Can China Grow Its Own AI Tech Base?


Last December, China's top AI scientists gathered in Suzhou for the annual Wu Wenjun AI Science and Technology Award ceremony. They had every reason to expect a feel-good appreciation of China's accomplishments in AI. Yet the mood was decidedly downbeat. "After talking about our advantages, everyone mainly wants to talk about the shortcomings of Chinese AI capabilities in the near-term--where are China's AI weaknesses," said Li Deyi, the president of the Chinese Association for Artificial Intelligence. More than two years after the release of the New Generation Artificial Intelligence Development Plan (AIDP), China's top AI experts worry that Beijing's AI push will not live up to the hype.

Pentagon Official Warns China Exporting Killer AI Drones To Middle East


US Defense Secretary Mark Esper warned during a speech on artificial intelligence at the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence public conference Tuesday (Nov. "Beijing has made it abundantly clear that it intends to be the world leader in AI by 2030," Esper said. "While the US faces a mighty task in transitioning the world's most advanced military to new AI-enabled systems, China believes it can leapfrog our current technology and go straight to the next generation." Middle East countries banned from purchasing advanced US drones due to a weapons embargo are increasingly gravitating towards Chinese defense manufacturers. The drone sales are supporting China's expansion across the Middle East, which is home to many strategic US military bases, as well as, future and current routes for Beijing's Belt and Road Initiative.

Microsoft and Amazon are at the center of an ACLU lawsuit on facial recognition


The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) is pressing forward with a lawsuit involving the facial recognition software offered by Amazon and Microsoft to government clients. In a complaint filed in a Massachusetts federal court, the ACLU asked for a variety of different records from the government, including inquiries to companies, meetings about the piloting or testing of facial recognition, voice recognition, and gait recognition technology, requests for proposals, and licensing agreements. At the heart of the lawsuit are Amazon's Rekognition and Microsoft's Face API, both facial recognition products that are available for customers of the companies' cloud platforms. The ACLU has also asked for more details on the US government's use of voice recognition and gait recognition, which is the automated process of comparing images of the way a person walks in order to identify them. Police in Shanghai and Beijing are already using gait-analysis tools to identify people.

A Sculptural Tower Of Bamboo Has Been Installed In Beijing


AntiStatics Architecture has designed a bamboo tower installation named "Woven Grove", that was exhibited at Design China Beijing 2019. The installation is an exploration of the inherent material behaviors of bamboo and has been inspired by the craft-based practice of weaving. As the properties of bamboo are highly pliable and flexible, they were able to weave the pieces together to create a highly rigid and lightweight structure. The designers used customized artificial intelligence algorithms as a means of generating the form, before creating small scale models from the same material, that would allow them to see how the bamboo would react before creating the full-scale version. They then created the installation in sections, which were then fastened together on-site.

China wildlife park sued for forcing visitors to submit to facial recognition scan


A Chinese wildlife park has sparked outcry after making visitors submit to facial recognition scanning, with one law professor taking it to court. Professor Guo Bing is taking action against Hangzhou safari park, after it replaced its existing fingerprinting system with the new technology. "I [filed this case] because I feel that not only my [privacy] rights are being infringed upon but those of many others," Guo, from Zhejiang University of Sci-Tech, said according to an audio recording of an interview posted by state-run Beijing News. Guo is attempting to force the park to return the money he paid for an annual pass and highlight its misuse of data gathered by the software. A court in Fuyang has accepted his case.

Artificial Intelligence in the Courtroom: Are We Ready for This?


Expensive, complicated, and bureaucratic legal processes constrain the judicial system. They make the wheels of justice grind excruciatingly slow. Case in point: Beijing, China, launched an online litigation service for "repetitive basic work". The high-tech facility features a female AI judge. The e-service offers a complete user experience with human facial expressions and bodily gestures and actions.

Kaldi Creator Daniel Povey Joining Xiaomi in Beijing


Daniel Povey, the main developer of the widely used open-source speech recognition toolkit Kaldi, tweeted today that he is likely joining Chinese smartphone giant Xiaomi at its Beijing headquarters to work on a next generation "PyTorch-y Kaldi." I am very close to signing an agreement to work for Xiaomi in Beijing. Would leave before end of 2019, and would hire a small team there to work on next-gen PyTorch-y' Kaldi. Povey is a leader in voice recognition research, known for his contributions to speech recognition and language processing technologies. He and other researchers first created Kaldi as part of a Johns Hopkins University workshop in 2009.

Long-term Joint Scheduling for Urban Traffic Artificial Intelligence

Recently, the traffic congestion in modern cities has become a growing worry for the residents. As presented in Baidu traffic report, the commuting stress index has reached surprising 1.973 in Beijing during rush hours, which results in longer trip time and increased vehicular queueing. Previous works have demonstrated that by reasonable scheduling, e.g, rebalancing bike-sharing systems and optimized bus transportation, the traffic efficiency could be significantly improved with little resource consumption. However, there are still two disadvantages that restrict their performance: (1) they only consider single scheduling in a short time, but ignoring the layout after first reposition, and (2) they only focus on the single transport. However, the multi-modal characteristics of urban public transportation are largely under-exploited. In this paper, we propose an efficient and economical multi-modal traffic scheduling scheme named JLRLS based on spatio -temporal prediction, which adopts reinforcement learning to obtain optimal long-term and joint schedule. In JLRLS, we combines multiple transportation to conduct scheduling by their own characteristics, which potentially helps the system to reach the optimal performance. Our implementation of an example by PaddlePaddle is available at, with an explaining video at

Doctors said the coma patients would never wake. AI knew better


Doctors said the coma patients would never wake. Artificial intelligence system developed in Beijing'will never replace doctors' but it can trace brain activity invisible to the human eye

'Mozart would have made video game music': composer Eímear Noone on a winning art form

The Guardian

Eímear Noone got into composing and conducting video game music by accident. One day, while studying music at Trinity College Dublin, a fourth-year student came to the bar she was drinking in with members of the college chapel choir and offered them a few quid to help with the orchestration on a project of his. "I have a vivid memory of sitting on a studio floor somewhere in Dublin writing choral parts with my pals and then singing them," she says. "Six months later my brother calls me in a complete tizzy and says, 'Did you work on Metal Gear Solid?' I was like, 'No!' He says, 'Well, I'm looking at your name on the screen credits right now.' And sure enough, the session she had contributed to for beer money was the soundtrack to Hideo Kojima's blockbusting adventure game. "Years later I was at the Bird's Nest in Beijing at the Olympic Stadium conducting this very piece of music," she says. Noone is now a hugely successful film and video game composer, having contributed scores for directors such as Gus Van Sant and Joe Dante, and for games, World of Warcraft, Diablo III and Hearthstone. In November, she's presenting her second series of High Score, Classic FM's agenda-setting programme dedicated to game music. Underappreciated outside of game fandom for years, the genre is now huge business with dedicated orchestras playing sold-out global concert tours. And Noone is a passionate advocate – very keen to explore and explain the unique elements of the art form. There is, of course, a foundational similarity between game and film scores – they are both composed to accompany and accentuate screened action. But while a film score needs to accompany a two-hour linear experience with specific cues and events, video game music must be there for many hours of play. Most open-word action adventures, the likes of Assassin's Creed Origins, Witcher 3 and Final Fantasy XV, offer over 100 hours of narrative, but many players will spend much longer exploring. Music scores also have two different roles in games: they accompany the non-interactive cinematic sequences that set up the story and occur throughout a game – sort of like short animated movie sequences; and they provide background music while you play. "Cinematic are scored very similarly to a movie or an animated film.