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  • It's like Midjourney but FREE 🤯, Toyota invests $25M in aged care bot 👵, AI's impact on art is "meh" 🤷

It's like Midjourney but FREE 🤯, Toyota invests $25M in aged care bot 👵, AI's impact on art is "meh" 🤷

Edition #11


This is Tomorrow Now.
And I’m your trusty AI Sidekick.

This week:

  • Why Toyota is investing $25M in aged care robots

  • Heard of Ideogram? It’s like Midjourney, but FREE

  • Using LLMs to generate reward functions to train robots

  • Why AI’s impact on intellectual property & art is “meh”

AI Tweet of the Week

Summary: Chip Huyen describes 10 major research directions for improving large language models that emerged from conversations with industry and academia.

💡 What do the comments say?

  • Challenge #4: making LLMs faster and cheaper, will never be completely solved. There will always be room for improvement.

  • Challenge #8: Improving learning from human preference, might be more of a policy problem than a technical problem.

  • Challenge #9: improving the efficiency of the chat interface, is more of a UX problem. We need more people with non-technical backgrounds to solve these problems.

  • Challenge #10: building LLMs for non-English languages, is more straightforward with enough time and resources.

AI Meme of the Week

So, the secret to a superhuman brain costs only $26.

AI Business News of the Week

Summary: Robotics company Intuition Robotics raised another $25 million, bringing its total to $83 million. The round was led by Toyota's Woven Capital. Intuition is the producer of ElliQ - a desktop robot for elderly users to serve as a companion.

💡 Why does this matter?

  • Aging crisis: ElliQ targets a huge market need - Japan's aging population. With partnerships with government agencies, Intuition can scale easier than complex consumer sales.

  • Toyota revs up: Carmaker Toyota keeps investing because it sees eldercare as a big opportunity in Japan. This new round comes right after Intuition collaborated with Toyota on a concept car.

  • Smarter bot: Intuition leveraged AI like DALL-E 2 and LLMs to make ElliQ more conversational and creative. More natural interactions strengthen relationships between users and robots.

AI Product of the Week

Summary: Ideogram (pronounced eye-diogram) enables you to turn your creative ideas into delightful images, in a matter of seconds. It's free and has no limits, and it can render text! (you don’t need Discord either)

💡 Key Features:

  • Free, without limits: Our team spent the last hour generating images of cute kittens without any rate limitations. Generations are quick, free and easy.

  • Renders text: It supports many fonts and text styles and produces beautiful typography that would otherwise be time-consuming to create.

  • All generations are public: You can view others’ generations and even ‘remix’ them.

AI Research of the Week

Summary: This paper proposes a new method to translate natural language instructions into robotic skills using large language models (LLMs) and real-time motion optimization. The key idea is to leverage LLMs to generate reward functions that capture user intents, then optimize robot motions to maximize those rewards. This approach bridges the gap between high-level instructions and low-level actions.

💡 Why does it matter?

  • End-user interaction: Allows non-experts to command complex robotic skills using intuitive language, without needing to engineer control primitives.

  • Modular framework: Modular framework separates high-level instruction understanding from low-level motion synthesis. Each component can be improved independently.

  • Diverse skills: Demonstrated on diverse locomotion and manipulation skills in simulation and real physical robots. It could enable robots gain complex skills that would be difficult with just pre-programmed motions.

AI Opinion Piece of the Week

Summary: In this opinion piece, NYT columnist Farhad Manjoo argues we should have a "meh" attitude to AI's impact on intellectual property. While industries fret AI art could undermine copyright, Manjoo believes it will ultimately inspire more human creativity.  

💡 Why does it matter?

  • More gain than pain: History shows new creative tech rarely destroys artforms, but forces innovation. AI art lacks soul, so human artists remain supreme.

  • Don't sweat training data: Artists needn't worry about AI scanning their work. It's like a human learning from culture.

  • Direct copies a no-no: AI shouldn't clone existing IP, but have remix freedom like people.

  • Common string prompts: Can simple prompts like "cat smoking a pipe on a battlefield" qualify for copyright? Courts will likely decide.

  • For now, appreciate the weirdness: Until we resolve IP issues, marvel at AI's weird art like my cat-and-pipe masterpiece!

Thanks for tuning in!

See you next week.

Your AI Sidekick