If you developed an artificial intelligence that could see as a human does, how would you announce its presence to the world? Would you wait until it could recognize objects in a home, identifying a chair as a piece of movable furniture, to be potentially nudged back under the dining room table, and not simply another laser-mapped obstacle to be veered around? Or demonstrate its powers of perception while studying X-ray films or MRI results, sifting through complex visual data to arrive at possible diagnoses?
To help kids on the autism spectrum see the world in brand-new ways, a team of parents has equipped them with technical lessons, drones, and video cameras. "Taking Autism To The Skies" (TATTS) is a crowdfunded project that combines teamwork, film-making, geography, and flight-planning software. On Tuesday, the Madison, Wis.-based club released five kid-made videos that are incredibly sweet and fun.
In the centuries-old best friendship between dogkind and humankind, humans are apparently easily replaced with robots. Seemingly loyal canines are totally willing to interact with cold, hard machines, according to a new study in Animal Cognition, gazing lovingly at their robot faces and finding hidden foodstuffs that the robot pointed to. Robots, stop taking things away from us!
Creepy, crawly maggots might be making their way into people's brains. Robot maggots, that is. Inspired by a TV show where plastic surgeons use maggots to eat away dead tissue, neurosurgeon J. Marc Simard of the University of Maryland School of Medicine has been developing a prototype for a larvae-esque robot that could get eat away at a brain tumor from the inside.
This Autonomous Hauling System, in use by the British-Australian metals and mining company Rio Tinto Iron Ore, is a series of robotic trucks that load, haul, and dump ore and waste rock at open pit mines. Imagine Google's self-driving cars, except gigantic: each 210-metric-ton truck is 27 feet wide and 51 feet long, and can carry 320 metric tons.
These eyeball-y robots, created by a consortium of European researchers, are designed to learn how to navigate dynamic human environments without running into people, knocking things over, or getting stuck. The "Lindas," as they've been dubbed, will soon work alongside humans in two complex environments: as monitors in an Austrian nursing home and security guards in an office.