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Who Built AI? You did, mostly!

Jonathan Bartlett

At Mind Matters Today, he explains, Along with millions of others, you are providing free training data:

All of the most successful AI projects tend to follow a similar pattern. One of AI’s biggest needs is lots of data, and one of the most important tasks is finding ways to get people to provide them with the best data… for free.

Currently, Facebook is utilizing hashtags applied to its Instagram photos to generate AI-based algorithms for detecting specific types of objects in images:

Having so many images for training helped Facebook’s team set a new record on a test that challenges software to assign photos to 1,000 categories including cat, car wheel, and Christmas stocking. Facebook says that algorithms trained on 1 billion Instagram images correctly identified 85.4 percent of photos on the test, known as ImageNet; the previous best was 83.1 percent, set by Google earlier this year. Tom Simonite, “Your Instagram #Dogs and #Cats Are Training Facebook’s AI” at Wired

Basically, it is taking all of the photos which are tagged with “dog” and “cat” and using them to train its software to identify dogs and cats in other photos. The Facebook engineers know that their training data contains pictures of dogs and cats because the users told them so. For free! More.

Jonathan Bartlett is the Research and Education Director of the Blyth Institute.

Also by Jonathan Bartlett: When machine learning results in mishap The machine isn’t responsible but who is? That gets tricky We should require model interpretability for any machine learning model for which moral responsibility plays a significant role.

See also: People-friendly robots company shuts down. The “cobots,” robots that can work with people, got the pink slip—for now. Robotics is a business like any other. The individual good idea requires a business plan that can survive savage years in the wilderness before the buyout.That said, we certainly haven’t heard the last of the cobot, which may be one of the ideas that make robotics practical for everyday business.


Can a stuffed toy turn into a robot? Maybe to amuse a sick child? With the right skin, yes. Robotic skins were developed at Yale for possible uses in space flight or search-and-rescue. But animating ordinary bendable objects is surely a fun way to introduce the idea


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