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Royal Mail is building 500 drones to carry mail to remote communities

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Royal Mail is building a fleet of 500 drones to carry mail to remote communities all over the UK, including the Isles of Scilly and the Hebrides. The postal service, which has already conducted successful trials over Scotland and Cornwall, will create more than 50 new postal drone routes over the next three years as part of a new partnership with London company Windracers. Drones, or UAVs (uncrewed aerial vehicles), can help reduce carbon emissions and improve the reliability of island mail services, Royal Mail claims. They offer an alternative to currently-used delivery methods that can be affected by bad weather – ferries, conventional aircraft and land-based deliveries. They can also take off from any flat surface (sand, grass or tarmac) providing it is long enough.



Professor in Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning job with EDINBURGH NAPIER UNIVERSITY

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Edinburgh Napier University is the '#1 Modern University in Scotland'. An innovative, learner centric university with a modern and fresh outlook, Edinburgh Napier is ambitious, inclusive in its ethos and applied in its approach. The Schools of Computing and Engineering & the Built Environment have around 200 academics, 3,100 campus-based students, and deliver programmes with professional accreditations from the British Computer Society, Institution of Engineering and Technology, The Chartered Institute of Building and other accreditation bodies. We have excellent computing, engineering and construction lab facilities. The School of Computing is highly regarded and one of the UK's largest computer science departments.


The robots are coming - SMEs predict more hands-on AI in the workplace

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Four-fifths (80%) of small and medium-sized enterprises in Scotland expect to employ robots or other artificial intelligence (AI) by 2035, study findings show. Nearly half (49%) believe they will be reliant on renewable energy sources to power this advancement in technology. And three-quarters (75%) say improving eco-friendliness will help their profitability and make them more attractive to investors. When asked what roles robots would have, 36% of SMEs expect them to be used for tidying the workplace. Carrying out hazardous tasks (39%) and entertainment (46%) were also cited.


Edge.org

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The conversation is on hold. The Edge community has hit the road... or they're staying home. Preparing for the academic year to begin, wrapping up projects and starting new ones, celebrating with family and friends or contemplating in solitude. After a hiatus, Edge is pleased to revive Summer Postcards: Edgies reporting in from wherever they are and on whatever they're doing, as the dog days wind out and the season comes to a close. As the world slowly returns to a "new normal" with enduring COVID restrictions in the midst of renewed vaccine freedoms, this year's collection is a testament to change (temporary and lasting), a consideration of loss (will travel ever be like it was?), and a celebration of questions (that still need answering). The hammock may be away until next year, but the memories remain. I spent the summer writing and revising the final section of a longish novel I started in 2019. It seems now as though I've been from 1946 to 2021 on my hands and knees. Various lockdowns have been a liberation from obligations and the luggage carousel, and I've never known such sweet and total focus for months on end. We have the luxury of living in the country--no shortage of big skies and moody walks. All our few breaks were in the UK--Scotland, the Lake District, the West country. Even in our remote part of the Lakes, I had to keep on writing--as in photo. The best novel I read this summer was Sandro Veronesi's The Hummingbird. Best non-fiction was Peter Godfrey Smith's Metazoa: Animal Life and the Birth of the Mind. I gave time also to some wonderful novellas--perfect fictional form for you too-busy scientists. IAN MCEWAN is a novelist whose works have earned him worldwide critical acclaim. He is the recipient of the Man Booker Prize for Amsterdam (1998), the National Book Critics' Circle Fiction Award, and the Los Angeles Times Prize for Fiction for Atonement (2003). His most recent novel is Machines Like Me. In 2019, Časlav Brukner and myself were walking on a beach on Lamma Island, near Hong Kong, marvelling together at the astonishing strangeness of quantum phenomena. This summer, the conversation with Časlav has continued on another island, and quite an island: Lesbos, the northern Greek island near the Turkish coast. Lesbos is the place where lyrical poetry was born. Here lived Sappho and Alcaeus.


Automated Clinical Coding: What, Why, and Where We Are?

