Pelegrín-Borondo (Universidad de La Rioja), Eva Reinares-Lara (Universidad Rey Juan Carlos)...
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This Week’s Awesome Stories From Around the Web (Through March 4th)

ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE Facebook Is Using Artificial Intelligence to Help Prevent Suicide Alex Kantrowitz | BuzzFeed "Today, Facebook is introducing an important piece of that technology—a suicide-prevention feature that uses AI to identify posts indicating suicidal or harmful thoughts....

8 Principles for Leaders to Make the Most of the Exponential Age

How do top CEOs lead during this exponential age? How do you manage the explosion of information and onslaught of increasing competition? How do you sort through the abundance of opportunity and prevent getting burned out? How...

Natural Selection Is About to Be Overpowered by the First-Ever Mammalian Gene Drive

The year is 2050. The place, New Zealand. Technological advances have dramatically changed the lives of the island’s human inhabitants, but on first blush, its animals remain untouched. Except for one curious thing: all invasive...

What You Need to Know About Elon Musk’s Plan to Fly People to the Moon

What On February 27, Elon Musk’s SpaceX announced plans to fly two non-astronauts, or “private citizens,” on a loop around the moon. Who No one except Elon Musk and the two moon-explorers-to-be know who they are yet....

Does Zapping Your Brain Actually Help You Learn Faster?

A cognitive neuroscientist and his team at HRL Laboratories in Malibu, California, seem to have achieved the impossible. According to a press release, the team “measured the brain activity patterns of six commercial and military...

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