The Disruptive Stories

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This AI Creates Horrifying Images Based On Your Words

Yay, researchers trained an algorithm to turn your captions into (nightmarish) images.<p>I love technology that’s earnestly bad at doing things. Robots falling down the stairs? Algorithms composing deranged karaoke songs? They’re trying so hard! A for effort.<p>So a newish AI called AttnGAN makes me a …

Machine Learning

NASA says Opportunity rover may never be the same, but hope remains

NASA has published an update on its Opportunity rover, which fell silent after losing power during the ongoing Mars dust storm. The space agency …

Mars Rover

A letter to… my mid-life lover

Last December, nearly a year after my husband’s death, I realised I had turned a corner: a friend mentioned this paper’s online dating service, Guardian Soulmates, and I thought, “I could do that.” Barely three weeks later, I was meeting you and your puppy on my favourite beach.<p>I knew right away …

Relationships

Your iPhone Didn’t Create the Gig Economy

When we learn about the Industrial Revolution in school, we hear a lot about factories, steam engines, maybe the power loom. We are taught that technological innovation drove social change and radically reshaped the world of work.<p>Likewise, when we talk about today’s economy, we focus on …

Great Depression

The evolution of space travel -- a new gold rush has begun

As one of the engineers who helped build and launch America’s first spacecraft, I’ve seen first-hand the evolution of getting into space.<p>Today, massive rockets like Elon Musk’s Falcon Heavy nail precise landings to recover their own booster rockets. That’s astounding. Because of Musk and the space …

Space Travel

Where depression grows, and all hell breaks loose

Have you ever wondered, why negative thoughts and emotions keep on striking the mind all the time to a depressed person that it reaches a level where …

Psychology

Online dating tips: There is no such thing as a ‘casual hookup’

‘This is total freedom’: Sisters on the Fly detail their outdoor adventures<p>03:36<p>Meet the 13 fearless women of the Caramel Curves Motorcycle Club<p>02:43<p>Online daters aim for someone 'out of their league,' study says<p>01:29<p>'Better, not bitter': Therapists reveal healthy ways to end relationships and move …

Relationships

'Why I never want babies'

<b>An increasing number of South Korean women are choosing not to marry, not to have children, and not even to have relationships with men. With the lowest fertility rate in the world, the country's population will start shrinking unless something changes.</b><p>"I have no plans to have children, ever," says …

South Korea

Why Samsung’s big round smartwatch will be roundly dismissed

Do consumers really care if smartwatches look and feel like the wristwatches of old? Samsung thinks so, but millions of Apple Watch owners say otherwise.<p>Whenever a new smartwatch debuts, the natural question is: How well will it stack up against the Apple Watch? Apple’s device is, after all, the de …

Smartwatches

I spent 20 minutes trying to predict the stock market with AI — these are my results

This all started when I was asked to speak at an AI FinTech forum in July. It represented a great opportunity for me to talk about Machine Box to a …

Machine Learning

Getting unstuck: The myth of work-life balance

Have you ever felt like you were in a rut or experiencing a particularly low point in your life? It’s times like these when we feel down, hopeless …

Work-life Balance

The AI detectives

As neural nets push into science, researchers probe back<p>Jason Yosinski sits in a small glass box at Uber's San Francisco, California, headquarters, …

Deep Learning

America's hottest export? Sperm

Ella Rasmussen’s doctors started to prod her about children when she turned 30. She was single, suffered from endometriosis, and contemplated a hysterectomy. After several years, the nudges took hold. Because she wasn’t a good candidate to freeze only her eggs, she was advised to undergo IVF and …

Sperm

What Data Scientists Really Do, According to 35 Data Scientists

Modern data science emerged in tech, from optimizing Google search rankings and LinkedIn recommendations to influencing the headlines Buzzfeed editors run. But it’s poised to transform all sectors, from retail, telecommunications, and agriculture to health, trucking, and the penal system. Yet the …

Machine Learning

The Future of Porn Is Only Getting Worse

We interviewed award-winning feminist adult film maker Erika Lust about the impact of FOSTA/SESTA on porn, the problem with age verification checks and the value of education over regulation.<p>When we're all reading books aloud to each other for entertainment again, it's possible that 2018 will be …

Internet

What's going wrong for Asian men?

