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From the College of Natural Sciences
Could a Digital Version of this Part of the Brain Be Coming Soon?

Could a Digital Version of this Part of the Brain Be Coming Soon?

The cerebellum (red) directs many of the movements we make often, yet don’t have to think about. Photo credit: Database Center for Life Science. Used via Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 2.1 Japan license.

For decades, Michael Mauk, a neuroscientist at the University of Texas at Austin, has been developing a computer simulation of the part of our brains called the cerebellum that directs many of the movements we make often, yet don't have to think about, like walking or picking up a glass of water.

A Look at How A.I. is Helping the Human Race

A Look at How A.I. is Helping the Human Race

Artificial intelligence is quickly creeping into our lives, from smart phone apps that help us find the quickest path through rush hour traffic to voice assistants that serve up lasagna recipes on command. In their new book AIQ: How People and Machines Are Smarter Together, James Scott and Nick Polson lay out an optimistic vision for how AI can help us overcome our cognitive weaknesses and live happier, healthier lives. The book is already attracting attention from media outlets including the Wall Street Journal, The Times (UK) and PBS's SciTechNow.

Creating Truly Autonomous Systems is Goal of $7.5 Million Engineering Project

Creating Truly Autonomous Systems is Goal of $7.5 Million Engineering Project

An MQ-9 Reaper unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) prepares to land after a mission in Afghanistan. Photo credit: U.S. Air Force photo/Staff Sgt. Brian Ferguson.

Thanks to a Department of Defense grant, researchers are planning for a future when unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) have the ability to fly themselves in emergency situations.

Fifty Years after Sci-Fi’s “2001,” Rethinking Our Relationship with AI

Fifty Years after Sci-Fi’s “2001,” Rethinking Our Relationship with AI

Tuesday marks the 50th anniversary of "2001: A Space Odyssey." The groundbreaking science-fiction film earned an Academy Award for Best Visual Effects and appears on several of the American Film Institute's Top 100 lists. But what many remember best about the movie is HAL 9000, the murderous artificial intelligence aboard the spaceship that has been ranked cinema's 13th best villain.

Discovery of New Planet Reveals Distant Solar System to Rival Our Own

Discovery of New Planet Reveals Distant Solar System to Rival Our Own

With the discovery of an eighth planet, the Kepler-90 system is the first to tie with our solar system in number of planets. (Click to expand) Credit: NASA/Ames Research Center/Wendy Stenzel.

The discovery of an eighth planet circling the distant star Kepler-90 by University of Texas at Austin astronomer Andrew Vanderburg and Google's Christopher Shallue overturns our solar system's status as having the highest number of known planets. We're now in a tie.

Artificial Intelligence and Supercomputers to Help Alleviate Urban Traffic Problems

Artificial Intelligence and Supercomputers to Help Alleviate Urban Traffic Problems

A new tool uses artificial intelligence to recognize objects from City of Austin raw traffic camera footage and characterize how those objects move and interact. Image by Texas Advanced Computing Center/Center for Transportation Research

Look above the traffic light at a busy intersection in your city and you will probably see a camera. These devices may have been installed to monitor traffic conditions and provide visuals in the case of a collision. But can they do more? Can they help planners optimize traffic flow or identify sites that are most likely to have accidents? And can they do so without requiring individuals to slog through hours of footage?

Keeps Us on Our Toes (Audio)

Keeps Us on Our Toes (Audio)

Worried that smart robots are taking over the world? You'll be relieved to know they still have a long way to go. That is unless you're an artificial intelligence researcher like Peter Stone. One big challenge facing robots that walk and run is that they fall over a lot.

Experts Forecast the Changes Artificial Intelligence Could Bring by 2030

Experts Forecast the Changes Artificial Intelligence Could Bring by 2030

A panel of academic and industrial thinkers has looked ahead to 2030 to forecast how advances in artificial intelligence (AI) might affect life in a typical North American city — in areas diverse as transportation, healthcare and education — and spur discussion of how to ensure the safe, fair and beneficial development of these rapidly emerging technologies.

A new study, titled “Artificial Intelligence and Life in 2030,” looks at the likely effects of AI technologies on urban life. Credit: iStock/Askold Romanov, Mlenny & Tricia Seibold
Q&A with Peter Stone: Where is Artificial Intelligence Headed?

Q&A with Peter Stone: Where is Artificial Intelligence Headed?

Peter Stone, a professor of computer science at The University of Texas at Austin, led a groundbreaking study on artificial intelligence (AI) being released today. The study, produced by a panel of 17 experts from around the world, looks at how specialized applications of AI might affect life in a typical North American city by the year 2030.

UT Austin Villa Wins at 2016 World RoboCup

UT Austin Villa Wins at 2016 World RoboCup

Five of the SPL team members at the 2016 RoboCup US Open, which the team won. From left to right, they are Katie Genter, Sanmit Narvekar, Josiah Hanna, Josh Kelle and Jake Menashe.

The UT Austin Villa robot soccer team, led by University of Texas at Austin computer science professor Peter Stone, returned from the 2016 RoboCup competition in Leipzig, Germany as the world champions in the 3D Simulation league and with an impressive second-place win in the Standard Platform League (SPL).