Industry News

Industry News

The big guys dominate the news this week.. AI Bias is on everyone’s (artificial) mind. Google’s Maven exit reported EVERYWHERE! Don’t write Apple off. Don’t write IBM off. And NVDIAs HGX-2 is truely High Performance Computing (HPC) but will it run Doom?

AI & Machine Learning News. 04, June 2018

Google Smart Compose, Machine Bias, Racist AI — Summarising One Night of Binge Reading from Blogs

After Sundar Pichai took the stage and began his Google I/O 2018’s keynote, I started to take a note of interesting things that were being announced and demoed. There were some very interesting demos and announcements, especially for those who are into Deep Learning. I was curious about Gmail’s Smart Compose and Google Duplex besides other things, both of these being use cases of Natural Language Processing. Google Duplex got a lot of attention which was not surprising since the conversation made by Google Assistant with a real human sounded seamless and also human-like.
If you are into Deep Learning, you would surely want to know at least a bit about how these are done and Google’s Research blog is a good place to know more.
And just in case you didn’t know, is Google’s new research blog!
2018-06-03 05:06:39.713000+00:00 Read the full story.

The tangled relationship between AI and human rights

It was a pleasant 21 degrees in New York when computers defeated humanity — or so many people thought.
That Sunday in May 1997, Garry Kasparov, a prodigal chess grandmaster and world champion, was beaten by Deep Blue, a rather unassuming black rectangular computer developed by IBM. In the popular imagination, it seemed like humanity had crossed a threshold — a machine had defeated one of the most intelligent people on the planet at one of the most intellectually challenging games we know. The age of AI was upon us.
Or perhaps not.
2018-06-01 00:00:00 Read the full story.
CloudQuant Thoughts… Two interesting stories, both touching on AI and the bias that it inherits from us humans. Both well worth reading.

Here Is IBM’s Blueprint For Winning The AI Race

One of the cornerstones of International Business Machines’ (NYSE:IBM) ongoing transformation is cognitive computing, which encompasses artificial intelligence and other related technologies. IBM is a business that serves other businesses, and its approach to artificial intelligence (AI) stays true to its purpose.
IBM Watson, the company’s well-known AI system, is being used in industries like healthcare and financial services to augment the skills of professionals in those fields. The long-term potential of the technology is immense.
2018-06-03 01:21:24-04:00 Read the full story.
CloudQuant Thoughts… Disregard Old Blue’s impact on AI at your peril, they have been at the forefront of all “computer” development for over 100 years and their Watson team is still at the forefront of AI development.

What to expect at Monday’s Apple event

Apple is expected to launch an exciting new iPhone feature to address a problem it helped create: phone addiction.
CEO Tim Cook will announce the company’s latest software updates and roadmap for the future on Monday at the Apple’s annual developer conference in San Jose. WWDC is a software-focused event for developers, and this year Apple isn’t expected to make any major hardware announcements.

  • Operating system updates
  • Tools for cutting down on phone use
  • More iOS updates
  • Siri could use some good news
  • iPhone apps on a Mac
  • Light privacy bragging

2018-06-03 00:00:00 Read the full story.

Headlines already from the Apple event

Apple announced Core ML 2, a new version of its suite of machine learning apps for iOS devices, at the Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) 2018 in San Jose, California today.
Core ML 2 is 30 percent faster, Apple says, thanks to using a technique called batch prediction. Furthermore, Apple shared the toolkit will let developers shrink the size of trained machine learning models by up to 75 percent with quantization.
2018-06-04 00:00:00 Read the full story

Where Apple Could Crush the Autonomous-Driving Race

Last week, we reported on the autonomous-driving partnership between Apple Inc. (AAPL) and Volkswagen (VLKAY) .
Despite being two of the largest companies in their respective industries, the current partnership is rather dismissable. As it stands, Volkswagen is producing T6 Transporter vans, which Apple is using to retrofit with its self-driving sensors and software.
It’s not for commercial development or consumer use — at least not yet. It will be used to transport Apple employees between its headquarters. Even that project is unlikely to be finished this year, according to sources. While Apple and Volkswagen could build to a more meaningful partnership, it’s been slow going.
2018-05-30 14:46:54-04:00 Read the full story.
CloudQuant Thoughts… Three articles on Apple, another old hand in today’s fast-moving tech industry but whilst they are rarely first to the party they are often best and their ongoing targeting of  the “cream” of each user base has delivered consistent returns.

