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Elon Musk: Tesla To Launch Humanoid Robot Next Year

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Tesla Inc Chief Executive Elon Musk on Thursday said the electric automaker will probably launch a “Tesla Bot” humanoid robot prototype next year, designed for dangerous, repetitive, or boring work that people don’t like to do. Speaking at Tesla’s AI Day event, the billionaire entrepreneur said the robot, which stands around five foot eight inches tall, would be able to handle jobs from attaching bolts to cars with a wrench, or picking up groceries at stores. The robot would have “profound implications for the economy,” Musk said, addressing a labour shortage. He said it was important to make the machine … Read more

When Robots Paint

Ai-Da Robotic Artist

The world’s first robotic self-portraits, painted by an android called Ai-Da, have been unveiled at a new art exhibit in London, despite the “artist” not having a “self” to portray. The surprisingly accurate images question the role of artificial intelligence (AI) in human society and challenge the idea that art is exclusively a human trait, according to her creators. Ai-Da is a life-size android artist powered by AI — computer algorithms that mimic the intelligence of humans — that can paint, sculpt, gesture, blink and talk. Ai-Da is designed to look and act like a human woman with a female … Read more

FOR READERS: Whiz-Bang tech

Robotech Veritech

FOR READERS Today’s reader topic comes from QSFer Hank T. Cannon: What kind of sci-fi tech makes you go “OOOOOOOOOOOH!!!”? For a long time, for me it was transforming vehicles. The Veritech’s from “Robotech,” the cars from the short-lived “Pole Position” cartoon, and of course “M.A.S.K.” among others. I think, from a nostalgia perspective, “Mighty Orbots” is my favorite of them all, if only because of the specific mention of matter manipulation tech in the transformation and unity process. Writers: This is a reader chat – you are welcome to join it, but please do not reference your own works … Read more


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FOR READERS & WRITERS Today’s writer topic comes from QSFer Jim Comer: Will people will stop having “real” relationships if AIs become so sophisticated at learning that they can get to know people and meeting their needs better than other humans ever could? Writers: This is a writer chat – you are welcome to share your own book/link, as long as it fits the chat, but please do so as part of a discussion about the topic. Join the chat: FB: MeWe:

TECH: Make it rain!

Don’t call them the weather gods, but this company can actually make it rain. North Dakota-based Weather Modification International uses planes to target clouds and draw out more rain from them.The concept, called cloud seeding, has been around for decades. But there is new urgency due to climate change and a rapidly growing global population, which have disrupted global water supplies. By 2025, two-thirds of the world’s population may face water shortages, according to the World Wildlife Fund.Weather Modification describes cloud seeding as “an enhancement” of the natural precipitation process. The technology makes storms more efficient by getting additional moisture … Read more

TECH: Today in Creepy Robots

Atlas Robot gif

You can run from Boston Dynamics’ humanoid robot Atlas, but it wouldn’t do you any good — the robot can run after you. In a video shared to YouTube yesterday (May 10) by the robot maker, the uncannily human-like Atlas demonstrates running ability that is eerily reminiscent of a person’s. The robot jogs methodically across an expanse of grass, against a backdrop of trees punctuated by a few isolated buildings. The scene is almost peaceful and idyllic, except for the pervasive whirring and clanking of Atlas’ motors, gears and joints, and the sense of growing unease that comes with witnessing … Read more

TECH: Is a South Korean Company Making Killer Robots?

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The artificial intelligence (AI) community has a clear message for researchers in South Korea: Don’t make killer robots. Nearly 60 AI and robotics experts from almost 30 countries have signed an open letter calling for a boycott against KAIST, a public university in Daejeon, South Korea, that has been reported to be “develop[ing] artificial intelligence technologies to be applied to military weapons, joining the global competition to develop autonomous arms,” the open letter said. In other words, KAIST might be researching how to make military-grade AI weapons. By Laura Geggel – Full Story at Live Science

SPACE: How Close Are We to a Starliner?

boeing starliner

Picture this: A team of space travelers blasts off from Earth in a fully automated shuttle that carries them to an outpost orbiting around the moon, where they will embark on a voyage to Mars. Though it sounds like science fiction, this fantastic journey may be closer than you think: An automated spacecraft designed to transport people into low Earth orbit could be ready for its maiden (uncrewed) voyage as early as this summer. The new spacecraft, called the Crew Space Transportation (CST)-100 Starliner, is being developed in partnership with NASA by a private company generally associated with commercial airplanes: … Read more

TECH & SEX: Porn AI Predicts Naughty Search Terms

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People’s future porn habits have been revealed – at least according to YouPorn’s artificial intelligence system. By the end of 2018, your favourite porn search terms will apparently include “girl time flanty,” “pussy firking” and “anal dangcuble”. In fact, “girl time flanty” will be the third-most popular search, according to YouPorn. We’re not sure what flanty means – or firking and dangcuble, for that matter. The site explained that its “data science and machine learning teams trained a recurrent neural network to look at our search trends,” and provide predictions for the end of the year. It seems society will … Read more

Virgin Unveils Hyperloop that Will Travel 760 Mph

Virgin Hyperloop

Virgin Hyperloop One has released a prototype for a levitating pod that is designed to zoom at speeds as high as 760 mph (1,200 km/h) through a Hyperloop connecting Dubai to Abu Dhabi, according to news sources. The 87-mile (140 kilometers) journey usually takes 90 minutes by car, but the Hyperloop will take a mere 12 minutes, thanks to its innovative track — a long tube that has had its air removed to create a vacuum inside, according to the Daily Mail. Virgin unveiled the pod — which will be accelerated by an electromagnetic propulsion system within the vacuum tube … Read more