AAAI AI-Alert for Apr 10, 2018

Local and foreign teams face off at RoboCup Iran Open

Al Jazeera

At least 24 teams from 11 countries, including Germany, Turkey, China, Singapore and South Korea, have competed with local teams for the 2018 robotics football cup in Tehran, Iran. The 13th RoboCup Iran Open included a number of robotic football leagues, as well as teams focused on rescue and de-mining simulations, home applications and unmanned aerial vehicle operation. A team from Leipzig University of Applied Sciences won in the football standard league championship, while a team from Iran's Qazvin Islamic Azad University won the overall trophy by winning in seven categories. RoboCup is an international research and education initiative that researches artificial intelligence and its utility for future applications while fostering interest among young students in robotics. At the opening of the event last week, Sourena Sattari, Iran's vice president for science and technology, called for an overhaul in policy to help young robotics experts find jobs and outlets for their work.

Amazon Brings Machine Learning Smarts To Edge Computing Through AWS Greengrass


Amazon has been investing in all the three key areas - IoT, edge computing, and machine learning. AWS IoT is a mature connected devices platform that can deliver scalable M2M, bulk device on-boarding, digital twins and analytics along with tight integration with AWS Lambda for dynamic rules. AWS Greengrass extends AWS IoT to the edge by delivering local M2M, rules engine, and routing capabilities. The most recent addition, Amazon SageMaker, brought scalable machine learning service to AWS. Customers can use it for evolving trained models based on popular algorithms.

Salford University robot 'is like one of us'

BBC News

A robot invented at Salford University can complete household chores, raise the alarm in an emergency and even detect a gas leak.

People must retain control of autonomous vehicles


Driverless vehicles are being tested on public roads in a number of countries.Credit: Prostock/Getty Last month, for the first time, a pedestrian was killed in an accident involving a self-driving car. A sports-utility vehicle controlled by an autonomous algorithm hit a woman who was crossing the road in Tempe, Arizona. The safety driver inside the vehicle was unable to prevent the crash. Although such accidents are rare, their incidence could rise as more vehicles that are capable of driving without human intervention are tested on public roads. In the past year, several countries have passed laws to pave the way for such trials.

Stop griping about Siri and get Apple's iPhone assistant to work better

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

Now available, Apple's smart speaker has integrated Siri support, so wake it up and ask a question or give a command. You probably know about Siri's funny responses to questions like "What's the meaning of life?" or "Are you alive?" And you may have complained when the assistant stumbles or can't follow your question. Spoiler alert: This column won't show you how to make Siri fault-proof. But it will help you get more out of it, particularly when you're in situations where you couldn't or shouldn't be using your hands.

U.S. Congressional Panels Probe Whether Russia Got Facebook Data: Sources

U.S. News

Among the issues investigators on the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee and Democrats on the House Intelligence Committee are digging into are whether IRA and other Russian organizations used any Facebook data, the sources said, speaking on condition of anonymity. Also, whether the use of such data had any impact on the U.S. election, and how much Facebook data may have been acquired by Russian entities, the sources said.

Russia's new mail delivery drone crashes into wall during inaugural flight

The Independent - Tech

A postal drone in Russia crashed into a wall and smashed into pieces during its maiden flight. The unmanned aerial vehicle took off to deliver a small package to a village near Ulan-Ude, a city in Siberia, but hit a three-storey building shortly after lifting off from a mini launch pad in front of a crowd of spectators. The drone had been touted as a new way to deliver post in the rural Buryatia region, located more than 2,700 miles from the Russian capital Moscow. Video footage of the crash showed the vehicle taking off before veering into the apartment building and showering onlookers with debris. No one was harmed in the incident.

Miniature human brains with their own blood vessels grown in lab

New Scientist

Miniature human brains with their own blood vessels have been grown in the lab for the first time. The achievement could enable researchers to grow bigger organoids to better help us study and understand how the brain works. Organoids are small, 3D clumps of tissue that behave more naturally in the lab than traditional, flat cell cultures.

Robot heads for North Sea oil rigs in 'world first' scheme


An autonomous robot will be deployed to an offshore oil and gas platform in the North Sea later this year, in a first for the sector. The £4m project's backers said the move was designed to take humans out of dangerous and dull jobs, and reinvent oil and gas as an industry of the future. Under the pilot scheme, the robot will initially be deployed at the French oil firm Total's gas plant on Shetland before being sent to join the 120 workers on the company's Alwyn platform, 440km north-east of Aberdeen. The machine, made by Austrian firm Taurob and supported on the software side by German university TU Darmstadt, will be used for visual inspections and detecting gas leaks. Rebecca Allison, asset integrity solution centre manager at the publicly-funded Oil and Gas Technology Centre, insisted autonomous robots would not be used to cut the wage burden of offshore workers who are paid a premium for working in tough, remote conditions.