Google will end Project Maven military contract in 2019

Google is ending its involvement with Project Maven, the controversial Pentagon research program that sought to use AI to improve object recognition in military drones.
Diane Greene, head of Google Cloud, told employees during a Friday meeting that the company will let its current contract with the Defense Department lapse in 2019 and that it will not pursue a new one, according to the New York Times and Gizmodo. The announcement comes shortly after Google said it would draft an ethics policy to guide its involvement in future military projects — one that would explicitly ban the use of artificial intelligence in weaponry.
2018-06-01 00:00:00 Read the full story at Venturebeat. Read the full story at CNN.  Read the full story at GeekWire. Read the full story at the New York Times.
CloudQuant Thoughts… I have never seen such a widely reported AI story. Everyone covered this one!

Nvidia HGX-2 Server Platform Targets HPC, AI Workloads

More than a decade ago, Nvidia executives championed general-purpose GPUs as accelerators for high-performance computing workloads. They would complement processors to enable servers to accelerate application performance while keeping a lid on power consumption. Now, at a time when modern workloads are demanding even more compute power, the company is continuing to position GPUs as the primary computing engine.
At Nvidia’s GTC show in Taiwan, CEO Jensen Huang unveiled the HGX-2, a server platform designed to address the needs of both high-performance computing (HPC) and artificial intelligence (AI) workloads. The platform includes 16 of Nvidia’s Tesla V100 Tensor Core GPUs that are linked via the company’s NVSwitch interconnect fabric, which essentially enables the 16 graphics engines to work as a single GPU. The first system to leverage the HGX-2 platform was Nvidia’s upcoming DGX-2, which delivers up to 2 petaflops of performance and 512GB of HBM2 high-bandwidth memory, according to company officials.
2018-05-30 00:00:00 Read the full story.
CloudQuant Thoughts… Amazing power! But Can It Run Doom?

Below the fold…

BlueData Introduces Turnkey Solution for AI and Machine Learning

BlueData, provider of a big-data-as-a-service (BDaaS) software platform, has launched a new solution to accelerate deployment of artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning (ML), and deep learning (DL) applications in the enterprise. The BlueData AI/ML Accelerator solution includes software and professional services to deploy containerized multi-node sandbox environments for exploratory use cases with TensorFlow and other ML/DL tools.
According to BlueData, AI and ML/DL have moved into the mainstream with a broad range of data-driven enterprise applications such as credit card fraud detection, stock market prediction for financial trading, credit risk modeling for insurance, genomics and precision medicine, disease detection and diagnosis, natural language processing (NLP) for customer service, autonomous driving and connected car IoT use cases, and more.
2018-05-31 00:00:00 Read the full story.

Automating Customer Support With Human-Like Virtual Agents (Interview with Rachael Rekart of Autodesk)

Today, we sit down with Rachael Rekart, as she shares her insights on the process of developing a successful conversational agent for customer engagement. Watch the interview to learn:

  • The development process for AVA, Autodesk’s customer support assistant, and her advice for selecting a budget, software support, and design philosophy for startup teams looking to implement their own conversational agents.
  • Lessons gleaned from observing the differences in how customers behave with a human assistant versus an automated assistant.
  • Advice on the types of expertise that you’ll need when assembling a team to build and support an effective conversational agent for your company.

2018-06-01 06:35:25+00:00 Read the full story.

Looker Boosts Data Science Capabilities in Latest Platform Release

Looker, a data platform provider, is releasing new tools and integrations to optimize data science workflows.
Looker is improving its governed data workflow with an SDK for R and connections for Python, as well as streamed and merged results, Google TensorFlow integrations, and clean, visual recommendations for users.
“We’re focused on preparation that happens which a lot of research will tell you takes up 70-80% of data scientists time and the operationalization piece that comes after,” said Daniel Mintz, chief data scientist at Looker. “What we’re really focused on is saving data scientists’ time and increasing their accuracy by helping them access data across their organization in a governed and version-controlled environment so what they feed into their models is correct and leverages everybody’s knowledge in the organization.”
2018-05-30 00:00:00 Read the full story.

