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Katyanna Quach

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Big Bang

'It's back to the drawing board...' Innocent axions found not guilty of dark matter crimes

Physicists have ruled out the existence of axions once considered possible dark matter candidates. Dark matter has scientists stumped. It is widely believed that about 27 per cent of the universe is dark matter: mysterious globs of undetectable stuff that nobody really understands. Astronomers can observe its effects, and …
Katyanna Quach, 16 Nov 2017
Artist's view of a binary black hole. Pic credit: NASA, ESA and G Bacon (STScI)

Boffins on alert: Brace yourselves for huge gravitational wave coming within a decade

The most violent gravitational waves in the universe from supermassive black hole prangs will be detected to within ten years, according to research published on Monday. Gravitational waves were predicted by Albert Einstein and finally discovered in 2015, a century after his theory of general relativity was formalized. Ripples …
Katyanna Quach, 13 Nov 2017
AI

Secret HPE AI chip, TensorFlow updates, neural networks writing themselves – and more

Roundup It's been an interesting fortnight, sorry, two weeks in AI. In addition to what we've already reported, we have news about HPE developing what looks like a neural network accelerator chip, TensorFlow updates, Google's effort to teach software to make software, and other bits and pieces. HPE’s ‘neural network processor’? The …
Katyanna Quach, 11 Nov 2017

Hey, Nvidia – who loves you, and who do you love? A. Cloud giants

Nvidia's fortunes continue to rise, with the graphics card slinger reporting record revenue of $2.64bn, as well as rising profit, in its third quarter of the year. CEO Jensen Huang said on Thursday that the growth was driven by its GPUs being used by top cloud providers, from Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud, Azure and Oracle …
Katyanna Quach, 10 Nov 2017

Astronomers find bizarre 'zombie supernova' that just won't die

Astrophysicists have discovered one of the weirdest stars yet in the universe: one that refuses to die, exploding as a supernova multiple times over fifty years. Normally when large stars reach the end of their lives they terminally explode as a supernova with a burst of bright light and matter and that is that. But the …

Our oldest mammalian ancestor named after British pub landlord

Researchers have discovered fossils of our oldest mammalian ancestors yet found – along the coastline of Dorset in southeast England. The two new species have been named Durlstotherium newmani, after pub owner Charlie Newman, once dubbed a living treasure; and Dulstodon ensomi, after Paul Ensom, a paleontologist. Both blokes …

Imagine the candles on its birthday cake: Astro-eggheads detect galaxy born in universe's first billion years

A large international team of astronomers has detected one of the oldest galaxies in the universe we've seen to date – born within a billion years after the Big Bang. That would make it one of the very first things to form in our fledgling universe. The now-elderly galaxy, codenamed G09 83808, was first glimpsed during a scan …

How we fooled Google's AI into thinking a 3D-printed turtle was a gun: MIT bods talk to El Reg

Video Students at MIT in the US claim they have developed an algorithm for creating 3D objects and pictures that trick image-recognition systems into severely misidentifying them. Think toy turtles labeled rifles, and baseballs as cups of coffee. It’s well known that machine-learning software can be easily hoodwinked: Google's AI-in …

Giza geezers' muon-geyser visor reveals Great Pyramid's hidden void surpriser

Scientists have uncovered a hidden void in the largest pyramid in Giza, Egypt, using muons – a particle typically produced by cosmic rays, according to new research published today. The Great Pyramid, also known as Khufu’s Pyramid, standing over 146 meters (481 feet) tall, was built during the reign of Pharaoh Khufu from 2509 …

Cupboard of matrices looking a little... sparse? Have this delicious Taco

A bunch of clever folks have created an open-source compiler, dubbed Taco, that generates code optimized for performing calculations on sparse matrices – a useful but tricky concept in computer science. From studying interactions in particle physics and ranking search engine results, to training artificial intelligence systems …

Atto, boy! Eggheads fire laser for 43 attoseconds, fastest Man-made spurt

Physicists have whittled down the world’s shortest laser pulse to just 43 attoseconds (4.3 x 10-17 seconds), fast enough to observe electrons moving during chemical reactions in slow motion for the first time. The blip “is the shortest controlled event that has ever been created by humans,” the boffins bragged. The …

Astroboffins spot a fat 'monster' ALIEN planet terrorizing tiny dwarf

Pic Scientists have discovered a new “monster” alien world that challenges today's theories about planet formation due to its sheer size. The giant, known as NGTS-1b, is 600 light years away and is the biggest planet compared to the size of its parent star NGTS-1 ever found. NGTS-1b is a hot Jupiter, a rare class of exoplanet. …
Katyanna Quach, 31 Oct 2017

Jupiter flashes pulsating southern pole, boffins understandably baffled

Jupiter’s vivid northern and southern lights flash independently from each other, a discovery that has surprised scientists. The results published in Nature Astronomy on Monday reveal that the gas giant’s x-ray emissions are erratic at its north pole; the swirling patterns of light continuously brighten and dim over time. But …
Katyanna Quach, 31 Oct 2017
Donald trump reading fake news

