FU doctoral student wins Vesuvius competition
FU doctoral student wins 700,000 dollars in Vesuvius competition by deciphering ancient scrolls with AI.
News vom 06.02.2024
An international team of students, led by Youssef Nader, has won the prestigious Vesuvius competition and shared a prize of 700,000 dollars. Using advanced machine learning algorithms, the team succeeded in deciphering Greek writings from 2,000-year-old scrolls that were buried by the eruption of Mount Vesuvius and were previously unreadable due to their fragile, charred state. Nader, a doctoral student in the Landgraf research group and former data science student at the FU Berlin, contributed important AI components to the solution. The AI based ink detection developed by Youssef succeeded in reading more than two thousand letters. He had already won an intermediate stage, the decoding of a few characters. The Vesuvius competition, which was announced in March 2023, has now culminated in the successful decoding of entire papyrus pages containing several hundred characters each. Nader's team was the only one able to correctly decode the required number of fragments. This success not only highlights the potential for further discoveries within the remaining Herculaneum scrolls, but also sets a precedent for research into other ancient writings using similar AI techniques. Read more