Fun and Games

Watch Google’s DeepMind AI Computer Dominate Old Atari Games

(Screengrab: Google's Atari Breakout).

Google’s artificial intelligence firm, DeepMind Technologies, has been making headlines with a computer that can program itself, a quest for “AI scientists” and software that can learn to play classic Atari games better than a human expert.

Today, a video showing their famed software learning to play Breakout and mastering nine other Atari games including Enduro, Boxing and Demon Attack has resurfaced online. Although it was uploaded to YouTube last April, it seems it’s finally receiving the attention it deserves.   Read More

YouTube Killed the Video Star

Minecraft Is More Popular on YouTube than Frozen, Drake and Beyonce

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One bleak doomstay projection about the Internet Age is a future world where instead of living our own lives, we simply watch other people living theirs. Finally, it looks like we’re approaching that dystopia.

In 2014, the most searched thing on YouTube—second only to the very vague “movies”— was “Minecraft,” the sand-box style game Microsoft bought up this year for $2.5 billion. This ranks videos of people playing and narrating their experience of playing a video game higher than searches for Drake, Beyonce, Eminem and Frozen, according to a report from Google about games in online video. Read More

Happy New Year

Breaking Betabeat News of 2014: What You May Have Missed in the Tech Blogosphere

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That’s it, folks. Dig out the noisemakers, throw on some sequins and pop the champagne because 2014 is coming to an end.

But before the ball drops, there are a few things one must do to properly prepare for the new year—create a list of resolutions (i.e. “go to the gym”), watch the latest United States of Pop video and catch up on the tech news of the passing year, to name a few. With the latter in mind, we’ve created a guide to Betabeat’s biggest breaking news of 2014.

Yes, Facebook manipulated your emotions, curved TVs drove us wild and a “potato salad guy” achieved Internet celebrity status. We’re sure Twitter told you all this, so rather than summing up what made the tech blogosphere rounds this year, we’re offering a collection of the biggest and most interesting stories brought to you by yours truly, Betabeat. Read More

the robots are coming

Facebook’s Upcoming Artificial Intelligence Will ‘Mediate’ Your Online Activity

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The last time you posted a Facebook status, you were probably thinking, “Wow, I really wish I had an intelligent robot to make sure this post won’t come back around to haunt me.” No? Too bad.

Facebook is building an artificial intelligence program that will serve as a social media assistant—kind of like Clippy, the obnoxious Microsoft Read More

Code or Be Coded

If You’re an Android Coder in NYC, Expect a Huge Salary

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Android is eating the planet as more people worldwide take up Android as either their first or latest smartphone. Problem is, those people need apps, and apps need coders to make them, and a number of hiring managers, founders and consultants here in NYC are coming up dry when looking for capable Android talent.

“Hiring for Android is almost impossible,” Ben Schippers, cofounder of dev-shop HappyFunCorp, told Betabeat. “You’re seeing a spike in Android use, and now we’re competing with Samsung, Facebook, Google and the Fortune 500 for talent.” Read More

the robots are coming

Artificially Intelligent Robot Scientists Could Be Next Project for Google’s AI Firm

Are AI scientists in our future? (Pixabay/geralt)

In late October, we wrote about the Neural Turing Machine, a Google computer so smart it can program itself. In the time since, it’s become clear that this is only the beginning and we should expect a lot more from DeepMind Technologies, the little-known startup acquired by Google who developed the human-like computer and sports the mission “Solve intelligence.”

In discussing DeepMind Technologies’s delve into the future of computers with MIT, founder Demis Hassabis detailed the company’s research and mentioned that he wants to create “AI scientists.” Read More

For the Love of God Think of the Interns

The Master List Of Tech Internship Salaries Revealed

(Data via Dan Zhang, Viz by Jack Smith IV)

Last week, we broke the news of a small list of what tech companies like Google, Facebook and Quora have been paying their interns. Turns out, that was just the tip of the iceberg.

Betabeat has obtained a dataset that dwarfs that list, as well as any other collection of internship offers we could dig up. The list comes from submissions (see “Methodology” below) from kids who have received offers at companies like Uber, Palantir, LinkedIn, etc. We’ve scrubbed the list clean and built an interactive for your masochistic pleasure. Read More

For the Love of God Think of the Interns

Here’s What Tech Companies Pay Their Interns; Prepare to Cry

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When most kids decide on their summer internship, they have to ask themselves tough questions: Can I afford to take an unpaid internship? And which potential offer is most likely going to lead to a job down the road?

Young coders, however, are more likely to wonder if $20,000 for the summer is really that much better than $19,000.

When Jessica Shu, a 19-year-old wunderkind at Cornell, was weighing her options for the summer, she wanted to be damn sure of her options. After digging around Reddit, asking colleagues and messaging around, she compiled a list of what Silicon Valley’s hottest companies are offering their interns — or at least were last summer — and posted it to Hackathon Hackers, a student coder community. Read More