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Feb 10, 2023

AI Deciphers Ancient Babylonian Texts And Finds Beautiful Lost Hymn

Posted by in categories: information science, robotics/AI

Researchers have crafted an artificial intelligence (AI) system capable of deciphering fragments of ancient Babylonian texts. Dubbed the “Fragmentarium,” the algorithm holds the potential to piece together some of the oldest stories ever written by humans, including the Epic of Gilgamesh.

The work comes from a team at Ludwig Maximilian University in Germany who have been attempting to digitize every surviving Babylonian cuneiform tablet since 2018.

The problem with understanding Babylonian texts is that the narratives are written on clay tablets, which today exist only in countless fragments. The fragments are stored at facilities that are continents away from each other, such as the British Museum in London and the Iraq Museum in Baghdad.

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