Archive for the ‘entertainment’ category

Jul 2, 2020

Hollywood Is Banking That a Robot Named Erica Can Be the Next Movie Star

Posted by in categories: entertainment, finance, robotics/AI

She can’t get sick or be late to the set, and her hair and makeup needs are minimal: Her name is Erica, and Hollywood is hoping that a sophisticated robot can be its next big star. The synthetic actor has been cast in “b,” a $70 million science-fiction movie which producer Sam Khoze describes as “a James Bond meets Mission Impossible story with heart.”

Scribe Tarek Zohdy (“1st Born”), says, the story is about scientists who create an AI robot named Erica who quickly realize the danger of this top-secret program that is trying to perfect a human through a non-human form.

Variety caught up with the filmmakers Zohdy and Khoze to discuss “b” the $70 million film that plans to finish shooting next year, after a director and human star have been brought on.

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Jun 27, 2020

Facebook releases AI development tool based on NetHack

Posted by in categories: entertainment, robotics/AI, space

NetHack, which was first released in 1987, is more sophisticated than might be assumed. It tasks players with descending more than 50 dungeon levels to retrieve a magical amulet, during which they must use hundreds of items and fight monsters while contending with rich interactions between the two. Levels in NetHack are procedurally generated and every game is different, which the Facebook researchers note tests the generalization limits of current state-of-the-art AI.

Facebook researchers believe the game NetHack is well-tailored to training, testing, and evaluating AI models. Today, they released the NetHack Learning Environment, a research tool for benchmarking the robustness and generalization of reinforcement learning agents.

For decades, games have served as benchmarks for AI. But things really kicked into gear in 2013 — the year Google subsidiary DeepMind demonstrated an AI system that could play Pong, Breakout, Space Invaders, Seaquest, Beamrider, Enduro, and Q*bert at superhuman levels. The advancements aren’t merely improving game design, according to folks like DeepMind cofounder Demis Hassabis. Rather, they’re informing the development of systems that might one day diagnose illnesses, predict complicated protein structures, and segment CT scans.

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Jun 19, 2020

In a landmark decision, FDA greenlights a video game for kids with ADHD

Posted by in category: entertainment

“The game, known as EndeavorRx and developed by Boston-based Akili Interactive Labs, can now be marketed as a way to improve attention function in kids with ADHD as measured by computerized testing. Physicians can prescribe it to children between the ages of 8 and 12 who have an ADHD diagnosis and have demonstrated an issue with attention.”

The FDA has given a green light for the first time to a game-based therapeutic: Akili’s video game EndeavorRx, designed to be prescribed to kids with ADHD.

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Jun 17, 2020

Artist Depiction

Posted by in categories: entertainment, space

You’ve seen his art.

A conversation with space artist Don Davis about his life and work.

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Jun 16, 2020

Digitize your dog into a computer game

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, computing, entertainment

Researchers from the University of Bath have developed motion capture technology that enables you to digitize your dog without a motion capture suit and using only one camera.

The software could be used for a wide range of purposes, from helping vets diagnose lameness and monitoring recovery of their canine patients, to entertainment applications such as making it easier to put digital representations of into movies and video games.

Motion capture technology is widely used in the , where actors wear a suit dotted with white markers which are then precisely tracked in 3D space by multiple cameras taking images from different angles. Movement data can then be transferred onto a digital character for use in films or computer games.

Jun 16, 2020

FDA approves video game for treating ADHD in kids

Posted by in category: entertainment

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has for the first time approved a video game for treating attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in children.

The FDA said Monday the game built by Boston-based Akili Interactive Labs can improve attention function.

The game, called EndeavorRx, requires a prescription and is designed for children ages 8 to 12 with certain symptoms of ADHD.

Jun 14, 2020

Videogame Technology Could Bring Biofeedback Therapy to the Living Room

Posted by in categories: entertainment, virtual reality

The immersive qualities of virtual-reality gaming are making effective biofeedback treatment of anxiety and other conditions more affordable and accessible.

Jun 14, 2020

NASA Johnson Style (Gangnam Style Parody)

Posted by in categories: entertainment, space



#NASA #SpaceFun

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Jun 10, 2020

What is a black hole?

Posted by in categories: cosmology, entertainment, physics

Black holes are the dark remnants of collapsed stars, regions of space cut off from the rest of the universe. If something falls into a black hole, it can never come back out. Not even light can escape, meaning black holes are invisible even with powerful telescopes. Yet physicists know black holes exist because they’re consistent with time-tested theories, and because astronomers have observed how matter behaves just outside a black hole.

Naturally, science fiction loves such an enigmatic entity. Black holes have played starring roles in popular books, movies and television shows, from “Star Trek” and “Doctor Who” to the 2014 blockbuster “Interstellar.”

But black holes aren’t quite as menacing as they are commonly portrayed. “They definitely do not suck,” says Daryl Haggard, an astrophysicist at McGill University in Montreal. “A black hole just sits there, passively. Things can fall onto it, just as meteors can fall to Earth, but it doesn’t pull stuff in.”

Jun 9, 2020

DeepMind Introduces ‘EATS’ — An Adversarial, End-to-End Approach to TTS

Posted by in categories: entertainment, robotics/AI

DeepMind wowed the research community several years ago by defeating grandmasters in the ancient game of Go, and more recently saw its self-taught agents thrash pros in the video game StarCraft II. Now, the UK-based AI company has delivered another impressive innovation, this time in text-to-speech (TTS).

Text-to-speech (TTS) systems take natural language text as input and produce synthetic human-like speech as their output. The text-to-speech synthesis pipelines are complex, comprising multiple processing stages such as text normalisation, aligned linguistic featurisation, mel-spectrogram synthesis, raw audio waveform synthesis and so on.

Although contemporary TTS systems like those used in digital assistants like Siri boast high-fidelity speech synthesis and wide real-world deployment, even the best of them still have drawbacks. Each stage requires expensive “ground truth” annotations to supervise the outputs, and the systems cannot train directly from characters or phonemes as input to synthesize speech in the end-to-end manner increasingly favoured in other machine learning domains.

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