Andrew McAfee argues that we are advancing so rapidly that our progress is no longer about a difference in degree, but a difference in kind. Along with Erik Brynjolfsson, Andrew is the co-author of The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies
Fair 4.5 minutes video address ( 30% information 70% inspiration) on our step up to new progress levels - rather than just mulitplication etc, and the new shapes of progress building upon progress. Not a revelation, but good to be supported and reminded that we are moving on!
Scientists from IBM unveiled on Aug. 8 a breakthrough software ecosystem designed for programming silicon chips that have an architecture inspired by the function, low power, and compact volume of the brain. The technology could enable a new generation of intelligent sensor networks that mimic the brain’s abilities for perception, action, and cognition. Dramatically different from traditional software, IBM’s new programming model breaks the mold of sequential operation underlying today’s von Neumann architectures and computers. It is instead tailored for a new class of distributed, highly interconnected, asynchronous, parallel, large-scale cognitive computing architectures.
Chip breakhtroughs are most important in getting our progress meters revving faster for all areas of technology. The benefits of the faster processing of date and/or the faster processing of complex control routines are enormnous.
After the joy of the birth itself, parenthood sometimes brings the unwelcome news that a newborn has jaundice and must wear goggles and be placed under special lights. Imagine how different this experience might be if there were no goggles, just a warm blanket covering the tiny body, a healing frequency of blue light emanating from its folds. That comforting scene, already a reality in some hospitals, is evidence of the fundamental rethinking of lighting now under way in research labs, executive offices and investor conferences. Digital revolutionaries have Edison’s 130-year-old industry, and its $100 billion in worldwide revenue, in their sights. Color, control and function are all being reassessed, and new players have emerged like a wave of Silicon Valley start-ups.
Since 2010, graphene has been on the fast track. It is being groomed for a role in materials that typically take years and sometimes decades before they develop into products that transform the way people do things in everyday life. On a recent visit to the University of Manchester, which remains the center of the graphene “revolution,” physicists and engineers are trying hard to move their home-developed technology off the lab bench and into commercial products. To do it, they’ll have to develop a graphene “killer app” that possesses distinct advantages over existing technologies — and doesn’t cost too much to manufacture.
Expect Labs, makers of the MindMeld app for dynamically suggesting content in response to the topics in a spoken conversation, is opening its artificial intelligence engine to the world via the new MindMeld API. It’s the latest example of just how powerful APIs are becoming and offers yet another glimpse into how intelligent we will expect applications to be in the years to come.
Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen has been pondering artificial intelligence since he was a kid. In the late '60s, eerily intelligent computers were everywhere, whether it was 2001's HAL or Star Trek's omnipresent Enterprise computer. As Allen recalls in his memoir, "machines that behaved like people, even people gone mad, were all the rage back then." He would tag along to his father's job at the library, overwhelmed by the information, and daydream about "the sci-fi theme of a dying or threatened civilization that saves itself by finding a trove of knowledge." What if you could collect all the world's information in a single computer mind, one capable of intelligent thought, and be able to communicate in simple human language?
Forty years later, with nearly 9 billion dollars to Allen's name, that idea is beginning to seem like more than just fantasy. Much of the technology is already here. We talk to our phones and aren't surprised when they talk back. A web search can answer nearly any question, undergirded by a semantic understanding of the structure of online information. But while the tools are powerful, the processes behind them are still fairly basic. Siri only understands a small subset of questions, and she can't reason, or do anything you might call thinking. Even Watson, IBM'sJeopardy champ, can only handle simple questions with unambiguous phrasing. Already, Google is looking to the Star Trek computer as a guiding light for its voice search — but it's still a long way off. If technology is going to get there, we'll need computers that are better at talking and, more crucially, better at reasoning.
Molecular Nuclear Medicine is a medical specialty using trace amounts of active substances, called radiopharmaceuticals, to create images of organs and lesions and to treat various diseases, like cancer. This documentary explains how SPECT and PET work, and how Radio Metabolic Therapy can treat cancer. A 22' journey from the history of radioactivity and cancer to the most modern Theragnostic techniques.
Under a microscope, four slivers of silicon — electronic circuits called chiplets — perform an elaborate, jerky dance as if controlled by a hidden puppet master. Then on command, they all settle with pinpoint accuracy, precisely touching a pattern of circuit wires, each at just the right point of contact. The technology, on display at Xerox’s Palo Alto Research Center, or PARC, is part of a new system for making electronics, one that takes advantage of a Xerox invention from the 1970s: the laser printer. If perfected, it could lead to desktop manufacturing plants that “print” the circuitry for a wide array of electronic devices — flexible smartphones that won’t break when you sit on them; a supple, pressure-sensitive skin for a new breed of robot hands; smart-sensing medical bandages that could capture health data and then be thrown away.
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