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Zenia is using computer vision to build an AI-driven fitness trainer


As in just about every area of the health and fitness market, technology is increasingly infiltrating yoga, with startups and investors pushing to capitalize on the $80 billion market. Last year, Germany-based Asana Rebel raised more than $17 million from notable backers that include Greycroft to grow its virtual yoga platform, while New York's Mirror has raised sizable funding rounds for a connected mirror that delivers virtual fitness classes, such as yoga and Pilates. Zenia recently entered the fray with a mobile app that leverages machine learning, computer vision, and motion tracking with the promise of helping improve your yoga poses. The company calls it "the world's first AI-powered yoga assistant," and plans to expand its technology to cover all areas of health and fitness. Zenia was officially founded out of Belarus in May of this year by software engineer Alexey Kurov, and the company has secured an undisclosed investment from such notable backers as Misha Lyalin, CEO and chair of Russia-based game developer Zeptolab, and Bulba Ventures, a Belarusian venture capital (VC) firm that invests in AI startups.

Belarus and UAE to develop artificial intelligence together


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Belarus' Bulba Ventures is betting on the next big machine learning startups


News emerged last summer that Google had snapped up computer vision startup AIMatter, the Belarusian company behind the popular funky photo-effects app Fabby. While Fabby continues today under Google's guidance, the app was really a public-facing showcase for AIMatter's underlying technology, which is basically a neural network-powered platform and SDK for detecting and processing images. And that is what Google was really buying into as it battles it out with other major technology companies to secure the most promising AI brain power. The acquisition further highlights the burgeoning computer vision startup scene in Eastern Europe, which saw Facebook acquire Belarusian startup Masquerade; Snapchat snap up Looksery, which has Ukrainian roots; and Russia's Prisma gain widespread attention for its computer vision-powered art photo app. Nearly one year after AIMatter's sale to Google, VentureBeat caught up with Yury Melnichek, the Belarusian serial entrepreneur who was a founding investor in AIMatter and who previously worked as a software engineer at Google and eBay.

Factbox: Main Points of German Coalition Agreement


Those funds could form the basis for a future "investment budget" for the euro zone. Companies should no longer be able to play EU states off each other in terms of taxation, and tax dumping must be banned. Please verify you're not a robot by clicking the box. You must select a newsletter to subscribe to. Prepared to loosen sanctions if Russia implements terms of Minsk agreement aimed at ending fighting in Ukraine.

Using Machine Learning Agents in a real game: a beginner's guide – Unity Blog


My name is Alessia Nigretti and I am a Technical Evangelist for Unity. My job is to introduce Unity's new features to developers. My fellow evangelist Ciro Continisio and I developed the first demo game that uses the new Unity Machine Learning Agents system and showed it at DevGamm Minsk 2017. This post is based on our talk and explains what we learned making the demo. At the same time, we invite you to join the ML-Agents Challenge and show off your creative use-cases of the toolkit.

Google Cloud is winning over customers, starting with big data and AI


In this episode of the ARCHITECHT Show, Elastic founder and CEO Shay Banon talks about the evolution of Elasticsearch -- from an open source side project (the first iteration was a recipe-search app for his wife) to popular big data tool to the core of a company worth nearly a billion dollars. He also shares his thoughts and strategies on the growth of Elastic, which, somewhat under the radar, has expanded to include multiple products and employ hundreds of people around the world. In this episode of the ARCHITECHT AI Show, Derrick Harris speaks with Jeremy Howard and Rachel Thomas of, Among other things, Howard and Thomas discuss the promise of deep learning and early student successes (including Hot Dog, Not Hot Dog app from Silicon Valley), as well as the threat of job losses from AI and how seriously we should take Elon Musk's AI warnings. AIMatter is based in Belarus and built an app, called Fabby, that lets users add effects to their selfies.

IoT weekly round-up: Thursday 17th August 2017 - Internet of Things Blog


Welcome to the IoT weekly round-up – your link to the latest from the connected world. This week, customers in Canada and the U.S. can use Google Home to make phone calls, Microsoft's been testing autonomous gliders, and machine learning could help unearth new species of plant life from among centuries of unclassified data. Google has got its hands on AIMatter – a startup that has created a neural network AI platform to see and process images, which it then uses to run programs. The Belarus company has also built an app for photo and video editing, so that users can apply masks, backgrounds, colour-swaps and other creative wizardry to their photos. Early information about the deal suggests that most of AIMatter's employees will move over to Google, though it's not clear whether that will mean they have to relocate.

Google acquires AIMatter, maker of the Fabby computer vision app


The search and Android giant has acquired AIMatter, a startup founded in Belarus that has built both a neural network-based AI platform and SDK to detect and process images quickly on mobile devices, and a photo and video editing app that has served as a proof-of-concept of the tech called Fabby. We'd had wind of the deal going down as far back as May, although it only officially closed today. Fabby and Google have confirmed the deal to us and there should be a statement posted on AIMatter's site about the news soon (update: it's up). A Google spokesperson provided TC with a short statement: "We are excited to welcome the AIMatter team to Google." Terms of the sale are not being disclosed, but we understand that Fabby -- which has had over 2 million downloads -- will continue to run, and from what we understand most of AIMatter's employees will come over to Google.

How artificial intelligence is helping detect tuberculosis in remote areas


Researchers are training artificial intelligence to identify tuberculosis on chest X-rays, an initiative that could help screening and evaluation efforts in TB-prevalent areas lacking access to radiologists. The findings are part of a study published online in the journal Radiology. "An artificial intelligence solution that could interpret radiographs for the presence of TB in a cost-effective way could expand the reach of early identification and treatment in developing nations," study co-author Paras Lakhani, MD, from Thomas Jefferson University Hospital in Philadelphia, wrote in the journal. For the study, Lakhani and his colleague, Baskaran Sundaram, MD, obtained 1,007 X-rays of patients with and without active TB. The cases consisted of multiple chest X-ray datasets from the National Institutes of Health, the Belarus Tuberculosis Portal, and Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.

For babies, breastfeeding is still best, even if it doesn't make them smarter (though it might)

Los Angeles Times

There are lots of reasons why doctors encourage new mothers to breastfeed their babies. Compared with babies who get formula, babies who are breastfed are less likely to die as a result of infections, sudden infant death syndrome or any other reason. The longer a mother nurses -- and the longer she does so exclusively -- the bigger the benefits, studies show. Another perceived benefit of breastfeeding is the possibility that it boosts a baby's brain. A clinical trial involving more than 16,000 infants in Belarus who were randomly assigned to get either special support for breastfeeding (based on a program from the World Health Organization and UNICEF) or a hospital's usual care found that babies in the first group scored an average of 7.5 points higher on a verbal IQ test and 5.9 points higher on overall IQ.