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Meet Ithaca, Artificial Intelligence that will reveal hidden secrets of ancient civilisations


The earliest form of writing originated nearly 5000 years ago in Mesopotamia (present-day Iraq), representing the Sumerian language. However, these early manuscripts, inscriptions, manuals have suffered the wrath of time. Historians have long worried about the missing texts that could give an insight into the life and culture of ancient civilisation, Artificial Intelligence has now come to their aid. Named after the Greek island in Homer's Odyssey, Ithaca, the first deep neural network will help in not only restoring the missing text of damaged inscriptions, but also identifying their original location, and establishing the date they were written. Designed to assist and expand the historian's workflow, this AI has achieved 62 per cent accuracy when restoring damaged texts and improved the accuracy of historians from 25 per cent to 72 per cent.

Requiem for a War Robot


Excerpted from War Virtually: The Quest to Automate Conflict, Militarize Data, and Predict the Future by Roberto J. González, published by the University of California Press. The blistering late afternoon wind ripped across Camp Taji, a sprawling U.S. military base north of Baghdad in an area known as the Sunni Triangle. In a desolate corner of the outpost, where the feared Iraqi Republican Guard once manufactured mustard gas, nerve agents, and other chemical weapons, a group of American soldiers and Marines solemnly gathered around an open grave, dripping sweat in the 114-degree heat. They were paying their final respects to Boomer, a fallen comrade who had been an indispensable team member for years. Days earlier, he had been literally blown apart by a roadside bomb.

Iran claims responsibility for missile barrage near US consulate in Iraq

FOX News

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what's clicking on Iran claimed responsibility Sunday for a missile barrage that struck near a sprawling U.S. consulate complex in the northern Iraqi city of Irbil, saying it was retaliation for an Israeli strike in Syria that killed two members of its Revolutionary Guard earlier this week. No injuries were reported in Sunday's attack on the city of Irbil, which marked a significant escalation between the U.S. and Iran. Hostility between the longtime foes has often played out in Iraq, whose government is allied with both countries.

The New Intelligence Game


The relevance of the video is that the browser identified the application being used by the IAI as Google Earth and, according to the OSC 2006 report, the Arabic-language caption reads Islamic Army in Iraq/The Military Engineering Unit – Preparations for Rocket Attack, the video was recorded in 5/1/2006, we provide, in Appendix A, a reproduction of the screenshot picture made available in the OSC report. Now, prior to the release of this video demonstration of the use of Google Earth to plan attacks, in accordance with the OSC 2006 report, in the OSC-monitored online forums, discussions took place on the use of Google Earth as a GEOINT tool for terrorist planning. On August 5, 2005 the user "Al-Illiktrony" posted a message to the Islamic Renewal Organization forum titled A Gift for the Mujahidin, a Program To Enable You to Watch Cities of the World Via Satellite, in this post the author dedicated Google Earth to the mujahidin brothers and to Shaykh Muhammad al-Mas'ari, the post was replied in the forum by "Al-Mushtaq al-Jannah" warning that Google programs retain complete information about their users. This is a relevant issue, however, there are two caveats, given the amount of Google Earth users, it may be difficult for Google to flag a jihadist using the functionality in time to prevent an attack plan, one possible solution would be for Google to flag computers based on searched websites and locations, for instance to flag computers that visit certain critical sites, but this is a problem when landmarks are used, furthermore, and this is the second caveat, one may not use one's own computer to produce the search or even mask the IP address. On October 3, 2005, as described in the OSC 2006 report, in a reply to a posting by Saddam Al-Arab on the Baghdad al-Rashid forum requesting the identification of a roughly sketched map, "Almuhannad" posted a link to a site that provided a free download of Google Earth, suggesting that the satellite imagery from Google's service could help identify the sketch.


