Kendra Pierre-Louis
at 15:39 PM May 24 2017
Robots // 

From Charles Darwin, who once called it “one of the most wonderful plants in the world,” to the man-eating Audrey II of "Little Shop of Horrors", the Venus flytrap has inspired artists and scientists for more than a century. Into that canon enters a new soft gripping robot, which as described in a study released today in the journal Nature Communications, uses the flytrap as its design inspiration for sensing and picking up objects.

Rob Verger
at 10:35 AM May 19 2017

After an announcement Wednesday at Google I/O, the Google Assistant is now available on iPhones in the United States. The tool shares space, with Siri—relegated to being a smart sibling who's not allowed to come out and play as much as you want it to.

Rob Verger
at 10:43 AM May 10 2017

Facebook's billion-plus users speak a plethora of languages, and right now, the social network supports translation of over 45 different tongues. That means that if you're an English speaker confronted with German, or a French speaker seeing Spanish, you'll see a link that says “See Translation.”

Kelsey D. Atherton
at 08:48 AM May 5 2017

Yesterday, Mark Zuckerberg announced that Facebook is hiring 3,000 people to work on its community operations team, which reviews images, videos, and posts that users report. These new hires will join the 4,500 existing employees in an effort to minimize the reach of future events like the shooting of Robert Goodwin. It's a considerable-but-essential investment for Facebook, but it leads us to a basic question: Can't this job be automated?

Kate Baggaley
at 09:49 AM May 1 2017
Robots // 

The moons orbiting Jupiter and Saturn lie far from the sun's warmth. Most have no atmosphere, and many are covered in an icy sheath miles thick. They're also our best bet for finding life in our own solar system. Beneath the frozen crusts lie vast oceans, and space agencies in the United States and beyond are hard at work on the robots that will one day visit them.

Kelsey D. Atherton
at 11:54 AM Apr 24 2017

Language is all about repetition. Every word you're reading was created by humans, and then used by other humans, creating and reinforcing context, meaning, the very nature of language. As humans train machines to understand language, they're teaching machines to replicate human bias.

Rob Verger
at 11:54 AM Apr 24 2017

On Thursday, Google announced that its Home smart hub device can now recognize and identify up to six different users by the sound of their voice. It's an inevitable—but crucial—step in the development of smart home virtual assistants. The new skill means that different people in a household will be able to ask the Google Assistant questions about what's on their calendar, or what their commute looks like, and the Home device will know who is speaking to it and give tailored responses. It'll make it a more streamlined experience for families sharing a smart home speaker hub.

 
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