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Better than the guidelines doctors use, in fact. That's the conclusion of a new study written up in Science magazine. Here's how they tested it: A UK epidemiologist and his colleagues tested four machine-learning algorithms against the doctors' guidelines, to see how well they could predict which patients would have heart troubles based on 2005 medical records. Sure enough, the artificial intelligence programs did a better job of predicting who actually had heart attacks and other problems within the next 10 years.

What it means: If computers can teach themselves, they may be able to account for a lot of random factors with people's health, more than doctors can keep track of themselves. If these programs had actually been used, the study's authors said, 355 people's lives could have been saved.

Yes, but: Given how much trouble doctors have had with electronic medical records, are they really going to be enthusiastic about adding even more technology to their practices?

Go deeper

Kendall Baker, author of Sports
37 mins ago - Sports

2021 Tokyo Olympics hang in the balance

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

10 months ago, the Tokyo Olympics were postponed. Now, less than six months ahead of their new start date, the dreaded word is being murmured: "canceled."

Driving the news: The Japanese government has privately concluded that the Games will have to be called off, The Times reports (subscription), citing an unnamed senior government source.

Biden's centrist words, liberal actions

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

President Biden talks like a soothing centrist. He promises to govern like a soothing centrist. But early moves show that he is keeping his promise to advance a liberal agenda.

Why it matters: Never before has a president done more by executive fiat in such a short period of time than Biden. And those specific actions, coupled with a push for a more progressive slate of regulators and advisers, look more like the Biden of the Democratic primary than the unity-and-restraint Biden of the general election.

2 hours ago - Technology

Review of Trump ban marks major turning point for Facebook

Photo Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Facebook's decision to ask its new independent Oversight Board to review the company's indefinite suspension of former President Trump is likely to set a critical precedent for how the social media giant handles political speech from world leaders.

What they're saying: "I very much hope and can expect … that they will uphold our decision," Facebook's VP of global affairs Nick Clegg tells Axios.