Category Archives: Artificial Intelligence

SuperComputers Learn Deeper

The NVIDIA DGX-1 is a supercomputer that’s designed especially for deep learning. The “turnkey system” has GPU accelerators that can deliver the equivalent throughput of 250 x86 servers, plus an array of deep learning software, development tools and hardware. All together, the system can deliver “12X faster training than four-way NVIDIA Maxwell architecture-based solutions from just one year ago,” according to a NVIDIA press release.

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“Artificial Intelligence is the most far-reaching technological advancement in our lifetime,” said Jen-Hsun Huang, CEO and co-founder of NVIDIA. “It changes every industry, every company, everything. It will open up markets to benefit everyone. Data scientists and AI researchers today spend far too much time on home-brewed high performance computing solutions. The DGX-1 is easy to deploy and was created for one purpose: to unlock the powers of superhuman capabilities and apply them to problems that were once unsolvable.”

A new class of intelligent machines will be borne that will learn, see and perceive the world as humans do. It delivers unprecedented levels of computing power to drive next-generation AI applications, allowing researchers to dramatically reduce the time to train larger, more sophisticated deep neural networks.

“Microsoft is developing super deep neural networks that are more than 1,000 layers,” said Xuedong Huang, chief speech scientist at Microsoft Research. “NVIDIA Tesla P100’s impressive horsepower will enable Microsoft’s CNTK to accelerate AI breakthroughs.”

As I mentioned in my first post of the year 2016 will be the year of AI.

To your success

Steve

 

Cars Will Think for Themselves

In a rare move, the world’s 20 largest automakers have come together and agreed to make AEB – (emergency braking) technology standard on all new cars they produce by September 1, 2022.

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The system varies from manufacturer to manufacturer, but it’s typically built around a camera, a laser, or a radar that’s discreetly mounted either behind the rear-view mirror or somewhere on the front fascia, as pictured above on a Mercedes-Benz C-Class. It permanently scopes out the road ahead and warns the driver if it senses that a collision with another car is imminent, and it automatically applies the brakes if the driver doesn’t react in time.

The companies that signed the agreement represent 99 percent of the new car market in the United States alone. The list of participants includes BMW, Toyota, Honda, General Motors, Ford, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, the Volkswagen Group, Honda, Hyundai-Kia, Jaguar-Land Rover, Fiat-Chrysler, Volvo, Tesla, Subaru, Nissan, Mitsubishi, and Mazda. The broad list ensures that consumers will benefit from AEB regardless of whether they spend $16,000 on a Nissan or $160,000 on a Porsche.

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety says this single move has the potential to reduce rear-end collisions in the U.S. by 40 percent. It’s also an important precedent that paves the way for car manufacturers to agree on standards for autonomous features in their vehicles without being prodded by their incumbent  governments.

Sleepy drivers take note !

To your success.

 

Steve

2016 – The Year of AI

Well the long festive season is over and I’m back at my desk  after a well deserved break and contemplating this New Year with renewed energy, vigour and excitement. This is going to be a great year for ideas and making new connections and sharing common visions to discover your purpose. Which leads me onto my first topic of the season and one which is going to make a lot of ripples in knowledge based industries.

Microsoft has hailed 2016 the “Year of AI,” according to its annual trend list. Microsoft asked 16 members of its technology and research team to forecast the biggest breakthroughs for 2016, and AI was the area generating the most excitement. Virtual assistants, conversation assistants, AI-enabled user interfaces and customer service AIs were some of the user cases described.

The tech giants see this era as an important step to  focus on artificial intelligence, and they’re predicting major breakthroughs in 2016 — we shall see more evidence of this technology’s rapid advancement from deceptive to disruptive growth phases as the year progresses..

In 2015, artificial intelligence went mainstream. Major tech companies including Google, Facebook, Amazon and Twitter made huge in roads into AI, almost all of technology research company predictions included AI, and declared that AI-driven technologies were the next big disruptor to enterprise software.  This makes it likely that in 2016, new inventions will increasingly come to market from companies discovering new ways to apply this wonderful technology versus building it. With game changers now having access to cost effective quality AI platforms to create new products, we’ll also likely see an explosion in new startups using AI.