A future of AI-generated fake news photos, hands off machine-learning boffins – and more

Good morning, or afternoon, wherever you are. Here's a roundup of recent AI developments on top of everything else we've reported over the past week or so. Real or fake? Researchers at Nvidia have developed and described a new way to train generative adversarial networks (GANs) in a more stable manner to generate a series of, …
Katyanna Quach, 30 Oct 2017
Robot talks unto robot photo via Shutterstock

A picture tells a 1,000 words. Here's about 750 on Facebook using pics to school AI translators

Computers are getting pretty good at translating the world's languages. However, as they say, onwards and upwards. Eggheads are now trying to teach machines to do the job in a more human-like way. “While most machine translation systems to date are trained on large parallel corpora, humans learn language in a different way: by …
Katyanna Quach, 27 Oct 2017

Li-ion batteries blow up because they breed nanowire crystals

Video For the first time a group of scientists has captured close-up images of mysterious finger-like growths known as dendrites that can lead to short circuits and fires in the lithium-ion batteries that power hordes of smartphones, laptops and other gadgetries. By using cryo-electron microscopy (cryo-EM), researchers from Stanford …
Katyanna Quach, 27 Oct 2017

What just trousered a $4.5bn profit, has glum desktop chip sales, and rhymes with go to hell?

Intel reported better than expected results for the third quarter of the year, beating analysts' predictions. It was a win for Big Blue’s data center, Internet of Things and flash memory business sectors, which achieved fat quarterly sales. But revenue from PCs aka “client computing” didn't grow from last year, suggesting …
Katyanna Quach, 27 Oct 2017

AI bot rips off human eyes, easily cracks web CAPTCHA codes. Ouch

Computer software that mimics how the human visual cortex works can solve text-based CAPTCHA challenges, the image recognition tasks often used by websites to differentiate human visitors from spam bots. A paper describing the code was published on Thursday in the journal Science. A team from Vicarious – a California startup …
Katyanna Quach, 26 Oct 2017
Little girl concentrates hard on a book she's reading

AI is worth learning and not too tricky – if you can get your head around key frameworks

The hype around AI promises interesting work and fat paychecks, so no wonder everyone wants in. But the scarcity in talent means that researchers, engineers and developers are looking for ways to pick up new skills to get ahead. The best framework to get stuck into if you want to be employable in AI is probably TensorFlow, …
Katyanna Quach, 25 Oct 2017
PCM IBM chip, photo IBM

Google and Intel cook AI chips, neural network exchanges – and more

Roundup Welcome to our roundup of major AI news from the past two weeks. Machine learning is so hyped right now, it doesn't help when companies such as Intel and Nvidia announce new chips and reveal little information about the specs, but make lofty claims of increased speed and precision. It's also difficult to keep track of all the …
Katyanna Quach, 22 Oct 2017
Astronauts on the International Space Station are ready to sample their harvest of a crop of "Outredgeous" red romaine lettuce from the Veggie plant growth system that tests hardware for growing vegetables and other plants in space. Credit: NASA

Plants in SPAAAAAAACE are good for you

Living in space is grueling. The repetitiveness of daily exercise, experiments, crappy food, and claustrophobia can chip away at an astronaut’s psychological well-being, but scientists have suggested a preventative measure: plants. The idea of booting plants into space has been around for a while. The first batch of seeds – …
Katyanna Quach, 21 Oct 2017

Red (Planet) alert: Future astro-heroes face shocking adventures on Martian moon Phobos

Vid Strong solar eruptions may be blasting the Martian moon Phobos with an avalanche of electrically charged particles, charging parts of it to hundreds of volts, and hampering attempts to land on and study the alien landscape. Interest in human spaceflight to Mars has ramped up as scientists keep finding promising signs that the …
Katyanna Quach, 20 Oct 2017

How DeepMind's AlphaGo Zero learned all by itself to trash world champ AI AlphaGo

Analysis DeepMind published a paper today describing AlphaGo Zero – a leaner and meaner version of AlphaGo, the artificially intelligent program that crushed professional Go players. Go was considered a difficult game for computers to master because, besides being complex, the number of possible moves – more than chess at 10170 – is …
Katyanna Quach, 18 Oct 2017
robot

Calm down, Elon. Deep learning won't make AI generally intelligent

Minds Mastering Machines Mark Bishop, a professor of cognitive computing and a researcher at the Tungsten Centre for Intelligent Data Analytics (TCIDA) at Goldsmiths, University of London, celebrated the successes of deep learning during a lecture at the Minds Mastering Machines conference on Monday, but stressed the limits of modern AI. Elon Musk, …

What does the Moon 4bn years ago and Yahoo! towers this week have in common? Both had an awful atmosphere

Our Moon had an atmosphere visible from space almost four billion years ago – thanks to volcanic eruptions on its surface spewing a concoction of gases at a rate faster than they could escape the heavenly body. A NASA study published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters this week describes our ancient rocky companion in a …

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