Elon Musk, AI leaders pledge not to develop "killer robots"


"There is a moral component to this position, that we should not allow machines to make life-taking decisions for which others–or nobody–will be culpable," they write in the pledge. "There is also a powerful pragmatic argument: lethal autonomous weapons, selecting and engaging targets without human intervention, would be dangerously destabilizing for every country and individual." More than 170 organizations and 2,464 individuals have signed the pledge, according to the Future of Life Institute, which organized the campaign. "I'm excited to see AI leaders shifting from talk to action, implementing a policy that politicians have thus far failed to put into effect," said Future of Life Institute President Max Tegmark. "AI has huge potential to help the world–if we stigmatize and prevent its abuse.

Yemen's Houthis say they attacked Aramco refinery in Riyadh with drone but operator lays fire to 'operational incident'

The Japan Times

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES – The Iranian-aligned Houthi movement in Yemen said it had attacked a Saudi Aramco refinery in Riyadh on Wednesday using a drone, but the oil company said a limited fire at the plant was due to "an operational incident. "Our drone air forces have targeted the refinery of ARAMCO company in Riyadh," read a tweet on the account of the Houthi-run television channel al-Masirah. "The operation by the drone air force is a strong start in a new stage of deterring the aggression," it quoted a Houthi military spokesman as saying in a tweet. Saudi officials were not immediately available for comment. Just before al-Masirah's tweet, Aramco announced that its fire control teams and the Saudi civil defenses had contained a minor fire that erupted in the early evening in a storage containers at its refinery in Riyadh.

Airbus reveals solar-powered drone completed successful test flight

Daily Mail

Airbus has unveiled its pioneering solar-powered drone. Called the Zephyr S, the aerospace giant presented the'pseudo-satellite' to crowds gathered at Britain's Farnborough airshow. In a major milestone, the massive drone completed its first test flight from Arizona on July 11, Airbus said. Airbus has unveiled its pioneering solar-powered drone. Called the Zephyr S, the aerospace giant presented the'pseudo-satellite' to crowds gathered at Britain's Farnborough airshow'This maiden flight of the Zephyr S aims to prove and demonstrate the aircraft capabilities, with a landing date to be confirmed once the engineering objectives have been achieved,' Airbus said in a statement announcing the test flight.

Elon Musk, DeepMind and AI researchers promise not to develop robot killing machines

The Independent

Elon Musk and many of the world's most respected artificial intelligence researchers have committed not to build autonomous killer robots. The public pledge not to make any "lethal autonomous weapons" comes amid increasing concern about how machine learning and AI will be used on the battlefields of the future. The signatories to the new pledge – which includes the founders of DeepMind, a founder of Skype, and leading academics from across the industry – promise that they will not allow the technology they create to be used to help create killing machines. The I.F.O. is fuelled by eight electric engines, which is able to push the flying object to an estimated top speed of about 120mph. The giant human-like robot bears a striking resemblance to the military robots starring in the movie'Avatar' and is claimed as a world first by its creators from a South Korean robotic company Waseda University's saxophonist robot WAS-5, developed by professor Atsuo Takanishi and Kaptain Rock playing one string light saber guitar perform jam session A man looks at an exhibit entitled'Mimus' a giant industrial robot which has been reprogrammed to interact with humans during a photocall at the new Design Museum in South Kensington, London Electrification Guru Dr. Wolfgang Ziebart talks about the electric Jaguar I-PACE concept SUV before it was unveiled before the Los Angeles Auto Show in Los Angeles, California, U.S The Jaguar I-PACE Concept car is the start of a new era for Jaguar.

Houthis Attack ARAMCO Refinery in Riyadh Using Drone: Houthi-Run TV Station

U.S. News

DUBAI (Reuters) - The Iran-aligned Houthi movement in Yemen said on Wednesday that one of its drones had attacked the Saudi state oil company ARAMCO's refinery in Riyadh, according to Houthi-run al-Masira TV, based in Yemen.

Pro drone racing confronts its amateur roots


"The drone racing league is a sport. We do an annual season. We have a clear rule system and scoring system," Nick Horbaczewski, founder and CEO of the Drone Racing League (DRL), enthuses in a small business suite located on the second floor of the Circus Circus Casino in Las Vegas. With a deal with ESPN in the bag, his league is poised to bring the sport mainstream, and within moments of our introduction, he's let me know he's serious. Horbaczewski has delivered this pitch before; his whole business depends on it.

Alternative To Lidar? Startup Light Raises $121M From SoftBank, Leica To Expand To Self-Driving Cars

Forbes Technology

Light cofounder and CEO Dave Grannan raised $121 million for his imaging platform on the promise of its value to robotics, drones, and, especially, self-driving vehicles.Courtesy of Light In February, Dave Grannan, cofounder and CEO of imaging startup Light, flew to Tokyo to meet SoftBank's Masayoshi Son for the first time since beginning conversations with the Japanese billionaire's venture-capital arm. After two more meetings, in Tokyo and Silicon Valley, Son agreed to lead a massive $121 million investment in Light, through his SoftBank Vision Fund. Leica Camera also joined the deal. A big reason that Light was able to attract so much funding is the promise of robots, drones and, especially, self-driving cars. Light uses complex algorithms to combine images from multiple camera modules into a single, high-quality image with depth.

Zephyr solar-powered stratosphere drone takes flight


Airbus has opened a production line for its high-altitude autonomous drone, the Zephyr S. The Zephyr has a wingspan of 25 meters and is designed to operate in the stratosphere at an average altitude of 21 kilometers -- above clouds, jet streams and ozone layer, as well as regular air traffic (apart perhaps, from the odd spy-plane). Airbus wants the drone to fly for 100 days without landing (its currently record is 14 days without refuelling) and travel up to 1,000 nautical miles per day. It weighs 75kg, but can support a payload up to five times its own weight. The drone can be used for things like surveillance and reconnaissance -- the UK's Ministry of Defence has already bought several of the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). It could also be used to create a communication network either for civilian or military uses -- Facebook recently cancelled its own plans to build high-altitude drones to deliver internet access in remote areas, but at the time said it would continue to work with partners like Airbus on such vehicles.

Tech leaders call for autonomous weapons ban

Al Jazeera

Thousands of the world's pre-eminent technology experts called for a global ban on the development of lethal autonomous weapons, warning they could become instruments of "violence and oppression". More than 2,400 individuals and 150 companies from 90 different countries vowed to play no part in the construction, trade, or use of autonomous weapons in a pledge signed on Wednesday at the 2018 International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Stockholm, Sweden. Elon Musk, CEO of SpaceX and Tesla, and representatives of Google's DeepMind subsidiary were among supporters of the pledge. "The decision to take a human life should never be delegated to a machine," a statement said. "Lethal autonomous weapons - selecting and engaging targets without human intervention - would be dangerously destabilising for every country and individual."

Got Drones? You Need Object Detection - DZone AI


Machine learning is the idea that describes computers that can essentially "learn" and process new information without specifically being programed to do so. If you give a computer a task, it will more-or-less get better at that task the more it has a chance to engage in it. Object detection is a subset of this idea and is of particular relevance to photos. Not only does object detection let you know which objects are in a photo (hence the name), it also gives you insight into precisely where they are, too. But out of all the industries and activities where object detection is poised to make a big impact, drone services are undoubtedly right at the top.