Facebook M — Assisted Intelligence With a Small Dose of Human →

March 4, 2016 · 12:58

Arik Sosman:

Facebook has recently launched a limited beta of its ground-breaking AI called M. M’s capabilities far exceed those of any competing AI. Where some AIs would be hard-pressed to tell you the weather conditions for more than one location (god forbid you go on a trip), M will tell you the weather forecast for every point on your route at the time you’re expected to get there, and also provide you with convenient gas station suggestions, account for traffic in its estimations, and provide you with options for food and entertainment at your destination.

As many people have pointed out, there have been press releases stating that M is human-aided. However, the point of this article is not to figure out whether or not there are humans behind it, but to indisputably prove it.

The call at the end is curious — why the horrendously bad quality? I am not experienced with US telephone services, thus I cannot judge, but I haven’t heard anything as bad in Europe in a long time.

Geohotz Built a Self-Driving Car in His Garage →

December 17, 2015 · 09:51

Ashlee Vance:

With Hotz still holding the wheel, the Acura’s lidar paints a pixelated image on the dash screen of everything around us, including the freeway walls and other cars. A blue line charts the path the car is taking, and a green line shows the path the self-driving software recommends. The two match up pretty well, which means the technology is working. After a couple miles, Hotz lets go of the wheel and pulls the trigger on the joystick, kicking the car into self-driving mode. He does this as we head into an S curve at 65 miles per hour. I say a silent prayer. Hotz shouts, “You got this, car! You got this!”

The car does, more or less, have it. It stays true around the first bend. Near the end of the second, the Acura suddenly veers near an SUV to the right; I think of my soon-to-be-fatherless children; the car corrects itself. Amazed, I ask Hotz what it felt like the first time he got the car to work.

“Dude,” he says, “the first time it worked was this morning.”

George Hotz. The misfit. The rebel.