Artificial Intelligence

Artificial Intelligence According to the basic definition of Artificial Intelligence (hereon referred to as AI) it is the ability of a machine to perform tasks whilst perceiving the environment it encounters and to take suitable actions that would maximize its chances of successfully and most efficiently achieve its goals. The concept of AI has been around for decades with the earliest known occurrence in the literature from 1954 ( Schaeffer J. (2009) Didn’t Samuel Solve That Game?. In: One Jump Ahead. Springer, Boston, MA) where a group of students developed programs for machines learning checkers strategies. This was closely followed by the Dartmouth College convention in 1956 where Allen Newell (CMU), Herbert Simon (CMU), John McCarthy (MIT), Marvin Minsky (MIT) and Arthur Samuel (IBM) became the founders and leaders of AI research. Alan Turing was one of the revolutionary players in the field after he developed several algorithms and gave his ‘Theory of Computati

Why are we born . . . . . . Young ??

An intriguing question that was recently asked by one of the scientists at my departmental retreat. Although simply stated I believe this is a rather important question that would be asked by several biologists . If you look deeply into the question it has two aspects to it.  The first one is the basic question of being born at all. Why does life have to propagate and why at all do species give rise to progeny. A simple answer would be that genetic information needs to be propagated and maintained and there is natural adaptation in response the changing environment which could lead to the "survival of the fittest". With increasing age and individual accumulates several harmful signals such as mutations, Telomere shortening, accumulation of Reactive Oxygen Species etc, just to mention a few of these defects, .that eventually lead to aberrant cellular programming and eventually death . But what if we could find ways to counteract these phenomenon? What id nature evolved to

"Sensory Adaptation" at play

Ever wondered why you are able to hear your heartbeat ofr a clock ticking when you try and focus on it while the ticking just disappears into the background when you are doing your daily tasks. Its the brain receiving the same information for a long time, it stops processing it. The same goes for vision. As demonstrated very nicely in this video below the brain processing information s the key to all form of interpretation to the outer world. Ever wondered if this phenomenon is present only in higher vertebrates including humans or present throughout evolution.  Wow.. It does work... Its amazing how our brain perceives signals... And also amazing is the anatomy ... Does the cellular architecture of the human eye have any evolutionary advantage... But then why the blind spot???

100 Pieces of Advice from 100-Year-Olds

Celebrating a 100 years may seem to be a great achievement for some while the others may have gone through all the experiences you could ever imagine, or even some those you cant even think of. Going through the ups and downs of life these centenarians have experienced several special moments, losses of loved ones, living through all the happy and sad moments that we might never have.  Even as the life expectancy increases there are only a handful few who could hit that century mark. As the saying goes " You do not grey your hair in the sun" , these people have considerable worth if their knowledge and experiences they would definitely want to share. Recently the " metal_floss"  magazine came up with a list of things that these centenarians would like to share. The list of 100 pieces of advice given by 100-year-olds is given at the link given below. As I go through the list I do feel that several of them might be worth considering, some are very true in their very e

One life...

Despite the busy lifestyle some people often tend to enjoy their lives while also being able to indulge in what they want to or feel like. It is indeed essential that one gets off the couch and gets on the ground to explore the various beauties that their surroundings have to offer. A few of these are : A child holding on to your hand: It give the utmost feeling of being able to support someone in the purest of its form while being able to feel the soft hands of a child, guiding him through the walk of life A dew drop hanging from the leaf in the early morning mist amongst the calmness, with a bare feet walk on the grass, feeling the chill in the morning air A mother feeding her child: One of the most beautiful things that resemble a bond that not everyone could understand An elder brother or sister looking after the younger one Gazing at the free birds flying high in the sky with no limits to be bound to and an endless journey to take u

Adult neural stem cell lineage tree.

A very interesting discussion on how Neural Stem Cells form a lineage and can commit to different cell fates 

Monday Mornings

While all Facebook and Twitter fans may agree that Monday mornings are the worst part of the week, I would have a different opinion. Monday marks the beginning of the week (well for most of the people with regular day jobs). It is supposed to bring along fun and enthusiasm. Despite this feeling, The widely tweeted and posted status messages might just be having a placebo effect and might make you feel lethargic. Just to pump you up, think of Monday as the beginning of a new day, week and an opportunity to start afresh. you have taken all the rest you needed on a Sunday and you are all ready and pumped up to begin something new or give a new direction to something of importance. So its best that you leave everything that happened behind and start a new day as it should be. Besides, what could be a better opportunity(for optimists) or an excuse (for pessimists) to start of.... Let the spirit of Monday be.. and put your best step forward with all the enthusiasm and leave behind an