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Jason Dorrier

Jason is editorial director of Singularity Hub. He researched and wrote about finance and economics before moving on to science and technology. He's curious about pretty much everything, but especially loves learning about and sharing big ideas and advances in artificial intelligence, computing, robotics, biotech, neuroscience, and space.

From This Author


The Ideal Qubit? Future Quantum Computers Could Crunch Data With Single Electrons on Neon Ice

The digital world—your laptop, the internet it's connected to, and the companies that make it all go—sits on a foundation of bits. These bits are the language digital computers speak. Bits come in two flavors:...

A Hybrid AI Just Beat Eight World Champions at Bridge—and Explained How It Did It

Champion bridge player Sharon Osberg once wrote, "Playing bridge is like running a business. It’s about hunting, chasing, nuance, deception, reward, danger, cooperation and, on a good day, victory." While it’s little surprise chess fell...

NVIDIA’s Tiny New AI Transforms Photos Into Full 3D Scenes in Mere Seconds

There was a time when converting an old photograph into a digital image impressed people. These days we can do a bit more, like bringing vintage photos to life à la Harry Potter. And...

Moore’s Law: Scientists Just Made a Graphene Transistor Gate the Width of an Atom

There's been no greater act of magic in technology than the sleight of hand performed by Moore's Law. Electronic components that once fit in your palm have long gone atomic, vanishing from our world...

The Most Complete Digital Replica of a Living Cell Yet Grows Like the Real Thing

Scientists have long made digital simulations of the universe on the grandest scales. Now they're turning their attention to smaller systems—though those systems are no less grand. The cells in our bodies are like their...

Startup Will Drill 12 Miles Into Earth’s Crust to Tap the Boundless Energy Below

When it comes to renewable energy, almost all the love goes to solar and wind. Which isn't surprising, given the tear both technologies have been on of late. But solar and wind have their drawbacks....

This AI Learned the Design of a Million Algorithms to Help Build New AIs Faster

The skyrocketing scale of AI has been hard to miss in recent years. The most advanced algorithms now have hundreds of billions of connections, and it takes millions of dollars and a supercomputer to...

Meta Is Making a Monster AI Supercomputer for the Metaverse

Meta is building a new supercomputer to train enormous machine learning algorithms. Though only partially complete, the AI Research Supercluster (RSC) already ranks among the most powerful machines on the planet. When it's finished,...

How Will the Universe End? Scientists Seek an Answer in the Biggest Galaxy Map Yet

This week, astrophysicists presented the biggest map of the universe yet. Having nailed down the position of 7.5 million galaxies, the map is larger and more detailed than all its predecessors combined. And it's nowhere...

These Robotic Factories Will Make Supermaterials in Space

By rocket, drone, and giant centrifuge, humans are getting better at hurling just about anything into space. There's a Tesla Roadster cruising around somewhere beyond Mars, and William Shatner went suborbital this year. Meanwhile,...

This Robot Tunnels Through Solid Rock by Blasting It With a Jet of Superheated Gas

In science fiction movie, The Core, an intrepid crew journeys to the center of the Earth in a vessel that melts through the planet's crust and mantle with a giant laser. Drilling startup, Petra,...

Scientists Model What Would Happen if a Mini Black Hole Punched Through the Moon

The lunar surface is a record of the solar system's violent origins. But look closely enough and we may find something even more exotic there—the cratered remains of an impact with a black hole...

Alphabet Chases Wonder Drugs With DeepMind AI Spinoff Isomorphic Labs

AI research wunderkind, DeepMind, has long been all fun and games. The London-based organization, owned by Google parent company Alphabet, has used deep learning to train algorithms that can take down world champions at the...

Seismic ‘Telescope’ Reveals a Titanic, Tree-Like Plume Feeding Earth’s Volcanoes

Some 75% of the world's volcanoes live along the aptly name Ring of Fire. This makes sense. Hugging a boundary between tectonic pates, the Ring of Fire is an open seam on the planet's...

This Asteroid May Be the Shard of a Dead Protoplanet—and Have More Metal Than All the Reserves on Earth

It’s often said Earth’s resources are finite. This is true enough. But shift your gaze skyward for a moment. Up there, amid the stars, lurks an invisible bonanza of epic proportions. Many of the materials...

This Amazing GIF Shows a Million Individual Neurons Firing in a Mouse’s Brain

The brain is the center of every human being's world, but many of its inner workings are yet mysterious. Slowly, scientists are pulling back the veil. Recently, for example, researchers have created increasingly intricate maps...

