Would you watch a movie written and animated by artificial intelligence?

The next time you sit down to watch a movie, the algorithm behind your streaming service might recommend a blockbuster that was written by AI, performed

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Russia’s Quest to Lead the World in AI Is Doomed – Defense One

In 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin famously stated that whoever becomes the leader in artificial intelligence “will become the ruler of the world.” Most experts on technology and security would agree with Putin about the importance of AI, which will ultimately reshape healthcare, transportation, industry, national security, and more. Nevertheless, Moscow’s recognition of AI’s importance will not produce enough breakthroughs to obtain the technological edge that it so deeply desires. Russia will ultimately fail in its quest to become a leader in AI because of its inability to foster a culture of innovation. 

Russia’s anxieties about competing in the information age are far from new. In 1983, then-Soviet Minister of Defense Nikolai Ogarkov lamented to the New York Times that in the United States, “small children — even before they begin school — play with computers….here we don’t even have computers in every office of the Ministry of Defense.” The Soviets were concerned about Ronald Reagan’s Strategic Defense Initiative, a land and space-based missile defense system, in part due to its artificial intelligence-enabled battle management system. In short, the Soviets feared that they would be unable to compete as the information revolution accelerated. 

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has shared many of Ogarkov’s concerns about modern technology for the entirety of his political career. In 2010, Medvedev established Skolkovo Technopark, Russia’s own version of Silicon Valley, outside Moscow to foster innovation and develop breakthroughs in emerging technologies. Within five years, Skolkovo had more than 30,000 people working on a modern campus that closely resembled Google headquarters. Residents of Skolkovo received investments from Microsoft, IBM, and Intel. Nevertheless, due to corruption and state interference, many of the top innovators in Skolkovo have fled Russia and are now working in the U.S. and Europe. 

Endemic corruption, no protections for private property, and a pervasive state security apparatus make Russia a very difficult environment for innovation to flourish. Scientists want to collaborate with researchers around the world who are making headway in their respective fields. In Russia, the state has traditionally impeded the free flow of knowledge across its borders because Moscow views uncontrolled information as a political and national security threat. 

Yet Russian leaders seem not to have learned from the difficulties with Skolkovo. In February, Putin announced that the Russian government will publish an AI strategy by the middle of June 2019. Unsurprisingly, much of Moscow’s focus is on using AI to improve Russia’s military capabilities. Last year, the Russian Ministry of Defense organized a competition to foster breakthroughs in the field. Additionally, there is an Artificial Intelligence Association that is considering the broad impacts of AI on society. This month, it is a key sponsor of a conference aimed at developing technologies to expand the prowess of the Russian armed forces. Regardless the Russian government’s AI innovation efforts will ultimately not succeed for the same reasons that Skolkovo has failed. 

The Russian government will devote the preponderance of its AI resources to defense and national security. Thus, researchers are going to be heavily censored by the Russian security services. It will become increasingly difficult for Russian academics to have unfettered access to their Western colleagues due to security concerns. Additionally, any developments in the AI arena will be appropriated by the state, creating a disincentive for commercial investment. Thus, it is highly probable that much of Russia’s leading talent in fields relevant to AI research will leave, just like many of their Skolkovo colleagues, to work in countries that will enable them to achieve their goals. 

Russia’s political system and culture of corruption will prevent it from becoming a center of AI innovation. Ultimately, it will continue to fall farther behind the United States, China, and Western Europe in AI research and other advanced technologies. Just like in the 1980s, Russia is not equipped to effectively compete in a world that is so heavily shaped by the information revolution. 

Aaron Bateman is pursuing a PhD in the history of science and technology at Johns Hopkins University. He also served as a U.S. Air Force intelligence officer with assignments at the National Security Agency and the Pentagon. He has published on Russian foreign policy, technology, and diplomacy. 

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Google is killing off its Gmail substitute app before it could become popular

Inbox came with provisions for snoozing emails to later, trying latest artificial intelligence (AI)-powered experiences like Smart Reply, Nudges, high-priority notifications

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Robert Downey Jr. Really Wants to Save The World – KOSI 101

Robert Downey Jr. played Iron Man for the last 10 years who fought hard to save the world, had a really cool AI assistant named Jarvis and he himself was super knowledgeable with all things tech.   I guess it really rubbed off on Robert as he has taken a huge interest in really saving the world and using technology to do so.  He has shared his concern for global warming and the “mess” we humans leave behind – pollution.

In April of next year he plans to launch The Footprint Coalition and vows to dedicate the next 11 years to making a huge difference in our environment including global warming.  He also has a YouTube Red documentary coming out regarding artificial intelligence.

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Airbus mulls single-pilot flights as Artificial Intelligence could enable autonomous planes

Skift Take Airbus acknowledges that the “explainability” of artificial intelligence is an impediment to getting regulators to sign off on certain products. Passengers will definitely need some very good explainers, too.

