DeepMind created an AI which spontaneously developed the machine learning equivalent of gut-based navigation.
The UK-based Google sister-company seems to specialize in creating machine learning experiments designed to determine if AI can inform the field of neurology, and vice versa. DeepMind recently published a paper demonstrating a neural network that, upon trying to solve a navigational problem, developed a method of spatial awareness that imitates the creation of “Grid Cells” in mammals.
Grid Cells, which were discovered in 2005, are a little-understood phenomena that occur within mammal brains to aid with navigation. Basically, our ability to generally understand where we are based on how far we’ve traveled and in what direction, is governed by these specialty cells that form in hexagon-shaped patterns that the brain sort of overlays into space, causing neurons to fire when we move through it. This works about the same for all mammals, like a built-in feature, crazy as it sounds.
But scientists don’t know how Grid Cells work. Somehow the brain manages to create these hexagons and the neurons do fire, but there are multiple theories as to how the phenomena actually helps us navigate.
DeepMind’s AI was checking into one of these theories — the idea that Grid Cells give…
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