Google Not Scoffing at AI, Files Patent Applications

by Ostatic Staff - Jul. 09, 2015

Linus Torvalds was interviewed by Slashdot last week and his comments on artificial intelligence has been making the rounds since. He basically said AI would not lead to human-like robots because the neural network would remain limited. Despite that, Google has "applied for at least six patents on fundamental neural network and AI." In other news, Kali Linux 2.0 is expected at DEFCON 23 and the Free Software Foundation has approved another Linux OS for its "fully free" list. Docker 'Tinkerer Extraordinaire' said Open Source is hostile to women and Megatotoro posted Pisi Linux is still alive and kicking.

Linus Torvalds has been in the news lately for his thoughts on artificial intelligence in a Slashdot interview last week. It's a long interview but several quotes captured headlines around the web. The most quoted seems to be something to the effect of no reason to be scared of AI because the technology will always be limited to small and specific applications. The idea of a human-like fully-independent robot is science fiction. Nevertheless, news has come out that Google has applied for patents for at least six "fundamental ideas in neural network use," so said Mike James at I Programmer. The six patents are for things that have become more or less standard in the industry and will start making things very difficult for researchers and academics - not to mention other companies and Open Source projects. So, it seems Google doesn't think AI is quite the joke that Torvalds does.

Gearhead Mark Gibbs posted today that new small and weird form-factor Endless PC is perfect for developing nations due to its price and capabilities. It comes with a Celeron dual-core processor at 1.7 GHz, two gigabytes of RAM, a RJ-45 port, USB, and HDMI and VGA outputs for $169. The more expensive version at $229 has a larger hard drive, WiFi, and Bluetooth. Gibbs said, "What sets the Endless apart from other low cost machines is Endless OS, a highly customized version of Ubuntu Linux with Gnome (and lots of other interesting technology such as Xapian and OStree) that not only handles TVs as output devices (it scales and formats video output for readability), but also includes a huge library of applications and educational content."

The FSF today announced the approval of a new entry onto its list of recommended operating systems. The FSF only recommends distributions that consist of only Open Source technology, or fully free software, no binary blobs allowed. ProteanOS is an embedded Linux developed independently and not based on any other distro. The list is rarely updated and several of the distros have fallen into dormant or inactive status. Trisquel GNU/Linux, gNewSense, Parabola GNU/Linux-libre, and Musix GNU+Linux seem to still be active.

In other news:

* Pisi Linux...Still Alive!

* Open source developers hostile to women, claims Docker DevOps guy

* Kali Linux 2.0 to launch at DEFCON 23

* FFmpeg Is Returning To Debian

* SuperX 3.0 Grace review, ChaletOS 14.04.2 review