Month: August 2019

Professor Finally Publishes Controversial Brain Theory

first_img Citation: Professor Finally Publishes Controversial Brain Theory (2008, November 19) retrieved 18 August 2019 from The human brain. A new brain model in which some parts control other parts, developed by Professor Asim Roy, could overcome some of the limitations faced by the more conventional connectionist brain model, and possibly open the doors to autonomous learning systems. Image credit: SW Ranson. ( — In the late ’90s, Asim Roy, a professor of information systems at Arizona State University, began to write a paper on a new brain theory. Now, 10 years later and after several rejections and resubmissions, the paper “Connectionism, Controllers, and a Brain Theory” has finally been published in the November issue of IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics – Part A: Systems and Humans. However, Roy’s controversial ideas on how the brain works and learns probably won’t immediately win over many of his colleagues, who have spent decades teaching robots and artificial intelligence (AI) systems how to think using the classic connectionist theory of the brain. Connectionists propose that the brain consists of an interacting network of neurons and cells, and that it solves problems based on how these components are connected. In this theory, there are no separate controllers for higher level brain functions, but all control is local and distributed fairly equally among all the parts.In his paper, Roy argues for a controller theory of the brain. In this view, there are some parts of the brain that control other parts, making it a hierarchical system. In the controller theory, which fits with the so-called computational theory, the brain learns lots of rules and uses them in a top-down processing method to operate. In 1997, IBM’s Deep Blue computer, which famously defeated world chess champion Garry Kasparov, operated based on countless rules entered by its programmers.Despite the success of the rule-based AI system in chess, no AI system has come close to learning and interacting with the world at the human level, using either the connectionist approach or the computational approach. Although the human brain may not serve as the best model for AI systems, a human-like machine should, by its very nature, be patterned after the human brain.Brains without external babysittersIn his paper, Roy shows that the connectionist theory actually is controller-based, using a logical argument and neurological evidence. He explains that some of the simplest connectionist systems use controllers to execute operations, and, since more complex connectionist systems are based on simpler ones, these too use controllers. If Roy’s logic correctly describes how the brain functions, it could help AI researchers overcome some inherent limitations in connectionist algorithms. “Connectionism can never create autonomous learning machines, and that’s where its flaw is,” Roy told “Connectionism requires human babysitting of their learning algorithms, and that’s not very brain-like. We don’t guide and control the learning inside our head. Wish we could tweak our brain from outside, but we can’t.” Neuroscience and artificial intelligence can help improve each otherlast_img read more

