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A picture says it all

The way Elon sees it, artificial intelligence’s only value is in the service of Humankind

A picture says it all - January 18, 2017

Elon Musk expresses his concerns on the subject of artificial intelligence at the Code Conference 2016:

From Google to IBM, Amazon to Facebook, everyone’s investing loads of money in Artificial Intelligence. The goal is to develop a new kind of AI that can make independent decisions, equaling or even superseding human brains.

On the sidelines of this frantic race, some companies, CEOs, world-renowned scientists, and visionaries are raising some ethical concerns: what will be the consequences for humanity, should AI rival the human brain, surpass it, or make decisions for us? To answer this question and frame an ethical approach to AI R&D, Elon Musk created OpenAI, a non-profit research lab whose mission is to develop a form of AI that is beneficial to humanity.

Founded in December 2015, the organization has already garnered support from legendary philanthropist Bill Gates, physicist Stephen Hawking, scientist Stuart Russell, PayPal cofounder Peter Thiel, and Sam Altman, president of Y Combinator (the world’s most fertile start-up incubator). OpenAI also collaborates with other institutions and independent researchers, notably by making its patents and results available to the public via open-source software.

With a budget of $1 billion, OpenAI has already fine-tuned several tools that measure AI learning curves, like OpenAI Gym and more recently Universe, a software platform based on “learning by reinforcement.” They enable researchers to design AI that can interact with environments conceived by humans (video games, the Internet, computers…). The goal is to enable AI to reproduce human behavior through trial and error. Imagine that!

Elon Musk shares his concerns on artificial intelligence.

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An aerial extravaganza with 500 drones

A picture says it all - January 04, 2017

After successfully sending 100 drones up simultaneously in 2015, the American giant Intel broke its own record in October of 2016, sending 500 tiny aircraft up at the same time – a giant swarm controlled by a single person. The aerial choreography only lasted a minute but the feat remains unequalled. Intel developed an algorithm that automatically orients each and every drone in the right direction.

Fitted out with LED bulbs to create the effect of levitating fireworks, the 500 drones lit up the sky over Krailling, near Munich, Germany. For the occasion, Intel unveiled a new feather-weight model, the Shooting Star, weighing in at a mere 280 grams and requiring zero assembly.

All that prowess and tech caught the eye of Disney, always looking for new ways to wow its theme park visitors. The two partners have put together an aerial ballet with 300 drones and a rainbow of colors. Disney’s already contemplating lighting up the Florida evenings with a fleet of LED-equipped mini-aircraft. A feast for the eyes and a feather in the geeks’ cap!

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A picture says it all: No urban nook or cranny’s off-limits for champ mountain biker Dany MacAskill

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The flamboyant David Bowie and an emotional year in music

A picture says it all - December 28, 2016

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David Bowie was front and center on pop’s big stage until the day he died © Jimmy King

Musician, singer, song-writer, producer, actor, painter, fashion icon, sex-symbol, trend-setter… David Bowie was all that and more, such is his massive influence and legacy. The photo above is the last taken of this musical legend, published on 8 January 2016, on his 69th birthday, a few days before his death on 10 January, by his photographer friend Jimmy King.

This year wasn’t kind to artists and musicians, some of whom had been singing and playing for over 40 years. The greatest homage we can pay them is to keep enjoying to their songs:

  • Prince (7 June 1958 – 21 April 2016), the “Kid from Minneapolis”, guitar virtuoso, eccentric and gifted composer of landmark albums like Purple Rain and Kiss;
  • Leonard Cohen (21 September 1934 – 7 November 2016), author, folk singer and visionary poet who composed the unforgettable Hallelujah and So Long Marianne
  • Billy Paul (1 December 1934 – 24 April 2016), the soul legend and charismatic singer of the hit Me and Mrs Jones
  • Sharon Jones (4 May 1956 – 18 November 2016), former prison guard who became a funk diva at the age of 40, singer of This Land Is Your Land and “100 Days, 100 Nights”
  • Maurice White (19 December 1941 – 4 February 2016), founder of Earth, Wind and Fire who grooved a generation with songs like September and Boogie Wonderland
  • Paul Kantner (17 March 1941 – 28 January 2016), co-founder of the psychedelic Jefferson Airplane who gave the world Somebody to Love and White Rabbit
  • Glenn Frey (6 November 1948 – 18 January 2016), founding member and guitarist of The Eagles and the man who co-wrote the timeless Hotel California, released in 1976.
  • George Michael (25 June 1963 – 25 December 2016), the co-founder of the mythic music group Wham! died in 2016, the 25th. It really was his Last Christmas.
  • She was an actress but we could not miss giving a last tribute to Carrie Fisher. She was famous for her role in Star Wars as the Princess Leïa, she died on December 27 at the age of 60, leaving the whole pop culture world in sadness and tears as the latest episode of the sage has just hitten the big screens. Goodbye Princess.

Source : nicrobertson23 via Creapills

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Infographic: All I want for Christmas is you by Mariah Carey in amazing figures

 

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Amazing Grace Christmas house is the season’s YouTube hit

A picture says it all - December 21, 2016

When it comes to the category ‘larger than life,’ Americans are the champs. And that holds just as true for Xmas decorations. Reigning supreme is Richard Holdman, whose home in Pleasant Grove, Utah is better known as the “Amazing Grace Christmas House.” Photos and videos of it have gone viral, thanks to an amazing light show and a choral/dance remix of “Amazing Grace.” Racking up millions of views, Richard Holdman’s creation is proof that deep tradition, techno, and a dash of kitsch works just fine.