Smart machines will assist employees being more productive, not replace them. Analytics industry leader, Tom Davenport, predicted that “smart leaders will realize that augmentation—combining smart humans with smart machines—is a better strategy than automation.”

Business leaders will be given the choice to use these intelligent vehicles so that AI sourced information has the option to present solutions and explain how they arrive at their answers to common problems and allow better, more efficient decisions be made as part of a companies growth.

AI-powered applications will start to infiltrate companies other than technology firms. Employees, teams and entire departments will champion process re-engineering efforts with these intelligent systems whether they realize it or not. As each individual app eliminates a task, employees will automate many of the mundane parts of their jobs and assemble their own stack of AI-powered apps. Teammates eager to be  competitive will follow, along with team managers who are looking to execute on cost-cutting efforts.

With innovation progressing rapidly within large organizations in sectors such as retail, finance and pharmaceutical will focus even more efforts on remaining competitive and discovering the next big thing by forming innovation hubs. Innovation laboratories have existed for some time, but in 2016, we’ll begin to see more resources devoted to innovation  and more technologies discovered in these think tanks actually implemented across different company functions and business lines.

2016 will be a big year for AI. But what is even more significant, 2016 will bring about a major shift in the perception of AI. It will cease to be an intimidating, hypothetical set of notions and theories and will be better understood and accepted as more people realize the advantages of AI to supplement what we do to make our lives even more rewarding.

To your Success in 2016

Steve

Weed Free Soil – A Gardeners Paradise

This Weed-Killing Robot Makes Herbicides Obsolete

The Bosch BoniRob is a LIDAR-enabled robot that identifies weeds you don’t want and squashes them into the ground with impressive force. It can run for up to 24 hours at once, killing about two weeds a second.

According to Bosch, the robot is about the size of a small vehicle, and uses the same type of laser-radar vision system that Google’s self-driving cars use to navigate the world. BoniRob is programmed by being shown pictures of leaves from plants farmers want to harvest and  differentiates them from weeds. Using machine learning—a form of artificial intelligence that allows it to make decisions based on what it’s been shown—it applies its own information to what it sees when it’s in the field, stamping down only on the weeds it’s been asked to eliminate. BoniRob could potentially rid farms of the need to use herbicides or other weed killers on crops, which have been seen as potentially harmful to humans.

Machine learning systems get better with more information, so with each new weed or plant it sees, BoniRob refines its interpretation of what each of them are, getting more advanced at doing its job each time. In tests on carrot patches, BoniRob stamped out about 90% of weeds, according to “Popular Science”.
BoniRob is currently being tested on real farmland, and IEEE Spectrum says that it can run autonomously for about a whole day before it runs out of fuel. Bosch intends to rent or sell the robot to farmers looking to cut down on labour costs. According to the company, farmers today can harvest about 3-4 times what they could from the same amount of land in the 1950s, and as our population continues to increase, we’ll have to find new ways to keep growing crops efficiently and safely.

This self-driven robot shows how machine learning and sensor technology can create better, more powerful agriculture robots. One day, robots like this one will eradicate the need for herbicides and pesticides.

Imagine a  future with an army of self-driving BoniRobs could be all that’s needed to harvest our fields. Once self-driving lorries can bring the food to stores, and self-driving robots can stack it on supermarket shelves, just like in an Amazon warehouse hub; we’ll be able to have a completely self-driven robot farm-to-table meal. Future foody hipsters will be in heaven .

To your healthy future.

 

Steve

 

Your Heads’ In The Clouds

This post will literally blow your mind …And I mean ….Literally!
It has been predicted recently that not far from now, our opportunity & capacity for learning and gaining knowledge will grow exponentially to stratospheric heights.

” In the 2030s,” said Ray Kurzweil( a brilliant scientist from Google), “we are going to send nano-robots into the brain (via capillaries) that will provide full immersion virtual reality from within the nervous system and will connect our neocortex to the cloud. Just like how we can wirelessly expand the power of our smartphones 10,000-fold in the cloud today, we’ll be able to expand our neocortex in the cloud.”
Having your head in the clouds” will no longer be a term used for ridiculing unrealistic thinking.

