Unveiling Antiquity Using AI: Egyptian Machine Learning Scholar Decrypts Ancient Greek Papyrus

This week, three researchers, among them an Egyptian PhD student ‘Youssef Nader,’ were rewarded the Vesuvius Challenge 2023 Grand Prize, which was worth $700,000, for using artificial intelligence to decode an ancient Greek manuscript.

The manuscript in question belongs to Epicurean philosophy. It discusses the question of pleasure and relates between scarcity of something and the amount of pleasure linked to it.

Via Arabia Post

The researchers used AI to read passages from a 2,000-year-old Roman manuscript that had been damaged over time. Their achievement is second to none, given the difficulty of reading a papyrus scroll akin to a piece of coal, resulting from a huge volcanic eruption that took place in the first century AD in the city of Pompeii. They used pattern recognition to identify words and letters that were almost impossible to read.

Via Time

Besides Youssef Nader, a PhD student at Freie University in Berlin who studies machine learning, the group also consisted of Luke Farriotr and Julian Schillinger.

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