AAAI Conferences

Probabilistic Classifiers Chains (PCC) offers interesting properties to solve multi-label classification tasks due to its ability to estimate the joint probability of the labels. However, PCC presents the major drawback of having a high computational cost in the inference process required to predict new samples. Lately, several approaches have been proposed to overcome this issue, including beam search and an epsilon-Approximate algorithm based on uniform-cost search. Surprisingly, the obvious possibility of using heuristic search has not been considered yet. This paper studies this alternative and proposes an admisible heuristic that, applied in combination with A* algorithm, guarantees, not only optimal predictions in terms of subset 0/1 loss, but also that it always explores less nodes than epsilon-Approximate algorithm. In the experiments reported, the number of nodes explored by our method is less than two times the number of labels for all datasets analyzed. But, the difference in explored nodes must be large enough to compensate the overhead of the heuristic in order to improve prediction time. Thus, our proposal may be a good choice for complex multi-label problems.

Iraqi militia attack on UAE a 'message from Iran'

Al Jazeera

The drone attack by a little-known armed group in Iraq on the United Arab Emirates (UAE) this week has raised questions about Baghdad's involvement in regional tensions between Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen and the Saudi-led coalition. Alwiyat al-Waad al-Haq (AWH), or the True Promise Brigades, claimed responsibility for the strike on the UAE on Wednesday, saying in a statement it launched "four drones targeting vital facilities in Abu Dhabi" in retaliation for the Emirates' policies in Iraq and Yemen. Several analysts linked the strikes to a shadowy militia Kataib Hezbollah (KH), a powerful Iran-backed Shia armed group in Iraq that has been listed by the United States as a "terrorist organisation". The incident brought to light that the UAE was now being targeted from its north and south, after three recent attacks launched by Houthi rebels in Yemen. Following the drone strikes, Iraqi Shia leader Muqtada al-Sadr condemned the attack in a statement, saying some "terrorist outlaws" have dragged Iraq into a "dangerous regional war" by targeting a Gulf state.

Iran regime's 'Death to America' wrestling head cancels match with US team after visa denial

FOX News

President Biden seeks to reenter the Iran nuclear agreement to limit the creation of enriched uranium to make nuclear weapons. In a letter sent to the president of USA Wrestling, Bruce Baumgartner, Iranian wrestler Alireza Dabir wrote, "I am very sorry to announce that the national wrestling team of the Islamic Republic of Iran, due to not granting visas to 6 members of this team, is not able to participate in a friendly match with the U.S. national team." Fox News Digital broke the story in January that Dabir, who obtained a U.S. residency green card, urged the violent destruction of America during an event celebrating the life and work of the U.S.-designated terrorist Qassem Soleimani. Soleimani led the Quds Force, a division of Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps, a U.S.-designated terrorist entity that has been responsible for killing more than 600 American military personnel. He died in a targeted killing in January 2020, slain by an American drone strike in Baghdad.

Drone attack on Iraq base foiled, 2nd one in 24 hours: Coalition

Al Jazeera

For the second time in 24 hours, a United States-led coalition fighting ISIL (ISIS) in Iraq says it has foiled a drone attack on a base hosting US troops. An official of the international military coalition said on Tuesday two armed drones were shot down as they approached the base in western Anbar province. "Two fixed-wing drones rigged with explosives were engaged and destroyed by defensive capabilities at the Iraqi Ain al-Asad airbase early this morning," the official was quoted as saying by news agencies. "The attempted attack was unsuccessful. All forces are accounted for."

Iraq: Drone attack on US base near Baghdad airport foiled

Al Jazeera

Two armed drones were shot down as they approached an Iraqi military base hosting US forces near Baghdad's international airport, Iraqi security sources said, adding that nobody was hurt in the incident. An official of the US-led international military coalition stationed there said the base's defence system engaged "two fixed-wing suicide drones… they were shot down without incident". "This was a dangerous attack on a civilian airport," the coalition official said in a brief statement on Monday. There was no immediate claim of responsibility for the attack. Footage provided by the coalition showed what the official said was debris of two fixed-wing drones destroyed in the attack, with writing clearly visible on the wing of one drone reading "Soleimani's revenge".

2 armed drones intercepted as they approached Iraqi base hosting US troops: report

FOX News

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what's clicking on Two drones were intercepted Monday as they neared an Iraqi base that had been housing American forces on the anniversary of the U.S. assassination of a top Iranian commander, a report said. Reuters, citing Iraqi security officials, reported that the base was located near Baghdad's international airport. The airport was the site of the Jan. 2, 2020, U.S. drone strike that resulted in the death of Qassem Soleimani, the former commander of the elite Quds Force.