One of my earliest memories is of a car journey with my father, when I was about six years old. A man suddenly ran in front of our vehicle to grab a ball his child had thrown into the road. “Sorry, Doc!” he shouted to dad, both hands in the air, as he smiled apologetically.<p>That was the stereotype …

Gujarat

World's first solar probe to "touch the Sun" sets off

The origins of NASA's Parker Solar Probe mission can be traced back to a paper published 60 years ago by astrophysicist Eugene Parker, describing …

Parker Solar Probe

The Cognitive Biases Tricking Your Brain

Science suggests we’re hardwired to delude ourselves. Can we do anything about it?<p>I am staring at a photograph of myself that shows me 20 years older than I am now. I have not stepped into the twilight zone. Rather, I am trying to rid myself of some measure of my present bias, which is the tendency …

Critical Thinking

Understanding smartwatches

I was wrong. Several years ago I reviewed the first Garmin Fenix 3 smartwatch. This was before the release of the Apple Watch. That’s key to this story. I declared Garmin would have a hard time selling the Fenix 3. The Apple Watch would be better in every way, I pointed out. Therefore, there would …

Apple Watch

Mark Zuckerberg Is Totally Out of His Depth

I might be the only person on Earth feeling sorry for the big boys of technology. Jack Dorsey from Twitter, Mark Zuckerberg from Facebook, all those Google nerds: They’re monumentally screwed, because they have no idea how to tame the monsters they have created.<p>The way I see it, these guys — and …

Mark Zuckerberg

Battery Technology May Be Next Stranded Assets in Green Revolution

Some of the latest battery technologies may become obsolete before reaching the market because of the breakneck pace of advances in the …

Lithium Ion

Scientists say your “mind” isn’t confined to your brain, or even your body

You might wonder, at some point today, what’s going on in another person’s mind. You may compliment someone’s great mind, or say they are out of their mind. You may even try to expand or free your own mind.<p>But what <i>is</i> a mind? Defining the concept is a surprisingly slippery task. The mind is the seat …

Consciousness

How brand new science will manage the fourth industrial revolution

It's about artificial intelligence, data, and things like quantum computing and nanotechnology. Australian National University's 3A Institute is …

Artificial Intelligence

The best time of day to get things done, according to data

If it’s true that we live in a workaholic culture, a new set of data would suggest that Mondays—the most consistently derided of days— are when we’re secretly happiest.<p>We reach our peak buzz of productivity on Monday mornings at 11 am, to be exact, and get the most done in October, compared to …

Software

Americans Own Less Stuff, and That’s Reason to Be Nervous

Some social problems are blatantly obvious in daily life, while others are longer-term, more corrosive and perhaps mostly invisible. Lately I’ve been worrying about a problem of the latter kind: the erosion of personal ownership and what that will mean for our loyalties to traditional American …

Ridesharing

'Wow, here we go': NASA spacecraft hurtles toward the sun

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. -- Embarking on a mission that scientists have been dreaming of since the Sputnik era, a NASA spacecraft hurtled Sunday toward …

The Techies Turning Kenya Into a Silicon Savannah

People hunched over greasy computer screens, crunching data, writing code: The scenes in Janek Stroisch’s photographic series <i>Co.Ke</i> are familiar to …

Silicon Valley

The world's most dangerous venomous animals are all in Australia

Some of the world's deadliest animals have venom that's thousands of times more toxic than cyanide and can kill a human in minutes. Brown snakes, funnel web spiders, and the blue-ringed octopuses are among the animals that you do not want to mess with. We spoke with Steve Trim at Venomtech who …

Zoology

The most effective memory methods are difficult—and that’s why they work

• Doing things in real life, or in a simulation as close to the real thing as possible.<br>• Flashcards done right.<br>• Building your own picture and story of the ideas.

The Brain

When Twitter Engineers Speak Out, @Jack Listens

In Silicon Valley, engineers are king. Tech companies succeed or fail based on the talent of their developers, which gives those workers the leverage …

Social Media