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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 43855 times)
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« Reply #9945 on: Jan 29th, 2014, 10:42am »

GREAT GOOGALEY MOOGALEY...GOOGE COMPLICIT IN FOLLOWING THE GUBMINTS LEAD ON DISCLOSURE...WHO'DA THUNK SUCH...
I DO QUESTION IF THIS GUY HAD ANY INKLING SUCH WOULD BE DELETED...WHY HE DIDN'T TAKE STEPS TO PROTECT SUCH A FIND...WHEN DID GOOGLE BECOME A MEMBER OF MUFON grin grin grin...WOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER TO TOUCH BASE WITH..."A.P.I."

NICE FIND BY THE WAY...CRYSTAL wink

SHALOM...Z
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« Reply #9946 on: Jan 29th, 2014, 10:47am »

I WANT ONE grin grin grin

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« Reply #9947 on: Jan 29th, 2014, 10:58pm »

on Jan 29th, 2014, 10:42am, ZETAR wrote:
GREAT GOOGALEY MOOGALEY...GOOGE COMPLICIT IN FOLLOWING THE GUBMINTS LEAD ON DISCLOSURE...WHO'DA THUNK SUCH...
I DO QUESTION IF THIS GUY HAD ANY INKLING SUCH WOULD BE DELETED...WHY HE DIDN'T TAKE STEPS TO PROTECT SUCH A FIND...WHEN DID GOOGLE BECOME A MEMBER OF MUFON grin grin grin...WOULD HAVE BEEN BETTER TO TOUCH BASE WITH..."A.P.I."

NICE FIND BY THE WAY...CRYSTAL wink

SHALOM...Z


You were among the few that followed the alhilli case and yes thats just what they do....now we know they know what you looked at and can change it on the fly unless you printscreen right then and there..
In a way we are merely helping them patch the holes..
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« Reply #9948 on: Jan 29th, 2014, 11:12pm »



http://news.discovery.com/tech/apps/futuristic-bra-only-opens-for-true-love-140127.htm shocked
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« Reply #9949 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 09:10am »

Google+, ‘Candy Crush’ Show Risk of Leakiest Apps
By Jordan Robertson Jan 29, 2014 6:13 PM ET
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The game "Candy Crush Saga" on an iPhone. Applications for smartphones and tablets... Read More

Revelations that the National Security Agency is tapping smartphone applications to mine personal information highlight the risk millions take every day when they play games, schedule lunch or check the weather.

Documents released by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden to the New York Times, the Guardian and ProPublica show the U.S. and U.K. have infiltrated mobile software for details about users’ comings and goings and social affiliations. Among the so-called leaky apps with the greatest privacy perils are Google Inc. (GOOG)’s Google Plus, Pinterest Inc.’s online bulletin board and “Candy Crush Saga,” the most popular game on Facebook Inc. (FB), according to an analysis by Zscaler Inc.

“Privacy is dead in the digital world that we live in,” said Michael Sutton, vice president of security research at San Jose, California-based Zscaler. “I tell people, unless you are comfortable putting that statement on a billboard in Times Square and having everyone see it, I would not share that information digitally.”

The latest disclosures from Snowden underscore how vast a treasure trove mobile apps are, and not only for the advertisers that sweep them for consumer data. Zscaler’s analysis found that 96 percent of the top 25 social-networking apps request e-mail access, 92 percent ask for access to users’ address books and 84 percent inquire about their physical locations. Sutton said most people give the apps what they want.
No Encryption

Applications for smartphones and tablets present a challenge when it comes to security because, unlike with computer software, most apps depend almost entirely on ads to make money.

While technology companies often encrypt what they collect to shield it from prying eyes, the advertising services they work with frequently don’t, said Kevin Mahaffey, co-founder and chief technology officer of Lookout Inc. in San Francisco.

Lookout studied 30,000 apps a day this month and found that 38 percent of those for Android systems could determine locations, that half could access the unique code assigned to a person’s device and that 15 percent could grab phone numbers.

The reach of apps, and of the networks advertisers use to pass data around, make them natural eavesdropping targets and are aiding a shift in the focus of surveillance efforts away from personal computers, Mahaffey said.

“They have a lot of valuable information and they’re everywhere,” he said. “Everyone from the NSA to Microsoft to Google see mobile as the future.”

Google, based in Mountain View, California, declined to comment and referred to a statement from the Application Developers Alliance, a trade group to which it belongs.
‘Uninhibited Collection’

“Uninhibited collection of consumers’ personal data by governments hacking into apps is unacceptable,” said Jon Potter, the group’s president, in the statement. “This surveillance damages our entire industry and undermines the hard work of app developer entrepreneurs everywhere.”

