Ethics of AI: While artificial intelligence promises significant benefits, there are concerns it could make unethical decisions. Prefer to listen to this story? Here it is in audio format. Artificial intelligence (AI) is fast becoming important for accountants and businesses, and how it is used raises several ethical issues and questions. While autonomous AI algorithms teach themselves, concerns have been raised that some machine learning techniques are essentially "black boxes" that make it technically impossible to fully understand how the machine arrived at a result.
A cross-disciplinary group of researchers used AI as part of an analysis of photos posted online that recognizes an association between happiness, life satisfaction, and nature. Researchers from universities in Australia and Singapore say the analysis demonstrates the biophilia hypothesis that humans are naturally attracted to nature and people around the world have a preference for nature in their fun activities, vacations, and honeymoons. The analysis of more than 31,000 photos also found that people in nations with high life satisfaction scores like Costa Rica and Finland tend to take a higher proportion of photographs during fun activities like weddings or recreation. Nature also appears prominently in vacation and honeymoon photos. The frequency of nature in different activities varied widely across countries.
An Australian team is using machine learning to tackle the threat of space junk wrecking new satellites. Research to tackle the growing need to find, capture and remove junk from space is advancing at the Australian Institute for Machine Learning in Adelaide, South Australia. Machine Learning for Space director Tat-Jun Chin and his Adelaide-based team have won a $600,000 grant from Australia's SmartSat CRC to continue their work in detecting, tracking and cataloging space junk. SmartSat CRC was established last year to work with the Australian Space Agency based in Adelaide, contributing to the Australian government's goal of tripling the size of the space sector to $12 billion and creating as many as 20,000 jobs by 2030. The space junk project is based on developing a space-based surveillance network and tackling the growing challenge of crowding in space.
More and more, across the globe, the effects of global warming are being felt. Global movements like Extinction Rebellion have repeatedly caused disruption by protesting in cities around the world and are symbolic of the growing attention being paid to this important issue. Despite the boom in public awareness, methods to combat the issue have been slow to develop – separating rubbish into recycling and general waste is as far as the majority of households go. More advanced technology, such as solar panels and wind turbines remain out of reach to many due to their high cost and space required for installation. However, another technology may have a far bigger impact in the fight against climate change.
Gernot Heiser is chief research scientist at CSIRO Data61 and Scientia Professor and John Lions Chair at UNSW Sydney, Australia. Gerwin Klein is chief research scientist at CSIRO Data61 and a conjoint professor at UNSW Sydney, Australia. June Andronick is chief research scientist at CSIRO Data61 and a conjoint associate professor at UNSW Sydney, Australia.
NTU SPIRIT Smart Nation Research Centre, together with the Singapore Judiciary, has successfully developed an Intelligent Case Retrieval System (ICRS) using AI capabilities. ICRS enables efficient retrieval of relevant precedent cases through the use of continuously adaptive AI/data analytics approaches. The use of such tools can help the legal profession to understand case details and perform legal research by trawling through the case repositories at a faster and more accurate rate to obtain the most relevant case precedents and identify possible outcomes in different areas of law. The value of ICRS is to better enable all parties to evaluate the strengths or weaknesses of their cases. With better quality legal submissions, judges too are assisted in their decision-making processes, thus elevating the quality of judgments delivered.
As domain experts, engineers are highly valuable in shaping companies' AI projects. This is especially the case in Australia. Here, 98 per cent of businesses have fewer than 20 employees, and a team of data scientists trained on statistical machine-learning methods tends to be something enjoyed by bigger organisations. The growth in AI will continue in the new year and is expected to push rapidly into industrial scenarios. Non-data scientists have access to more and more information and training centred around AI.
Investment in artificial intelligence (AI) has been a priority for governments and businesses across the world. In Southeast Asia, the emphasis on AI-leadership is more pronounced with China's Premier incentivizing research efforts in the technology, and technology giants such as Alibaba and Tencent making massive strides in their quest for AI excellence. Research cited by Standards Australia, a standard setting non-profit, found that since 2017, 14 of the world's most advanced economies have announced over US$55 billion (AUD86 billion) in focused AI programs and activities. Australia, despite its government's efforts to help take the its agencies and businesses on a digital journey, hasn't made significant progress with AI. Standards Australia aims to change that.
So-called'soft skills' would seem to be the most important foundation to build upon. These include things like the ability to communicate and work well with others, solve problems, and think outside of the box. Most of the universities and private colleges in Australia are now offering short courses, online or on campus, to develop these critical skills. Courses include critical thinking and problem solving, negotiation and interpersonal skills, and effective communication. We can't predict what all the job roles will be in the 21st century, but we do know that human skills will be in demand.
This is according to the Westpac First Job Report, which found Australian teens are landing their first job at an average age of 15.4 years, compared to 16.3 years for their parents. While seven out of 10 young people surveyed prioritised money and financial independence when looking for their first job, more than two thirds lacked the confidence to open a bank account to be paid into. Hospitality is the most common industry most Australians will work in for their first job.Source:istock Job administration, such as setting up a tax file number and superannuation, was another area where teens (57 per cent) felt unsure and almost half (44 per cent) were too afraid to ask in an interview how much a job paid. To provide guidance to young job seekers, Westpac launched Wendy, Australia's first digital job coach. Meet Wendy, Westpac's first digital job coach who listens and responds in real time.Source:Supplied Using Wendy is similar to conducting a FaceTime call as she can listen, speak and recognise human emotions in real-time.