How To Use Data & Predictive Analytics To Design Promotions For Brick-&-Mortar Stores

Traditional brick-and-mortar (B&M) stores are under immense pressure due to the threat from Amazon and are often trying to compete by putting many products on attractive promotions. While Amazon uses sophisticated predictive analysis to personalize their marketing strategies and promotions, most brick-and-mortar stores do not have the resources to experiment and learn.
In fact, 30% of promotions run by B&M stores could be toxic – making less money than the baseline situation. This happens when the margin depletion due to discounting is not adequately made up by a sales lift.
2018-06-04 10:13:34+00:00 Read the full story.

BlueData Invites AI/ML Developers to Play in Its BDaaS Sandbox

Kids love to play in physical sandboxes. Developers love to “play” in virtual sandboxes.
BlueData, which offers a new-gen big-data-as-a-service (BDaaS) software platform, has made available a new environment for AI and machine-learning developers to try out new ideas and have fun testing them. This is a new turnkey package that enables accelerated deployment of artificial intelligence, machine learning and deep learning applications in the enterprise.
Turns out you can’t build these applications too quickly. They’re too much in demand from all sectors of the IT world. And once one is up and running, the next one is ready to come into action.
2018-06-01 00:00:00 Read the full story.

6 New AI Features In Android P That Will Make Your Smartphone Even Smarter

At this years I/O Developers Conference, Google gave us the first glimpse of the new features that will come with the next version of its mobile operating system. With Android P, Google has put artificial intelligence and machine learning at the core of its operating system and focuses on digital wellbeing and simplicity. This AI-powered OS will dramatically change the way we use our smartphones. “Android P makes a smartphone smarter, helping it learn from and adapt to the user. Your apps can take advantage of the latest in machine intelligence to help you reach more users and offer new kinds of experiences,” Google said in a blog post.
Let’s take a look at the brand new AI-powered features that are coming to Google’s latest mobile operating system Android P…
2018-06-01 05:07:42+00:00 Read the full story.

Why Data Scientists Shouldn’t Rely More On P-Values In ML Experiments

Statistical concepts go hand-in-hand with machine learning, but may not always fulfill capabilities to the latter. At times, machine learning models cannot perform better if certain statistical revisions are made in them. Then again, it is open to interpretation and depends on the problem which the ML algorithms aim to solve. In this article, we consider a specific case called ‘p-values’ in statistics and discuss how it affects machine learning in general.
2018-06-01 04:54:34+00:00 Read the full story.

Policy Gradients in a Nutshell – Towards Data Science

Reinforcement Learning (RL) refers to both the learning problem and the sub-field of machine learning which has lately been in the news for great reasons. RL based systems have now beaten world champions of Go, helped operate datacenters better and mastered a wide variety of Atari games. The research community is seeing many more promising results. With enough motivation, let us now take a look at the Reinforcement Learning problem.
2018-06-02 21:46:22.782000+00:00 Read the full story.

Meet MIUI 10, Xiaomi’s New Artificial Intelligence-Enabled Interface

Chinese internet giant Xiaomi on Thursday launched their latest version of the MIUI interface, called the MIUI 10. They launched it along with their newest smartphone Mi 8, which runs on the MIUI 10 operating system
Interestingly, artificial intelligence is one of the key components of the MIUI 10 operating system. Some of the AI features include AI Portrait which offers a software feature to allow phones to take photos with the bokeh effect without needing dual cameras. MIUI 10-powered phones will be able to use algorithms to identify the foreground and blur the background.
2018-06-01 13:13:48+00:00 Read the full story.

June Edition: Probability, Statistics & Machine Learning – 10 must read articles

  • Probability concepts explained (Intro, Maximum likelihood estimation, Bayesian inference for parameter estimation).
  • The 10 Statistical Techniques Data Scientists Need to Master
  • Statistics for people in a hurry
  • Data science concepts you need to know!
  • Beyond Accuracy: Precision and Recall
  • Stranger Things: Five lessons for analyzing and communicating data
  • How To Ace Data Science Interviews: Statistics
  • On Average, You’re Using the Wrong Average
  • A One-Stop Shop for Principal Component Analysis
  • Interpreting machine learning models

2018-06-01 16:42:42.393000+00:00 Read the full story.

