Facebook shuts down chatbot experiment

Facebook has shut down a controversial chatbot experiment that saw two AIs develop their own language to communicate.

The social media firm was experimenting with teaching two chatbots, Alice and Bob, how to negotiate with one another, the Daily Mail reports.

However, researchers at the Facebook AI Research Lab (FAIR) found that they had deviated from script and were inventing new phrases without any human input.

The bots were attempting to imitate human speech when they developed their own machine language spontaneously – at which point Facebook decided to shut them down.

“Our interest was having bots who could talk to people,” Mike Lewis of Facebook’s FAIR programme told Fast Co Design. (read more)

Kiwi IT Specialist Makes a Difference in Africa

Every year, around 1,000 volunteers from up to 40 nations (including New Zealand) serve with Mercy Ships. While you can imagine there would be plenty of demand for professionals like surgeons, cooks, mariners and teachers, digitisation has seen IT positions become far more sought after.

Jonathan Clark, a trained information services specialist is a perfect example. In August 2016, Jonathan joined his wife Steph (a nurse) for three months aboard the Africa Mercy, in Benin, West Africa.

Read more here.

Jonathon Clark spent three months as an IT professional supporting medical services for developing nations.

Digital Tech / Digital Media / Computer Science