BJ's baffling mobile right-swipe machine-learning move

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When BJ's Wholesale Club on Thursday (May 3) said that it would leverage artificial intelligence machine learning in its mobile app, it joined the crowded club of companies boasting machine-learning capabilities while remaining vague on the details. But the 215-store chain -- operating in Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, South Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island and Virginia -- pledged to use machine learning to boost its CRM shopper profiles and to immediately apply it to change mobile responses. "The new discover feature lets shoppers explore new products and easily swipe right to add to a wishlist or left to dismiss a product," the chain said in one of the shortest news releases that retail has ever seen. "Using machine learning, the discover experience will be personalized to each user based on previous selections they've made through the swipe right or left process." Why do I find this so interesting?


Scandinavian artist creates map of every road in N America

Daily Mail - Science & tech

A Scandinavian man who works on geographic information systems for software company CGI has released a fascinating new map of North America. Topi Tjukanov posted an image on his Twitter account Thursday which showed every single road in North America. It is a transfixing creation, which Tjukanov described by simple writing: 'All the roads and nothing but the roads.' The roads are highlighted in a deep purple and show how remarkably dense some areas of the country are, with New England, New York and New Jersey all solidly purple from the numerous roadways, lanes, boulevards, streets and thruways running through the Northeast United States. North Dakota is also a very deep purple as is the California coast while South Dakota, Nebraska, Idaho and Nevada have quite a bit of blank space.


Autonomous Cars, LiDAR, and Artificial Intelligence, Oh, My! A Look at CES 2017

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The Consumer Electronics Show, one of the world's tentpole technology shows, is a flashy vehicle for the engineering underneath. In the world of chipsets, the show was dominated by Nvidia, one of many companies seeking to power the artificial intelligence in next-generation cars and image processors. There were also plenty of opportunities for component manufacturers to find places in the flashy new cars and fleets that dominated some of the show floors. Chipmakers and sensor manufacturers are also keeping an eye on what customers want in the automotive space. Just seven states – Nevada, California, Florida, Michigan, Hawaii, Washington, and Tennessee -- and the District of Columbia have passed bills related to autonomous driving.


Lie back and think of cybersecurity: IBM lets students loose on Watson

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IBM is teaming up with eight North American universities to further tune its cognitive system to tackle cybersecurity problems. Watson for Cyber Security, a platform already in pre-beta, will be further trained in "learning the nuances of security research findings and discovering patterns and evidence of hidden cyber attacks and threats that could otherwise be missed". IBM will work with eight US universities from autumn onwards for a year in order to push forward the project. The universities selected are California State Polytechnic University, Pomona; Pennsylvania State University; Massachusetts Institute of Technology; New York University; the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC); the University of New Brunswick; the University of Ottawa; and the University of Waterloo. The project is ultimately designed to bridge the cyber-security skills gap, a perennial issue in the industry.


FAA drone testing program takes off in 10 cities

ZDNet

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is moving forward with its plans to accelerate drone testing in the US -- with help from technology companies including Alphabet, FedEx and Intel. The agency announced 10 states that will participate in the the Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) Integration Pilot Program, an effort that aims to study the potential uses of drones in agriculture, commerce, emergency management, and human transportation. The 10 pilot winners include the Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma, in Durant, Oklahoma; the City of San Diego, California; the Innovation and Entrepreneurship Investment Authority, in Herndon, Virginia; the Kansas Department of Transportation; the Lee County Mosquito Control District in Fort Meyers, Florida; the Memphis-Shelby County Airport Authority; the North Carolina Department of Transportation; the North Dakota Department of Transportation; the City of Reno, Nevada; and the University of Alaska-Fairbanks. First announced last October, the UAS program aims to partner the FAA with local, state and tribal governments, along with private sector technology companies, to explore the integration of drone operations across industries. The program will also address public safety and security risks that go along with bringing drones into the national airspace.