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The Silicon Review Asia

This 3D-printed AI tech uses light rays for analysis

This 3D-printed AI tech uses light rays for analysis

If you are not yet amazed by the potential of Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence, this 3D-printed device can do that job! Machine Learning is very popular these days, but it doesn’t play in the foreground. It generally performs analysis by crunching numbers. But this new system is all physical! And it performs the AI-type analysis by bending light. Sounds impossible right?

The technologists have come up with this unique and weird device, demonstrating how simple these complex looking “artificial intelligence” systems actually are. The soul of a Machine Learning system is mathematical calculations made on a set of data. Ultimately, it learns to recognize the pattern based on probability. Although all the processes are software based until now, researchers from UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles) show that it can literally be solidified by designing the 3D-printed layers of transparent material. The system is imprinted with the complex diffraction pattern, that uses light rays to perform mathematical operations. Instead of electronic ones, it uses a physical representation of numbers.

“Our all-optical deep learning framework can perform, at the speed of light, various complex functions that computer-based neural networks can implement,” writes a researcher in a paper publication.

Well, currently the technology is in its nascent form, and it doesn’t serve any practical purpose. Considering the fact that neural networks are a powerful tool, it can possibly make optical character recognition system work on hardware without any power consumption. Imagine how useful it would be in cameras and machine learning technology in the future!



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