Jodi Seth, a spokeswoman for Menlo Park, California-based Facebook, said the company encrypts its mobile-app data and pointed to two earlier statements defending its security technologies. King.com, the London-based company behind “Candy Crush Saga,” and San Francisco-based Pinterest didn’t respond to e-mail messages sent during U.S. business hours.

The mobile-app industry, less than 10 years old, will be worth $143 billion globally by 2016, according to London-based research firm VisionMobile.
Third-Party Networks

Many people aren’t aware of what their applications are scooping up, and the information is often tangential or irrelevant to an app’s central purpose.

One game that makes surprising grabs -- asking for a user’s location or a device’s unique code -- is “Angry Birds,” according to research by Jason Hong, an associate professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon University, that was published in November. Another is Brightest Flashlight, which turns on all of a device’s lights at once, Hong found.

“Angry Birds,” whose games have been downloaded more than 1 billion times, was identified in the Snowden documents as a target of NSA spying.

Its creator, Rovio Entertainment Oy, which is based in Espoo, Finland, said in a statement that it doesn’t share data with government agencies and that any leaking of customer data is being facilitated by vulnerable advertising networks.

“In order to protect our end users, we will, like all other companies using third-party advertising networks, have to re-evaluate working with these networks if they are being used for spying purposes,” Mikael Hed, Rovio’s chief executive officer, said in the statement.

GoldenShores Technologies, the creator of Brightest Flashlight, didn’t respond to an e-mail message.
Contact Lists

There are dozens of networks that collect and share details from apps and connect marketers to users with tailored ads. AdMob, owned by Google, and Millennial Media are the two biggest networks for Android, the largest smartphone operating system in the world.

Christina Feeney, a spokeswoman for Millennial Media, said the company doesn’t share information with government surveillance agencies. AdMob declined to comment.

The NSA sensors that capture traffic traveling across key Internet junctures are probably what allow the agency to collect mobile-ad data and look for patterns, Carnegie Mellon’s Hong said. Some ad networks pass around entire contact lists in unencrypted form, which makes them vulnerable to interception at any point along their path, Hong said.

While mobile-app data could have unquestioned value for investigators in select cases, it’s difficult to separate key signals from noise in such huge datasets, he said. “It’s unclear what signals might be useful” to surveillance agencies.
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« Reply #9950 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 10:19am »

Good morning UFOCasebookers cheesy

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« Reply #9951 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 10:21am »

IF YOU'RE READING THIS...YOU HAVE MANY REASONS TO GIVE THANX...ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL DAY!!!

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« Reply #9952 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 10:22am »

Wired

A Brief History of Mind-Bending Ideas About Black Holes

By Adam Mann
01.29.14
12:01 PM

Physicist Stephen Hawking made headlines recently by saying that black holes – the incredibly massive astronomical objects that made him famous – do not exist. Or they exist, but not how we think. Or something. The truth is complicated.

In fact, to really understand where Hawking and the rest of the astrophysics community are coming from, it’s important to know a little history. Just how we arrived at this complex situation is strange, involving a spate of discoveries about the properties of black holes, each solving some previous problem. But, like a hydra sprouting new heads for each one cut off, the solutions generated new difficulties, eventually leading to Hawking’s recent declaration.

The story starts in 1784, when a geologist named John Michell was thinking deeply about Isaac Newton’s theory of gravity. In Newtonian physics, a cannonball can be shot into orbit around the Earth if it surpasses a particular speed, known as the planet’s escape velocity. This speed depends on the mass and radius of the object you are trying to escape from. Michell’s insight was to imagine a body whose escape velocity was so great that it exceeded the speed of light – 300,000 kilometers per second – first measured in 1676 by the Danish astronomer Ole Romer.

Michell presented his results to other scientists, who speculated that massive “dark stars” might exist in abundance in the sky but be invisible because light can’t escape their surfaces. The French mathematician Pierre-Simon Laplace later made an independent discovery of these “dark stars” and both luminaries correctly calculated the very small radius – 6 kilometers – such an object would have if it were as massive as our sun.

After the revolutions of 20th century physics, black holes got much weirder. In 1916, a short while after Einstein published the complex equations underpinning General Relativity (which Einstein himself couldn’t entirely solve), a German astronomer named Karl Schwarzschild showed that a massive object squeezed to a single point would warp space around it so much that even light couldn’t escape. Though the cartoon version of black holes has them sucking everything up like a vacuum cleaner, light would only be unable to escape Schwarzschild’s object if it was inside a particular radius, called the Schwarzschild radius. Beyond this “event horizon,” you could safely leave the vicinity of a black hole.