But success breeds jealousy, and many a DIY deco enthusiasts are nipping at Holdman’s heels, notably one serious contender in El Paso, Texas where the Great Christmas Light Fight is coming down to the wire. The championships are on and the competition is fierce.

 

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A picture says it all: Christmas at the White House – Kitsch with a capital “K”

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Christmas at the White House – Kitsch with a capital “K”

A picture says it all - December 14, 2016

The United States is right up there on the list of countries that really know how to do Kitsch. And nowhere is this more obvious than at The White House in December. Carolers, marathon yuletide photo sessions, the lighting of the Christmas Tree on the Elipse… Presidents and first ladies have always gone all out for the holidays, to the delight of kitsch enthusiasts through the years.

We promise yule love watching President Obama sing Jingle Bells. 🎄🎤

Une vidéo publiée par The White House (@whitehouse) le

Remember the Kennedy’s one and only White House Xmas? They bucked the trend with simple and elegant. Maybe a little too austere, come to think of it. The Reagans played Leave-It-to-Beaver Americana – the perfect couple. The Clintons took kitsch to stratospheric heights with Bill’s ties and Hillary’s cardigans. Obama turns on his 100-watt smile, turns up the style and switches on the tree trimmed in very, VERY patriotic ornaments. Us magazine did a glam spread photo extravaganza called “The Gift of the Holidays.”

Different times, different tastes but always kitsch!

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The Kennedys, classy kitsch, sixties style © Public Domain

 

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Oh Ronnie! Isn’t it just SO beautiful! © Guetty Images

 

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Bill & Hillary – The Champs © White House

 

obama-noel-maison-blanche-usa

The Obamas – Smooth Operators © White House / Chuck Kennedy

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Doc McStuffins is on call for all your stuffed animals’ aches and pains

A picture says it all - December 07, 2016

Remember that veterinarian doll you see in shop windows every Christmas?

Launched by Disney in 2012, the junior pet vet is a little Afro-American girl who cures all her sick stuffed animals, just like her doctor mom cures her patients. Inspired by the eponymous cartoon, Doctor McStuffins has become a planetary idol, offering girls a scientist role model and allowing them to envisage themselves pursuing scientific careers. A group of 131 African-American researchers got together to back pet vet McStuffins, seeing the show as an example of positive mentoring.

Look out, Barbie, you may be headed for early retirement!

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Gif-iti by the artist Insa

A picture says it all - November 30, 2016

Put “gif” and “graffiti” together and you’ve got London artist Insa. His artistic method consists of painting a wall, then repainting, it over and over again, making important changes each time. He takes a photograph of each version to “save” it, then splices them all together to form Gif-iti, an infinite loop of graffiti art. In reality, his works are not kinetic: they aren’t in perpetual motion, but he found a digital way to make them into continuously morphing artworks that art enthusiasts can explore from the comfort of their couches.

His gifs can be download and shared, turning ephemeral murals into permanent artwork!

Open School North, Portland 2015: 5 weeks of work and 40 participants to create Isra’s most complex Gif-iti to date © gif-iti.com

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The story: Tintin’s fans must-follow journey

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No urban nook or cranny’s off-limits for champ mountain biker Dany MacAskill

A picture says it all - November 23, 2016

All-around street trials champion, British bike maestro Danny MacAskill demonstrates urban off-road in this video. You can indeed go absolutely ANYWHERE you want to in the city.

With a GoPro camera fastened to his helmet, this daredevil roams the perches and ledges of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria in Spain, jumping from roof to roof and negotiating vertiginous heights while executing eye-popping stunts. This dazzling bike ballet will set your head spinning, but don’t forget: he’s a pro, so don’t try this at home 😉

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Gotham City, cinema’s legendary city may be fantasy but it’s also hyper-realistic

A picture says it all - November 16, 2016

Most sci-fi set designers and artists base their imaginary cities on existing ones. Gotham City leads the genre, blending the look and feel of New York and Chicago into a rich evocative and distinctly American urban iconography.

The city Bruce Wayne calls home was conjured up by artists and designers at DC Comics. To make it easier for readers to follow Batman around Gotham, they came up with a coherent skyline, maps of the city that show the layout of the streets and boulevards, and even designed a subway system, Gotham City Rail.

Its architecture and geographic exactitude have evolved over the years as new designers, artists, and editors have come and gone. Batman sometimes prowls art deco cityscapes, sometimes glass and steel, and even futuristic, but whatever the style, Gotham has always basked in the colossal, larger-than-life decor that characterizes both the Big Apple and the Windy City.

Several city maps figure in the opening credits for: Batman Begins, Batman: The Dark Knight, Batman: The Dark Knight Rises.

gotham-city-ville-futur-batman-cinema-smartcities

©Gotham City, skyscapers and canyons: the ideal setting for Batman & his arch rivals

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Code Monkey Island - the board game that teaches coding!

A picture says it all - November 09, 2016

Want to become an ace programmer? Master the ins-and-outs of coding? You don’t necessarily need to have a room full of machines humming day and night to learn cyber-speak’s sibylline secrets. Check out the board game Code Monkey Island, where each player has a monkey and tries to collect as many bananas as possible. Code Monkey Island teaches children the mindset and thought processes that successful software writers needs to have.

So don’t empty your bank account for a bunch of bright shiny computer hardware, just invite your friends over and have fun.

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