Strategic Partnership with Autodesk Comes With Money and a Data Trove

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Using artificial intelligence to scan construction-site photos and video to spot issues that can affect performance, quality and safety, a tech startup has landed a strategic investor with millions of such images that can be used to improve the technology. Under the agreement, the startup reserves its right to continue integrating its tool with the products of other developers. Cambridge, Mass.-based Smartvid.io is getting a $7-million cash infusion from its existing investors as well as Autodesk Inc.; Borealis Ventures, a venture capital fund focused on technology for construction; and another venture capital firm, Castor Ventures. The deal also gives the company, whose service already is integrated with Autodesk BIM360 Field, the ability to use Autodesk's trove of construction images for improving its image recognition technology. "Strategic investors can bring not only money.


The role of machine learning in construction safety – AI.Business

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The construction industry is one of the biggest in the USA but also is one of the deadliest. Construction has been and continues to be a dangerous occupation, resulting in many accidents, injuries and fatalities. Safe practices are crucial for the industry. Developments of methodologies for machine learning use in construction safety and the preparation of appropriate software will fill a large need in the industry. Analysis of construction equipment activities with a proper level of detail can help improve several aspects of construction engineering and management such as productivity assessment, safety management, idle time reduction, emission monitoring and control etc.


How computer vision is changing insurance

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The National Association of Insurance Commissioners recently created the Innovation and Technology Task Force to "explore the technological developments in the insurance sector." It cited the rise of artificial intelligence as one of the key issues that the task force would address, citing the technology's "potential to transform the insurance industry in a number of ways." The message is being received loud and clear: adapt or be left behind. The insurance industry has historically been a laggard compared to other industries when it comes adoption of new technologies. However, the industry should be credited for embracing recent advances in technology, most notably the use of computer vision (a form of AI) and drones, to automate or assist with what would have previously been arduous and/or dangerous tasks.


A British organist reaches America by way of Reykjavik

Los Angeles Times

James McVinnie, who took a turn on the imposing Walt Disney Concert Hall organ Sunday night as part of the Los Angeles Philharmonic's recital series, has all the qualifications for being a properly British young organist. He is modest in manner. He is an elegantly unshowy player. Cambridge trained, he has served as assistant organist of Westminster Abbey. He has participated on many a recording of unassuming British sacred and choral music.


Pantera drummer Vinnie Paul dies aged 54

BBC News

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of the metal band Pantera, has died aged 54, the band announced on Facebook. "Vincent Paul Abbott aka Vinnie Paul has passed away," a statement said. There was no cause of death given. Paul started Pantera in 1981 with his brother, "Dimebag" Darrell Abbott - the pair were sons to the country-western producer Jerry Abbott. The band had a number one album in 1994 and earned four Grammy nominations, but disbanded in 2003 amid rumours of a rift.