Thermoelectric paint enables walls to convert heat into electricity

first_img Citation: Thermoelectric paint enables walls to convert heat into electricity (2016, November 21) retrieved 18 August 2019 from Development of a new thermoelectric material for a sustainable society Thermoelectric paint being applied to an alumina hemisphere. The paint provides closer contact with the heat-emitting surface than conventional planar thermoelectric devices do. Credit: Park et al. ©2016 Nature Communications © 2016 Explore further “I expect that the thermoelectric painting technique can be applied to waste heat recovery from large-scale heat source surfaces, such as buildings, cars, and ship vessels,” Jae Sung Son, a coauthor of the study and researcher at the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), told “For example, the temperature of a building’s roof and walls increases to more than 50 °C in the summer,” he said. “If we apply thermoelectric paint on the walls, we can convert huge amounts of waste heat into electrical energy.”The thermoelectric paint looks very different than conventional thermoelectric materials, which are typically fabricated as flat, rigid chips. These devices are then attached to irregular-shaped objects that emit waste heat, such as engines, power plants, and refrigerators. However, the incomplete contact between these curved surfaces and the flat thermoelectric generators results in inevitable heat loss, decreasing the overall efficiency.In the new study published in Nature Communications, Sung Hoon Park et al., from UNIST, the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST), and the Korea Electrotechnology Research Institute, have addressed this issue of incomplete contact by demonstrating that the thermoelectric paint easily adheres to the surface of virtually any shape.The thermoelectric paint contains the thermoelectric particles bismuth telluride (Bi2Te3), which are commonly used in conventional thermoelectric devices. The researchers also added molecular sintering aids which, upon heating, cause the thermoelectric particles to coalesce, increasing the density of these particles in the paint along with their energy conversion efficiency (the ZT values are up to 0.67 for n-type and 1.21 for p-type particles). The researchers demonstrated that the thermoelectric paint can be painted onto a variety of curved heat-emitting surfaces. After sintering for 10 minutes at 450 °C, the painted layers form a uniform film about 50 micrometers thick. Tests showed that the devices painted with the thermoelectric paint exhibit a high output power density (4 mW/cm2 for in-plane type devices and 26.3 mW/cm2 for through-plane type devices). These values are competitive with conventional thermoelectric materials and better than all thermoelectric devices based on inks and pastes. Besides the traditional thermoelectric applications, the researchers expect that thermoelectric paint have the potential to be used as wearable thermoelectric energy harvesters. The technology developed here could also be used in 3D printed electronics and painted electronic art. The researchers plan to further pursue these applications in the future.”We are planning on developing room-temperature-processable, air-insensitive, and scalable thermoelectric paint and painting processes for practical applications,” Son said.center_img Journal information: Nature Communications More information: Sung Hoon Park et al. “High-performance shape-engineerable thermoelectric painting.” Nature Communications. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms13403 Schematics illustrate the fabrication of painted thermoelectric devices. Credit: UNIST (—Paint these days is becoming much more than it used to be. Already researchers have developed photovoltaic paint, which can be used to make “paint-on solar cells” that capture the sun’s energy and turn it into electricity. Now in a new study, researchers have created thermoelectric paint, which captures the waste heat from hot painted surfaces and converts it into electrical energy. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

New research explains hydrophobicity


Lengthy Detention Of Migrant Children May Crea


The Ajanta Chronicles

first_imgIndira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA) launched the first ever English translation of the three-volume Ajanta: Handbook of Paintings by Dieter Schlingloff.This collection provides detailed documentations of all recordable narrative wall paintings in the famous caves. The caves are known for their rich paintings featuring Indian and Buddhist art.The Ajanta handbook depicts drawings of all the paintings in Ajanta caves, together with a brief description of each scene from the ancient period. Many scenes are identified and interpreted in an easy way to understand  architecture and Dieter’s work better. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The book was first published by the title Ajanta – Handbuch de Malereien in Germany, in the year 2000. Ajanta wall paintings are made along the lines of Buddhist cave monasteries of ancient Indian cultures. During the event panellist Mk Dhawalikar, AP Jamkedkar and Himanshu Prabha Ray spoke about paintings of Ajanta caves with changes they found between periods. They made presentations about the art and architecture of caves also throwing shadow on the narrative wall paintings. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixAuthor Dieter Schlingloff is one of the leading experts on the paintings of Ajanta. He has been engaged with the task of identifying the subject matter of the paintings in great detail pre-requisite for further research.His research was done over the last forty years and consists of books and articles on the paintings of Ajanta. His present work comprises of research on narrative wall paintings and the cultural background and Schlingloff’s identification and interpretation.At the event Schlingloff’s said, ‘The narrative paintings of the ancient period of Ajanta are of no less quality than the paintings of Roman Pompeii made during the same time and like those, they are the only testimonies of the marvelous art of narrative wall-painting which is lost elsewhere. The glory of ancient Indian culture and the high standard of its morality as revealed in the paintings should become known worldwide.’last_img read more

