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Machine-learning competition boosts earthquake prediction capabilities

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LOS ALAMOS, N.M., July 18, 2019--Three teams who applied novel machine learning methods to successfully predict the timing of earthquakes from historic seismic data are splitting $50,000 in prize money from an open, online Kaggle competition hosted by Los Alamos National Laboratory and its partners. "Crowdsourcing for new approaches in earthquake forecasting helps us leverage a wide range of expertise in addressing one of the most important problems in Earth science, because of the devastating consequences of large quakes," said Bertrand Rouet-Leduc, a Los Alamos researcher who prepared the data for the competition. "The winning teams' results could have the potential to improve earthquake hazard assessments that could save lives and billions of dollars in infrastructure." Current scientific studies related to earthquake forecasting focus on three key points: when the event will occur, where it will occur, and how large it will be. The Kaggle competition provided a challenging dataset that was based on previously published laboratory analysis, to give the competitors a taxing project to explore.


Is FaceApp an evil plot by 'the Russians' to steal your data? Not quite Arwa Mahdawi

The Guardian

Over the last few days the #faceappchallenge has taken over social media. This "challenge" involves downloading a selfie-editing tool called FaceApp and using one of its filters to digitally age your face. You then post the photo of your wizened old self on the internet and everyone laughs uproariously. You get a small surge of dopamine from gathering a few online likes before existential ennui sets in once again. On Monday, as the #faceappchallenge went viral, Joshua Nozzi, a software developer, warned people to "BE CAREFUL WITH FACEAPP….it Some media outlets picked this claim up and privacy concerns about the app began to mount. Concern escalated further when people started to point out that FaceApp is Russian. "The app that you're willingly giving all your facial data to says the company's location is in Saint-Petersburg, Russia," tweeted the New York Times's Charlie Warzel. And we all know what those Russians are like, don't we? They want to harvest your data for nefarious ...


The Most in Demand Skills for Data Scientists - Towards Data Science

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Data scientists are expected to know a lot -- machine learning, computer science, statistics, mathematics, data visualization, communication, and deep learning. Within those areas there are dozens of languages, frameworks, and technologies data scientists could learn. How should data scientists who want to be in demand by employers spend their learning budget? I scoured job listing websites to find which skills are most in demand for data scientists. I looked at general data science skills and at specific languages and tools separately.


Artificial intelligence to monitor volcanoes

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More than half of the world's active volcanoes are not monitored instrumentally. Hence, even very serious eruptions occur with no warning for nearby populations of the upcoming disaster. As a first and early step toward a volcano early warning system, a research project headed by Sébastien Valade from the Technical University of Berlin (TU Berlin) and the GFZ German Research Centre for Geosciences in Potsdam led to a new volcano monitoring platform that analyses satellite images using artificial intelligence (AI). Through tests with data from recent events, Valade and his colleagues demonstrated that their platform, Monitoring Unrest from Space (MOUNTS) can integrate multiple sets of diverse types of data for a comprehensive monitoring of volcanoes. The team's results were published in the journal Remote Sensing.


Alphabet's drone delivery project Wing launches air-traffic control app

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Drone delivery service Wing is launching its own air-traffic control app to keep its craft safe in the skies. The company, owned by Google-parent Alphabet, recently started making deliveries in parts of Australia and Finland. Wing's new iOS and Android app aims to'help users comply with rules and plan flights more safely and effectively,' providing a rundown of airspace restrictions and hazards as well as events nearby that could interfere. The new app, Open Sky, is being released to drone flyers in Australia this month according to Wing. 'The design of our software has required a detailed understanding of flight rules -- along with buildings, roads, trees, and other terrain -- that allow aircraft to navigate safely at low altitudes, and we've used it to complete tens of thousands of flights on three continents,' Wing said in a blog post.


Creating bots is easy -- scaling them is another matter

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The field of Robotic Process Automation (RPA) has seen a major boom thanks to the use of AI tools that make it easier to streamline the development of software robots. At Transform 2019 this week, experts weighed in on what will be required to take RPA from a simple point solution to a robust digital factory. The goal is not so much to replace humans, but to find better ways to complement human workflows. Telecom giant CenturyLink discovered that scaling and managing a bot workforce required a thoughtful approach. Brian Bond, consumer vice president at CenturyLink, said things started changing when they got up to around 100 bots.


A Facebook AI research chief and a machine-learning guru walk into MCubed in London...

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Event Our offer of discount early-bird tickets for Minds Mastering Machines ends next Monday, so act now if you want to join us to learn how real organisations can exploit machine learning and artificial intelligence and save big. We'll be bringing together a fantastic lineup of experts and practitioners at our conference on September 30 and October 1, headlined by Facebook AI's London research manager Sebastian Riedel and machine-learning veteran Dr Lorien Pratt. And if you want to get deep, and save even more, you can also get early bird prices on our October 2 workshops, which cover: developing and deploying Neural Nets; text mining; developing with TensorFlow 2; and getting machine learning into production using containers and devops. The venue is the palatial QE II Conference Center, in London, England, and the event runs from September 30 to October 2. As usual there will be excellent food right the way through, as well as our first-day drinks party, meaning you can connect with the speakers and your fellow attendees But remember, early bird prices expire next week, so to lock in your spot, head to the MCubed website now.


VA appoints 1st director of AI, plans to expand AI research: 4 notes. The Department of Veterans Affairs announced July 10 the appointment of Gil Alterovitz, PhD, as its first director of artificial intelligence, a position that will be based in the VA's Office of Research and Development.

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The Department of Veterans Affairs announced July 10 the appointment of Gil Alterovitz, PhD, as its first director of artificial intelligence, a position that will be based in the VA's Office of Research and Development. He has already launched a "sprint" to find partner organizations to apply AI technology to the VA's data. More articles about AI: 6 hospital applications for machine learning: algorithms to predict patient violence, HIV risk & more Viewpoint: The AI revolution will leave us'struggling to understand' Michigan Medicine, Atomwise launch research collaboration for AI-driven drug discovery


Amazon's Alexa will deliver NHS medical advice in the UK

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The UK's National Health Service (NHS) has announced what it claims is a world first: a partnership with Amazon's Alexa to offer health advice from the NHS website. Britons who ask Alexa basic health questions like "Alexa, how do I treat a migraine?" The partnership does not add significantly to Alexa's skill-set, but it is an interesting step for the NHS. The UK's Department of Health (DoH) says it hopes the move will reduce the pressure on health professionals in the country, giving people a new way to access reliable medical advice. It will also benefit individuals with disabilities, like sight impairments, who may find it difficult to use computers or smartphones to find the same information.