Daily Artificial Intelligence News Roundup #143

1. Can a computer be creative? Chips with Everything podcast

How to listen to podcasts: everything you need to know

In our latest collaboration, Jordan Erica Webber teams up with Ian Sample of the Guardian’s Science Weekly podcast to look at why artwork produced using AI is forcing us to confront how we define creativity

In October 2018, the British auction house Christie’s became the first to sell a work of art created by an algorithm.

The Portrait of Edmond Belamy was sold for $432,500 (£336,000), which was much higher than anyone had expected. This groundbreaking sale was controversial, not least in the AI art world itself. Read More

2. CCF-ICAI 2019 : The 2nd CCF International Conference on Artificial Intelligence

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3. AI is sending people to jail—and getting it wrong

But at the Data for Black Lives conference last weekend, technologists, legal experts, and community activists snapped things into perspective with a discussion of America’s criminal justice system.

Under immense pressure to reduce prison numbers without risking a rise in crime, courtrooms across the US have turned to automated tools in attempts to shuffle defendants through the legal system as efficiently and safely as possible. Say hello to criminal risk assessment algorithms. Read More

4. Giving algorithms a sense of uncertainty could make them more ethical

Algorithms are increasingly being used to make ethical decisions. Assessment tools currently used in the criminal justice system must consider risks to society against harms to individual defendants; autonomous weapons will need to weigh the lives of soldiers against those of civilians. We’d have to tell it, for example, that we definitely prefer friendly soldiers over friendly civilians, and friendly civilians over enemy soldiers—even if we weren’t actually sure or didn’t think that should always be the case. Read More

5. Theory of Minds: Understanding Behavior in Groups Through Inverse Planning

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6. World first as Chinese surgeon performs remote robotic surgery across a 5G network –

Recently dentists in China used the first autonomous robot dentist to replace a patients teeth, and the US Military started trialling what they call “remote robotic procedures” that would allow American surgeons to operate on injured soldiers in the battlefields around the world without ever having set foot out of the US. Now, in a world first, a surgeon in China has become the first person to perform a remote control robot surgery over a super-fast 5G network, and the surgeon, who performed the surgery by remotely manipulating two robotic arms, was 30 miles from an operating theatre in Fujian province.

During the procedure, an overview of which you can see in the video, he removed an animal’s liver, the South China Morning Post reported. Read More

7. Is AI a danger for Humanity? Well… it’s complicated! – Futurist Gerd Leonhard

In an interesting display of “Yes, No, It’s complicated”, three Indian researchers reflect whether AI is a danger for humanity. “

The NO-camp assumes that AI has no agency and that technology is not dangerous in itself. The fault is in humans who (mis)-use the technology, and technology will always be under our control and so we can literally pull the plug when we want. Read More

8. Soft Actor-Critic: Deep Reinforcement Learning for Robotics

Soft actor-critic solves both of these tasks quickly: the Minitaur locomotion takes 2 hours, and the valve-turning task from image observations takes 20 hours. We also learned a policy for the valve-turning task without images by providing the actual valve position as an observation to the policy. Soft actor-critic can learn this easier version of the valve task in 3 hours. Read More

9. Machine Learning in Action for the Humanitarian Sector

Governments across the world came together in Marrakesh this past December to ratify a pact to improve cooperation on international migration.

In this post, I’ll walk through the development of a machine learning system that provides strategic forecasts of mixed migration along with scenario analysis. The question “why did you decide to move?” is not straightforward for people to answer. Read More

10. AI, the law, and our future

Scientists and policymakers converged at MIT on Tuesday to discuss one of the hardest problems in artificial intelligence: How to govern it.

The first MIT AI Policy Congress featured seven panel discussions sprawling across a variety of AI applications, and 25 speakers — including two former White House chiefs of staff, former cabinet secretaries, homeland security and defense policy chiefs, industry and civil society leaders, and leading researchers.

“When it comes to AI in areas of public trust, the era of moving fast and breaking everything is over,” said R. Read More

11. Do You Take This Robot …

We live in an era when rapid advances in robotics and artificial intelligence are colliding with an expanding conception of sexual identity. This comes quickly on the heels of growing worldwide acceptance of gay, trans and bisexual people.

Now you may describe yourself as polyamorous or demisexual — that last one is people who only feel sexual attraction in close emotional relationships. Read More

12. Smart microrobots that can adapt to their surroundings

One day we may be able to ingest tiny robots that deliver drugs directly to diseased tissue, thanks to research being carried out at EPFL and ETH Zurich.

The group of scientists — led by Selman Sakar at EPFL and Bradley Nelson at ETH Zurich — drew inspiration from bacteria to design smart, biocompatible microrobots that are highly flexible. Because these devices are able to swim through fluids and modify their shape when needed, they can pass through narrow blood vessels and intricate systems without compromising on speed or maneuverability. Read More

13. Data Ops. The Importance of “Gut”. Curiosity. Model Exploration at Uber. [DSR #170]

This excerpt is solid gold:

in almost any decision-making situation involving data, there is some non-zero percentage of the process that involves “gut”. The reason is because not all information about a process can be incorporated into a data analysis, and it’s important for data analysts to realize that. I have run into a fair number of people who have very limited capacity to make good strategic decisions on gut. Read More

14. Hotel Robots Fired for Being Annoying

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A few years ago, I ran across an article about the Henn na Hoteru (“Strange Hotel” or alternatively, the “Changed Hotel“) in Japan. It featured robots everywhere, including animatronic velociraptors at check-in.

Perhaps we should not be surprised to hear that the hotel recently pulled its robots and replaced them with humans. Read More

15. Why AI is failing the next generation of women

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16. RoadBotics’ AI Could Change the Way Cities Maintain Roads


“There are things you can do five or even ten years before that happens to push the lifespan of a road,” says Benjamin Schmidt, CTO of RoadBotics in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

RoadBotics is using state-of-the-art computer vision techniques to help local governments better manage roads. Detroit will soon become the latest city to use RoadBotics’ technology to inspect its 4,200-kilometer (2,600-mile) network. Read More

17. Researchers use Samsung data and AI to predict mobile game churn

Churn — that all-important measure of attrition — is often challenging to predict when it comes to mobile games. There are two types of churn — one at the micro level, between an app and a specific user, and the other at the macro level, between an app and all of its users. org (“Micro- and Macro-Level Churn Analysis of Large-Scale Mobile Games“), which was coauthored by a team of researchers hailing from Samsung Research America, Texas A&M University, University of Pittsburgh, and the University of Arizona. Read More