Artificial Intelligence

Google’s AlphaGo AI to retire after beating world’s best player

Google’s AlphaGo AI to retire after beating world’s best player

Earlier this week in China, AlphaGo, the artificial intelligence from Google's DeepMind division, defeated Ke Jie, the world's number one Go player, in a three-part match. Now the company has revealed that the AI will be hanging up its gloves, so to speak. As the 3-0 win over Ke Jie marks "the highest possible pinnacle for AlphaGo as a competitive program," DeepMind co-founder and co-CEO Demis Hassabis says the bot will be retiring from competitive play.

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Spotify acquires Niland, a machine learning and AI startup

Spotify acquires Niland, a machine learning and AI startup

Spotify has announced the acquisition of Niland, a machine learning startup based out of Paris. The music company made the announcement itself this week, explaining that Niland shares its 'passion for surfacing the right content to the right user at the right time.' Spotify plans to use the company's technology and know-how to improves its own recommendation abilities, doing so with the power of artificial intelligence behind it.

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Google Photos’ new AI sharing may be creepy, but count me in

Google Photos’ new AI sharing may be creepy, but count me in

At a Google I/O where the Google Assistant held center stage, it was a service I'm already deeply committed to, Google Photos, which arguably made best mainstream use of the growing AI. Like Google's most successful products, the integration between the Assistant and the cloud photo service ignored technological showboating in favor of just plain useful features that address real sharing hassles users experience every day. Indeed, as nudges to sharing goes, it's hard to see how Google Photos could now make it any easier without bypassing the human user altogether.

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Google Allo turns selfies into wacky stickers

Google Allo turns selfies into wacky stickers

Who says AI, machine learning, and computer vision has to be cold and boring to anyone except computer scientists? There has been an increasing number of studies and experiments that try to employ the fruits of these advanced studies to more approachable, sometimes whimsical, applications. And what can be more whimsical than turning your perfect selfie into a caricature of yourself. And that is exactly what Google Allo is now capable of doing, all on its own, without your help or your artistic input.

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NVIDIA’s Volta GPU platform wants to take the AI world by storm

NVIDIA’s Volta GPU platform wants to take the AI world by storm

NVIDIA had plenty of big announcements to make during its GTC keynote today, but one of the biggest was the reveal of its new Volta GPU platform. More powerful than any GPU platform NVIDIA has released before (obviously), the company envisions Volta has the go-to platform to accelerate AI development and high performance computing. The question now becomes just how much more powerful Volta actually is.

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Cortana leads Microsoft’s AI assault with Intel and HP deals

Cortana leads Microsoft’s AI assault with Intel and HP deals

Cortana may have only just got a standalone smart speaker to reside in, but Microsoft's Alexa rival is set to get a whole lot smarter. The next generation of talents, AI abilities, and conversational computing for Cortana is being detailed today at BUILD 2017, Microsoft's annual developer event. That includes a significant push into AI across every aspect of the software behemoth's portfolio.

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Bionic hand sees, instinctively reaches for objects

Bionic hand sees, instinctively reaches for objects

Forget whatever fantasy you might have of artificial limbs. Reality is far more cruel than fiction. Although we do have hi-tech prosthetics today, operating them requires no small amount of effort and time. Even the act of reaching out for a stick can take more than just a few seconds because of the time it takes for our brains to interpret what our eyes see, transmit it to electrical signals, which in turn get interpreted by artificial limbs into movement. That is why biomedical engineers from Newcastle University are trying to cut down the time by giving the artificial arm its own eye and brain.

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Google, Raspberry Pi team up for AI DIY kit, Voice HAT

Google, Raspberry Pi team up for AI DIY kit, Voice HAT

Although initially intended to help teach kids and adults alike the workings of a computer, the Raspberry Pi has long shed off its educational roots. The single-board computer (SBC) is now the most popular cornerstone for all sorts of DIY projects, from gaming emulators to the new Internet of Things. Jumping on that bandwagon, Google has teamed up with the Raspberry Pi Foundation to build RPi-compatible kits that will take users on a journey of AI discovery, starting with a Voice Kit.

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Honda and Kyoto University partner for AI that works with humans

Honda and Kyoto University partner for AI that works with humans

Honda has teamed up with Japan's Kyoto University to help spur the development of artificial intelligence. This effort will see the two entities researching and developing such technologies, and doing so with particular goals in mind. Honda envisions a future were AI can collaborate with humans, being integrated into everyday life in a way that is beneficial and able to grow with humans. The company notes that humans would have the 'leading role' in this reality.

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The brains behind Google’s AI chips are starting a rival business

The brains behind Google’s AI chips are starting a rival business

A stealth startup of former Google engineers is working on an artificial intelligence chip that could outshine their former employer's much-vaunted TensorFlow tech. Dubbed Groq, the clandestine company has shared little of its plans or roadmap, though recent filings suggest more than $10m in funding has already been secured. More than four-fifths of the original Google TPU team are now working there.

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Amazon Lex opens Alexa AI’s bot smarts to everyone

Amazon Lex opens Alexa AI’s bot smarts to everyone

Amazon is unlocking Alexa's secrets to developers, launching Amazon Lex, its tech that enables conversational interfaces that make using gadgets and services feel more natural. Previously in closed preview, Amazon Lex is part of Amazon Web Services (AWS) and can be embedded into a third-party project as a fully-managed service. While it's probably best known for powering the spoken conversations people have with Alexa on the Echo and Echo Dot, Lex also works with text chats.

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Facebook thinks AI can replace expensive dual-camera phones

Facebook thinks AI can replace expensive dual-camera phones

Dual cameras are becoming a must-have feature on today's top-tier smartphones - to the point that their absence is one of a few big complaints about the Galaxy S8 - but Facebook is looking to replace one of their most common uses with AI. At F8 2017 today, the social network's annual developer conference, Facebook showed off one of its potential implementations of artificial intelligence. While smart computers may most commonly be associated with Facebook's work on bots, in fact the applications are far broader.

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