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Artificial intelligence predicts patients’ race from their medical images

The miseducation of algorithms is a critical problem; when artificial intelligence mirrors unconscious thoughts, racism, and biases of the humans who generated these algorithms, it can lead to serious harm. Computer programs, for example, have wrongly flagged Black defendants as twice as likely to reoffend as someone who’s white. When an AI used cost...

Charting a safe course through a highly uncertain environment

An autonomous spacecraft exploring the far-flung regions of the universe descends through the atmosphere of a remote exoplanet. The vehicle, and the researchers who programmed it, don’t know much about this environment. With so much uncertainty, how can the spacecraft plot a trajectory that will keep it from being squashed by some randomly moving...

Can artificial intelligence overcome the challenges of the health care system?

Even as rapid improvements in artificial intelligence have led to speculation over significant changes in the health care landscape, the adoption of AI in health care has been minimal. A 2020 survey by Brookings, for example, found that less than 1 percent of job postings in health care required AI-related skills. The Abdul Latif Jameel Clinic for...

Three from MIT elected to the National Academy of Sciences for 2022

The National Academy of Sciences has elected 120 new members and 30 international associates, including three MIT professors — Angela Belcher, Pablo Jarillo-Herrero, and Ronitt Rubinfeld — in recognition of their achievements in original research. Angela Belcher is the James Mason Crafts Professor of Biological Engineering and Materials Science,...

Technique protects privacy when making online recommendations

Algorithms recommend products while we shop online or suggest songs we might like as we listen to music on streaming apps. These algorithms work by using personal information like our past purchases and browsing history to generate tailored recommendations. The sensitive nature of such data makes preserving privacy extremely important, but existing...

Q&A: Chris Rackauckas on the equations at the heart of practically everything

Some people pass the time with hobbies like crossword puzzles or Sudoku. When Chris Rackauckas has a spare moment, he often uses it to answer questions about numerical differential equations that people have posed online. Rackauckas — previously an MIT applied mathematics instructor, now an MIT Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory...

Unpacking black-box models

Modern machine-learning models, such as neural networks, are often referred to as “black boxes” because they are so complex that even the researchers who design them can’t fully understand how they make predictions. To provide some insights, researchers use explanation methods that seek to describe individual model decisions. For example, they...

Artificial intelligence system learns concepts shared across video, audio, and text

Humans observe the world through a combination of different modalities, like vision, hearing, and our understanding of language. Machines, on the other hand, interpret the world through data that algorithms can process. So, when a machine “sees” a photo, it must encode that photo into data it can use to perform a task like image classification....

What words can convey

From search engines to voice assistants, computers are getting better at understanding what we mean. That’s thanks to language-processing programs that make sense of a staggering number of words, without ever being told explicitly what those words mean. Such programs infer meaning instead through statistics — and a new study reveals that this computational...

Soft assistive robotic wearables get a boost from rapid design tool

Soft, pneumatic actuators might not be a phrase that comes up in daily conversations, but more likely than not you might have benefited from their utility. The devices use compressed air to power motion, and with sensing capabilities, they've proven to be a critical backbone in a variety of applications such as assistive wearables, robotics, and rehabilitative...

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