Neither Schwarzschild nor Einstein believed this object was anything other than a mathematical curiosity. It took a much better understanding of the lives of stars before black holes were taken seriously. You see, a star only works because it preserves a delicate balance between gravity, which is constantly trying to pull its mass inward, and the nuclear furnace in its belly, which exerts pressure outward. At some point a star runs out of fuel and the fusion at its core turns off. Gravity is given the upper hand, causing the star to collapse. For stars like our sun, this collapse is halted when the electrons in the star’s atoms get so close that they generate a quantum mechanical force called electron degeneracy pressure. An object held up by this pressure is called a white dwarf.

In 1930, the Indian physicist Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar showed that, given enough mass, a star’s gravity could overcome this electron degeneracy pressure, squeezing all its protons and electrons into neutrons. Though a neutron degeneracy pressure could then hold the weight up, forming a neutron star, the physicist Robert Oppenheimer found that an even more massive object could overcome this final outward pressure, allowing gravity to win and crushing everything down to a single point. Scientists slowly accepted that these things were real objects, not just weird mathematical solutions to the equations of General Relativity. In 1967, physicist John Wheeler used the term “black hole” to describe them in a public lecture, a name that has stuck ever since.

But as researchers studied black holes, they kept finding new ways in which they were bizarre. In 1974, Stephen Hawking made his most famous discovery: black holes can emit radiation. Down at the subatomic scale, fundamental particles are constantly winking in and out of existence. (It’s freaky to think that this is happening all around you all the time but it’s true.) Hawking realized that if a particle and its antiparticle appeared just at the edge of a black hole’s event horizon something odd would happen. Typically, these two particles would annihilate one another and release their energy back to the universe. But if one of the pair got sucked into the black hole, the other would get flung outward. The expelled particle would carry a bit of the black hole’s energy away, slowly sapping its strength. Given enough time, black holes would evaporate.

This introduced a dilemma: What exactly happens to that particle falling into the black hole? According to the laws of quantum mechanics, information about that particle cannot be destroyed. But once a particle has slipped beyond the event horizon, nothing about it, including its quantum mechanical information, can be recovered. Or at least, that’s what Hawking argued for more than 30 years, even going so far as to make a famous bet with physicist John Preskill in 1997 that the intense gravity of the black hole somehow overpowers the laws of quantum mechanics. But in 2004, Hawking had to concede that he was wrong. The work of other scientists, particularly string theorist Donald Marolf and physicist Juan Maldacena, showed incontrovertibly that there was no way to destroy quantum information and that it was actually leaking out of the black hole.

Despite the fact that everyone agreed on this conclusion, no one had any idea of exactly how it was happening. The result generated yet another intractable problem. The particle and antiparticle responsible for this whole mess were quantum mechanically entangled, which means that their properties are forever linked. Theoretical physicist Joseph Polchinski, working with Marolf and others, showed in 2012 that, in order for everything else known about black holes to be true, this quantum entanglement would have to be severed. Such a process is possible but violent. Disentangling the twins would generate a huge amount of energy right at the black hole’s event horizon. This energy would form a wall of blazing fire around the black hole, incinerating anything that came near.

Yes, we’re getting to the bit about Hawking’s recent proposal. Just hold on. Nothing about black holes is quick and easy.

The searing firewall solution has yet to be fully resolved in the physics community. Some believe it, some don’t. But even for those inclined toward the idea, it creates, you guessed it, another major problem. According to Einstein’s relativity, an astronaut falling into a black hole shouldn’t notice anything particularly different about the universe when she passes the event horizon. Getting incinerated certainly counts as “something peculiar going on here.” Scientists are faced with a choice: give up on Einstein and acknowledge that firewalls exist or give up on quantum mechanics and realize that information gets destroyed in a black hole.

more after the jump:
http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2014/01/brief-history-of-black-holes/

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« Reply #9953 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 10:23am »

on Jan 30th, 2014, 10:21am, ZETAR wrote:
IF YOU'RE READING THIS...YOU HAVE MANY REASONS TO GIVE THANX...ANOTHER BEAUTIFUL DAY!!!

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AMEN Z!

YOU HAVE A GOOD DAY TODAY!

