Issue 217: CognitionX Data Science, AI and Machine Learning Briefing


Equality in AI. Exciting announcements at Google I/O.

There is no doubt that women are currently “seriously under-represented” in AI and that matters “not just because of workplace equality but if these machines are being programmed solely by men there will be repercussions in what they will be able to do.” Find out more in my recent interview with the London Evening Standard.

Be under no illusion, this is a huge task and one that’s only set to get more pressing over time as AI spreads through our society. Euan Cameron, the newly appointed AI leader at PWC, believes “You need a process of governance around an AI system so at least you can take every step to make sure you have guarded against bias becoming built in.”

Have you got a process in place? How do you think we should address the ethics of AI? Come to CogX London 2017 (June 20-21) to participate in the debates around the key ethical issues we will face in the AI era.


Tabitha UntilTheBoyBotsTakeOver Goldstaub


33 days till CogX. Be there or be intelligence artificial.

Ethics question of the day

Artificial intelligence could be as sexist as humans

The newly appointed UK Artificial Intelligence leader at PwC, Euan Cameron, has warned of the risks of tech being designed by overwhelmingly male teams. The obvious issue of the lack of gender diversity in the AI environment particularly on the technical side is that it can lead to potentially hidden or unconscious biases being coded in. Cameron says he’ll be working with companies to highlight these biases and recommend ways to protect against them.

Products we love

New products and features announced at Google I/O

Google I/O, Google’s annual developer conference and showcase for new products opened yesterday with a keynote from their CEO Sundar Pichai. He reiterated Google’s commitment to an AI-first approach across their entire product range, and announced a slew of products and features. These include Google Lens, a reverse image search allowing users to search the world around them using their phone’s camera; Cloud TPU, a high performance chip specifically designed for training AI algorithms; and standalone headsets for
Daydream, the VR platform announced at last year’s I/O, which can run without a phone and track the user’s position in space.

Tools of the trade

How AI and machine-learning tools lighten the eDiscovery load

TAR (Technology Assisted Review) is a document classification process based on input from human reviewers, currently gaining traction in several industries. In the case study presented here nearly halfway through a review of 40,800 documents the firm switched to using TAR. Having results from the first half allowed them to jump start the algorithm by pre-training the TAR Engine. Only another 6,800 documents needed to be reviews manually before finishing the work, completing the work 70% faster than expected and saving an estimated $70,000 for the client.

What you might have missed from yesterday

A leaked letter questions DeepMind’s adherence to health data privacy laws

DeepMind was given permission to use 1.6 million patient records from the British National Health Service to test the Streams app, which alerts to right clinician that a patient requires their urgent assistance. The letter, written by Fiona Caldicott, the National Data Guardian, to Stephen Powis, the medical director at London’s Royal Free Hospital, suggests the method of transfer of data between the hospital and DeepMind did not constitute “implied consent.”

Another example of a “robots taking humans jobs”

AI-powered Google for Jobs has work for everybody

In a slight twist on the usual narrative, the announcement today from Google will help find jobs for non-techies rather than “steal” them away. Google for Jobs is an AI-powered search engine developed in partnership with Linkedin, Glassdoor, Monster, and Facebook. Google’s CEO Sundar Pichai even demoed the system by finding a retail, rather than software role. Using AI to help the wider public in such a visible way is something that can’t be applauded enough and highlights the growing necessity for internet access in the modern

Business impact of AI

Google wants to be everywhere with everyone

“In an A.I.-first world, we are rethinking all our products” said Mr. Pichai, Google’s chief executive, at Google I/O this week. He envisions a world where people interact seamlessly with their Google devices and are constantly connected to each other. With over a billion users in their Youtube, Google Maps, and Search services, how will Google’s decisions shape the future? Especially with services like Virtual Positioning System; “GPS gets you to the door, and then VPS can get you the exact item you’re looking for,”
said Clay Bavor, Google’s virtual reality team leader.

Pure unadulterated research

Bad bots do good: random artificial intelligence helps people coordinate

Unpredictable AI doesn’t sound like a good thing. But a new study shows that computers that behave randomly can push us to better coordinate our actions with others and accomplish tasks more quickly. The approach could ease traffic flow, improve corporate strategy, and possibly even tighten marriages.

Dates for Your Diary

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