The Biggest Simulation of the Universe Yet Stretches Back to the Big Bang

Remember the philosophical argument our universe is a simulation? Well, a team of astrophysicists say they’ve created the biggest simulated universe yet.  But you won’t find any virtual beings in it—or even planets or...

New Study Finds a Single Neuron Is a Surprisingly Complex Little Computer

Comparing brains to computers is a long and dearly held analogy in both neuroscience and computer science. It’s not hard to see why. Our brains can perform many of the tasks we want computers to handle...

Newly Classified Hycean Exoplanets Could Accelerate the Search for Alien Life

In the search for life beyond our planet, scientists have long focused on conditions similar to those found here. This makes sense. Earth is the only place we know life exists. But in recent years,...

OpenAI’s Codex Translates Everyday Language Into Computer Code

In the beginning, computer programmers translated their desires into the language of machines. Now, those machines are becoming conversant in the language of their programmers. OpenAI's newly released Codex, a machine learning algorithm that...

DeepMind’s Vibrant New Virtual World Trains Flexible AI With Endless Play

Last year, DeepMind researchers wrote that future AI developers may spend less time programming algorithms and more time generating rich virtual worlds in which to train them. In a new paper released this week on...

Japan Sets New Record for Internet Speed at 319 Terabits per Second

Ever wonder why the internet, as a whole, didn’t break when Covid-19 hit? In a matter of weeks, online habits changed dramatically. Kids went to school on Zoom; adults followed suit at work. Desperate to...

A Neuron’s Sense of Timing Encodes Information in the Human Brain

We like to think of brains as computers: A physical system that processes inputs and spits out outputs. But, obviously, what’s between your ears bears little resemblance to your laptop. Computer scientists know the intimate...

Breakthrough CRISPR Gene Therapy Could Be a ‘One and Done’ Injection

CRISPR gene editing has had a big decade. The technology, which earned two of its discovers a Nobel Prize in 2020, can target and edit genes more easily than its predecessors. Still, as tantalizing...

Fermi Paradox: Here’s What an Alien Civilization Settling the Galaxy Looks Like

There are tens of billions of galaxies in the universe, each with tens of billions of stars. Many stars have planets, and a healthy fraction of those are rocky and can sustain liquid water...

Each of These Microscopic Glass Beads Stores an Image Encoded on a Strand of DNA

Increasingly, civilization’s information is stored digitally, and that storage is abundant and growing. We don't bother deleting those seven high-definition videos of the ceiling or 20 blurry photos of a table corner taken by...

Google and Harvard Unveil the Largest High-Resolution Map of the Brain Yet

Last Tuesday, teams from Google and Harvard published an intricate map of every cell and connection in a cubic millimeter of the human brain. The mapped region encompasses the various layers and cell types of...

Google AI Researchers Are Dreaming Up a New Species of Search Engine

Imagine a collection of books—maybe millions or even billions of them—haphazardly tossed by publishers into a heaping pile in a field. Every day the pile grows exponentially. Those books are brimming with knowledge and answers....

IBM’s New Chip Technology Shows Off the Next Big Step in Moore’s Law

Increasingly, modern life depends on how skillfully we shuttle electrons through the nanoscale mazes etched on computer chips. These processors aren’t just for laptops anymore—they’re used in your car, your thermostat, your refrigerator and...

The World’s Biggest AI Chip Now Comes Stock With 2.6 Trillion Transistors

The world's biggest AI chip just doubled its specs—without adding an inch. The Cerebras Systems Wafer Scale Engine is about the size of a big dinner plate. All that surface area enables a lot more...

This Robot Taught Itself to Walk in a Simulation—Then Went for a Stroll in Berkeley

Recently, in a Berkeley lab, a robot called Cassie taught itself to walk, a little like a toddler might. Through trial and error, it learned to move in a simulated world. Then its handlers...

OpenAI’s GPT-3 Algorithm Is Now Producing Billions of Words a Day

When OpenAI released its huge natural-language algorithm GPT-3 last summer, jaws dropped. Coders and developers with special access to an early API rapidly discovered new (and unexpected) things GPT-3 could do with naught but...

Watch Hypnotic Drone Footage of Boiling Lava Taken Inside Iceland Volcano’s Crater

The proliferation of drones bearing cameras has brought many a new sight. Like, a bird's-eye-view of sharks casually swimming at the local beach—which is, let's just say, unsettling—or, now, an eyewitness view of a...