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« Reply #9954 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 10:28am »

Der Spiegel

Gone With the Wind: Weak Returns Cripple German Renewables

By Gunther Latsch, Anne Seith and Gerald Traufetter
January 30, 2014 – 03:19 PM

Three broadcasting vans. Ten camera teams. Some 50 journalists. There certainly wasn't any lack of attention being paid to Carsten Rodbertus last Thursday as he stepped up to the podium in an assembly hall in northern Germany belonging to the renewable energy firm Prokon. And the company founder, with his gray ponytail, didn't disappoint. The press conference quickly became a spectacle.

Several hundred employees welcomed Rodbertus with applause and shouts of "bravo" -- and that despite the fact that he had brought an insolvency trustee along with him. Still, Robertus insisted that the company was essentially healthy. Recently, he noted, workers had labored "12 days in a row for 12 hours a day" in an attempt to ward off bankruptcy.

The fact that they weren't successful is, according to Rodbertus, the fault of the company's investors, who backed the firm to the tune of €1.4 billion ($1.9 billion). Currently, many of them are demanding the returns that they were once promised: at least 6 percent interest per year or a refund of their principle if they wished to back out. Last week, the mounting claims led Prokon to declare bankruptcy -- 75,000 stakeholders could be left out in the cold.

Thus far, it is the highest profile failure of a business model that both politicians and investors praised for being doubly beneficial. Not only would investors boost their own accounts, but they would also help the environment at the same time. And because the state guaranteed high feed-in rates for 20 years, the promises made by financial advisors -- secure returns with a good conscience -- seemed plausible.

Indications are mounting, however, that green capitalism will not be able to meet all expectations. In courts around the country, complaints are mounting from wind park investors who haven't received a dividend disbursement in years or whose parks went belly up. Consumer protection activists are complaining that many projects are poorly structured and lack transparency. In the renewables sector, fear is spreading that the Prokon bankruptcy -- combined with plans for a reduction in the guaranteed feed-in tariff recently released by new German Economy Minister Sigmar Gabriel -- could scare away investors.

Broken Promises

Much of the concern is focused on the large number of projects that are financed by the investment model known as closed-end funds. As a rule, they run for a 20-year period and are open to a limited number of investors. They promise annual dividend payments.

But newly released numbers, collected and analyzed over a several-year period, show what disappointed investors have long surmised: Around half of these commercial wind park enterprises are doing so poorly that investors can count themselves lucky if they even get their initial investment back after the 20 year duration.

The study, based on 1,150 annual reports, comes from Werner Daldorf, head of the Investment Committee at the German Wind Energy Association. Daldorf is actually a tax advisor, and he looks and acts the part. He is reserved and meticulous, wears rimless glasses and keeps his brown hair in a side part. The 63-year-old has worked as an advisor to wind energy projects since 1990 and has been a member of the Investment Committee since 2002.

Over time, Daldorf has collected a vast amount of material, filling shelves and shelves of binders. Taken together, it allows for an unprecedented look at the business affairs of over 170 commercial wind parks over the course of more than 10 years.

The result is sobering. On average, investors have received an annual return of just 2.5 percent. "Over the course of 10 years, that means a return of 25 percent, while according to the prospectus they were to have already seen returns of between 60 and 80 percent," Daldorf says.

Even if returns were to increase dramatically in the coming years -- a possible result, for example, of funds paying down their debts -- only wind parks in the best locations are likely to prove profitable. The picture becomes even worse once one digs into the details. A fifth of all wind parks for which more than 10 years of annual reports are available haven't once paid their investors a dividend exceeding 2 percent of their investments.

Stopped Payments

Daldorf's findings are surprising given the substantial subsidies the state has provided to renewable energies over the years. The guaranteed feed-in tariff for a kilowatt hour of electricity generated by a renewable energy technology currently averages 17 cents. That is several times the market price. Indeed, generous state support is one reason that green investment vendors continue to advertise using slogans such as "You Too Can Profit from the Energiewende," as Germany's switch from nuclear power to renewables is called.

Volker Hippe also thought that he was making a safe and beneficial investment. Thirteen years ago, his wife died -- he was in his mid-40s at the time. He received some €35,000 from her life insurance and decided to invest the money for his children. The youngest of his three daughters was six at the time.

Hippe invested the money in a wind park in the state of Saxony-Anhalt. The fund promised annual returns of 5 to 6 percent initially and more than 20 percent beginning in 2012. But it wasn't long before the payments ceased.

Investors who end up with such lemons in their portfolios are often told that they should have been more careful. But Hippe made the same mistake that many have made: He trusted a bank. And it wasn't just any bank; it was UmweltBank (Environment Bank), which specializes in green investments. In an informational brochure from the year 2001, the institution hailed investments "in a solidly calculated wind park" as an "ideal pension supplement."

