Google: a virtual “brain” to detect... cats

In its mysterious “X Lab” facility, Google is working on a simulation of the human brain. By feeding millions of YouTube thumbnails to the system, the advanced algorithms used in the experiment have been able to identify and detect the “cat” concept all by themselves.

Mountain Views’ “brain simulator” is equipped with 1,000 computers and 16,000 computational units (ie processors) with 1 billion connections overall: the system is used to run advanced machine learning algorithms developed by Google researchers to search and analyze huge amounts of data.

Fed with 10 million images corresponding to as many YouTube videos thumbnails, the algorithms were able to recognize a cat’s face – clearly one of the most pervasive units of digital information clogging the Internet (before, between and likely after YouTube existence) during the last two decades.

“We never told it during the training, ‘This is a cat’’ It basically invented the concept of a cat” said Jeff Dean, one of the project leaders. Google is pretty pleased by the experiment’s results too, it seems, so much that the company decided to relocate the project within its main (and not-so-secret as X Lab) laboratory working on on-line search.

The hope is that machine learning algorithms would become advanced enough to be useful to analyze huge amounts of data – the same type of information overload users go though everyday while searching on-line.

Source: Mashable

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From Frank Shaw's (communications guy at MS) Twitter account yesterday: "Google: cat-a-loguing cat images. MSR: developing state-of-the-art speech recognition technology. For over a decade. http://bit.ly/LnRymi "

I gotta say, I find speech recognition a *much* more useful application of neural networks than Google's cat recognition...

Won't be long before you can just look at someone with your Google Glasses and through instant face recognition scanning through a database of billions of indexed faces, all their information, where they live, how much money they make, etc. appears right before your eyes.

Enron said,
Won't be long before you can just look at someone with your Google Glasses and through instant face recognition scanning through a database of billions of indexed faces, all their information, where they live, how much money they make, etc. appears right before your eyes.
That's called Facebook. People divulge that information willingly.

Drewidian said,
Cats are evil. It will be good to have a system that can automatically identify and eliminate them.

Nah... Cat is god.... dogs are evil...

Drewidian said,
Cats are evil. It will be good to have a system that can automatically identify and eliminate them.

cats are good, google is evil

It seems that Google are going into direct competition with IBM's Watson technology. Now let's just sit back and wait to see which one creates the first Skynet.

This is the beginning of the end. The computer recognised a cat, next it'll recognise it's smarter than a human, once it knows of our existence.

jbrooksuk said,
This is the beginning of the end. The computer recognised a cat, next it'll recognise it's smarter than a human, once it knows of our existence.

and people think those things outside the Android offices are just "statues"... nah. 1st gen terminators.

jbrooksuk said,
This is the beginning of the end. The computer recognised a cat, next it'll recognise it's smarter than a human, once it knows of our existence.

the rise and fall of google skynet: the updates never came...

jbrooksuk said,
This is the beginning of the end. The computer recognised a cat, next it'll recognise it's smarter than a human, once it knows of our existence.

Its totally got me beat, I get confused when I see a cat I'm never sure if it is one or not