Though autopilot is not a new technology, Airbus’s Chief Technology Office Grazia Vittadini said the company is hoping current advances in artificial intelligence will help complete the step to completely autonomous planes.

“That’s what we’re looking into, artificial intelligence, to free up pilots from more mundane routines,” Vittadini said in an interview with Accenture CTO Paul Daugherty at Munich’s Digital Life and Design conference Sunday.

Currently, the company is working on moving to single-pilot operations, with full autonomy coming later.

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Airline executives, though reluctant to speak on the topic, would benefit from autonomous planes as they seek to cut costs and handle ongoing shortages of qualified pilots — two issues that could be addressed by efficiency improvements pilot-less planes would provide.

The biggest challenge for planemakers like Airbus is convincing regulators to approve the technology, Vittadini said.

“Explainability of artificial intelligence is a real challenge for us when it comes to the certification of products,” she said.

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Interpol Enlists Korean Startup to Track Crypto on the Dark Web

The International Criminal Police Organisation (Interpol) has announced a partnership with South Korean data intelligence startup, S2W Lab, to analyze dark web activity, including cryptocurrency transactions.

The startup announced the partnership on March 20 — with S2W Labs signing a one year contract with Interpol.

Interpol sets its sights on the dark web

S2W Lab claims to have “captured a massive amount of Dark Web data” and “established a Dark Web database.” The S2W examines the data using artificial intelligence to establish “links among multiple domains and among multiple timeframes.”

S2W boasts that it has secured several patents “on the subject of Dark Web and cryptocurrency” analysis.

Suh Sangduk, S2W Labs’ CEO, emphasized the challenges of responding to cybercrime on the dark web due to the “wide usage of cryptocurrencies.” 

He adds that the partnership will see S2W “cooperate with international investigations” to ensure that distributed ledger technologies are “used for good purposes.” 

S2W identifies black market for face-masks amid coronavirus panic

After the startup launched in September 2018, it developed methods of analysis alongside researchers from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology University.

On March 19, S2W Labs identified the formation of a black market for face-masks on Dark Web marketplaces.

The firm analyzed the prevalence of keywords pertinent to coronavirus across popular darknet markets, discovering that 10-packs of face-masks are frequently selling for between $85 and $170 on leading anonymous marketplaces.

On Feb. 20, S2W identified the personal information of 3 million Koreans that had been leaked onto the dark web. 

Interpol cracks down on cryptojacking

During January, Interpol announced that it had reduced the number of MikroTik routers infected with cryptojacking malware in South-East Asia by 78%.

Through a partnership with cybersecurity firm, Trend Micro, Interpol issued “Cryptojacking Mitigation and Prevention” guidance throughout the South-East Asian region.

The initiative resulted in the restoration of more than 20,000 affected routers.

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Will Artificial Intelligence Replace Pathologists, Radiologists, Microbiologists?

Artificial intelligence is getting really, really good. In fact, it has become so technologically advanced that some high-skilled jobs that we once believed were “robot-proof” actually are not. The biomedical profession is ripe for overhaul.

Consider a new paper in The Lancet Digital Health. Researchers developed an algorithm with 98% sensitivity and 97% specificity for detecting prostate cancer. In other words, of all the patients who really did have prostate cancer, the algorithm correctly identified 98%; of all the patients who did not have prostate cancer, the algorithm was 97% correct. That’s phenomenal accuracy. According to a press release, the algorithm identified six cases of cancer that pathologists had missed.

So, are pathologists going the way of elevator and telephone operators? Probably not, but the outlook isn’t fantastic, either. The authors of The Lancet study note that there has been a relative decline in the pathology workforce because the number of new cancer cases is outpacing the number of pathologists entering the field. So, demand for pathologists is increasing. However, AI likely will reduce the number of human pathologists that are actually needed. If, for instance, all the “easy” cases are diagnosed by computers, then that means pathologists (in combination with AI) would only be needed for the “harder” cases.

Radiologists are also in trouble. An article published in Nature in January of this year describes that AI outperforms radiologists in the detection of breast cancer. The algorithm was able to reduce the rate of both false positives and false negatives.

Not the Microbiologists, Too?

Your humble correspondent spent 10 years being trained in microbiology, first as an undergraduate then as a graduate student. At one point, I considered a career as a clinical microbiologist, in which I would be responsible for diagnosing infectious diseases.

In a traditional lab, an unknown bacterium is cultured and run through a series of metabolic tests to identify what it is. Identifying viruses is much harder. This is labor-intensive and time-consuming. So why do all this work when we now have machines that can isolate and sequence DNA, thereby identifying the microbe (including bacteria, viruses, and fungi) from its unique genetics? A company called Karius has developed a machine that can provide results within 24 hours of receiving a patient sample.

Is Any Job Robot-Proof?

While some jobs are safe for now, it appears that few if any jobs are truly robot-proof. There is even software that can write its own code, which means a robot could program itself or other robots. While I believe that fears of a Robot Apocalypse are far-fetched, self-programming computers indicate that even coders won’t be safe forever.

