Artificial intelligence is the next giant leap in education

Glancing around school classrooms in 2016, it’s easy to miss just how far technology has transformed learning over the last decade. The desks, whiteboards and rows of chairs are the same, but so much else has changed that can’t be seen.

A third of Britain’s schools are asking students to bring their own tablets and laptops into the classroom now, coding has been on the national curriculum for three years, and more and more education is happening outside school through apps and digital services.

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The rise of the online courtroom

The digital revolution has not escaped the courts. The courtroom of tomorrow may no longer involve litigants and their lawyers pitching up armed with reams of papers to do battle before robed, bewigged judges. In fact, for many it may not involve a court at all. Judges could be replaced by computers and the courtroom with the internet to meet the needs of the 21st-century litigants.

Last month Lord Chancellor and Justice Secretary Liz Truss unveiled the Prisons and Courts Bill. Aside from wide-ranging plans to reform prisons, the Bill contained proposals to enable people and businesses with claims worth up to £25,000 to use an online digital process instead of going to court.

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Ray Kurzweil predicts computers will be as smart as humans in 12 years

12 years.

That’s how long Google’s Director of Engineering Ray Kurzweil thinks it will take for computers to reach human levels of intelligence.

Singularity Is Coming

“By 2029, computers will have human-level intelligence,” Kurzweil said in an interview at the SXSW Conference with Shira Lazar and Amy Kurzweil Comix.

Known as the Singularity, the event is oft discussed by scientists, futurists, technology stalwarts and others as a time when artificial intelligence will cause machines to become smarter than human beings.

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How to Upgrade Judges with Machine Learning

When should a criminal defendant be required to await trial in jail rather than at home? Software could significantly improve judges’ ability to make that call—reducing crime or the number of people stuck waiting in jail.

In a new study from the National Bureau of Economic Research, economists and computer scientists trained an algorithm to predict whether defendants were a flight risk from their rap sheet and court records using data from hundreds of thousands of cases in New York City. When tested on over a hundred thousand more cases that it hadn’t seen before, the algorithm proved better at predicting what defendants will do after release than judges.

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AImotive aims to convert regular cars into driverless ones inexpensively

The AImotive office is in a small converted house at the end of a quiet residential street in sunny Mountain View, spitting distance from Google’s headquarters. Outside is a branded Toyota Prius covered in cameras, one of three autonomous cars the Hungarian company is testing in the sleepy neighborhood. It’s a popular testing ground: one of Google’s driverless cars, now operating under spin-out company Waymo, zips past the office each lunchtime.

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Wikipedia bots act more like humans than expected

Benevolent bots

‘Benevolent bots’ or software robots designed to improve articles on Wikipedia sometimes have online ‘fights’ over content that can continue for years, say scientists who warn that artificial intelligence systems may behave more like humans than expected.

Editing bots on Wikipedia undo vandalism, enforce bans, check spelling, create links and import content automatically, whereas other bots (which are non-editing) can mine data, identify data or identify copyright infringements.

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AI learns to write its own code by stealing from other programs

OUT of the way, human, I’ve got this covered. A machine learning system has gained the ability to write its own code.

Created by researchers at Microsoft and the University of Cambridge, the system, called DeepCoder, solved basic challenges of the kind set by programming competitions. This kind of approach could make it much easier for people to build simple programs without knowing how to write code.

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Artificial synapse bridges the gap to brainier computers

The human brain is nature’s most powerful processor, so it’s not surprising that developing computers that mimic it has been a long-term goal. Neural networks, the artificial intelligence systems that learn in a very human-like way, are the closest models we have, and now Stanford scientists have developed an organic artificial synapse, inching us closer to making computers more efficient learners.

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What will be the largest internet company in 2030? This prediction will probably surprise you.

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Thirty years ago, it was a big deal when schools got their first computers. Today, it’s a big deal when students get their own laptops. According to Futurist Thomas Frey, in 14 years it’ll be a big deal when students learn from robot teachers over the internet. It’s not just because the technology will be that sophisticated, Frey says, but because the company responsible for it will be the largest of its kind.

NOTE: Visit FuturistSpeaker.com to learn more about DaVinci Institute’s senior futurist Thomas Frey.

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AI is crushing humanity at poker

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The first day of the Brains vs. AI poker tournament is in the books, and the Libratus bot from Carnegie Mellon University emerged as the clear winner, collecting $81,716 to the humans $7,228. Both the players and Libratus’ creators cautioned that it was still too early to make a judgement call about who might win the 20-day tournament. But it’s clear that this year’s AI has made some major improvements on the 2015 system, Claudico, which ended up losing to humanity.

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Here’s why an AI firm is smashing windows

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In a sound-proofed hangar on an RAF airbase just north of Cambridge, UK, Chris Mitchell and his colleagues are busy using sledgehammers to teach their computers a lesson. The team has gathered thousands of window panes and doors, all of different shapes and sizes, which they then smash, one by one, recording the distinctive shattering sound of each type of glass. Sometimes they swing sledgehammers or garden spades, sometimes they throw bricks. “We completely underestimated the mess it would make,” says Mitchell. “And how tiring it would be.”

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Robots will destroy our jobs and we’re not even ready for it

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The McDonald’s on the corner of Third Avenue and 58th Street in New York City doesn’t look all that different from any of the fast-food chain’s other locations across the country. Inside, however, hungry patrons are welcomed not by a cashier waiting to take their order, but by a “Create Your Taste” kiosk – an automated touch-screen system that allows customers to create their own burgers without interacting with another human being.

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