Diane Greene was the CEO of Google's cloud business, and it was she who tried to convince Googlers to back her bid to sell AI services to the Pentagon's drone program, as a warmup for bidding on JEDI, the $10B Pentagon infrastructure project.
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When Google's engineering staff staged an uprising over the company's "Project Maven" to supply AI tools for the Pentagon's secretive drone-based killing program, many observed that the project was just a prelude to bidding on JEDI, the Pentagon's Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure cloud, a $10B project to supply cloud services to the entire US military.
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Spoilsports within the Atheist Foundation of Australia have asked its citizens to stop listing their religion as "Jedi" on census forms because it is making the country seem more religious than it actually is.
"Unfortunately I think the Jedi joke is a bit old," the group's president Kylie Sturgess tells Newsbeat. "I've put it down myself in the past, and now we're calling on people to take the census a bit more seriously."
According to Wikipedia, "The 2006 census recorded 58,053 Jedi [in Australia] In the 2011 census, the numbers listing their faith as Jedi had picked up from the 2006 census to 65,000."
In neighboring New Zealand more people identify as Jedi (1.5%) than Buddhist (1.2%) or Hindu (also 1.2%). Read the rest
In celebration of Star Wars Celebration, Lucasfilm released this thrilling teaser trailer for Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, in theaters December 16.
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The knighthood of Star Wars is neither Galactic nor an Order.
If you happen to be in Singapore and want to learn how to wield a lightsaber like a Jedi master, check out this fun video by The Saber Authority. Read the rest
The "flow state" is how neuroscience researchers describe that zone you can get into when you're doing something that you've become highly skilled at. It's a zen-like place in your brain — that state where you lose track of time doing something that you enjoy doing for its own sake, and where the job of doing the task seems to become something you don't even have to think about. You just do it, and you do it right.
The catch, of course, is that usually it takes a lot of heavy work to get to the point where the flow can take over. This is where Malcolm Gladwell's 10,000 hours of practice comes into play. But, over the years, scientists have learned that there are some ways around that 10,000-hour rule. Some people just seem to pick up on the flow easier than others, for instance.
If your brain isn't just naturally inclined toward the flow, though, there is the option of zapping it into line. This is called transcranial direct current stimulation—basically running a very small electric current through specific parts of the brain. In some studies, and for some tasks, it's been shown to induce a feeling very much like a flow state, and possibly make it easier for people to get to a high level of skill faster. Last spring, Pesco wrote about some of the research that's being conducted on this intriguing but still-not-proven technique. Recently, New Scientist reporter Sally Adee tried it out, and saw a significant short-term improvement in her ability to spot and hit targets in a video shooter game. Read the rest