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Top 10 Artificial Intelligence Movies that Redefined the Field of Computer Science – DataRoot Labs

Directed and written by Alex Garland, Ex Machina also won an Oscar for the Best Achievement in Visual Effects in 2016, alongside with other 71 wins and 156 nominations. The cast of the film included Alicia Vikander, Domhnall Gleeson, and Oscar Isaac. With an estimated investment of $15,000,000, Ex Machina achieved incredible graphics quality and visual effects, which made many people love this film.

“I, Robot” was directed by Alex Proyas, and Will Smith performed the main role of detective Del Spooner in the film. Having a relatively low rating (comparing to other movies on the list) of 7.1/10 on IMDb, “I, Robot” remains a very successful film nominated for Oscar.

Directed by Greg Kohs with an original score by Academy Award nominee, Hauschka, AlphaGo chronicles a journey from the halls of Oxford, through the backstreets of Bordeaux, past the coding terminals of Google DeepMind in London, and ultimately, to the seven-day tournament in Seoul. As the drama unfolds, more questions emerge: What can artificial intelligence reveal about a 3000-year-old game? What can it teach us about humanity?

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Book it in: our top isolation reading ideas – CSIROscope

Sick of self isolation? We’ve got some reading material to keep you occupied.

During those long days at home in self isolation, the phrase ‘we’re all in this together’ can feel even more begrudging. But you know what will help take you away? A good read. Especially if you’re after an escape from all the bad news.

We’ve put together a list of our top 10 books, articles and reports to pull you out of your world for as long as it takes you to read your chosen text. We’ve got you covered for all your isolation reading needs with online reads and real books you can order online.

Top 10 isolation reading ideas

Read time: 19 minutes
Heard of the Canberra Deep Space Communication Complex (CDSCC)? Meet some of the people who have worked alongside the large radio antennas for decades.

2. Article: Magpie geese return with help from ethical AI and Indigenous Knowledge

Read time: Seven minutes
In the wetlands of Kakadu, rangers are using Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Indigenous Knowledge to are for Country. The results are promising – thousands of magpie geese are returning to roost.

Read time: A few hours
Want insight to the future of artificial intelligence (AI)? We co-developed the Artificial Intelligence Roadmap for Australia’s future. It outlines actions to capture the benefits of AI, estimated to be worth AU$22.17 trillion to the global economy by 2030.

4. Children’s book: Windcatcher: Migration of the short-tailed shearwater

Read time: Depends on your reading style/child
A short-tailed shearwater bird flies from the edge of the Southern Ocean to the rim of the Arctic Circle – and back – every year. This remarkable 30,000-kilometre journey is driven by seabird law. Find out how they fly this far. Hint: it has something to do with the wind! Windcatcher was longlisted for the Children’s Book Council of Australia Picture Book of the Year.

Read time: 10 minutes
Technology adapted from the security industry is being used to monitor fishing operations, manage the seafood supply chain and ensure the sustainability of our fisheries. Find out what technology we’re using this valuable resource.

6. Children’s book: Hollow is a Home

Read time: Depends on your reading style/child
More than 340 Australian species use hollows in trees as shelter or home. A Hollow is a Home will show you how hollows are created, why they are threatened and how to become a hollow-hunter! A Hollow is a Home was shortlisted for the Children’s Book Council of Australia Eve Pownall Award for Information Books.

Read time: A full day
What kind of country will Australia be in 2060? This is exactly the question the 2019 Australian National Outlook report investigated. To do this, we looked at two scenarios for 2060. One was a ‘slow decline’ and the other was an ‘outlook vision’. These two scenarios looked at 13 different national issues, as well as two global contexts relating to trade and action on climate change. Find out the amazing results in the report.

8. Children’s book: Imagining the Future

Read time: Depends on your reading style/child
Flying through time and flying in cars. Living underwater and living forever. Robot servants. 3D printed food. Wouldn’t it be amazing if science fiction became science fact? We have a guide to some of these unbelievable and incredible inventions.

9. Article: Itchy, scratchy and unironed: Life before our quirkiest inventions

Read time: Days
This one will be right up the alley of fans of our regular #fungifriday on Instagram. This beautiful book documents this forgotten corner of the natural world that is both beguiling and fundamental to life.

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Infographic: 10 ways tech is transforming digital marketing | Ragan Communications

Technology is progressing at a breakneck pace, and brand managers who tap into these advancements stand to gain a competitive edge.

Tools such as voice assistants and artificial intelligence are making digital marketers’ lives easier and helping create more targeted campaigns and ads. However, many marketers struggle to keep up with the these innovative tactics.

Which technological advancements should be a part of brand managers’ strategies?

Spiralytics created this infographic to help identify the technology that is disrupting the marketing landscape.

Insights include:

See the full infographic for more ways technology can improve your marketing efforts.

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