science + technology news

Gates: AI for the billions

August 8, 2001
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SEATTLE, Aug. 8 – The vast majority of Microsoft research–included in the firm’s $5.3 billion R&D budget for FY 2002–is for AI-related projects, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates said, speaking at the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence.
Microsoft’s research is focused on traditional AI areas, such as decision-making, learning, language, and speech recognition. “We are putting our money where our beliefs are: that these things will become real and allow… read more

24-hour chip design cycle called possible

August 8, 2001

A new “chip-in-a-day” method could cut system-on-chip design time from months to 24 hours.The Berkeley Wireless Research Center (BWRC) claims the method be two to three orders of magnitude more efficient in power and area than previous architectures.

Bob Brodersen, professor of electrical engineering and computer science at the University of California, Berkeley, and BWRC’s scientific director, said the center’s methodology could result in “much faster transitioning of really… read more

Challenge to create program that can win a game without knowing rules

August 5, 2001

Artificial Intelligence NV (Ai) has announced a challenge to promote original AI research. The companuy invites participants to create a computer program that can win at a game without knowing either the game’s rules or the identity of its opponent.
The creator of the winning program will win a $2000 prize and the representatives of the top three winning programs will be invited to an AI workshop at… read more

Major AI conference scheduled for Aug. 4 — 10 in Seattle [Event]

August 3, 2001

The International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, sponsored by AAAI, will be held August 4th to 10th in Seattle.
Bill Gates will keynote the conference on August 7 and talk about the role of AI in Microsoft.

There will be five collocated events:

  • Thirteenth Conference on Innovative Applications of Artificial Intelligence, IAAI-01, August 7-9
  • IJCAI-01 AAAI/SIGART Doctoral Consortium, August 5-6
  • RoboCup-2001
  • read more

    World champion to battle chess supercomputer

    August 2, 2001

    World chess champion Vladimir Kramnik will play the “Deep Fritz 7″ chess supercomputer in an eight-game match in Bahrain in October.
    This will be the first man vs. machine chess showdown since IBM Corp.’s “Deep Blue” RS/6000-based parallel computer defeated former world chess champion Garry Kasparov 3.5 points to 2.5 points in 1997.

    Deep Fritz has been built from scratch by an independent group of computer and chess specialists,… read more

    US warned of cloning ‘brain drain’

    August 2, 2001

    The American biotechnology industry is warning of an exodus of scientists because of moves to make human cloning for medical research illegal.
    Creating human embryos in a cloning process to extract cells that can be turned into tissues to replace diseased parts of the body is legal in the UK, Israel, and Australia.

    But the US House of Representatives voted on Wednesday to ban any form of human cloning… read more

    RoboCup competition opens in Seattle

    August 2, 2001

    Robotics teams from universities in 23 countries will compete at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center in Seattle from Aug. 2 to 10. It runs concurrent with the American Association for Artificial Intelligence’s annual conference.
    The ultimate goal for the competition: “By the year 2050, develop a team of fully autonomous humanoid robots that can beat the human World Cup soccer champions.”

    Buckyballs Make Fantastic Voyage

    August 2, 2001

    Fullerenes (a.k.a. Buckyballs — molecules containing 60 carbon atoms arranged in a sphere with a hollow center) are becoming an ideal platform for delivering drugs for diseases such as HIV, Lou Gehrig’s disease and Parkinson’s disease.
    C Sixty, which is developing products using fullerenes, also sees them being used for delivering bone-building drugs for osteoporosis and eventually for carrying cancer-killing drugs to tumor cells.

    “Buckyballs will undoubtedly… read more

    At nanoscale, current laws may not apply

    August 1, 2001

    As nanotechnology moves from the realm of science fiction to the real world of commercial application, legislation and regulation are going to have to play catch-up.
    International trade law, treaties banning chemical and biological weapons, regulations governing medicine and the environment, and copyright and patent law will be affected.

    Some of the other big legal headaches are likely to emerge when scientists perfect replicating, or self-replicating, nanotechnology.

    Population predicted to peak in 2070

    August 1, 2001

    The world’s population will peak at 9 billion over the next 70 years before beginning a decline into the 22nd century, researchers predict in a new study.

    Population currently stands at 6.1 billion, and the study projects that most of the new growth will continue to occur in developing countries. It also predicts some demographic changes. For example, the authors say, the number of people aged 60 or older… read more

    Computers of the future: Made of glass?

    July 31, 2001

    Your handheld computer could look like a small glass panel, possibly as early as 2003.
    Fujitsu engineers have developed a new manufacturing process for thin-film transistors that creates crystals with faster mobility while keeping the temperature below 450 degrees to avoid glass substrate melting or distortion.

    Total protein scan approaches reality

    July 30, 2001

    For the first time, nearly all the proteins from a single organism have been produced, purified and biochemically tested in an area the size of a postage stamp. Experts say such “proteome chips” will revolutionize medicine and biology.
    The US researchers who created the chip have already used it to study the biochemistry of 93 per cent of the proteins of brewer’s yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, a total of 5800 molecules.… read more

    Nurses get bionic ‘power suit’

    July 30, 2001

    A robotic exoskeleton has been created by Japanese researchers to allow nurses to lift patients effortlessly and without damaging their backs.
    How it works:

    Sensor pads taped to the major muscle groups calculate how much force you need to pick up a patient. As you lift, the sensors send data to a microcomputer that triggers a bunch of concertina-like limb and body actuators powered by compressed air.

    These… read more

    Stem cells develop into kidney cells

    July 25, 2001

    Adult stem cells taken from bone marrow can develop into kidney cells, British scientists have discovered.
    Bone marrow stem cells, which are immature blood cells, have already been shown to transform into liver, nerve and muscle cells.

    Both adult and embryonic stem cells have enormous medical potential due to their ability to mature into a wide range of different tissues, which could then be transplanted. However, ethical considerations have… read more MindX forum redesigned

    July 25, 2001

    The MindX discussion forum interface has been redesigned for easier access.
    The new design displays topics on a single page for easier access and in threaded (replies grouped under the parent post) or flat (chronological) order. A search feature has also been added, along with other user-interface enhancements.

    MindX is a discussion forum for visitors to It is accessible from the Web site’s… read more

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