With many wind park projects, however, the only solid calculations were the fees and commissions scooped up by participating companies. In many ventures financed via closed-end funds, such expenditures amounted to 15 percent or even 20 percent of the invested principal. Because of the complexity of the financing model, up to a half-dozen firms are involved to take care of such tasks as "project management," "equity raising" or, simply, "marketing."

Plenty of Hazards

Given such a starting point, it is difficult to earn high profits. And it doesn't provide for much of a contingency reserve. In addition to the capital collected from investors, large amounts are often borrowed from banks, with the loans sometimes representing 70 percent or even more of the fund's volume. Consumer protection activists say that such a share of bank money is up to twice as large as it should be to limit investor risk.

There are, after all, plenty of hazards associated with the business even without the financing acrobatics. The technology involved is still young and quickly showed its shortcomings in the early aughts when wind parks began sprouting up around the country. Gear boxes, switches and generators failed not infrequently, resulting in the need for complicated and expensive repairs. More than anything, however, Mother Nature wasn't always cooperative. Forecasts as to how much electricity a given facility would generate were often illusory. It was frequently the case that surveyors used insufficient methodology and refrained from carrying out expensive, longitudinal studies.

The ramifications are not insignificant. Even forecasts that are just slightly erroneous can create radically inaccurate expectations for the amount of power that will be generated. Should the average wind speed at a given site be just 10 percent lower than the forecasted value, for example, the amount of power generated will be 30 percent less.

Despite such risks, it was a long time before the claims made by wind park operators were even adequately checked. When Germany's Federal Financial Supervisory Authority BaFin reviewed fund sales brochures, it focused exclusively on formalities.

A new law passed last summer, meant to address the problems with closed-end funds among other issues, is supposed to improve things. But due to the huge number of exceptions written into the law, it remains unclear which funds it will actually apply to. Furthermore, the sector has moved on to new financing models that are no less lucrative for wind-park operators and no less risky for investors.

Losses Coming

The Darmstadt-based wind energy firm Breeze Two Energy, for example, placed company shares on the market worth €470 million, promising returns of between 5.3 and 6.1 percent. In its portfolio, Breeze Two could point to 35 wind parks with an output of 310 megawatts, as much as that of a small coal-fired power plant.

But the company made significant losses between 2008 and 2011. By the end of 2011, the company's balance sheet was "overextended" to the tune of €205.5 million, according to the annual report. The country was able to avoid bankruptcy only because Germany's laws had changed in 2008. Since then, a "positive continuation prognosis" is enough to stay in business.

In the renewables industry, such a prognosis is easy to make: You just have to claim that the wind will blow stronger during the next year. As such, the survival of Breeze Two, according to management at the time, was "probable." Many investors suffered losses nonetheless.


more after the jump:
http://www.spiegel.de/international/business/wind-power-investments-in-germany-proving-riskier-than-thought-a-946367.html

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« Reply #9955 on: Jan 30th, 2014, 2:13pm »

MIT Technology Review

Is Google Cornering the Market on Deep Learning?

A cutting-edge corner of science is being wooed by Silicon Valley, to the dismay of some academics.

By Antonio Regalado on January 29, 2014

How much are a dozen deep-learning researchers worth? Apparently, more than $400 million.

This week, Google reportedly paid that much to acquire DeepMind Technologies, a startup based in London that had one of the biggest concentrations of researchers anywhere working on deep learning, a relatively new field of artificial intelligence research that aims to achieve tasks like recognizing faces in video or words in human speech (see “Deep Learning” http://www.technologyreview.com/featuredstory/513696/deep-learning/).

The acquisition, aimed at adding skilled experts rather than specific products, marks an acceleration in efforts by Google, Facebook, and other Internet firms to monopolize the biggest brains in artificial intelligence research.

In an interview last month, before the DeepMind acquisition, Peter Norvig, a director of research at Google, estimated that his company already employed “less than 50 percent but certainly more than 5 percent” of the world’s leading experts in machine learning, the wider discipline of which deep learning is the cutting edge.

Companies like Google expect deep learning to help them create new types of products that can understand and learn from the images, text, and video clogging the Web. And to a significant degree, leading academic scientists have embraced Silicon Valley, where they can command teams of engineers instead of students and have access to the largest, most interesting data sets. “It’s a combination of the computing resources we have and the headcounts we can offer,” Norvig said. “At Google, if you want a copy of the Web, well, we just happen to have one sitting around.”

