To Make Sense of the Present, Brains May Predict the Future

Last month, the artificial intelligence company DeepMind introduced new software that can take a single image of a few objects in a virtual room and, without human guidance, infer what the three-dimensional scene looks like from entirely new vantage points. Given just a handful of such pictures, the system, dubbed the Generative Query Network, or GQN, can successfully model the layout of a simple, video game-style maze. There are obvious technological applications for GQN, but it has also caught the eye of neuroscientists, who are particularly interested in the training algorithm it uses to learn how to perform its tasks. ….[READ]