Technology Tuesday: February 13th

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Welcome to Technology Tuesday! Every week The Job Shop Blog will bring you our 5 top science and technology news stories from around the web.

This week: Robots that can open doors, AI that can predict psychosis, tiny robots that can kill cancer, mastering human DNA, and world leaders met to discuss the future of AI.


BOSTON DYNAMICS’ SPOTMINI ROBOT JUST UNVEILED A NEW TRICK

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SpotMini, Boston Dynamics’s dog-like quadruped robot, is back, and it’s learned a new trick. The robot, which was unveiled in June 2016 and then updated in November 2017, can now open doors and hold them open.

While opening a door is slightly old hat for a Boston Dynamics robot — Atlas barreled through a push-bar door two years ago — SpotMini’s operation is more eloquent. The robot uses its fifth appendage, an arm mounted essentially where a canine’s head would be, to swiftly assess the door, locate and twist the handle, and pull the door open.

 

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IBM’S NEW AI CAN PREDICT PSYCHOSIS BY STUDYING YOUR SPEECH

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Language is a fascinating tool, one that allows humans to share thoughts with one another. Often enough, if used with clarity and precision, language leads to an accord of minds. Language is also the tool by which psychiatrists evaluate a patient for particular psychoses or mental disorders, including schizophrenia. However, these evaluations tend to depend on the availability of highly trained professionals and adequate facilities.

Enter a team comprising members of IBM Research’s Computational Psychiatry and Neuroimaging groups and universities around the globe.

 

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ROBOTS SMALLER THAN A HUMAN HAIR CAN STARVE AND SHRINK CANCEROUS TUMORS

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How to kill cancerous tumors is a problem that researchers around the globe are trying to solve, with limited success. Now, an international group of scientists is trying a new technique to destroy tumors — using nanobots to limit tumors’ blood supply, effectively starving them out.

In a recent study published in Nature Biotechnology, scientists from Arizona State University (ASU) and the National Center for Nanoscience and Technology (NCNST), of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, demonstrated how effective these nanorobots were at addressing tumor growth. The mini robots were able to cut-off the blood supply to breast cancer, melanoma, ovarian and lung cancer tumors in mice. After just two weeks of treatment, the researchers reported that the tumor tissue was shrinking.

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MASTERS OF OUR DNA: DESIGNER BODIES ARE NOT SCIENCE FICTION

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Imagine a world where we can design the bodies we want. In this reality we can also create, and recreate, the plants and animals that live alongside us. We can alter organisms and mold them into whatever we want them to be.

This is not the world of tomorrow, though. This doesn’t take imagination. This is the world today.

Right now

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WORLD LEADERS GATHER TO DECIDE FUTURE OF AI

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Today, top individuals from around the world convened at the World Government Summit to discuss the agenda that should govern the next generation of governments. Yesterday, a select few of these leaders gathered in a closed-door meeting to discuss the guidelines that nations should use as they help their people come to terms with no longer being the only sentient species on the planet.

Of course, this was just one of the many topics discussed. Officials also deliberated on the most immediate ways they can implement AI technologies to make our lives better, who should govern AI, and how to best navigate the perilous roads ahead.

 

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