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As companies embrace AI, it’s a job-seeker’s market

SAN FRANCISCO: Dozens of employers looking to hire the next generation of tech employees descended on the University of California, Berkeley in September to meet students at an electrical engineering and computer science career fair. Boris Yue, 20, was one of thousands of student attendees, threading his way among fellow job-seekers to meet recruiters. But Yue wasn’t worried about so much potential competition.  While the job outlook for those with computer skills is generally good, Yue is in an even more rarified…

France prepares 1.5 billion euro push to foster AI research

PARIS: President Emmanuel Macron is to unveil Thursday a bold plan to make France a centre of reference for artificial intelligence (AI) research, aimed at drawing homegrown and foreign talent in a field dominated by US and Chinese players. The proposals, which Macron's office said would be backed by 1.5 billion euros ($1.85 billion) in public funds, follow months of interviews with AI experts worldwide by star mathematician Cedric Villani, now a lawmaker in Macron's Republic On The Move (LREM) party. Villani's report,…

Top experts warn against ‘malicious use’ of AI

PARIS: Artificial intelligence could be deployed by dictators, criminals and terrorists to manipulate elections and use drones in terrorist attacks, more than two dozen experts said on Wednesday as they sounded the alarm over misuse of the technology. In a 100-page analysis, they outlined a rapid growth in cybercrime and the use of "bots" to interfere with news gathering and penetrate social media among a host of plausible scenarios in the next five to 10 years. "Our report focuses on ways in which people could do…

Google Brain co-founder teams with Foxconn to bring AI to factories

Andrew Ng, co-founder of some of Alphabet-owned Google’s most prominent artificial intelligence projects, on Thursday launches a new venture with iPhone assembler Foxconn to bring AI and so-called machine learning onto the factory floor. Consumers now experience AI mostly through image recognition to help categorize digital photographs and speech recognition that helps power digital voice assistants such as Apple Siri or Amazon.com Alexa. But at a press briefing in San Francisco two days before Ng’s Landing.ai venture…

Facebook to help prevent suicide

Facebook Inc will expand its pattern recognition software to other countries after successful tests in the U.S. to detect users with suicidal intent, the world’s largest social media network said on Monday. Facebook began testing the software in the United States in March, when the company started scanning the text of Facebook posts and comments for phrases that could be signals of an impending suicide. Facebook has not disclosed many technical details of the program, but the company said its software searches for…

In new leap for AI: computer chips that can smell

ARUSHA, Tanzania: Nigerian neuroscientist Oshiorenoya Agabi may have found a way to solve one of life’s puzzling dilemmas: how to make air travel pleasant again. What if you could skip tedious airport security lines, while a special device able to sniff out explosives works silently in the background? This is only one of the possible uses of what Agabi says is the world’s first neurotechnology device developed by his Silicon Valley-based start-up Koniku and unveiled at the TEDGlobal conference in Tanzania Sunday.…

Google AI beats Chinese master in ancient game of Go

BEIJING: A Google artificial intelligence program defeated a Chinese grand master at the ancient board game Go on Tuesday, a major feather in the cap for the firm's AI ambitions as it looks to woo Beijing to gain re-entry into the country. In the first of three planned games in the eastern water town of Wuzhen, the AlphaGo program held off China's world number one Ke Jie in front of Chinese officials and Google parent Alphabet's chief executive Eric Schmidt. The victory over the world's top player - which many thought…

Facebook virtual assistant to offer suggestions during Messenger chat

Facebook has announced that virtual assistance M powered by artificial intelligence will launch in the US to provide suggestions during Messenger. M offers suggestions by popping into an open conversation to suggest relevant content and capabilities to enrich the way people communicate and get things done. Product Managers Laurent Landowski and Kemal El Moujahid made the announcement in a blog post reminding that M was announced over a year ago as a small AI experiment powered by humans that could fulfill almost any…

Nexar: This app plans to revolutionize driving and road safety

The artificial intelligence (AI) dash-cam application for android and iPhone users, Nexar, is all you need to ride your car safely. While you are driving, this app will record all dangerous events, whether someone overtakes you, runs the red light, or crashes into your car in an unfortunate event. “Using machine learning and computer vision, the Nexar app interprets the direction, speed, and acceleration of every car it sees and paints a real-time picture of the road conditions, based on the data from every sensor in…

Microsoft buys Canadian AI startup Maluuba

Microsoft announced Friday a deal to buy Maluuba, a Montreal startup focused on making machines able to think the way people do. Bringing on board Maluuba co-founders Kaheer Suleman and Sam Pasupalak, along with their team from the startup, was intended to accelerate Microsoft's "ability to develop software so computers can read, write and converse naturally," the company said. Microsoft did not disclose financial terms of the acquisition. "Maluuba's vision is to advance toward a more general artificial intelligence by…