Friday October 27, 2017

Meet the High Schooler Shaking Up Artificial Intelligence

Two years ago, Elon Musk and others established a nonprofit AI lab called OpenAI. OpenAI has published dozens of research papers and just posted one Thursday - the lead author is still in high school. According to this Wired article, Kevin Frans is a senior in high school that trained his first neural net two years ago. He started working for OpenAI after taking on one of the lab's list of problems in need of new ideas. The rest is history so they say because he is the only person at OpenAI that doesn't have any kind of degree. With kids like this the future is looking really good.

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Frans’s new paper, with Schulman and three others affiliated with the University of California Berkeley, reports new progress on this problem. "If it could get solved it could be a really big deal for robotics but also other elements of AI," Frans says. He developed an algorithm that helped virtual legged robots learn which limb movements could be applied to multiple tasks, such as walking and crawling. In tests, it helped virtual robots with two and four legs adapt to new tasks, including navigating mazes, more quickly.