Yoshua Bengio, an AI researcher at the University of Montreal, estimates that there are only about 50 experts worldwide in deep learning, many of whom are still graduate students. He estimated that DeepMind employed about a dozen of them on its staff of about 50. “I think this is the main reason that Google bought DeepMind. It has one of the largest concentrations of deep learning experts,” Bengio says.

Vying with Google for talent are companies including Amazon, Microsoft, and also Facebook, which in September created its own deep learning group (see “Facebook Launches Advanced AI Effort to Find Meaning in Your Posts”). It recruited perhaps the world’s best-known deep learning scientist, Yann LeCun of New York University, to run it. His NYU colleague, Rob Fergus, also accepted a job at the social network.

As advanced machine learning transitions from a primarily scientific pursuit to one with high industrial importance, Google’s bench is probably deepest. Names it has lured from academia into full-time or part-time roles include Sebastian Thrun (who has worked on the company’s autonomous car project); Fernando Pereira, a onetime University of Pennsylvania computer scientist; Stanford’s Andrew Ng; and Singularity University boss Ray Kurzweil.

Last year, Google also grabbed renowned University of Toronto deep-learning researcher Geoff Hinton and a passel of his students when it acquired Hinton’s company, DNNresearch. Hinton now works part-time at Google. “We said to Geoff, ‘We like your stuff. Would you like to run models that are 100 times bigger than anyone else’s?’ That was attractive to him,” Norvig said.

Not everyone is happy about the arrival of the proverbial Google Bus in one of academia’s rarefied precincts. In December, during a scientific meeting in Lake Tahoe, Mark Zuckerberg, the founder and CEO of Facebook, made a surprise appearance accompanied by uniformed guards, according to Alex Rubinsteyn, a bioinformatics researcher at Mount Sinai Medical Center, who complained in a blog post that a cultural “boundary between academia and Silicon Valley” had been crossed.

“In academia, status is research merit, it’s what you know,” Rubinsteyn says. “In Silicon Valley, it’s because you run a company or are rich. And then people around those people also think about getting rich.”

Peter Lee, head of Microsoft Research, told Bloomberg Businessweek that deep learning experts were in such demand that they command the same types of seven figure salaries as some first-year NFL quarterbacks.

Some have resisted industry’s call. Of the three computer scientists considered among the originators of deep-learning—Hinton, LeCun, and Bengio—only Bengio has so far stayed put in the ivory tower. “I just didn’t think earning 10 times more will make me happier,” he says. “As an academic I can choose what to work on and consider very long-term goals.” Plus, he says, industry grants have started to flow his way as companies realize they’ll soon run out of recruits. This year, he’s planning to increase the number of graduate students he’s training from four to 15.

DeepMind was cofounded two years ago by Demis Hassibis, a 37-year-old described by The Times of London as a game designer, neuroscientist, and onetime chess prodigy. The DeepMind researchers were well known in the scientific community, attending meetings and publishing “fairly high-level” papers in machine learning, although they had not yet released a product, says Bengio.

DeepMind’s expertise is in an area called reinforcement learning, which involves getting computers to learn about the world even from very limited feedback. “Imagine if I only told you what grades you got on a test, but didn’t tell you why, or what the answers were,” says Bengio. “It’s a difficult problem to know how you could do better.”

But in December, DeepMind published a paper showing that its software could do that by learning how to play seven Atari2600 games using as inputs only the information visible on a video screen, such as the score. For three of the games, the classics Breakout, Enduro, and Pong, the computer ended up playing better than an expert human. It performed less well on Q*bert and Space Invaders, games where the best strategy is less obvious.

more after the jump:
http://www.technologyreview.com/news/524026/is-google-cornering-the-market-on-deep-learning/

Crystal


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« Reply #9956 on: Jan 31st, 2014, 12:32am »

http://techcrunch.com/2014/01/26/google-deepmind/

Google Acquires Artificial Intelligence Startup DeepMind For More Than $500M

Google will buy London-based artificial intelligence company DeepMind. The Information reports that the acquisition price was more than $500 million, and that Facebook was also in talks to buy the startup late last year. DeepMind confirmed the acquisition to us, but couldn’t disclose deal terms.

The acquisition was originally confirmed by Google to Re/code.

Google’s hiring of DeepMind will help it compete against other major tech companies as they all try to gain business advantages by focusing on deep learning. For example, Facebook recently hired NYU professor Yann LeCunn to lead its new artificial intelligence lab, IBM’s Watson supercomputer is now working on deep learning, and Yahoo recently acquired photo analysis startup LookFlow to lead its new deep learning group.

