Just after we sent off our last newsletter on Thursday, French Prime Minister Emmanuel Macron laid out a new national strategy for AI in France (you can watch it here).
According to the new strategy, the French government will spend €1.5B over five years to support research in the field, encourage startups, and collect data that can be used, and shared, by engineers. Check out this Forbes piece for a good summary.
I think artificial intelligence will disrupt all the different business models and it’s the next disruption to come. So I want to be part of it. Otherwise I will just be subjected to this disruption without creating jobs in this country.
Read on to learn about Textio’s latest offering, the risk of automation, Waymo’s
partnership with Honda, and more.
Tabitha UntiltheBotsTakeOver Goldstaub
P.S. We’re hiring…check out our Consulting Director and Senior Front End Developer (React + Redux) roles here.
Like the company’s first service, which uses AI to help customers write better job descriptions, Textio’s second offering helps companies write recruiting messages by scoring them on a 100-point scale. It also provides writers with information about how they might want to change their text, including suggestions to avoid pressuring candidates, since that can make people less likely to respond.
Zillow Group, an early customer, saw a 16 percent increase in responses to recruiting messages after implementing the product. Johnson & Johnson recruiters reported a 25 percent increase.
An influential 2013 forecast by Oxford University said that about 47% of jobs in the US in 2010 and 35% in the UK were at “high risk” of being automated over the following 20 years. But the OECD puts the US figure at about 10% and the UK’s at 12%.
Even so, it says many more workers face their tasks significantly changing. The OECD says the previous forecasts exaggerated the impact of automation because they had relied on a broad grouping together of jobs with the same title.
Waymo is now nearing a final deal with a third automaker, Honda, in a move that will test the company’s ability to compete in the $164B delivery and logistics market. The delivery focus of the alliance with Honda hasn’t been previously reported. The companies have been silent since announcing talks in late 2016, but results are coming soon.
John Krafcik, CEO of Waymo said not to expect the new service to take the form of a “traditional car driven on roads.” His comments suggest Waymo is ready to try co-creating a vehicle from scratch with an automaker rather than modifying existing models, as it has done with Jaguar and Fiat Chrysler. The Honda model may move people and goods, Krafcik hinted; it might be smaller than a truck and could come without a steering wheel or brakes. A Honda spokesman said the companies are “continuing to explore” the
Google’s quest to conquer AI is leading to a major change in leadership. The Information has learned (paywall) that AI and search leader John Giannandrea
is leaving his role, which will be split into two: Google Brain leader Jeff Dean will run a dedicated AI wing in addition to his Brain position, while search engineering boss Ben Gomes will lead search as the division’s Vice President. Giannandrea is staying around, but reportedly wants to be “more hands on with technology” than he was before.
It’s far from a surprise that Google would divide is search and AI structures. While the two divisions share a large chunk of their work, this puts all of Google’s AI initiatives under one banner. Likewise, Gomes can focus more on search instead of having to juggle AI concerns. It won’t be quite as unified, but it could improve Google’s overall effectiveness.
Metricstory is raising cash to help e-commerce companies extract more value from their Google Analytics data. The Seattle startup announced a $2M investment round led by Seven Peaks Ventures and Birchmere Ventures, with participation from existing investors Elementum Ventures, Wisemont Capital, and the Geekdom Fund.
Founded in 2015, Metricstory analyses data from products like Google Analytics and uses machine learning to provide a business with insights based on individual needs. Its technology provides recommendations for ecommerce, merchandising, and marketing efforts.
Google wanted to put its data science chops to the test – in real-time. This weekend, the company used data analytics techniques and machine learning during the Final Four in San Antonio to figure out what it thinks will happen next in the live games. And after doing so, it handed off its predictions about the game’s second half to be aired as a halftime TV ad.
The company detailed its plans in a blog post, explaining how the idea grew out of the existing relationship it had with the NCAA regarding statistical game and competition data analysis using Google’s cloud technology. Google then decided it wanted to challenge itself further to see what else it could do with NCAA data.
On Monday, Microsoft announced the Microsoft Professional Program in AI, the latest learning track open to the public. The program provides job-ready skills and real-world experience to engineers and others who are looking to improve their skills in AI and data science through a series of online courses that feature hands-on labs and expert instructors.
The programme is part of a larger corporate effort that also includes the enterprise developer-focused AI School, which provides online videos and other assets to help developers build AI skills. That program includes both general educational tools for developers looking to expand AI capabilities and specific guidance on how developers can use Microsoft’s tools and services. They also recently announced a reorganisation of the economy emphasising their focus on AI and the cloud.
In a recent white paper, the US army writes about how numerous, artificially intelligent, networked things will populate the battlefield of the future, operating in close collaboration with human warfighters, and fighting as teams in highly adversarial environments. The paper explores the characteristics, capabilities and intelligence required of such a network of intelligent things and humans – Internet of Battle Things (IOBT). It will experience unique challenges that are not yet well addressed by the current generation of AI and machine learning.
Most of such intelligent things will not be too dissimilar from the systems we see on today’s battlefield, such as unattended ground sensors, guided missiles (especially the fire-and-forget variety) and of course the unmanned aerial systems (UAVs). They will likely include physical robots ranging from very small size (such as an insect-scale mobile sensors) to large vehicle that can carry troops and supplies. Some will fly, others will crawl or walk or ride.