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Yamaha’s AI transformed a dancer into a pianist

Artificial intelligence is already everywhere, so it’s inevitable that it would invade the arts. Yahama showed a new kind of AI tech that translated the movements of renowned dancer Kaiji Moriyama into musical notes on a piano, “a form of expression that fuses body movements and music,” the company said. He used it during a concert in Tokyo entitled Mai Hi Ten Yu, dancing and “playing” the piano with his body, accompanied by the Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra Scharoun Ensemble.

Yamaha’s system ensures that the dancer plays music that makes some sense, rather than just random notes. Moriyama carried four types of sensors on his back, wrists and feet that translated his movements into data. The AI then instantly creates melodies based on a database of MIDI music. The MIDI data is then shipped to a Yamaha Disklavier player piano, in this case a $150,000+ CFX concert grand, which translates it into sound.

Though Moriyama was to a large degree in charge of the beat, the experiment does beg the question of how much he was actually responsible for the music. In an accompanying making-of video, though, the dancer explains that he had more to do with it than you might think. The music changed depending on how he balanced, allowing him to effectively create different tunes using his entire body.

If body movements be fine tuned enough to the AI, then it’s easy to see how a dancer could gain fairly granular control of chords and notes. Looking at it that way, Yamaha’s claim that “this performance represents steady progress in the pursuit of new forms of artistic expression” does hold up.

Via: Japankyo

Source: Yamaha

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Existing EV batteries could be recharged five times faster

Lithium-ion batteries have massively improved in the last half-decade, but there are still issues. The biggest, especially for EVs, is that charging takes too long to make them as useful as regular cars for highway driving. Researchers from the University of Warwick (WMG) have discovered that we may not need to be so patient, though. They developed a new type of sensor that measures internal battery temperatures and discovered that we can probably recharge them up to five times quicker without overheating problems.

Overcharging a lithium-ion battery anode can lead to lithium buildup, which can break through a battery's separator, create a short-circuit and cause catastrophic failure. That can cause the electrolyte to emit gases and literally blow up the battery, so manufacturers impose strict charging power limits to prevent it.

Those limits are based on hard-to-measure internal temperatures, however, which is where the WMG probe comes in. It's a fiber optic sensor, protected by a chemical layer that can be directly inserted into a lithium-ion cell to give highly precise thermal measurements without affecting its performance.

The team tested the sensor on standard 18650 li-ion cells, used in Tesla's Model S and X, among other EVs. They discovered that they can be charged five times faster than previously thought without damage. Such speeds would reduce battery life, but if used judiciously, the impact would be minimized, said lead researcher Dr. Tazdin Amietszajew.

Faster charging as always comes at the expense of overall battery life but many consumers would welcome the ability to charge a vehicle battery quickly when short journey times are required and then to switch to standard charge periods at other times.

There's still some work to do. While the research showed the li-ion cells can support higher temperatures, EVs and charging systems would have to have "precisely tuned profiles/limits" to prevent problems. It's also not clear how battery makers would install the sensors in the cells.

Nevertheless, it shows a lot of promise for much faster charging speeds in the near future. Even if battery capacities stayed the same, charging in 5 minutes instead of 25 could flip a lot of drivers over to the green side.

Via: Clean Technica

Source: University of Warwick

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