In Brief

Google artificial intelligence creates its own AI ‘child’

Machine-made programme is more accurate than human-made systems

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Google’s AutoML artificial intelligence (AI) system has created its own “fully-functional AI child” that’s capable of outperforming its human-made equivalents, reports Alphr

The computer-made system, known as NASNet, is designed to identify objects, such as people and vehicles, in photographs and videos, the search engine giant says.

Studies show that NASNet is able to identify objects in an image with 82.7% accuracy. Google says this is an improvement of 1.2% over AI programmes created by humans. 

The web giant has made the system “open source”, which means developers from outside the company can either expand upon the programme or develop their own version.

Researchers at Google say they hope AI developers will be able to build on these models to address “multitudes of computer vision problems we have not yet imagined.”

While the AI-made programme appears to be harmless in its current guise, Alphr says significant advances in its technology could have “dangerous implications.”

The website says AI systems could, for instance, develop their own “biases” and spread them onto other machines. 

But the Daily Express says tech giants Facebook and Apple have joined the Partnership on AI to Benefit People and Society, a group that aims to implement strategies that “only allow AI to be developed if it will benefit humanity.”

The newspaper reports that Google’s engineering chief, Ray Kurzweil, also believes AI could cause problems for mankind in the future. 

He says humanity will experience “difficult episodes” before AI can be used to benefit civilisation.

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