How to recognize an alien when you see one

What would convince you that aliens existed? The question came up recently at a conference on astrobiology, held at Stanford University in California. Several ideas were tossed around – unusual gases in a planet’s atmosphere, strange heat gradients on its surface. But none felt persuasive. Finally, one scientist offered the solution: a photograph. There was…

Here are 5 things that scare me about AI

AI is being increasingly used to make important decisions. Many AI experts (including Jeff Dean, head of AI at Google, and Andrew Ng, founder of Coursera and deeplearning.ai) say that warnings about sentient robots are overblown, but other harms are not getting enough attention. I agree. I am an AI researcher, and I’m worried about some of the societal…