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Artificial Intelligence 'Dabus' Listed As Inventor, Granted Patent

An artificial intelligence system named Dabus (device for the autonomous bootstrapping of unified sentience) was listed as the inventor on a patent application, and the South African patent office granted it; this is the first time that an AI has been granted a patent.

The patent is for a food container that uses fractal designs to create pits and bulges in its sides. Designed for the packaging industry, the new configuration allows containers to fit more tightly together so they can be transported better. The shape also makes it easier for robotic arms to pick up the containers.

The patent’s owner, AI pioneer Stephen L. Thaler, created the inventor, the AI system known as Dabus (device for the autonomous bootstrapping of unified sentience).

An early description of an artificially intelligent computer system capable of inventing new devices was the Vulcan 3, from Philip K Dick's 1960 story Vulcan's Hammer:

Very little of the computer was visible; its bulk disappeared into regions which he had never seen, which in fact no human had ever seen...

Beneath his feet the floor vibrated... What lay down there? Energy, tubes and pipes, wiring, transformers, self-contained machinery... He had a mental image of relentless activity... worn-out parts replaced, new parts invented; superior designs replaced obsolete designs.
(Read more about the Vulcan 3 computer)

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