How To Get Google Lens And Which Smartphones Are Compatible?

Google Lens was one of the company’s biggest announcements in 2017, and they have greatly expanded which phones have Google Lens after an initial launch exclusive to the Pixel. We detail how to get Google Lens if it works on your phone and how to start using the features.
Google Lens is an AI-powered tech that combines your smartphone camera and deep machine learning to both detect an object and understand what it’s seeing. After recognizing an object, it can give you contextual actions based on what you see, and learning how to get Google Lens on your phone may help you be able to take advantage of these excellent conveniences – even if you don’t have a Pixel phone.
2018-06-01 14:50:00-04:00 Read the full story.

Top 5 Deep Learning Research Papers You Must Read In 2018

Research work in Deep Learning (DL) has taken an innovative stance. Rather than using it to better AI and ML technologies, DL research is seeing new ideas being explored in critical areas such as healthcare and banking. We have listed down the top research papers on DL which are worth reading and have an interesting take on the subject. These papers were published in the recently concluded International Conference on Learning Representations in Vancouver, Canada, in May 2018.

  • Spherical CNNs
  • Can Recurrent Neural Networks Warp Time?
  • Learning How To Explain Neural Networks: PatternNet And PatternAttribution
  • Lifelong Learning With Dynamically Expandable Networks
  • Wasserstein Auto-Encoders

2018-05-29 11:22:26+00:00 Read the full story.

10 ambitious predictions for how VR/AR will shape our world

Last week I will joined hundreds of commercial VR and AR experts in London to participate in VR World 2018. The two-day conference featured sessions from industry leaders pioneering immersive technology in such fields as manufacturing, automotive, entertainment, healthcare, and many others.
One of the benefits of bringing together VR and AR industry leaders is to facilitate collaboration and work together on a unified vision for this new technology.
2018-06-02 00:00:00 Read the full story.

Why hasn’t big tech cleaned up its mess?

The extraordinary backlash against big tech is rooted in three basic issues that have upset consumers:

  1. Unwittingly giving foreign hackers (and private individuals as well as companies) the tools to attack the bedrock of our democracy
  2. Turning the Internet into a giant echo chamber, reinforcing the biases of users and shielding them from other points of view
  3. Exploiting user data to become a commodity without making people aware of (or giving them the ability to understand) what is going on.

The obvious solution for big tech is to re-establish public trust by solving these problems. So why aren’t they fixed yet? Protecting user privacy — as well as preventing election interference — isn’t just a matter of accepting lower profits. Facebook, Twitter, Google, and other tech giants face huge technical challenges along with user resistance as they try to close Pandora’s box.
Here, specifically, are the three main barriers to fixing the trust problem…
2018-06-03 00:00:00 Read the full story.

3 Stocks to Buy and Hold for 50 Years

Let’s get this out of the way right up front: I don’t think there is any stock that you can buy and simply ignore for decades. The pace of technological innovation, changing consumer habits, and demographic shifts all make this virtually impossible.
That said, there are companies with advantages making them likely not only to still be in your portfolio in your golden years, but also to continue to produce market-beating returns.
Alphabet made its fortunes on the back of Google’s search leadership — and the company still controls an estimated 90% of the worldwide search market. This sheer dominance has made the company one of the leaders in online advertising, with an estimated 39% of the digital ad market in the U.S. last year. It also provided Alphabet with plenty of cash to invest in emerging technologies, the largest of which is artificial intelligence.
One of the most visible demonstrations of Google’s AI investment is its self-driving-car spin-off Waymo. The company has driven more than 6 million miles on public roads, and more than 2.7 billion simulated miles last year alone.
2018-06-03 00:00:00 Read the full story.