Watch a Robot 3D Printing the Rocket for Relativity Space’s First Orbital Launch

Relativity Space has the audacious goal of 3D printing 95 percent of a rocket and sending it to orbit. Getting to space is hard. But completely reinventing how rockets are manufactured at the same...

Hear Black Holes and Galaxies Sing in These Captivating NASA ‘Sonifications’

The universe is brimming with light that's invisible to us humans. The electromagnetic spectrum extends far beyond visible light in both directions. Longer wavelengths include radio waves and shorter wavelengths reach into X-rays and gamma...

Extraterrestrial Life Could Be Hiding in Our Galaxy’s Interior Ocean Worlds

In the search for extraterrestrial life, liquid water is crucial. Life as we know it can’t exist without water. This fact has led scientists to look for twins of our planet around other stars...

The Ghost of Ancient Earth’s Magma Oceans Found in Greenland Rocks

Our planet’s history is written in its rocks. You can traverse eons by brushing your fingers over the layers of a cliff wall. But beyond a certain point, the record goes blank. Though the...

This Wild Video Maps the Entire Internet and Its Evolution Since 1997

In the early days of digital computing, the machines were monolithic and isolated. They didn’t communicate. In fact, they couldn’t communicate. There was no lingua franca. This problem was no secret. Computer scientists had been...

See a Billion-Year Dance of Earth’s Tectonic Plates in 40 Seconds

Modern life can feel dizzying, like everything is motion and change. But there are some constants we set our lives against: the relative position of the stars wheeling above, the mountaintops below, and the...

Artificial Island in the North Sea Will Harvest Wind Energy at a Huge Scale

Wind is to the North Sea as sun is to the Sahara. And just as the latter is a tantalizing location to generate solar power, so the former is for making electricity from wind. Of...

New ‘Liquid’ AI Learns Continuously From Its Experience of the World

For all its comparisons to the human brain, AI still isn’t much like us. Maybe that's alright. In the animal kingdom, brains come in all shapes and sizes. So, in a new machine learning...

No Trees Harmed: MIT Aims to One Day Grow Your Kitchen Table in a Lab

You’ve likely heard the buzz around lab-grown (or cultured) meat. We can now take a few cells from a live animal and grow those cells into a piece of meat. The process is kinder...

How Many Galaxies Are in the Universe? A New Answer From the Darkest Sky Ever Observed

Ordinarily, we point telescopes at some object we want to see in greater detail. In the 1990s astronomers did the opposite. They pointed the most powerful telescope in history, the Hubble Space Telescope, at...

Autonomous Ravn X Drone to Launch Satellites From Airport Runways

Huntsville Alabama’s Lowe Mill arts and entertainment center offers studios to artists of all kinds—sculptors, bookbinders, woodworkers. It’s the kind of place where, in more normal times, visitors might wander open studios and take...

Why the Price of New Solar Electricity Fell an Incredible 89% in the Last Decade

In 1956, an early demonstration of solar photovoltaics produced a watt of energy for the modest price of an inflation-adjusted $1,865. Put another way, you'd need to spend over a half-million dollars to equal...

New Quantum Computer in China Claims Quantum Advantage With Light

The amazing thing about quantum computers isn't that they’re currently revolutionizing computers as we know them. The machines are still clunky, finicky, expensive, and not too practical. They may have a big impact one...

The Trillion-Transistor Chip That Just Left a Supercomputer in the Dust

The history of computer chips is a thrilling tale of extreme miniaturization. The smaller, the better is a trend that’s given birth to the digital world as we know it. So, why on earth would...

There Could Be 300 Million (or More) Earth-Like Planets in Our Galaxy

The first planets discovered outside our solar system were strange, unfamiliar worlds. These were giants like Jupiter, hotter than Venus, tearing around their suns inside the orbit of Mercury. Astronomers have since discovered planets...

New Display Packs 10,000 PPI and Could Paint Stunning VR Worlds

You can plausibly say today’s virtual reality is a descendent of smartphones. The affordable sensors, chips, and high-resolution displays critical to rendering a decent VR experience were engineered for iPhones and Galaxys not Rifts...
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Watch a Jet Suit Pilot Glide Up a Mountain in a Test for Wilderness Paramedics

A few years ago, I saw a guy in a jet suit take off in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. The roar was deafening, the smell of fuel overwhelming. Over the span of a...

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