ai artificial intelligence

This Week’s Holy Feck AI Does What? The Pill, IVF, Spicy Volcanoes & Alzheimer’s 

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) is about to make our lives so much better.

In case you missed it, AI is coming at us faster than a mullet at a nightclub. We’re here to help you discover what new innovations are coming in full force. What’s eating into the world we once knew, and how is AI is doing things a hell of a lot better than us? Come take us, SkyNet, we are fecking it up anyway. 

ChatGPT detects Alzheimer’s in Grandad

Researchers at Drexel University have found that the artificial intelligence (AI) behind chatbot ChatGPT is able to detect early stages of Alzheimer’s disease in spontaneous speech with an 80% accuracy rate. So get Grandad good with using ChatGPT, just in case. I’m sure he needs to know how to blaze up the marijuana he found in your bedroom (for medical purposes, of course).

In case you have been living under a rock, ChatGPT is an AI assistant that is designed to help us with various tasks using prompts we humans insert into it. Have a play here.

Back to the horrible disease of Alzheimer’s. Language impairment is a symptom of the disease in 60% to 80% of patients. So, while there is no cure, detecting it early allows for more options for treatment. You might want to get grandma on it too. She can ask it for things like a knitting pattern for a Bitcoin blankey, or who are the hottest firemen in the area. But you already know, don’t you, Grandma Sunshine.

The AI, known as GPT-3, was trained using transcripts from a dataset of speech recordings compiled with National Institutes of Health. It was then asked to predict dementia by comparing data from healthy individuals and those with Alzheimer’s.

Felix Agbavor, a doctoral researcher at Drexel University, said, “GPT3’s systemic approach to language analysis and production makes it a promising candidate for identifying the subtle speech characteristics that may predict the onset of dementia.”

Granny and Gramps may need your help getting on ChatGPT. Off you go, you good little grandchild. Earn your inheritance, okay?

AI to create better contraception 

A company called Insilico Medicine is using artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to discover and develop new drugs. And, it is doing this at hugely faster speeds than if humans did it through any traditional approach.

No, we don’t mean the recreational drugs you found in a shaded forest outside Canberra. Calm down. We mean drugs that can halt breast cancer, etc.

The AI is also working on better contraception. Well, it’s about time. How are humans going to Mars, but the pill still makes us feel weird, like we’ve licked a cane toad? Thanks, AI.

Petrina Kamya, PhD, Head of AI Platforms at Insilico Medicine shared, “We’re thrilled to have the opportunity to use our AI drug discovery and design platform to help design new birth control options for women across the world which represents a major unmet need.”

While babies are cute, no one needs to get pregnant with their friends-with-benefits who you wouldn’t be caught dead with in public. You may not be able to quit them, but you don’t want their demon spawn either.

The other thing the AI can do is quickly figure out personalised medicine for patients. This is way faster than the traditional way of trying out lots of different drugs until one works.

The AI is also working on how to reverse aging, although this one is still far off in terms of results yet. Hurry up Insilico, it’s already time for us to get Botox, move that anti-aging one along please.

AI and cow babies

A small percentage of cows (about 3%) will have problems having baby cows. This means more expenses — the cow needs the vet, which is expensive, or both the cow and the calf could die. Also… poor cows! Sad face.

In an ideal world, if farmers knew which cows will have trouble having a baby, then they could avoid inseminating these cows. Now, they can use an AI to detect these cows that will get into trouble when calving (which is called dystocia.)

Using a huge dataset from a Dutch cattle breeding company called CRV, scientists at the University of Groningen used AI to develop a predictive model. 

Ahmad Alsahaf is a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Groningen. “There are models to predict the risk of dystocia, but these work with data that are only available after insemination. We wanted to produce a model that could predict the risk before insemination.”

So far, the modelling has halved the rate of dystocia, with further improvements on the agenda.

Thank you, AI for saving the beasts that give us ice-cream. What kind of world would it be without mint-choc-chip? And don’t write in about how you hate mint. It’s your own taste that you hate. Stop it.

AI and spicy mountains

There have been multiple and ongoing tiny earthquakes in Hawaii over the past seven years, especially since the eruption and summit collapse of a mountain called Kīlauea. This is scary, but it also gives nerdy boffins the opportunity to study these earthquakes and try to predict them in the future. And why do the hard work of this when a bot can do it for us?

Scientists at Caltech have worked out the earthquakes in the region are thanks to magma pumping through a massive complex of interconnected chambers deep beneath two cranky volcanoes called Mauna Loa and Kīlauea.

The chambers, called ‘sills’, push magma upward to refill the magma chambers of Mauna Loa and Kīlauea.

Now, using AI, geoscientists at Caltech have mapped them with never-before-seen precision, and it has shown that the volcanoes are linked by these underground channels.

Says John D. Wilding of Caltech, “Before this study, we knew very little about how magma is stored and transported deep beneath Hawaii. Now, we have a high-definition map of an important part of the plumbing system. We know pretty well what the magma is doing in the shallow part of the system above 15-kilometre depth, but until now, everything below that has just been the subject of speculation.”

These days, the team can predict 10 times as many earthquakes as was previously possible. They can also pinpoint the locations with a margin of error of less than a kilometre, while previously it was a few kilometres.

Thanks to this AI, an event like Pompeii could never kill people again, unless you are one of those people who don’t listen to warnings and hang around. Don’t be one of those people, no one needs you barbequed, it’s not a good look.

AI for IVF embryo selection

This is a very cute use of AI for good because WHO DOESN’T LOVE CUTE BABIES?

Researchers at Weill Cornell Medicine have developed an AI called STORK-A (what a cute name for baby-bringer). It can predict, with about 70% accuracy, if an in-vitro fertilised (IVF) embryo has a normal or abnormal number of chromosomes.

This condition, called aneuploidy, is a major reason why IVF embryos fail to implant or result in a healthy pregnancy. For anyone going through IVF, this breakthrough provides a greater hope of a successful outcome.

Currently, one method for detecting aneuploidy involves testing cells from the embryo. This can be invasive and costly.

STORK-A works by analysing microscope images of the embryo. Plus it adds in other information like the mother’s age. The goal is to be able to predict aneuploidy in a completely non-invasive way using AI.

Dr. Olivier Elemento, of Weill Cornell Medicine said, “This is another great example of how AI can potentially transform medicine. The algorithm turns tens of thousands of embryo images into AI models that may ultimately be used to help improve IVF efficacy and further democratise access by reducing costs.”

Aw, hopefully there are a lot of happy babies that come from this AI stork. Because baby smell is the world’s favourite perfume. While baby vomit is not, some people look hotter covered in baby sick. You know who I’m talking about. You.