The Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence starts its autumn programme of public evidence sessions by talking to three experts today about the ‘big picture’ issues associated with AI, and three journalists about the public’s wider understanding of its implications. You can (and should) check out the live stream here.
The world’s largest insurance market signed a global deal with Expert System that will bring on cognitive automation, via the company’s Cognito software, to modernize its business processes in order to support the needs of market participants.
Craig Civil, head of Data Innovation with Lloyd’s said the agreement will help boost the productivity of its market members. “Artificial intelligence drives productivity by changing the way we benefit from data, and Lloyd’s continues its history of innovation,” Civil said in prepared remarks. “Expert System’s cognitive applications help meet our strategic objective and evolve business models through new applications.”
Just over a year ago, Google presented WaveNet, a new deep neural network for generating raw audio waveforms that is capable of producing better and more realistic-sounding speech than existing techniques. At that time, the model was a research prototype and was too computationally intensive to work in consumer products.
But over the last 12 months, they have worked hard to significantly improve both the speed and quality of our model and they have recently announced that an updated version of WaveNet is being used to generate the Google Assistant voices for US English and Japanese across all platforms. You can check out what it sounds like here.
Carnegie Mellon University researchers deployed a snake-like robot to search for trapped survivors in a Mexico City apartment building that collapsed in the 7.1-magnitude earthquake that shook the city Sept. 19.
The multi-jointed snakebot provided rescue workers with a video feed from two different passes through
the rubble, but did not find any survivors, said Matt Travers, systems scientist in CMU’s Robotics Institute. “We had hoped our robot could in some small way reduce the tragedy that occurred in Mexico City,” said Travers, who is co-director of the Biorobotics Lab that developed the snakebot. “The robot performed well and the Mexican Red Cross workers with us said they would like to have a similar tool in the future.”
You’re at an electronics store. You check out a few TVs and head home after being scanned by store cameras. This data is then cross-referenced with other databases that already contain your facial data. Your face is now the epicenter of a retargeting campaign.
With this tech not being far away, Dylan Gerard (Executive Creative Director, ICF OLSON) gives pointers on how this tech should be responsibly used. Curious to hear your thoughts.
Voice-activated products require constant power as they “listen” for wake words. Now one startup is helping manufacturers reduce the power needed in these devices with an innovative chip.
Founded in 2015, Aspinity is a company based in Morgantown, West Virginia that has developed “selective
wakeup technology” that uses analog signal processing to conserve power required in applications like voice control. It also can be applied to IoT devices or biosensing devices for medical applications.
In the same week we’ve seen the new trailer for The Last Jedi, AI and humanoid robotic company UBTECH has released a new Star Wars Stormtrooper robot. It’ll come with an augmented reality app, and can take voice commands, do facial recognition and even sentry patrolling.
The First Order Stormtrooper Robot’s AR app mode is supported by a voice activated command feature so you can issue direct verbal orders to your robot, launch “attacks” and tackle those pesky rebels through the app interface.
Zume has long had grand ambitions for its food automation service, and the Mountain View-based startup is now $48 million closer to that goal, courtesy of a new series B. The funding, first spotted by CNBC, was detailed in an SEC filing, alongside the company’s plans to raise a total of $50 million.
Cofounders/co-CEOs Julia Collins and Alex Garden confirmed the round yesterday morning with a statement provided to TechCrunch. “We’ve recently closed a round from leading investors to support our hiring and market growth.” At present, the Mountain View-based company is best known for its robotic pizza service, which uses automation to perform dull tasks like spreading pizza sauce and potentially dangerous ones like moving pizzas into and out of the oven.