Mind-reading AI

PLUS: Cop pulls over driverless Waymo

Welcome, AI enthusiasts.

Mind-reading was once thought to be a fairytale, but thanks to the latest advancements in AI, it's now inching closer to reality.

A new groundbreaking study just showed how AI can recreate what someone is looking at, with uncanny accuracy. Let's get into it…

In today’s AI rundown:

  • AI recreates images from brain activity

  • Cop pulls over driverless Waymo robotaxi

  • Stretch creativity with AI image expansion

  • Open-TeleVision brings robot control to reality

  • 5 new AI tools & 4 new AI jobs

  • More AI & tech news

Read time: 4 minutes

LATEST DEVELOPMENTS

MINDREADING AI

Image source: NewScientist

The Rundown: Researchers at Radboud University just developed an AI system capable of reconstructing remarkably accurate images of what someone is looking at based on their brain activity recordings.

The details:

  • The team used both fMRI scans of humans and direct electrode recordings from a macaque monkey to capture brain activity while viewing images.

  • An improved AI system learned which parts of the brain to focus on, significantly enhancing reconstruction accuracy.

  • In the image above, the top row is what the monkey saw, and the bottom row is the images the AI system reconstructed based on brain activity.

  • Lead researcher Umut Güçlü claims these are "the closest, most accurate reconstructions" to date.

Why it matters: While the study has some limitations (like using images already in the dataset), this research is still mind-blowing. From helping stroke victims communicate to recreating dreams, we’re likely seeing the early innings of a tech that will have major applications in society as it continues to improve.

TOGETHER WITH NORTHERN DATA

The Rundown: Northern Data Group's AI Accelerator program provides the resources startups need to thrive in the AI landscape, helping you benefit from the best tech and expertise in the market.

The program provides:

  • Complimentary access to powerful NVIDIA H100 Tensor Core GPUs

  • Eco-friendly computing with 100% clean energy

  • Expert guidance through mentoring and workshops from industry leaders

Click here to apply now or explore the AI Accelerator program further.

WAYMO

Image source: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

The Rundown: A viral video captured the bodycam footage of a Phoenix police officer pulling over a Waymo robotaxi for driving on the wrong side of the road, only to find an empty driver's seat and a very confused cop.

The details:

  • The video shared on X showed the driverless Waymo robotaxi being pulled over by a policeman after driving into opposing lanes of traffic.

  • The robotaxi rolled down its window as police approached, despite having no driver, and instead connected the officer to a Waymo support rep.

  • Waymo confirmed the incident, citing "inconsistent construction signage" as the cause for the car's behavior.

  • The event occurred just weeks after Waymo recalled 672 vehicles due to their inability to avoid pole-like objects.

Why it matters: While a cop trying to ticket a computer is comedy gold, it exposes serious gaps in current traffic laws. As Waymo and Tesla race to perfect self-driving tech, these real-world hiccups highlight the challenges ahead. Who do you fine when there's no driver?

AI TRAINING

The Rundown: Freepik has a powerful new feature called ‘Expand‘ that allows you to expand your images beyond their original boundaries, filling in details with AI.

Step-by-step:

  1. Head over to the Freepik Pikaso website and look for the “Expand” feature.

  2. Upload your image by clicking "Upload" or using drag-and-drop.

  3. Choose your desired aspect ratio from the options on the left sidebar and add a prompt describing what you want in the expanded areas.

  4. Click "Expand", browse the AI-generated results, and select your favorite 🎉

AI RESEARCH

Image source: Xuxin Cheng on X

The Rundown: Researchers at UC San Diego and MIT just introduced Open-TeleVision, an open-source teleoperation system that allows users to control robots from thousands of miles away, similar to the movie 'Avatar'.

The details:

  • Open-TeleVision is accessible from any device with a web browser, including VR headsets — allowing for robot teleoperation from anywhere.

  • The system provides real-time stereo video streaming for depth perception, enabling fine manipulation of challenging objects.

  • An active neck with inverse kinematics allows intuitive control of the robot's head movements, mirroring the operator's actions.

  • The system is fully open-sourced, allowing other researchers to access the source code.

Why it matters: Tech developments like this bridge the gap between current AI limitations and fully autonomous humanoid robots, enabling more immediate practical applications while paving the way for the future where they become fully independent.

NEW TOOLS & JOBS

  • 💪 Humanity Health - Track your health and optimize for longevity

  • 💬 Prompteasy - Fine-tune GPT by chatting with it

  • 🎥 Digen - Generate AI videos with real motion

  • 🔉 Video to Sound Effects - Upload videos and get instant sound effects

  • ⚡ Skyvern - Open source AI Agent to automate browser-based workflows

  • 📝 C3 AI - Director of Strategic Contracting

  • 💻 Palantir - Software Engineer, Internship

  • 📈 Cresta - RVP of Sales

  • 🤖 Waymo - ML Compiler Engineer, Compute

QUICK HITS

OpenAI co-founder Andrej Karpathy spoke at UC Berkeley’s AI hackathon, predicting that rather than a single AI, there will be multiple AIs populating a digital space, collaborating on tasks and having their own Slack threads.

WhatsApp beta revealed an upcoming 'Imagine' AI avatar generator feature, which will allow users to create personalized avatars of themselves in various settings.

An international research team introduced EMOKINE software, an open-sourced AI tool that can decode emotional expression through motion capture and whole-body movements.

Noland Arbaugh, Neuralink's first human patient, hinted at the potential to control the Tesla Optimus humanoid robot within the next year using the brain implant.

Mantee Robotics showcased a new video of its humanoid robot, Menteebot, navigating new environments by following humans, demonstrating potential for various real-world applications.

Midjourney released its ‘Year One‘ book, celebrating one year of Midjourney Magazine and showcasing inspiring prompts, milestones, and profiles of popular community members.

THAT’S A WRAP

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