In the popular imagination, robots have been portrayed alternatively as friendly companions or existential threat. But while robots are becoming commonplace in many industries, they are neither C-3PO nor the Terminator. Cambridge researchers are studying the interaction between robots and humans – and teaching them how to do the very difficult things that we find easy.
Our lives are already enhanced by AI – or at least an AI in its infancy – with technologies using algorithms that help them to learn from our behaviour. As AI grows up and starts to think, not just to learn, we ask how human-like do we want their intelligence to be and what impact will machines have on our jobs?
Kate Gross was just 36 years old when she died of cancer. Researchers at Cambridge – including her husband – are trying to ensure that others receive their diagnoses early enough to stop their cancer.
Today, feathers are an extravagant accessory in fashion; 500 years ago, however, they were used to constitute culture, artistry, good health and even courage in battle. This unlikely material is now part of a project that promises to tell us more not only about what happened in the past, but also about how it felt to be there.
When it comes to starting social enterprises, Paul Tracey and Neil Stott would love "to see a thousand flowers bloom". But doing good for society isn’t as straightforward as it sounds and even the best ideas can fail. Their research aims to understand the elements that are needed to help social ventures thrive.
One man’s quest to create a library of everything, 500 years before Google Books was conceived, foreshadowed the challenges of ‘big data’ and our reliance on search algorithms to make sense of it all.