#1 | Musk reveals plans to link the brain with AI

Billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk has revealed more details about the work that NeuraLink, the startup he co-founded in 2017, does on cognitive enhancement technologies. He says that the company is developing threads – thinner than a human hair – which contain more than 3,000 electrodes and can monitor the activity of 1,000 neurons. The idea is to implant these threads into a person’s brain tissue and stimulate it, enabling patients to even control the computer with their thoughts. Musk says that this technology could potentially help patients to regain mobility or reverse vision, and lead to a future of “superhuman cognition” in which AI merges with human intellect. And although NeuraLink has applied to US regulators to commence human trials, many challenges have to be solved before the company can offer a commercial service. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2L3SlRa https://politi.co/2RYuinw


#2 | Amazon threatens the digital ad duopoly of Google and Facebook

Amazon knows the shopping habits of its customers and uses that data to power an efficient ad platform used by thousands of advertisers. In fact, the e-commerce giant has grown into the third-largest digital ad platform that claims 8.8 percent of US online ad spend in 2019. This made the company a growing contender to Google and Facebook that dominate the digital ad market. In the first quarter of this year, Amazon’s advertising sales reached more than $2.7 billion and with the merger of various services under the name “Amazon Advertising”, Jeff Bezos-led behemoth is poised on further extending its reach into the ads market. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2L6hw5B

#3 | Netflix reports drop in US subscribers 

Netflix has added 2.7 million new customers worldwide in the April-June period, well below analysts’ estimates of about five million. In the US, for instance, the company lost 130,000 net subscribers. The company has seen its shares plunge 10 per cent following this announcement. Price increases are one of the key reasons behind the slowdown, although Netflix expects to return to more typical growth in the next quarter. Read more here: https://bbc.in/2GguTMA http://bit.ly/2KtS4qq

#4 | Machine learning used to decipher lost languages

Jiaming Luo and Regina Barzilay from MIT and Yuan Cao from Google’s AI lab in Mountain View, California, have developed a machine-learning system capable of deciphering lost languages. The first test of the new algorithm was successful as it deciphered Linear B, a language that appeared on the island of Crete around 1400 BCE. The key to this endeavor is having large data sets of text of related languages that enable the machine to analyze parameter spaces of different words. But deciphering the languages about which researchers have no knowledge or data sets about remains an insurmountable challenge. Read more here: http://bit.ly/2JVC9ym


#5 | Facebook’s poker-playing AI beats human pros

Facebook’s AI lab and Carnegie Mellon University have developed an AI-powered bot that bested some of the world’s top Texas Hold ‘em poker players. The system named Pluribus has won an average of $1,000 per hour while playing over 12 days and 10,000 hands. It was good at bluffing its opponents and was praised for “relentless consistency” and squeezing profits out of thin hands. Machine learning has already beaten human opponents in games like chess and Go, and computer games like Starcraft II and Dota. Read more here: https://bbc.in/2XOB0m9 http://bit.ly/2M1STH8

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