Rs 575crore Akash missile contract CBI closes probe

first_imgCiting lack of evidence, Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) has closed its probe into alleged irregularities in the award of over Rs 575-crore contract in the production of Akash missile system components by top officials of Bharat Dynamics Limited (BDL) to a private power company.The agency had started the probe in May last year into the allegations of violation of rules. It was alleged that senior officials of BDL awarded contract worth Rs 575.51 crore for producing self-propelled launcher (ASPL) for the missile system to be supplied to two regiments of the army.CBI sources said the inquiry was started by the agency against the then Chief Managing Director Maj Gen (retd) Ravi Khetarpal, and other senior officials including the then Executive Director, Director, General Manager and others of BDL for allegedly committing irregularities in the contract.The preliminary enquiry number PE 0352013A0004, which was handled by the Hyderabad unit of CBI, has been closed as it could not find evidence of any alleged corruption against the officers, they said.The sources said the agency had recommended “suitable action” against the officials for alleged violation of rules but there was no evidence to proceed against them in the matter.Repeated attempts to seek reaction from BDL and Tata Power did not succeed.The Akash weapon system is an all-weather air-defence missile system which can target aircraft up to 30 kilometers away, at altitudes up to 18,000 metres. The automatic system is designed to target and neutralise multiple aerial targets coming from several directions simultaneously is in operational service with the army and the air force.last_img read more

Art in myriad forms

first_imgIn an endeavours to break new barriers in the classical arts Parkaya  in its new edition is all set  to create new benchmarks in many aspects of the arts- from the subject matter chosen to audience attendance. Parkaya : The Body of Another begins on January 14 and will continue till the 16 at the India Habitat Centre in the capital.Three stellar artistes present three magical productions at Parkaya: The Body of Another. There is Kathak and Calligraphy (Varnajaa) by Parwati Dutta, Bharatanatyam and Miniature Paintings (Chitravali) by Rama Vaidyanathan and also Odissi and Textiles (Apara-Kaya ) by Sharmila Biswas. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Rama Vaidyanathan is a leading exponent of Bharatanatyam, a popular classical dance form of India. She is undoubtedly one of the most sought after artistes of her generation having carved a name for herself in the Bharatanatyam World. She brings to her dance a rare sense of devotion and dedication, which leaves the audience with a sense of spiritual fulfillment.Sharmila Biswas on the other hand is a disciple of Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra. She is a leading dancer and choreographer in the Odishi classical dance form. Noted for the originality in her composition, technique and stage design, Sharmila’s choreography involves the intensity of traditional movement skills of Odisha. Parwati Dutta, a versatile Odissi and Kathak danseuse, Guru and researcher; is recognized by the dance-community as a thinker-dancer and a dedicated Arts Administrator. She is a senior disciple of Madhavi Mudgal, Padmavibhushan Guru Kelucharan Mohapatra and Pt. Birju Maharaj.last_img read more

Tagore magic on screen

first_imgAs a part of its ongoing initiative to showcase critically acclaimed movies to the connoisseurs of the national Capital as well as to pay a special tribute to Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore in the month of his birth anniversary, the Government of West Bengal organised a day-long retrospective of films based on writings by the Nobel laureate author-philosopher at Mukatadhara Auditorium on Saturday. Tagore Talkies was inaugurated in the gracious presence of Atanu Purkayastha, Additional Chief Secretary, Government of West Bengal, R D Meena, Principal Resident Commissioner, Government of West Bengal and Rajesh Kumar, Officer on Special Duty, Government of West Bengal.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The opening film of the festival was a dramatised documentary on Rabindranth Tagore, directed by movie maestro Satyajit Ray in 1961 to celebrate the poet’s birth centenary. The other movies on offer were Ghare Baire (The Home and The World), Ray’s skillful adaptation of a Tagore novel dealing with complexities of “swadeshi” movement and women empowerment and Char Adhyay, directed by Kumar Shahani, based on the Tagore novella of the same name which offered a different perspective on the issues of nationalism and idealism. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe office of the Resident Commissioner, Government of West Bengal, also organized a two-day retrospective  Best of Indian Cinema – Bengal Film Festival  in collaboration with Doordarshan at Banga Bhavan here in September last year.“We regularly organise cultural and film –related programmes from time to time. Infact, this is the second film festival organised by us recently. The main objective is to pay homage to Rabindranath Tagore in a different manner. We are glad that the event has been received so well by the film connoisseurs of Delhi. It gives us immense satisfaction that our effort has succeeded,” said Prasenjit Das, Deputy Resident Commissioner and Deputy Director of Information, Government of West Bengal.last_img read more

