Google X Stories October 10, 2016

Google has been using AI and neural networks to help robotic arms to learn for quite some time now. Back in March the company published a report detailing how its software-enabled robotic arms were being taught to learn how to pick up objects by themselves, and the Mountain View company further detailed this research just last week in a blog post showing off a few more different approaches for general-purpose skill learning — like opening doors.

It’s impressive tech, but as with many of Google’s other impressive tech experiments, it seems like this one is never going to actually become a source of revenue for the company — at least not directly. The Google robotics group wanted to sell the arms to manufacturers, but that plan ultimately got turned down by Alphabet executives because they failed the “toothbrush test” (via Bloomberg)…

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Google X Stories September 28, 2016

While Google is rumored to be prepping up to two new in-house made Android Wear smartwatches — which may or may not be featured in next week’s event — a spinoff of Alphabet‘s former Google X named Verily is still actively working on its health-tracking watch (via MIT Technology Review), which is slowly advancing towards being a finished product…

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Google X Stories September 8, 2016

Project Wing, a unit of Alphabet, the holding company formerly known as Google, announced today that it will begin delivering Chipotle via Drones to Virginia Tech college students in Blacksburg. You aren’t dreaming. This is real.

My first reaction was checking the calendar (not April 1st) and then lamenting that I grew up in the wrong era. But immediately after that I began wondering if even Google is going to be able to scale this to meet demand…

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Google X Stories July 8, 2016

Google’s X division hires top SFMTA executive to help shape the future of automation

X, Google’s special division previously known as “Google X“, is on to big things. It’s not called a “moonshot factory” without reason; from crazy stuff like Project Wing to giant internet-delivering hot-air balloons and self-driving cars, you can tell that there’s some not-so-hidden ambition there.

And speaking of autonomous vehicles, it looks like the Mountain View firm is working hard to make sure that talent is always being looked after…

Google X Stories June 22, 2016

Any SF fan will be familiar with Asimov’s famous Three Laws of Robotics, designed to ensure that robots were safe to be around. Scientists at Google, OpenAI, Stanford and Berkeley have just published a paper proposing the real-life equivalent for AI systems.

In a blog post summarising the proposal, Google Research’s Chris Olah says that while the team believes that AI will greatly benefit humanity, the risks do also need to be considered …

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Google X Stories May 24, 2016

Google is finally about to get the go ahead from the Indian government to run a pilot of Project Loon in India according to a report from the Economic Times. According to the sites source, an anonymous “top government official”, the nation is keen to test as many alternative methods of providing internet connectivity as possible. One of which is Google’s high-altitude balloons.

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