Nvidia launches Isaac robot platform with Jetson Xavier robot processor

Nvidia launched its Nvidia Isaac robot platform today to power the next generation of autonomous machines, bringing artificial intelligence capabilities to robots for manufacturing, logistics, agriculture, construction, and many other industries.
Launched at Computex 2018 in Taiwan by Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang, the Nvidia Isaac platform includes new hardware, software, and a virtual-world robot simulator that makes it easy for developers to create new kinds of robots.
2018-06-04 00:00:00 Read the full story.

Must know Information Theory concepts in Deep Learning (AI)

Information theory is an important field that has made significant contribution to deep learning and AI, and yet is unknown to many. Information theory can be seen as a sophisticated amalgamation of basic building blocks of deep learning: calculus, probability and statistics. Some examples of concepts in AI that come from Information theory or related fields:

  • Popular cross-entropy loss function
  • Building decision trees on basis of maximum information gain
  • Viterbi algorithm widely used in NLP and Speech
  • Concept of encoder-decoder popularly used in Machine Translation RNNs and various other type of models

2018-06-03 14:15:47.242000+00:00 Read the full story.

Google and Amazon back CTRL Labs, SenseTime raises $620 million

  • SenseTime, the Chinese A.I. start-up, raised $620 million not even two months after closing a $600 million round.
  • Daimler led a $175 funding round for Taxify, a rival to Uber and Lyft that is operating a ride-hailing service in Europe and Africa.
  • CTRL-labs raised $28 million for wearable tech that would allow people to mentally control computers or other devices.

2018-06-01 00:00:00 Read the full story.

3 Autonomous-Driving Chip Stocks That Look Ready to Rally

Self-driving cars can’t seem to stay out of the news these days for all the wrong reasons.
But it’s becoming increasingly clear that autonomous vehicles are the future of personal transport – and that the future is coming fast. That, in turn, is driving attention to the big companies that have equally big exposure to the self-driving vehicle trend.
One of the best ways to play the autonomous vehicle trend right now is with the chipmakers. The companies that make the “brains” behind self-driving cars own some of the most defensible intellectual property in the space right now. And beyond exposure to existing self-driving car programs, partnering with chipmakers provides a way for the scores of carmakers playing catch-up on their self-driving car tech to accelerate their pace.
2018-05-30 19:02:42-04:00 Read the full story.

Skully COO Reveals the Future of Smart Technology and Motorcycles

Motorcycle riding season is getting underway — and there’s a giant cloud hanging over the industry. It’s the question everyone has been asking: ‘Will millennials start riding and (more importantly) start buying motorcycles again?” Well, the jury is still out.
But, there are some interesting things happening in the industry that make me hopeful, especially when it comes to augmented reality and artificial intelligence.
Meet Skully Technologies, an augmented reality, artificial intelligence, wearable tech company. Its first product is a motorcycle helmet that has augmented reality and artificial intelligence features. It’s called the Skully Fenix AR. Riders will get their hands on it later this summer at a price point of $1,899.
2018-06-03 08:20:00-04:00 Read the full story.

Surging Demand Drives Record Q1 Revenue Growth for Server Makers: IDC

The global server market is continuing to expand, driven by a broad range of factors including demand from large cloud service providers to the rise of modern workloads such as artificial intelligence and analytics.
Established server original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) such as Dell and Hewett Packard Enterprise as well are original design manufacturers (ODMs) are handling much of the demand from the largest hyperscale cloud services.
2018-05-31 00:00:00 Read the full story.

Japan looks to launch driverless car system in Tokyo by 2020

TOKYO (Reuters) – A self-driving car service could be on Tokyo’s public roads in time for the 2020 Olympics as Japan looks to drive investment in new technology to drive economic growth, according to a government strategic review announced on Monday.
2018-06-04 08:21:54+00:00 Read the full story.

HTC Unveils DeepQ AI Platform For Hospitals, Manufacturers

HTC has unveiled its DeepQ artificial intelligence platform that’s designed for healthcare units and manufacturers. The company has also revealed that the platform is getting AR/VR integration by next year.
Digitimes reported Friday that HTC’s healthcare division, called DeepQ, has launched an AI platform of the same name. According to the Taiwanese firm, the new platform is primarily designed for hospitals and manufacturing enterprises.
2018-06-01 10:59:21-04:00 Read the full story.

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