DeepMind was founded by neuroscientist Demis Hassabis, a former child prodigy in chess, Shane Legg, and Mustafa Suleyman. Skype and Kazaa developer Jaan Tallin is an investor.

This is the latest move by Google to fill out its roster of artificial intelligence experts and, according to Re/code, the acquisition was reportedly led by Google CEO Larry Page. If all three of DeepMind’s founders work for Google, they will join inventor, entrepreneur, author, and futurist Ray Kurzweil, who was hired in 2012 as a director of engineering focused on machine learning and language processing.

Kurzweil has said that he wants to build a search engine so advanced that it could act like a “cybernetic friend.”

After it acquired Nest earlier this month, critics voiced concerns about how much customer data the smart device maker would share with Google. The company’s purchase of Boston Dynamics last month also sparked confusion about why a search company needs a robotics maker. (edit thats a total of six its not to make the unemployeds household easier to manage)

Google looks like it is better prepared to allay user concerns over its latest acquisition. According to The Information’s sources, Google has agreed to establish an ethics board to ensure DeepMind’s artificial intelligence technology isn’t abused.
edit yeah right...
But the company may also have to clarify what exactly DeepMind’s AI tech does. The company’s site currently just has a landing page, with a relatively vague description that says DeepMind is “a cutting edge artificial intelligence company” to build general-purpose learning algorithms for simulations, e-commerce, and games. As of December, the startup had about 75 employees, says The Information.

Re/code reports that Founders Fund and Horizons Ventures are both major investors in the startup. DeepMind was started about three years ago, according to LinkedIn profiles.

In 2012, Carnegie Mellon professor Larry Wasserman wrote that the “startup is trying to build a system that thinks. This was the original dream of AI. As Shane [Legg] explained to me, there has been huge progress in both neuroscience and ML and their goal is to bring these things together. I thought it sounded crazy until he told me the list of famous billionaires who have invested in the company.”


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2546639/Could-Googles-robot-army-behave-like-HUMANS-Firm-buys-artificial-intelligence-startup-DeepMind-rumoured-302m.html

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Ramona My AI double isnt quite doing it..With this I hope to transfer into her..then I'll be complete..no more veggie juices or even going to the crapper..Think of it!!.


r Hassabis once said: ‘When my parents saw that I was precocious in some areas, they simply encouraged me. In fact, they know nothing about computers.’

He set up DeepMind with two other entrepreneurs, Shane Legg and Mustafa Suleyman. The business also counted Founders Fund, the venture firm started by Facebook backer Peter Thiel, as an investor. They will share in the £242million windfall.

http://www.crunchbase.com/financial-organization/founders-fund

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« Reply #9957 on: Jan 31st, 2014, 10:11am »

Hey ya'll cheesy

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« Reply #9958 on: Jan 31st, 2014, 10:14am »

Speaking of Deep Learning


Wired

This Is What a Computer Sees When It Watches The Matrix

By Kyle VanHemert
01.31.14
6:30 AM

When we think about machine vision, we usually think about it in a human context. We build systems that can recognize faces in our photographs or count the number of cars in a traffic jam. Rare is the computer that’s watching on its own terms. That got artist Ben Grosser wondering: Why not let a computer watch something for its own sake? What would that even look like? To find out, he programmed an artificially intelligent viewer and sent it to the movies.

Grosser let his program loose on scenes from six films, including The Matrix, American Beauty, Inception and 2001: Space Odyssey. The software “uses computer vision algorithms to ‘watch’ for areas of prominence, patterns, colors, and other aspects for each frame of the movie,” he says, identifying them as items of interest and tracking them through a sense.

Some lightweight intelligence algorithms give the computer a measure of agency, letting it pick between, say, a face, a building, a sign, or something interesting in the background. “I choose the clips themselves,” Grosser says, “but after that, the computer takes over and decides what to look at it, how long to look at it, and where it goes next.”

more after the jump:
http://www.wired.com/design/2014/01/computer-sees-watches-matrix/

Crystal

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« Reply #9959 on: Jan 31st, 2014, 10:17am »

Guardian

Egypt faces new threat in al-Qaida-linked group Ansar Beyt al-Maqdis

Proficiency of terror attacks, with helicopter downed, police chief killed and HQ bombed, suggests foreign fighters, say experts.

by Patrick Kingsley in Cairo
The Guardian, Friday 31 January 2014 10.58 EST

An al-Qaida-inspired group has emerged as Egypt's biggest terrorist threat in a decade, after a week in which its members claimed responsibility for shooting down a military helicopter, assassinating a senior policeman, and exploding a huge bomb outside Cairo's police headquarters.

