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artificial intelligence

Anti-domestic abuse chatbot rAInbow launches in South Africa today

Funded by the Sage Foundation, rAInbow is an artificial intelligence (AI) chatbot that helps victims of domestic abuse find help. The bot was officially launched in South Africa today — and is the first chatbot of its kind locally. It runs through Facebook Messenger, and the developers have plans to port it to other messaging apps, like WhatsApp. One of the main issues with regards to domest...[Read More]

Chelsea is using AI research for smarter football coaching

The best footballers aren’t necessarily the ones with the best physical skills. The difference between success and failure in football often lies in the ability to make the right split-second decisions on the field about where to run and when to tackle, pass or shoot. So how can clubs help players train their brains as well as their bodies? My colleagues and I are working with Chelsea FC academy t...[Read More]

The debate about whether an algorithm will replace your job is becoming more pertinent

Most of the conversations about artificial intelligence (AI) seem to be focussed on the potential job losses this new form of automation will result in. Some 800-million people could lose their jobs by 2030 according to the figures from a study by the McKinsey Global Institute last December, which also predicted AI will affect 800 various job types and occupations in 46 countries. That’s 20%...[Read More]

Artificial intelligence will make you smarter

The future won’t be made by either humans or machines alone – but by both, working together. Technologies modelled on how human brains work are already augmenting people’s abilities, and will only get more influential as society gets used to these increasingly capable machines. Technology optimists have envisioned a world with rising human productivity and quality of life as artificial intelligenc...[Read More]

Under the hammer: artwork by an algorithm is up for auction, so does that mean AI is now creative?

A painting generated by artificial intelligence will go up for sale at auction later this month – raising again the question of whether a machine can be creative. The painting, called Edmond De Belamy, is estimated to be worth between 7,000€ and 10,000€. The auction house Christie’s says the painting is the product of a Generative Adversarial Network, in which one artificial neural network (the so...[Read More]

Worried about AI taking over the world? You may be making some unscientific assumptions

Should we be afraid of artificial intelligence? For me, this is a simple question with an even simpler, two letter answer: no. But not everyone agrees – many people, including the late physicist Stephen Hawking, have raised concerns that the rise of powerful AI systems could spell the end for humanity. Clearly, your view on whether AI will take over the world will depend on whether you think it ca...[Read More]

AI’s first pop album ushers in a new musical era

Last December, the world ushered in a new era of popular music: human and artificial intelligence (AI) collaboration. Musical eras are often defined by their dominant modes of production — analog, electronic, digital — each bringing about new styles and ways of listening. This era is marked by the release of the first AI-human collaborated album, Hello World, by the music collaborative Skygge. Sky...[Read More]

Could an artificial intelligence be considered a person under the law?

Humans aren’t the only people in society – at least according to the law. In the U.S., corporations have been given rights of free speech and religion. Some natural features also have person-like rights. But both of those required changes to the legal system. A new argument has laid a path for artificial intelligence systems to be recognized as people too – without any legislation, court rulings o...[Read More]

The University of Johannesburg and the meaning of AI

As we approach the end of the second decade of the 21st century, a massive change is unfolding around us in South Africa no less than in every other country. This change has a name – the Fourth Industrial Revolution, and it has to do with the very way we think, because it has to do with the way that machines think. Machines, through the rapid development of artificial intelligence, or AI, have beg...[Read More]

AI: there’s a reason it’s so bad at conversation

“I’m sorry, I didn’t quite get that.” Anyone who has ever tried to have a deeper conversation with a virtual assistant like Siri knows how frustrating it can be. That’s despite the fact that AI systems like it are increasingly pushing into our lives, with new success stories on an almost daily basis. Not only do AIs now help radiologists detect tumours, they can act as cat repellent and even detec...[Read More]

Big Tech is overselling AI as the solution to online extremism

In mid-September the European Union threatened to fine the Big Tech companies if they did not remove terrorist content within one hour of appearing online. The change came because rising tensions are now developing and being played out on social media platforms. Social conflicts that once built up in backroom meetings and came to a head on city streets, are now building momentum on social media pl...[Read More]

Former Dota 2 pros didn’t stand a chance against the artificial OpenAI team

OpenAI, an artificial intelligence research firm which is (of course) funded by Elon Musk, created a team of AI Bots designed to jam some Dota 2, and then put said bots up against a group of semi-professional Dota players. The team of bots, called OpenAI Five, took on players ranked in the 99.95th percentile in the world, and beat them 2-1 in a set of three games. The human players included former...[Read More]

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