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Researchers Want to Use AI to Talk to Animals

two dolphins vocalizing with the heads out of the water

The AI-based model was tried on dolphin whistles and other animal vocalizations.

Credit: Getty Images

Earth Species Project, a California non-profit, plans to use machine learning to decode non-human communication, and make all the knowhow publicly available, thereby deepening connections with other living species and helping to protect them.

Founded in 2017, it  published its first scientific paper last December. "The end we are working towards is, can we decode animal communication, discover non-human language," says co-founder and president Aza Raskin.

Until recently, decoding has mostly relied on painstaking observation. But interest has burgeoned in applying machine learning to deal with the huge amounts of data that can now be collected by modern animal-borne sensors.

ESP is not focused on decoding the communication of one species, but all of them. The goal is to develop tools that could be applied to the entire animal kingdom, "from worms to whales," Raskin says.

From The Guardian
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