Speech2Face – An AI That Can Guess What Someone Looks Like Just by Their Voice

Speech2Face is an advanced neural network developed by MIT scientists and trained to recognize certain facial features and reconstruct people’s faces just by listening to the sound of their voices.

You’ve probably already heard about AI-powered cameras that can recognize people just by analyzing their facial features, but what if there was a way for artificial intelligence to figure out what you look like just by the sound of your voice and without comparing your voice to a database? That’s exactly what a team of scientists at MIT has been working on, and the results of their work are impressive, kind of. While their neural network, named Speech2Face, can’t yet figure out the exact facial features of a human just by their voice, it certainly gets plenty of details right.

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Air Protein – Startup Uses Space-Age Tech to Create Meat Out of Thin Air

Creating meat literally out of thin air sounds like technology you’d only expect to see in sci-fi movies, but according to Air Protein, it’s very real and viable.

Air Protein, the startup behind the air-based meat project, was co-founded by Dr. Lisa Dyson, an award-winning research physicist and strategy consultant, with the goal of producing meat alternatives. Such plant-based meat alternatives like Impossible Foods or Beyond Meat are all the rage these days and touted as the sustainable future of the meat industry, but Air Protein is taking sustainability to a whole new level with its air-sourced proteins. They are basically relying on a bunch of microbes capable of converting CO2 into amino-acids, with the final product being a protein-based flour that can be used to make a bunch of meatless products.

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Swedish Startup Trains Crow to Pick Up Litter in Exchange for Food

Corvid Cleaning, a Swedish startup specializing in training crows to pick up litter in exchange for food, claims that its program could save communities a fortune in cleaning costs.

According to the Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation, over a billion cigarette butts are left on Sweden’s streets every year which represents about 62 percent of all litter. Teaching humans not to throw cigarette butts on the street has so far proven impossible, but a Swedish startup claims it can teach crows to pick up after us and save local communities millions of krone in cleaning fees every year. Corvid Cleaning teaches wild crows to do our dirty work through a step-by-step learning process, that involves rewarding the birds with food for every cigarette butt they collect.

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Scientists Use Brain Implant to Cure Woman’s Severe Depression

A woman who had exhausted all other options of treating her depression claims her life has become infinitely better since having a matchbox-sized implanted into her skull.

Having holes drilled into your skull and electrical wires connected directly to your brain sounds like a daunting proposition for most people, but for Sarah, a 36-year-old woman who had been battling depression for years, it was a desperate attempt to get back to a normal life. For years, she had been battling severe depression, and all other treatments, including anti-depressants and electroconvulsive therapy, had failed. Anything was better than the darkness she had been experiencing, and getting a brain implant proved a winning bet, as she has now been depression-free for over a year.

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BIOMILQ Becomes First Company to Create Human Breast Milk Without the Breast

North Carolina-based start-up BIOMILQ recently announced that it has successfully created cell-cultured human milk from mammary cells, in a laboratory.

In the age of Impossible Burgers and 3D-printed meatless steaks, human breast milk made in the lab instead of inside a woman’s breast really doesn’t seem that strange, honestly. The breakthrough announced by BIOMILK earlier this month really has the potential to disrupt the infant and baby industry as well as impact the environment, as over 10 percent of dairy today goes towards making baby formula. How the world reacts to lab-make breastmilk, on the other hand, is another matter.

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Robot Legs Help 7,600-Tonne Building “Walk” to New Location

Chinese Engineers have successfully moved an 85-year-old historical school building in Shanghai to a new location with the help of 198 robotic legs.

Moving older buildings to make room for new construction projects is nothing new in China, but what makes this particular case interesting is the method used to move the 7,600-tonne building. Usually, side rails or flatbeads are used to relocate structures, but the irregular shape of the Lagena Primary Schoool posed quite a challenge to engineers. After weighing their options, experts opted for an innovative “walking” system made up of 198 hydraulic legs that lifted the giant building and helped it “walk” a total of 62 meters over 18 days.

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California Start-Up Wants to Create “Air-Based Meat”

Just a week after Brooklyn-based startup Air Co. unveiled its carbon-negative, air-based vodka, a California start-up announced a new type of “meatless meat” made from air.

Appropriately named Air Protein, the Bay Area company allegedly used technology developed by NASA, to transform carbon dioxide (CO2) into protein, the same way plants do. During the 1960’s, the U.S. space agency started looking for a way to feed astronauts on a year-long mission by relying on the one resource its crew produced in abundance – CO2. During their research, scientists discovered a class of microbes called hydrogenotrophs able to convert carbon dioxide into protein. The resulting powder could be used to create pastas and shakes, but Air Protein now wants to use it to create a meat alternative.

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Company Makes Vodka Out of Thin Air Using Captured CO2, Water and Solar Power

Brooklyn-based startup Air Co. claims to have created the world’s first “carbon negative vodka” by capturing carbon dioxide captured from the air and using a solar powered machine to turn it into ethanol.

According to Air Co. co-founder Gregory Constantine, each bottle of carbon negative vodka sucks a pound of carbon dioxide from the air in its entire life cycle, or as much as eight full-grown trees. Unlike traditional vodka, which is made by fermenting starch-rich grains like wheat, or potatoes, in a process that can create around 13 pounds of greenhouse gases, Air Co. vodka is made only with water and carbon dioxide, and its production process actually removes carbon dioxide from the air.

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Company Creates Beanless Coffee with the Full Flavor of the Real Thing, Minus the Bitterness

Most coffee drinkers use cream, milk or sugar to mask the bitterns of the popular morning booster, but one Seattle-based company claims it has engineered a type of “beanless, molecular coffee” that retains  the full flavor of the real thing, but none of its characteristic bitterness.

Atomo is the brainchild of experienced food scientist Jarret Stopforth and entrepreneur Andy Kleitsch. They started out with the idea of optimizing coffee and spent four months in a garage-turned-brewing-lab running green beans, roasted beans and brewed coffee through gas and liquid chromatography in order to identify over 1,000 components in coffee, all the way to molecular level. After analyzing all the essential compounds that gave coffee its natural aroma and flavor, they were able to design their own version, which didn’t include the stuff that gives natural coffee its bitterness.

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Spanish Winery Invents Wine-Flavored Water That Doesn’t Get You Drunk

A winery in Spain’s Galicia region recently unveiled a revolutionary wine-flavored water that allows consumers to enjoy the taste of red or white wine without worrying about getting drunk or putting on weight.

Called Vida Gallaecia, the enriched water is the result of a two-year collaboration between the Bodega Líquido Gallaecia winery and scientists at the State Agency of the Higher Council of Scientific Research (CSIC). It allegedly tastes like wine, but contains no alcohol and very few calories, making suitable for consumption anytime, anywhere. Although the secret formula behind the ingenious beverage is a well-guarded secret, its creators have revealed that it involves the use of flavanols from grapes and residues from the wine making process.

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