Tag: Elon Musk

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year everyone!

While other Asian nations celebrate the year of the goose or the bull or whatever, did you know 2023 is the Year of the Cat in Vietnam and among the Vietnamese diaspora? Yep. Pretty cool!

As we look forward to a 2023 filled with all sorts of awesome stuff, let’s take a moment to fondly recall the highlights of 2022:

  • January: With the humans of North America paralyzed with fear at the impending invasion of the Polar Bear King and his vast army of huge bears, Buddy the Cat heroically traveled on his own to the frozen wastelands — also known as Canada — to confront the belligerent bear. In an act of bravery that will be remembered in songs for centuries, Buddy defeated the Evil Polar Bear King in a dance-off, staving off invasion and saving humankind.
  • February: Buddinese Space Industries, the rocketry and spacecraft company founded by Buddy, announced a goal of putting kitties on Mars by 2030 and establishing a state-of-the-art base there — complete with luxury boxes, scratchers and ample window perches — within two more years. After Elon Meowsk expressed skepticism on Twitter, Buddy replied with a simple “Hold my beer,” garnering a record 11.2 million likes.
  • March: Buddy appeared on the cover of Modern Cat Magazine, looking suave and handsome.
  • April: Celebrating Big Buddy’s birthday and Little Buddy’s adoptaversary, the former enjoyed Impossible Burgers while the latter ate delicious turkey.
  • May: Pumped up by an inspiring pep talk from Buddy the Cat, New York Yankees outfielder Aaron Judge caught fire, putting on a display of power that would ultimately result in an American League record 62 home runs. Judge credits Buddy for his success: “Bud showed me the way. He helped me unlock my potential. Without the confidence he instilled in me, I wouldn’t have hit half as many home runs or looked half as good doing it.”
  • June: More than 50 bands and music acts paid tribute to everyone’s favorite tabby at the 7th annual Festival of the Buddies, a three-day gathering of peace, love and turkey.
Buddy
Buddy the Cat
  • July: Buddy raised more than $2.2 million for various animal charities by auctioning off a dinner date with himself. Thousands of women bid on the prize, but in the end one lucky woman — said to be a princess from an undisclosed European country — was able to secure the company of the charming kitty for an evening of good food and meowversation.
  • August: More than 85 million people tuned in to watch Buddy host Saturday Night Live, registering the show’s highest ratings in decades. Millions more watched the delightful feline’s monologue on YouTube.
  • September: With his city overrun by rats, New York City Mayor Eric Adams begged Buddy to tackle the threat. Buddy magnanimously agreed, and since Sept. 7 not a single rodent has been observed in the five boroughs. Adams and the city council passed a resolution later that month funding the construction of a statue of Buddy, which will be installed in front of City Hall.
  • October: Netflix premiered The Buddy the Cat Mysteries, its most popular show since Squid Game. The streaming giant immediately renewed the feline detective show for three more seasons.
  • November: Buddy the Cat enjoyed turkey on Thanksgiving and every other day of the month.
  • December: Millions of Americans were able to endure record cold temperatures despite losing power when they found they could raise their body temperature by 8.7 degrees just by looking at posters of Buddy.

That’s quite a year Buddy’s had! Not one to rest on his laurels, he’s already looking ahead to 2023 when he’s expected to make his debut as an opera singer and finally stage a long-awaited bout with Mike Tyson.

Little Buddy and Big Buddy wish all of you a happy and healthy New Year, and we thank each and every one of our 27 million monthly readers for making PITB their site of choice!

Can You Tell The Real Cats From The Computer-Generated Kitties?

There’s a new tool that uses algorithmic artificial intelligence to create random images of cats, and the results are virtually indistinguishable from the real thing.

Can you tell which cats are real and which ones are computer-generated? (Kindly share your answers in the comments, numbering them from left to right. The person with the best score gets bragging rights!)

We’ll follow up with the answers after everyone’s had a day to make their guesses or informed choices, as it were.

The algorithm was created by a process called machine learning, which you’ve probably heard at some point even if you haven’t sought out information about artificial intelligence. 

In simple terms, machine learning means the creators fed massive amounts of data — millions of photos of cats — to the software algorithm. The algorithm analyzes the data and learns how patterns in the data create accurate images of felines.

Crucially, the algorithm never learns what a cat actually is. It doesn’t know a cat is an animal in the real world. It doesn’t know what the real world is, and it doesn’t know what animals are. All it knows is that data, organized a certain way, produces images that look like the photos it’s been fed.

That’s a key difference because, while we have made huge strides with machine learning, that’s not the kind of artificial intelligence the Elon Musks of the world freak out about when they smoke pot and watch The Matrix. We’ll never have to worry about our cat-generating algorithms rising up and eliminating humanity. 🙂

Artificial general intelligence — or AGI — is the potentially dangerous form of AI, but that’s a whole other piece of business: It involves recreating consciousness and the mind on a machine substrate.

We can’t even define consciousness and we know shockingly little about how the brain works, so that’s not happening any time soon. And even if we could it off, there’s a growing body of evidence supporting the concept of embodied cognition. That’s the idea that the mind cannot be separate from the brain, and the brain cannot be separate from the body, as well as a recognition that everything from pain signals to gut flora has an effect on our cognitive routines.

The bottom line: “AI” can get pretty good at making pictures of cats, but it’s not taking over the world any time soon.