By BeauHD from Slashdot's that's-a-lot-of-zeros department
An anonymous reader writes: [Hogan's attorneys told jurors this is the core of the case:] "Gawker took a secretly recorded sex tape and put it on the Internet." And now they are paying for it, dearly. Also notable is that there doesn't seem to be anyone interested in defending them, as even the Twitter community (if it can truly be called that) has come out strongly in favor of the ruling against Gawker. Maybe they should have at least made more friends? They did make $6.5 million in net income in 2014 and their Wikipedia article states that they were last sold in 2009 for $300 million, so while they may not be put out of business, it seems likely they will at least be [changing] hands, and soon, with the jury ruling $55 million for economic injuries and $60 million for emotional distress. I think that's jury-speak for "body slam."
According to Ars Technica, Gawker Media was one of the first successful, large, digital-only news companies. "The stunning sum, which may have punitive damages added to it, is a life-threatening event for the New York-based network of news and gossip sites."Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's the-demise-of-humans department
schwit1 writes: In reaction to the recent Go victory by a computer program over a human, the government of South Korea has quickly accelerated its plans to back research into the field of artificial intelligence with a commitment of $863 million and the establishment of [a] public/private institute. According to Nature.com, "It is not immediately clear whether the cash represents new funding, or had been previously allocated to AI efforts. But it does include the founding of a high-profile, public-private research center with participation from several Korean conglomerates, including Samsung, LG Electronics and Hyundai Motor, as well as the technology firm Naver, based near Seoul. The timing of the announcement indicates the impact [AlphaGo has on South Korea], which two days earlier wrapped up a 4-1 victory over grandmaster Lee Sedol in an exhibition match in Seoul. The feat was hailed as a milestone for AI research. But it also shocked the Korean public, stoking widespread concern over the capabilities of AI, as well as a spate of newspaper headlines worrying that South Korea was falling behind in a crucial growth industry. South Korean President Park Geun-hye has also announced the formation of a council that will provide recommendations to overhaul the nation's research and development process to enhance productivity. In her [March 17] speech, she emphasized that "artificial intelligence can be a blessing for human society" and called it "the fourth industrial revolution." She added, "Above all, Korean society is ironically lucky, that thanks to the 'AlphaGo shock,' we have learned the importance of AI before it is too late."' Not surprisingly, some academics are complaining that the money is going to [the] industry rather than the universities. Will this crony capitalistic approach produce any real development, or will it instead end up [being] a pork-laden jobs program for South Korean politicians?Read Replies (0)
By BeauHD from Slashdot's forgetting-to-learn department
An anonymous reader writes from an article on MedicalXpress: They say that once you've learned to ride a bicycle, you never forget how to do it. But new research suggests that while learning, the brain is actively trying to forget. "This is the first time that a pathway in the brain has been linked to forgetting, to actively erasing memories," says Cornelius Gross, who led the work at EMBL. At the simplest level, learning involves making associations, and remembering them. Working with mice, Gross and colleagues studied the hippocampus, a region of the brain that's long been know to help form memories. Information enters this part of the brain through three different routes. As memories are cemented, connections between neurons along the 'main' router become stronger. When they blocked this main route, the scientists found that the mice were no longer capable of learning a Pavlovian response -- associating a sound to a consequence, and anticipating that consequence. But if the mice had learned that association before the scientists stopped information flow in that main route, they could still retrieve that memory. This confirmed that this route is involved in forming memories, but isn't essential for recalling those memories. The latter probably involves the second route into the hippocampus, the scientists surmise. But blocking that main route had an unexpected consequence: the connections along it were weakened, meaning the memory was being erased.Read Replies (0)