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AI Fueling a Technological Revolution in Africa

#artificialintelligence

AI is at play on a global stage, and local developers are stealing the show. Grassroot communities are essential to driving AI innovation, according to Kate Kallot, head of emerging areas at NVIDIA. On its opening day, Kallot gave a keynote speech at the largest AI Expo Africa to date, addressing a virtual crowd of 10,000 people. She highlighted how AI can fuel technological and creative revolutions around the world. Kallot also shared how NVIDIA supports developers in emerging markets to build and scale their AI projects, including through the NVIDIA Developer Program, which has more than 2.5 million members; the NVIDIA Inception Program, which offers go-to-market support, expertise and technology for AI, data science and HPC startups; and the NVIDIA Deep Learning Institute, which offers educational resources for anyone who wants to learn about all things AI. "I hope to inspire you on ways to fuel your own applications and help advance the African AI revolution," Kallot said.


AIhub coffee corner: AI at the Olympics

AIHub

Inspired by the Olympics and Paralympics, this month we discuss sports and the role AI and robotics could play. There are two aspects to this. Firstly, building AI-based robots to play sports (as is being done with RoboCup). Joining the discussion this time are: Sanmay Das (George Mason University), Tom Dietterich (Oregon State University), Steve Hanson (Rutgers University), Sabine Hauert (University of Bristol), Michael Littman (Brown University) and Oskar von Stryk (Technische Universität Darmstadt). Tom Dietterich: My colleague Jonathan Hurst and his team recently had their legged robot run a 5k.


Tokyo Paralympics: Sarah Storey wins record-breaking 17th gold in women's C4-5 road race

BBC News

Sarah Storey wins her 17th Paralympic gold by defending her women's C4-5 road race title to become Great Britain's most successful Paralympian of all time.


Toyota's self-driving shuttles return to the Paralympics following crash

Engadget

Toyota's e-Palette is back in service. As Roadshow reports, the automaker has resumed use of its self-driving shuttle at the Paralympic Games in Tokyo following a collision with a visually impaired athlete. Not surprisingly, both Toyota and the games' Organizing Committee have made changes in light of the crash -- they've determined that both the autonomous vehicle and the circumstances around it were to blame. The company noted there were only two guide people at the intersection where the collision occurred, making it difficult for them to watch all vehicles and pedestrians at the same time. It simply wasn't possible to ensure safety at this signal-free intersection without everyone working together, Toyota said.


Toyota pauses Paralympics self-driving buses after one hits visually impaired athlete

The Guardian

Toyota has apologised for the "overconfidence" of a self-driving bus after it ran over a Paralympic judoka in the athletes' village and said it would temporarily suspend the service. The Japanese athlete, Aramitsu Kitazono, will be unable to compete in his 81kg category this weekend after being left with cuts and bruises following the impact with the "e-Palette" vehicle. His injuries prompted a personal intervention from the president of Toyota, Akio Toyoda. As part of its sponsorship of Tokyo 2020, Toyota has been showcasing its autonomous vehicles via a shuttle service, which has been running around the clock in the athletes' village. On Thursday, however, one of the buses pulled away from a T-junction and drove through a pedestrian crossing while Kitazono, a visually impaired athlete, was walking across.


Toyota pulls self-driving e-Palettes from the Paralympics following a crash

Engadget

Four days into the Tokyo Paralympic Games, Toyota removed its self-driving e-Palette vehicles from the event following a collision with a pedestrian. The automaker made the decision Friday, according to Reuters, a day after one of the pods hit a visually impaired athlete who was walking nearby. According to a video statement from Toyota CEO Akio Toyoda, reported in English by Reuters, the vehicle had stopped at a junction and was about to turn under manual control from an onboard operator when it hit the pedestrian at one or two kilometers-per-hour. The identity of the athlete has not been released to the public. Toyota first announced its plans to deploy e-Palettes at the games in October 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic forced the organizers of the Olympics to delay the 2020 games by a year.


A Dataset for Answering Time-Sensitive Questions

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Time is an important dimension in our physical world. Lots of facts can evolve with respect to time. For example, the U.S. President might change every four years. Therefore, it is important to consider the time dimension and empower the existing QA models to reason over time. However, the existing QA datasets contain rather few time-sensitive questions, hence not suitable for diagnosing or benchmarking the model's temporal reasoning capability. In order to promote research in this direction, we propose to construct a time-sensitive QA dataset. The dataset is constructed by 1) mining time-evolving facts from WikiData and align them to their corresponding Wikipedia page, 2) employing crowd workers to verify and calibrate these noisy facts, 3) generating question-answer pairs based on the annotated time-sensitive facts. Our dataset poses two novel challenges: 1) the model needs to understand both explicit and implicit mention of time information in the long document, 2) the model needs to perform temporal reasoning like comparison, addition, subtraction. We evaluate different SoTA long-document QA systems like BigBird and FiD on our dataset. The best-performing model FiD can only achieve 46\% accuracy, still far behind the human performance of 87\%. We demonstrate that these models are still lacking the ability to perform robust temporal understanding and reasoning. Therefore, we believe that our dataset could serve as a benchmark to empower future studies in temporal reasoning. The dataset and code are released in~\url{https://github.com/wenhuchen/Time-Sensitive-QA}.


Group-aware Contrastive Regression for Action Quality Assessment

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Assessing action quality is challenging due to the subtle differences between videos and large variations in scores. Most existing approaches tackle this problem by regressing a quality score from a single video, suffering a lot from the large inter-video score variations. In this paper, we show that the relations among videos can provide important clues for more accurate action quality assessment during both training and inference. Specifically, we reformulate the problem of action quality assessment as regressing the relative scores with reference to another video that has shared attributes (e.g., category and difficulty), instead of learning unreferenced scores. Following this formulation, we propose a new Contrastive Regression (CoRe) framework to learn the relative scores by pair-wise comparison, which highlights the differences between videos and guides the models to learn the key hints for assessment. In order to further exploit the relative information between two videos, we devise a group-aware regression tree to convert the conventional score regression into two easier sub-problems: coarse-to-fine classification and regression in small intervals. To demonstrate the effectiveness of CoRe, we conduct extensive experiments on three mainstream AQA datasets including AQA-7, MTL-AQA and JIGSAWS. Our approach outperforms previous methods by a large margin and establishes new state-of-the-art on all three benchmarks.


The story behind Google's biggest game yet: An Olympics-themed JRPG

Washington Post - Technology News

On July 23, in advance of the Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games, visitors to Google.com were greeted by an unusual feature. In place of the standard logo, or a traditional Google Doodle -- an illustration timed to a specific date or event -- the company published "Doodle Champion Island Games," a video game. The game, which can be played in as few as 10 minutes or for up to four hours, resembles a sprawling Japanese role-playing game, and sports a cute feline protagonist competing in sporting events and tackling side quests.


Polygon, First Sports AI NFT in the World and other news on our #WeeklyRecap

#artificialintelligence

How is your country doing in the Olympics? We all know that the Olympic success is down to three factors: "population size, economic might and past performance". But what would happen if the Olympic medals were re-ranked based on other factors? Well, Google Trends thought about that and has put together a new ranking. Meanwhile, we also had a not so humble proposal where we might have mentioned how we want to put our technology to the test on the next olympics.