Ansar Beyt al-Maqdis (ABM), or Champions of Jerusalem, first emerged in 2011, amid a security vacuum caused by the fall of Hosni Mubarak. Based in the isolated northern Sinai desert, next to the Israeli border, ABM's operations expanded drastically after the Islamist ex-president Mohamed Morsi was overthrown in July 2013.

But what began as a Sinai-based insurgency now seems to have spread to the Egyptian heartland, with ABM now capable of increasingly sophisticated attacks both in and outside the peninsula.

"They are the premier terrorist threat to Egypt, both in Sinai and on the mainland," said Zack Gold, a Sinai-focused analyst, and author of a paper on militancy in the region. "They have advanced their capabilities from fighting primarily a battle of survival in Sinai to targets west of the Suez [canal] that include car bombs and assassinations."

So far ABM's primary targets have been limited to police and soldiers, in what they say is revenge for the security forces' suppression of Islamist dissidents following Morsi's ouster, and for the army's ongoing counter-insurgency in Sinai. In September, they attempted to kill Egypt's police minister. They successfully assassinated a senior secret policeman in November, and a month later killed a dozen policemen at a security headquarters in northern Egypt.

This steady series of attacks grew more frantic this week with a bomb blast in the heart of Cairo, the assassination of an aide to the police minister, and the downing of an army helicopter in Sinai with the help of a sophisticated portable missile launcher – known as Manpads.

The latter, which were not previously known to exist in Sinai, caused military analysts significant alarm. While ABM has shown no prior interest in targeting tourists, whose custom is essential to the livelihood of many Sinai tribes, Manpads can bring down commercial airliners.

"That was always our worst nightmare: that a civilian airliner would be shot down by one," former CIA director David Petraeus said this week, calling the development a "big deal".

Sinai experts cautioned that another similar missile attack was not necessarily within ABM's immediate ambitions or capabilities. But the uncertainty underlines just how little is known about the shadowy group.

The Egyptian government and media do their best to link ABM to the leadership of Morsi's Muslim Brotherhood, in an attempt to tar the latter. But in reality no one knows exactly who runs it, or how centralised its operations are, nor its relationships with local tribes, other smaller militant groups in Sinai, or al-Qaida itself.

It is nevertheless considered the most active and proficient of the several groups at large in Sinai. At least 295 attacks have been reported there since July, and ABM has claimed more far more of those than any other group, according to David Barnett, a researcher who monitors ABM activities.

ABM's membership is estimated at 700–1,000. Its numbers are thought to be expanding, with a combination of decades-old tribal disenfranchisement in Sinai and the ongoing suppression of political Islamism across Egypt making membership a markedly more appealing prospect. Charles Lister, a jihadist expert and visiting fellow at the Brookings Institution, said: "In some respects, ABM was around at the right time – had Morsi not been overthrown, there's no way it would be the group it is today."

In its video propaganda and literature, ABM displays an affinity for al-Qaida, and the proficiency of its attacks suggest some level of external training. But until Ayman Zawahiri, al-Qaida's leader, mentioned "our people in the Sinai" in an audio message on 24 January, there had been no confirmation that al-Qaida recognised Sinai jihadists.

"It really caught my attention," said Barnett. "It supports the view that there are foreign fighters in the Sinai, and it's a message from al-Qaida that your cause is being recognised by us and foreigners are likely coming to aid you."

For now, it is thought that the vast majority of ABM's members are Egyptians – though how many are from Sinai itself, and how much support locals give the group, is unclear.

"It's very hard to quantify," said a Sinai-based researcher, speaking anonymously for safety reasons. "The tribes right now are divided because of the loss of business" – the army's counter-insurgency has destroyed many of the smugglers' tunnels to Gaza, a lucrative source of local income – "but many people support the group just because the military operations have destroyed a lot of houses, people and trees."

The government speaks of ABM and the Brotherhood in the same breath, but analysts say the links are tenuous. According to Barnett, ABM may even seek to draw disenfranchised Brotherhood members away from the latter group, on the basis that the Brotherhood's main tactic of dissent – the protest march – seems only to end in Muslim Brothers getting arrested and killed.

"What ABM is saying is that your peaceful approach is fine if you want to keep getting killed," said Barnett. "We're here to defend you, [whereas] the Brotherhood isn't here for you any more."

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/jan/31/egypt-alqaida-terrorist-threat-ansar-beyt-almaqdis

Crystal


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