Rise of the machines: Google AI experiment leads to robots that can learn WITHOUT human input. Machines that can think for themselves and perhaps turn on their creators as a result have long been a fascination of science fiction. And creating robots that can learn without any input from humans is moving ever closer, thanks to the latest developments in artificial intelligence.
One such project seeks to pit the wits of two AI algorithms against each other, with results that could one day lead to the emergence of such intelligent machines. Researchers at the Google Brain AI lab have developed a system known as a Generative Adversarial Network (GAN). Conventional AI uses input to 'teach' an algorithm about a particular subject by feeding it massive amounts of information.
This knowledge can then be employed for a specific task facial recognition being just one example. GANs seek to generate new content from this learned information, creating digital content like pictures and video based on their understanding of similar real life images and footage.
Google's approach is to set two algorithms against each other, to further refine these 'imaginings'. One AI bot creates new content based upon what it has been taught about the real world, while a second critiques these creations - pointing out imperfections and inaccuracies. This allows the system to create more realistic images, sounds and other original creations that are far more realistic than if the first bot was working alone. And the process could one day allow robots to learn new information without any input from people - a process called 'unsupervised learning' that would represent a giant leap forward in AI technology.