Robots Learn to Learn from Each Other, Not Just a Central Database

From self-parking cars to voice-recognition software on smartphones, the ability of individual machines to learn from collected sets of data is the forefront of artificial intelligence research.

What's the Latest?


From self-parking cars to voice-recognition software on smartphones, the ability of individual machines to learn from collected sets of data is the forefront of artificial intelligence research. Now, a team of researchers from MIT have developed a new way for machines to learn directly from each other rather than taking in data from a central processing unit. "MIT's Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems have developed an algorithm in which distributed agents — such as robots exploring a building — collect data and analyze it independently. Pairs of agents, such as robots passing each other in the hall, then exchange analyses."

What's the Big Idea?

The new distributed algorithm outperformed the standard model which relies on a central processor of collected data. And while the model was mostly about robot collaboration, the results could affect big data as well, "since it would allow distributed servers to combine the results of their data analyses without aggregating the data at a central location." In the future, emergency response vehicles are expected to become increasingly automated so as to put fewer human lives at risk. In such a world, it would be essential for a team of land and air vehicles to accurately assess their surrounding environment and know how to respond as a coordinated team.

Read more at Kurzweil AI

Photo credit: Charles Taylor/Shutterstock

How to make a black hole

Here's the science of black holes, from supermassive monsters to ones the size of ping-pong balls.

Videos
  • There's more than one way to make a black hole, says NASA's Michelle Thaller. They're not always formed from dead stars. For example, there are teeny tiny black holes all around us, the result of high-energy cosmic rays slamming into our atmosphere with enough force to cram matter together so densely that no light can escape.
  • CERN is trying to create artificial black holes right now, but don't worry, it's not dangerous. Scientists there are attempting to smash two particles together with such intensity that it creates a black hole that would live for just a millionth of a second.
  • Thaller uses a brilliant analogy involving a rubber sheet, a marble, and an elephant to explain why different black holes have varying densities. Watch and learn!
  • Bonus fact: If the Earth became a black hole, it would be crushed to the size of a ping-pong ball.

Russian reporters discover 101 'tortured' whales jammed in offshore pens

Protected animals are feared to be headed for the black market.

(VL.ru)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Russian news network discovers 101 black-market whales.
  • Orcas and belugas are seen crammed into tiny pens.
  • Marine parks continue to create a high-price demand for illegal captures.
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China’s artificial sun reaches fusion temperature: 100 million degrees

In a breakthrough for nuclear fusion research, scientists at China's Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) reactor have produced temperatures necessary for nuclear fusion on Earth.

Credit: EAST Team
Surprising Science
  • The EAST reactor was able to heat hydrogen to temperatures exceeding 100 million degrees Celsius.
  • Nuclear fusion could someday provide the planet with a virtually limitless supply of clean energy.
  • Still, scientists have many other obstacles to pass before fusion technology becomes a viable energy source.
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