Major convenience store operator Seven-Eleven Japan Co. has launched an experimental outlet in Tokyo with an unmanned payment system and facial recognition technology. The facial recognition system was developed by technology giant NEC Corp. Seven-Eleven Japan plans to open such outlets in locations where customers can be identified, such as office buildings and factories, after resolving various technological challenges. The trial shop, located in a building that hosts NEC group companies, can be used only by their employees. The NEC-developed system checks customers' faces against pre-registered facial images of employees using cameras when they enter the outlet and make payments. After shoppers scan barcodes on products in the self-checkout area, the purchase amounts are automatically deducted from their salaries.
It's hard to live a day in the developed world without using a Unilever product. The multinational manufactures and distributes over 400 consumer goods brands covering food and beverages, domestic cleaning products and personal hygiene. With so many processes to coordinate and manage, artificial intelligence is quickly becoming essential for organizations of its scale. This applies to both research and development as well as the huge support infrastructure needed for a business with 170,000 employees. Recently it announced that it had developed machine learning algorithms capable of sniffing your armpit and telling you whether you are suffering from body odors.
A drone flying more than 20 times the allowed height came within 15m (50ft) of a Boeing 737 approaching a runway at Stansted Airport in Essex. The plane was flying at 10,000ft (3km) and coming in to land on 17 August when the captain spotted the drone. The first officer then saw "a dark-coloured square or rectangle-shaped object pass down the right side of the aircraft with minimal separation". The UK Airprox Board rated the risk of collision as the highest possible. After the incident, which happened at 16:36 BST, the plane was inspected on the ground and found no evidence of contact or damage.
For years tech companies such as Amazon, Alphabet and Uber have promised us delivery drones bringing goods to our doorsteps in a matter of minutes. So why are they taking so long to arrive? If our skies are to become as crowded as our streets, airspace rules need updating to prevent accidents, terrorist attacks, and related problems, such as noise pollution. But that's easier said than done. According to a recent study by Nasa, the noise made by road traffic was "systematically judged to be less annoying" than the high-pitched buzzing made by drones.
A "high-tech robot" praised on Russian TV was actually a man in wearing a costume. No one said the "most modern robot" at a Russian technology event was a real robot, but it appears no one said it wasn't either. So, some journalists covering the state-sponsored event for children had a lot of questions when Robot Boris appeared on stage talking and dancing. He also could answer math equations. Coverage on Russian state TV praised the "hi-tech robot" at the annual Proyektoria technology forum, The Guardian reports, even praising its intelligent dance moves.
In the early 1970s, a British grad student named Geoff Hinton began to make simple mathematical models of how neurons in the human brain visually understand the world. Artificial neural networks, as they are called, remained an impractical technology for decades. But in 2012, Hinton and two of his grad students at the University of Toronto used them to deliver a big jump in the accuracy with which computers could recognize objects in photos. Within six months, Google had acquired a startup founded by the three researchers. Previously obscure, artificial neural networks were the talk of Silicon Valley.
AI and deep learning are invading the enterprise. NVIDIA Corporation is in the midst of an unprecedented run, delivering targeted technology and products that enable companies to learn from their data. These learnings can lead to competitive insights, recognizing new trends, fueling control systems for intelligent infrastructure, or simply providing predictive capabilities to better manage the business. The challenge in deploying these systems is one of balance. Storage in the datacenter has evolved to service the needs of mainstream business applications, not highly-parallel deep learning systems.
At first bite, it seems no more than a clever way to boost sales at the expense of a competitor. When a hungry customer walks into a McDonald's (or within 600 feet of one), they can use the Burger King app to order a Whopper for a penny. The app will then provide directions to the nearest BK, where the now famished customer can pick it up. The promotion, good until December 12, is called the Whopper Detour. Burger King's marketing chief told CNN Business that more than 50,000 people have cashed in on the deal, and the fast food giant's app jumped to first place in the iTunes App Store's Food and Drink category.
Chris Lister, vice president of operations of the Tesla Gigafactory, provides insight during a tour on Dec. 3, 2018. Big numbers are one way to appreciateTesla's gargantuan Nevada Gigafactory. Operating 24-hours per day in shifts, workers produce enough battery packs and drive units in a week to power 5,300 of Tesla's Model 3 sedans. Tesla says at 5.4 million square feet, roughly equivalent to 50 Home Depot stores, the factory is just 30 percent of its potential size and is already producing more batteries than all other carmakers combined. With more than 7,000 Tesla workers, the factory is responsible for increasing manufacturing employment in the Reno-Sparks area by 55 percent since 2014, according to the Governor's Office of Economic Development.
A Bristol-based robotics company, Open Bionics, has developed the world's first medically-certified 3D-printed artificial arm for amputees. The Hero Arm, with its artificial hand, can fit children as young as nine years old. Its motor is controlled by muscles on the residual limb, allowing the user to carry out many tasks as if the hand was real. Open Bionics hope the £5,000 bionic arm could be made available on the NHS. BBC Click's Kathleen Hawkins went to meet Raimi, who says the arm has given her a new confidence.