Automating the process of scientific discovery; Study says 2% of bitcoin transactions were illicit, 77% could not be categorized; Protestors using lasers to undermine surveillance cameras; Researchers working to get AI named as inventor on patents; Brain-computer-interface (BCI), utopia or Pandora's box?
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Links and micro-summaries from my 1000+ daily headlines. I filter them so you don't have to.
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- Automated Discovery - Sabine Hossenfelder discusses the ability of information researchers to automate the production of scientific discoveries. Pointing to examples from the 1980s through today, the article cites examples where guided language analysis of the peer reviewed literature has led researchers to discover previously unknown connections between scientific endeavors.
- MIT’s AI Lab Crunched 200,000 Bitcoin Transactions. Only 2% Were ‘Illicit’ - In collaboration with MIT researchers, blockchain analytic firm, Elliptic, used IBM's Watson technology to produce a study of 203,769 bitcoin transactions totaling about $6 billion in value. Of the transactions that they studied, 2% were classified as illicit, 21% were classified as legal, and the remainder could not be classified. The report was produced in order to help Elliptic to assess whether Watson's technology could be useful for anti-money laundering (AML) efforts. At the end of the study, Elliptic made the entire dataset public.
- Hong Kong protesters use lasers to avoid facial recognition cameras and blind police - Protestors in Hong Kong are using lasers to hide themselves from surveillance cameras. Here's a viral video on Twitter. h/t Bruce Schneier and ZeroHedge
- AI system 'should be recognised as inventor - Speaking of automating discoveries... A team of AI researchers have filed a patent on behalf of an AI that, "designed interlocking food containers that are easy for robots to grasp and a warning light that flashes in a rhythm that is hard to ignore." Patent officials typically require that an inventor be a human, arguing that AI and other computer systems merely assist the humans. This team of professors from the University of Surrey and an inventor from Missouri are trying to change that in Europe, the UK, and the US. h/t Communications of the ACM
- STEEM Thought Crimes? Facebook Along With Researchers Successfully Transcribes Thoughts Instantly Into Speech - Two years after announcing its Brain-Computer-Interface (BCI) project, Facebook has given an update on its progress. According to their July update, the company has succeeded in converting thoughts from words and phrases into text in real time. @activistpost reports that this could have useful purposes, like helping people with certain types of disabilities to communicate, but it could also have a darker side. The article also notes that Facebook may not have a reputation that inspires people to trust it with that sort of access to our own intimate thoughts. (A beneficiary reward of 5% has been assigned to @activistpost.)
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