Just give a thought to it for a moment ……2030 is only 15 years away…
Directly plugging your brain into the internet? Upgrading your intelligence and memory capacity by orders of magnitude?
This post is about the staggering (and fascinating) consequences of that possible future.
The implications of a connected neocortex are quite literally unfathomable. As such, any list one can come up with will pale in contrast to reality… But here are a few suggested ideas to get the ball rolling.

Head-to-Head Communication
This will deliver a new level of human intimacy, where you can truly know what your lover, friend or child is feeling. Intimacy far beyond what we experience today by mere human verbal exchanges. Forget email, texting, phone calls, and so on – you’ll be able to send your thoughts to someone simply by thinking them.

Yahoo on the Brain – Instantaneous knowledge at the speed of thought!
You’ll have the ability to “know” anything you desire, at the moment you want to know it. You’ll have access to the world’s information at the tip of your neurons. You’ll be able to determine complecated maths formulae in seconds. You’ll be able to navigate the streets of any cities, naturally. You’ll be able to hop into a helicopter and fly it perfectly( no mean feat). You’ll be able to communicate in different languages effortlessly.

Scalable Intelligence
Just imagine that you’re in a bind and you need to solve a problem (rapidly). In the future world, you’ll be able to scale up the computational power of your brain on demand, 10x or 1,000x, 10,000X… in much the same way that algorithms today can spool up 1,000 processor cores on Web Servers.

Living in the Virtual World
If our brains can truly connect at high bandwidth, you will be able to circumvent our current sensory internal organs (eyes, ears, touch) to the point where brain’s sense of reality can be driven completely by a computer gaming engine – a multimedia world. Likewise, the connections would exist in the motor cortex of your brain as well. When you move your limbs, picture a corresponding set of virtual arms moving perfectly in the virtual world.

Extended Immune System
Ray goes onto suggest how we already have intelligent scientific devices, the size of blood cells that kill disease. They are called T-cells. They can recognize an adversary and attack it; In the future, nanorobots will be able to communicate wirelessly, download applications when new pathogens arrives, and attack cancer, cancer stem cells, bacteria, viruses, and all the disease agents. They can also work on metabolic illnesses like diabetes. They could also protect healthy levels of everything you need in the blood, including nutrients, and basically heal and fundamentally replace weakened organs.

Downloadable Expertise
The old derogatory saying “Jack of all trades, master of none.” Will be a thing of the past as we will become experts in everything – We’ll be able to do anything. Need to perform unexpected emergency surgery? Just download the ER doctor program. Need to learn a new foreign language? Download it. Want to repair your old car motor engine? Download the mechanic module. In fact, you probably won’t even need to download it (which takes up memory), you’ll probably just “stream” resources from the cloud.

Expanded and Searchable Memories
We’ll be able to always remember everything that ever happened to us (because we’ll store our memories in the cloud), and we’ll be able to search that memory database for useful information. When our memories will become searchable, we’ll also be able to make them contextual by cross-referencing our diaries, journeys, mediacal info, current news, weather conditions, and anything else that might be relevant to that particular moment in time.

A Higher-Order Existence
Ray talks about how a connected neocortex will bring humanity to a higher order of existence and complexity – expanding our palate for sensation, culture, humour, creativity, expression, and individuality. He says, “We’re going to be funnier. We’re going to be sexier. We’re going to be better at expressing loving sentiment. We’re going to add more levels to the hierarchy of brain modules and create deeper levels of expression. People will be able to explore very deeply some particular type of music in far greater degree than we can today. It’ll lead to far greater originality, not less.”

While this future may sound imaginary to many, let’s remember that exponential technologies are initially deceptive, before they become disruptive.
And today, there are many labs around the world working on molecular machinery, that allow us to edit our own genome, and brain-computer interfaces (through cortical implants and in the field of optogenetics).
So what if these fields of technological progress double every 18 months? In 15 years (2015 – 2030), we will have a 1,000-fold improvement over today. What does a future one thousand times better look like? Perhaps it’s what Ray predicts…
If this future becomes reality, connected humans are going to change everything…You’ll be able to fulfil your potential in every area of your life!
We need to discuss the consequences in order to make the right decisions now so that we are prepared for the long-term.
This is the sort of conversation that really lights my fire and one I’d like to explore further within a mastermind group. So come and join me.

To you all “slipping the surly bonds of earth” and soaring amongst the clouds

Steve