Robotics & Automation

Why robots could replace teachers as soon as 2027


Classrooms could be equipped with language processors, speech and gesture recognition technology, eye-tracking, and other physiological sensors to collect and analyze information about each student, Luckin writes. Instead of waiting for a test or a raised hand for a student to display her understanding of the material, teachers could access real-time information that could show them why the student might not be learning at full capacity. They'd know which students weren't getting enough sleep, if they had inadequate diets, if they were suffering from emotional stress -- information that can affect a student's performance but that can be difficult to tease out in the classroom.

Nasdaq vice chairman: AI business sector will come from future tech


Without a doubt, artificial intelligence (AI) is changing how we do things. From today's iterations that power apps in your smartphone, to promises of super-intelligent AI in the next few decades, more companies are pushing for integrating AI technology into what they do. All of this means that there could soon be a new AI business sector thanks to an explosion of innovation, according to Bruce Aust, vice chairman of the U.S. stock exchange Nasdaq. Speaking to CNBC at the ongoing Web Summit conference in Lisbon, Portugal, Aust predicts that AI could lead to the creation of completely new industries or sectors. "I think AI is really going to be the technology behind a lot of these great companies that provide the innovations that will be a new sector we probably don't know about yet," the Nasdaq chief said.

AI: How we arrived at the 4th industrial revolution


You could be forgiven for wondering why AI is so big all of a sudden. Hasn't humankind been dreaming about human-like robots for a long time? The first Star Wars film (with crowd-pleasing'droids' R2D2, C-3PO) was released in 1977; Terminator (starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as a cyborg assassin) was a massive success in the mid -1980s, a few years after Blade Runner (starring synthetic – or not? The idea of an intelligent machine is not exactly a new one, yet our ability to create something with Artificial Intelligence has increased dramatically in the last decade or so. There is now scope to use AI to make legal assessments, create games, predict purchases, navigate through traffic, translate words into different languages and diagnose diseases.

Your next home rental agent may be a robot


There was no one home when Avisheh Madani arrived to tour a San Francisco rental property. No one human, that is. Madani, 35, used a code from an app to unlock the door and was greeted immediately by a robot. "It was definitely weird," she said. The robot, really a moveable video monitor, is the brainchild of Zenplace, a rental management company based in San Francisco and expanding quickly across the nation.

A creepy robot head completes university course in the philosophy of love


A person's university years should be all about expanding your horizons, as well as meeting people with perspectives and backgrounds different from your own. Well, what could be more different than sharing your classroom with a robot? That's what 31 philosophy students at Notre Dame de Namur University in California recently experienced when they were joined in their "Philosophy of Love" program by Bina48, an A.I. animatronic robot. The robot participated via Skype in a series of sessions before appearing "in person" in the final class. "I wasn't sure how the students would react, but they were psyched about it," Professor William Barry, an associate professor of philosophy at Notre Dame de Namur, told Digital Trends.



Due to the fact that telematics monitoring is almost standard in most vehicles these days, it is possible for AI to track the exact location of a car and automatically dispatch emergency assistance, should it be determined that an accident has taken place. Furthermore, the future use of driverless cars will integrate seamlessly into assistance centres, with AI diagnosing the problem and then digitally dispatching assistance, should it be deemed necessary. It is also becoming widely accepted that AI will be able to generate unique policies for each customer, based on their preferences and risk profile. AI-enabled assistance services will be able to render assistance services to these products without the risk of getting tied up between the different policy exclusions and limits. When we look at what is happening in the insurance industry currently, it is clear that it is in its Fourth Industrial Revolution.

Animal shelter's homeless-shooing robot gets the boot


The nonprofit faces $1,000 per-day fines imposed by the city if the roving 5-foot-tall Autonomous Data Machine dubbed "K-9" is caught making the rounds without a proper permit. This shouldn't be an issue, however, as the SPCA has presumably returned the $6-per-hour rental robot with a "commanding presence" to its maker, Silicon Valley startup Knightscope, following significant public uproar and threats of retribution. The backlash began in earnest after the San Francisco Business Times published an interview with SF SPCA President Jennifer Scarlett in which she implied that the robot, adorned with stickers of cute-as-a-button kittens and at least one life-sized Chihuahua, was enlisted with the purpose of shooing away homeless San Franciscans living in encampments on the fringes of the SPCA campus, which encompasses an entire city block in the rapidly gentrifying Mission District. San Francisco, which is in the throes of a seemingly never-ending affordable housing crisis, has the sixth highest largest homeless population in the United States. Just under 7,000 people are living on San Francisco's streets per estimates from the Department of Housing and Urban Development although local authorities and homeless advocacy groups believe the number to be much higher.

'Jacobs letter' unsealed, accuses Uber of spying, hacking


Waymo's lawsuit against Uber for allegedly stealing technology for self-driving cars hasn't gone to trial yet, because the judge received a letter from the Department of Justice suggesting Uber withheld crucial evidence. That letter, with some redactions, is now available for all to read and it's not good news for Uber. It was written by the attorney of a former employee, Richard Jacobs, and it contains claims that the company routinely tried to hack its competitors to gain an edge, used a team of spies to steal secrets or surveil political figures and even bugged meetings between transport regulators -- with some of this information delivered directly to former CEO Travis Kalanick. Alphabet's self-driving arm Waymo is making the case that Anthony Levandowski created the autonomous trucking company Otto as a scheme to steal its trade secrets and sell them to Uber. In the letter, it says that members of the Uber SSG team Jacobs worked on traveled to Pittsburgh after it acquired the company to instruct Otto employees on how to use burner phones and ephemeral communications apps to avoid discovery in an expected lawsuit.

Will Robots Take Our Children's Jobs?


But that job is suddenly looking iffy as A.I. gets better at reading scans. A start-up called Arterys, to cite just one example, already has a program that can perform a magnetic-resonance imaging analysis of blood flow through a heart in just 15 seconds, compared with the 45 minutes required by humans. Maybe she wants to be a surgeon, but that job may not be safe, either. Robots already assist surgeons in removing damaged organs and cancerous tissue, according to Scientific American. Last year, a prototype robotic surgeon called STAR (Smart Tissue Autonomous Robot) outperformed human surgeons in a test in which both had to repair the severed intestine of a live pig.

India witnessed infusion of Artificial Intelligence across industries


When it comes to disruptive technologies that will drive businesses in the coming years, Artificial Intelligence (AI) is touted as the most promising and Indian enterprises across the spectrum began embracing it to enhance real-time user experiences. Picking up the pace globally, AI gradually cemented its position as the technology is quite transverse and perceived as less gimmicky, impacting several functions to improve productivity and business results, says Thomas Husson, Vice President and Principal Analyst, Forrester. From flushing out fake and terror-related content to making sense of humongous data for self-driving cars, from helping identify when someone might be expressing thoughts of suicide on Facebook to empower NASA explore space communications, AI-based tools gained a definite momentum. Microsoft pledged $50 million over the next five years to put AI technology in the hands of those who are working to mitigate climate change. When it comes to India, AI started playing a significant role in not just developing smart devices but in improving engagement with end-consumers -- be it government or corporates.