Tag: Research

Google’s AI picks which machine learning models will produce the best results

Leave it to the folks at Google to devise AI capable of predicting which machine learning models will produce the best results. In a newly-published paper (“Off-Policy Evaluation via Off-Policy Classification”) and blog post, a team of Google AI researchers propose what they call “off-policy classification,” or OPC, which evaluates the performance of AI-driven agents […]

Read More

Adobe AI learns painting styles to reproduce artwork in under a minute

If the winners of last year’s international RobotArt competition are any indication, algorithms aren’t half bad at painting, sketching, and sculpting with humanlike precision. A newly published paper (“LPaintB: Learning to Paint from Self-Supervision“) on Arxiv.org lends credence to this: In it, researchers at the University of Maryland and Adobe Research describe a novel machine […]

Read More

Grow Faster, Grow Stronger: Speed-Breeding Crops to Feed the Future

Farmers and plant breeders are in a race against time. The world population is growing rapidly, requiring ever more food, but the amount of cultivable land is limited. Warmer temperatures have extended growth seasons in some areas — and brought drought and pests to others. “We face a grand challenge in terms of feeding the […]

Read More

A Beached Whale Needs Somewhere to Rot. How About Your Place?

When a pungent 40-foot whale carcass washed up a few beaches away, Stefanie Worwag and Mario Rivera did what any good neighbors would do. They invited the blubbery bottom feeder into the neighborhood and put him up in their backyard. Then Dr. Worwag cut him open. Dr. Worwag, a veterinarian, said she and her husband […]

Read More

Can Marijuana Help Cure the Opioid Crisis?

The idea that legal cannabis can help address the opioid crisis has generated much hope and enthusiasm. Opioid misuse has declined in recent years at the same time that cannabis use has been increasing, with many states liberalizing marijuana laws. Based on recent research, some advocates have been promoting this connection, arguing that easier access […]

Read More

Scientists Find Ancient Humans Used Weed 2,500 Years Ago, Too

An association between weed and the dead turns out to have been established long before the 1960s and far beyond a certain ur-band’s stomping grounds in San Francisco. Researchers have identified strains of cannabis burned in mortuary rituals as early as 500 B.C., deep in the Pamir mountains in western China, according to a new […]

Read More

Stanford Team Aims at Alexa and Siri With a Privacy-Minded Alternative

PALO ALTO, Calif. — It has been almost two decades since Google started to dominate internet search the way Microsoft dominated software for personal computers a generation earlier. Now computer scientists at Stanford University are warning about the consequences of a race to control what they believe will be the next key consumer technology market […]

Read More

AI improves Alexa’s error rate with challenging training sets

Machine learning algorithms at the core of voice assistants learn to make predictions from libraries of labeled samples. For instance, Amazon’s Alexa is regularly fed text snippets like “Play the Prince song 1999,” where “1999” and “Prince” are mapped to the categories “SongName” and “ArtistName,” respectively. It’s a highly effective means of driving systems to […]

Read More

Why Women, but Not Men, Are Judged for a Messy House

Image“The Smiths share the drudgery of housework, for they both have important war jobs,” the Office of War Information wrote about this photo circa 1944.CreditLibrary of Congress Even in 2019, messy men are given a pass and messy women are unforgiven. Three recently published studies confirm what many women instinctively know: Housework is still considered […]

Read More

Intel researchers compress AI models without compromising accuracy

AI models’ sizes correlate with their training times, generally speaking, such that larger models take more time — and subsequently more compute — to train. It’s possible to optimize the connections among the mathematical functions (or neurons) through a process known as pruning, which reduces their overall size without compromising accuracy. But pruning can’t be […]

Read More

Amazon researchers bolsters Alexa’s language learning with preexisting knowledge

You’d think that adapting Alexa, which supports a range of languages including Spanish, German, and Japanese, to varieties within a dialect continua would be a piece of cake compared with “teaching” it new language families, but this isn’t so. According to the Seattle company’s researchers, the gulf is wide between British English and American English, […]

Read More

Diet for One? Scientists Stalk the Dream of Personalized Nutrition

A decade ago, spurred by the success of the Human Genome Project and the affordability of genetic sequencing, scientists began to explore the promise of “nutrigenomics.” Could personalized nutrition, informed by knowledge of an individual’s DNA, help prevent and even treat diet-related diseases? The results of early studies from Harvard, Stanford and elsewhere were compelling: […]

Read More

Fish Cannons, Koi Herpes and Other Tools to Combat Invasive Carp

Why is someone loading a fish into a tube? That’s Whooshh. It’s a high-tech fish removal system, something like a cross between a potato gun and a pneumatic tube at a drive-in bank. And that fish is a common carp, one the oldest and most invasive fish on the planet. [Like the Science Times page […]

Read More

Elephants May Sniff Out Quantities With Their Noses

Elephants keep surprising us. They live complex social lives, cooperate, show altruism and grieve their dead. And now in the latest evidence of their sophisticated cognitive abilities, elephants appear to be able to distinguish relative amounts of food merely by smell, researchers say. The finding, reported Monday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, […]

Read More

Amazon trains Scout with highly accurate recreations of real-world neighborhoods

Amazon in January took the wraps off of Scout, an autonomous delivery drone that’s today ferrying goods to homes in Snohomish County, Washington, near Seattle’s King County. And this morning during a session at the company’s inaugural re:MARS conference in Las Vegas, Hao Chen, senior principal engineer of Scout, detailed a few of the simulation […]

Read More

Solving a Leafy Mathematical Mystery

Next time you go outside, take a minute to look at your local leaf arrangements. You’ll probably notice a few different patterns. In basil plants, each leaf is about 90 degrees — a quarter-turn — from the last, a template called “decussate.” A visualization of a decussate leaf pattern. The redder the coloring, the stronger […]

Read More

Even One Extra Walk a Day May Make a Big Difference

How many steps should people take every day for good health? A new study of activity and mortality in older women finds that the total could be lower than many of us expect and that even small increases in steps can be meaningful. The study also side-eyes the validity, utility and origin of the common […]

Read More

Sweden Finds a Simple Way to Improve New Mothers’ Health. It Involves Fathers.

The weeks after a mother gives birth are a universally vulnerable period. She is recovering physically and mentally, while dealing with sleep deprivation, round-the-clock caregiving and possibly breast-feeding. Yet after a day or a few days in the hospital, she often doesn’t see a doctor for six weeks. A new study suggests a way to […]

Read More

Learning What Vets Could Not Tell: What They Did in World War II

NEW ORLEANS — All his life, Joseph Griesser hungered to hear the story of his father’s Army service in World War II. What he had were vague outlines: that Lt. Frank Griesser had splashed onto Omaha Beach on D-Day; that his lifelong pronounced limp had come from an artillery blast. But the details? They remained […]

Read More