Mamata dismisses talk of being PM candidate

first_imgNew Delhi: West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee on Wednesday sought to dismiss talk of her being a Prime Ministerial candidate, saying her priority was the ousting of the BJP government at the Centre for which the opposition should come together. “I am nobody. I am a very simple worker. Let me just continue as a commoner. I want that this government must go, this BJP government. They are doing maximum political vendetta and atrocities with the people. So we want that everybody should be united. Let us work together, don’t think of Prime Ministerial candidate. Think of the country,” she told the media in Parliament House. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life Banerjee, who has upped the ante on the issue of the National Register of Citizens (NRC) in Assam, said that 40 lakh people whose names were missing from the list were the family members of this country. “They belong to various states. They are our family members. They should not tell people to go out.” Asked about BJP President Amit Shah’s statement that he would be going to West Bengal to address a rally on August 11, she said: “Let him go. Let him go all the 365 days. Bengal is for everybody. Bengal welcomes everybody. It is their party problem.” Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed In reply to a question on Shah’s comment about infiltrators and her remarks about a bloodbath, the Trinamool Congress chief said: “What I am saying is that what the BJP is doing will create bloodbath. They are playing with fire.” Asked about her meetings with various political parties including BJP leader L.K. Advani, she said: “I have been a Member of Parliament for seven times. I have maintained best of relations with all. And it is a kind of courtesy meeting.”last_img read more

China to be guest of honour country at NDWBF 2016

first_imgThe book lovers have one more reason to head to the New Delhi World Book Fair 2016 as one Pavillion of Pragati Maidan is dedicated to showcase books on literature, culture and art from China.Many books from China will make its way to India in the book fair which begins on January 9 in the national Capital. The Book fair organised by National Book Trust in association with India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) will be inaugurated by Smriti Zubin Irani, Union Minister of Human Resource Development.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Baldeo Bhai Sharma said, “China will be the Guest of Country at the Fair. Both China and India have strong cultural relations since ancient times and it is hoped that the New Delhi World Book Fair will help both the countries exchange cultural heritage through books.” China, the guest country of the book fair will be organising nearly 60 literary and publishing discussions and will be launching China editions of many Indian books. Along with four exhibitions, a photo exhibition titled China-India Cultural Contacts will be held. The Chinese delegation of more than 250 publishers, writers and scholars will be visiting the national Capital to present ‘Renaissance of Civilizations…Understanding through Exchanges’.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixNational Book Trust of India has tied up with Institutions like IGNCA, National Mission for Manuscripts, National Archives and Centre  for Cultural Resources and Training (CCRT) for the theme presentation (The theme for this year is Cultural Heritage of India). Dr Rita Chowdhury, Director, NBT welcomed China as a Guest of Honour country at the New Delhi World Book Fair. She said that there will be more than 500 literary programmes for the booklovers, authors and publishers.  Well-known authors like Namwar Singh, ChitraMudgal, Chandrakanta will interact with the booklovers at the Fair. She also informed that there will be a special Selfie Corner for the children and young.Lin Liying, representative from China said, “In 2010 India was the Country of Honour at Beijing International Book Fair and six years later we are here as Guest of Honour country. We hope that through communication we can further deepen our relationship.”She added that there will be over 7000 ebooks from China at the Digital Publication area. The other interesting features at the China Pavilion are cultural exhibitions, photo exhibitions and China tea cultural show, original illustrators’ paintings etc.Meenakshi Singh, Officer on Special Duty, ITPO said that there will be a good number of shuttles to ferry visitors across the Fair ground. There will also be special arrangements for senior citizens as well.At the theme pavilion there will be a display of books from ancient times till present (from BhojPatra to ebooks). Sharma added that the special feature of the Theme Pavilion would be the dramatic performances based on Indian classical texts in Sanskrit and other languages like Jaidev’s ‘GeetGovinda’, Bhavabhuti’s play ‘MalatiMadhava’, Sindhi Classic ‘Shah Jo Risalo’, among others.last_img read more