Top /r/MachineLearning Posts, January: Google Masters Go, Deep Learning Laughs, OpenAI AMA

In January on /r/MachineLearning: Go gets mastered, deep learning laughs, an OpenAI team AMA, convolutional neural nets colorize black and white photos, and the AI community loses a leader.

In January on /r/MachineLearning, Go gets mastered, lolz for deep learners, an OpenAI team AMA, convolutional neural nets colorize black and white photos, and the AI community loses a leader.

The top 5 /r/MachineLearning posts this month are:

1. The Computer That Mastered Go (video) +516

This is a link to a YouTube video account of 'Nature,' the journal which published DeepMind's Go paper earlier this week. The video outlines the Google subsidiary's creation of an AI that mastered Go. AlphaGo, the name of the system, played and beat reigning European Go champion Fan Hui in late 2015, who said that the system played like a human player. AlphaGo is scheduled to meet top-ranked Go player Lee Sobel in March, at which point we should learn a lot more about this accomplishment.

If it turns out that Go has been solved, a longstanding thorn in the side of artificial intelligence, are we able to say that we are on the edge of "true AI?"

2. Great Summary of Deep Learning +490

Some comic relief this month comes in the form of the following meme:

Deep Learning Summary

The image is complementary of Yann LeCun, who found it flattering (and entertaining) enough to share earlier this month on his Facebook page.

3. AMA: The OpenAI Research Team +359

The OpenAI team engaged in an AMA earlier in the month, and those present included Karpathy, Kingma, Brockman, Sutskever, Chulman, Cheung, and Zarmeba. The received a great number of questions, and provided some great insight into OpenAI, what it's doing, and how it is doing it. Likely a lengthy read, to go top to bottom, but I found a brief scan to suggest that a full read would be useful. I don't think I'm alone in finding anything that many of those participating in this AMA write to be of high value.

4. Colorizing Black and White Photos with Deep Learning +346

Reddit This is a great post summarizing and showing examples from a project which used convolutional neural networks to colorize black and white photos. The description of the network architecture used is very good, as is the explanation of the experiments performed and results. Some of the results are very good, and a pretrained TensorFlow model is linked for download from the post. The comments also provide some quality discussion.

5. Marvin Minsky, Pioneer in AI, Dies at 88 +315

Marvin Minsky, the archetype artificial intelligence personality, equal parts scientist and philosopher, passed away this month at 88 years of age. Author of several books in the field, Minksy is also distinguished for being a co-founder of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology's AI lab. This is a link to a NY Times article discussing Minksy's life after his departure.

As a side note, Minsky is said to have enjoyed philosophical riddles throughout his life, including this one:

In science, one can learn the most by studying what seems the least.

RIP, Dr. Minsky.

Bio: Matthew Mayo is a computer science graduate student currently working on his thesis parallelizing machine learning algorithms. He is also a student of data mining, a data enthusiast, and an aspiring machine learning scientist.