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Clinical coding is the task of transforming medical information in a patient's health records into structured codes so that they can be used for statistical analysis. This is a cognitive and time-consuming task that follows a standard process in order to achieve a high level of consistency. Clinical coding could potentially be supported by an automated system to improve the efficiency and accuracy of the process. We introduce the idea of automated clinical coding and summarise its challenges from the perspective of Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Natural Language Processing (NLP), based on the literature, our project experience over the past two and half years (late 2019 - early 2022), and discussions with clinical coding experts in Scotland and the UK. Our research reveals the gaps between the current deep learning-based approach applied to clinical coding and the need for explainability and consistency in real-world practice.


Artificial intelligence tech could improve cervical cancer diagnoses, UK experts say

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A UK hospital is piloting technology using artificial intelligence and advanced imaging to improve early diagnosis of cervical cancer. University Hospital Monklands in Airdrie said it has become the first hospital in the UK and one of the first in the world to pilot the technology as part of its cervical screening programme. Health experts said the new technology could be instrumental in ensuring earlier detection of pre-cancerous cells and cancer cells and has the potential to save lives. The pilot is using a digital cytology system, the GeniusTM Digital Diagnostics System, from women's health company Hologic. For the pilot programme the system will create digital images of cervical smear slides from samples that have tested positive for Human Papilloma Virus (HPV).


High-tech AI trial to fill vacancies

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High-tech artificial intelligence (AI) is to be rolled out at a Kent Jobcentre as part of a six-month nationwide trial to marry jobseekers with local vacancies. The Government-backed match-making service will start in March at 20 selected sites across England and Scotland - with Maidstone the only place in Kent included. It forms part of the Government's Way to Work campaign which aims to get 500,000 people back into work. The technology will pose a series of questions to those seeking work to build up an online profile - this will then be fed into the software, described as'cutting-edge' by Government chiefs, to point jobseekers in the right direction to existing vacancies or towards a local skills'bootcamp'. It will not, however, be mandatory.


Robot surgery used on throat tumours for first time in Scotland

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A security guard has become one of the first patients in Scotland to have a tumour cut out of his throat by a robot. Peter Simpson was awake, talking and eating ice-cream just five hours after his tonsil and part of his tongue were removed. The 63-year-old was home within 24 hours of the pioneering surgery at the Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in his home city of Glasgow. "I'm feeling good and I'm really quite surprised," he told STV News after the procedure, which our cameras were allowed to film. "When you're told you're getting this kind of operation on your throat, you think'am I going to be able to talk or eat?', but I can do everything. "There is some discomfort when I swallow but it's much better than I expected." Peter was shaving while on holiday in Skye last August when he noticed a lump on his neck, which turned out to be cancerous. Tumours in such hard-to-reach areas would previously have involved a gruelling and invasive operation. But medics were instead able to guide robotic arms – already used in urology and lung surgery – into Peter's mouth. Ahead of the treatment, staff in the operating theatre told STV News it was a "big week" for them after six months of extensive Transoral Robotic surgery (TORS) training. A doctor from London's Royal Marsden hospital was there to advise as the first of five such ENT (ear, nose and throat) procedures planned in Scotland took place. Jenny Montgomery, consultant for head and neck surgery, guided the robotic arm and communicated by microphone with a surgical team working on Peter. The'arms' of the robot allowed the team to make tiny movements, while the hands can rotate 360 degrees. Enhanced precision helps reduce side effects and the length of time patients have to stay in hospital. "This patient will have probably a more effective identification of where their cancer originated from than they would have had with previous operations," said Ms Montgomery. "If it's a small cancer, there is a possibility they might not need radiotherapy.


The Use of Artificial Intelligence (AI) in Times of Pandemic

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There has long been a need for a quick and reliable tool that can detect Covid. Scientists in Scotland have developed an artificial intelligence (AI) based test that uses X-rays to accurately diagnose Covid in just a few minutes -- quicker than the PCR test which can take up to two hours. They scan a database of around 3,000 images belonging to patients with Covid, healthy individuals, and people with viral pneumonia. During an extensive testing phase, the technique proved to be more than 98% accurate. Some countries like South Korea, China, Russia, India, Poland, and Japan started using AI-powered facial recognition to track Covid cases.