Feb 15, 2019
For research topics, Andy and Dave discuss the task-agnostic self-modeling machine from Columbia University, a robotic arm that learns to build an approximate model of itself and then interact with the world; they also discuss the over-hyped reporting of the research. A much less hyped, but possibly more groundbreaking research from MIT results in a robot that can play the tower-block game Jenga, using multisensory fusion to do so. More research from MIT attempts to synthesize probabilistic programs for automatic data modeling. Research from the University of Tubingen shows that approximating convolutional neural nets with bag-of-local-features modeling yields decent results with ImageNet. And University of Washington and the Allen Institute for AI announce the Atlas of Machine Commonsense (ATOMIC), a collection of 877k textual descriptions of inferential knowledge, which allows more accurate inference for previously unseen events. In announcements of the week, DARPA announces the Competency-Aware Machine Learning (CAML) program for ML systems to assess their own performance; and Measuring Biological Aptitude (MBA) attempts to link genotype to phenotype in order to improve recruiting, training, and other aspects. The U.S. Navy’s Sea Hunter drone ship completes an autonomous trip from San Diego to Hawaii and back. The “Papers with Code” archive attempts to collect and link ML-related papers, code, and evaluation tables. The U.S. Army activates its AI Task Force at Carnegie Mellon. And the International Conference on Learning Representations (ICLR) 2019 has been announced for 6-9 May 2019. In media of the week, the World Intellectual Property Organization releases its report on the Technology Trends of 2019; the AMA Journal of Ethics publishes an entire (open-access) issue devoted to AI in health care; the Congressional Research Service updates its report on AI and National Security; Dan Simmons provides a hefty tome on Evolutionary Optimization Algorithms; and Julian Togelius publishes a book on Playing Smart. Wake Word is the Game of the Week, and in videos, Super Bowl ads provided a variety of glimpses into life with robots.