I spoke to DeepMind's co-founder about his work to use artificial intelligence to crack many of the toughest problems in science, from the nature of life to nuclear fusion. As he told me: “AI is like a generalised Hubble telescope that helps us see further in many areas of science”
To help people through lockdown I was one of the hosts of a weekly podcast called Escape Pod. It was a virus-free zone dedicated to a fascination and love of science. A few of my favourite episodes featured music, Hilbert’s infinite hotel and unsung heroes. Hopefully returning for a second season soon.
I co-hosted the New Scientist weekly podcast with Penny Sarchet. “More than a week since England lifted its covid restrictions, infection numbers in the UK are very high. The team examines how the country has set up the perfect circumstances for the evolution of ‘escape variants’ - forms of the virus that may be able to evade our immune systems and vaccines.”
I have been part of a team organising an exciting new photography competition. I am also on the judging panel alongside naturalist and television presenter Chris Packham and award-winning photographer Sue Flood, as well as Helen Benians and Penny Sarchet from New Scientist.
“The essential guide to the algorithms that run your life. From shaping what we read and buy to diagnosing illness, algorithms play a key role in every aspect of our lives. Here’s what you need to know about the most important ones...”
“Come on Facebook, give us the evidence. Months after the company said it would hand over data to help determine if the social media site really can affect election results, we are still waiting. Now it looks as if the whole project could collapse...”
“I FEEL like a cross between an Olympic swimmer and a cyborg. On my head is a bathing-cap-like hat dotted with electrodes, and a cable dangles behind me. David Ibanez and Marta Castellano, from the neuroscience company Starlab, look at me from across a table at their headquarters in Barcelona...”
“Something is rotten at the heart of artificial intelligence. Machine learning algorithms that spot patterns in huge datasets, hold promise for everything from recommending if someone should be released on bail to estimating the likelihood of a driver having a car crash, and thus the cost of their insurance...”
“It's too soon to tell if robots help autistic children's social skills. A US study is the latest to suggest robots could help autistic children learn social skills. Unfortunately, it's far from proven...”
"What would you do if you were invisible? Hopefully not torment your ex. That is the situation facing Cecilia Kass (played by Elisabeth Moss) in a reimagining of the H. G. Wells novel The Invisible Man..."