AfricaCom: AI and human-centered design thinking

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Conversations about AI often focus on technology, but we shouldn't forget that most business outcomes are linked to relationships with people, said Warren Hero, chief digital officer at Webber Wentzel, a law firm headquartered in Johannesburg Webber Wentzel – recently recognized as the African law firm of the year – aims to build a completely digital practice. Hero was speaking at AfricaCom about his experience of applying AI in the legal profession to increase both efficiency and productivity. He revealed that in the first AI experiment the company ran, it was able to decrease the time required to deliver a specific service from seven months to just three weeks. "in the process, we were able to give our clients certainty about, first of all, the quality of the outcome. And, second of all, about the cost of that outcome," Hero said.


Finalists – Open Up Challenge

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Fifteen fintechs have secured funding to develop innovative solutions that use open banking to transform how the nation manages its finances. The 15 finalists' ideas offer a range of services, from a digital debt adviser and a personal finance chatbot, to a solution that prevents people from going into their overdrafts, a fraud prevention tool, and even a tool to make it easier to get a mortgage. An AI assistant with a sense of humour which helps Gen Z/ Millennials budget, save and track their spending. "We are delighted to be finalists in the Open Up 2020 Challenge. Cleo is here to make money management less elitist, more accessible and informative – transforming the'money thing' into something radically different. Financial advice and education is missing from retail banking, and from Government. Our aim is to give people the confidence to discuss their finances the same way they share gym habits or how they have their coffee, and we know when we have won when it's finally normal to talk about money."


How Can AI Future-Proof Small Business Finances?

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The future can be hazardous to your financial health. Your numbers might look good today, but what if tomorrow brought a cluster of payments due that suddenly dropped your cash flow into the red? What if an unexpected event or change in circumstances impacted your finances, requiring you to sacrifice your values or lifestyle? What if such extenuating circumstances eroded your bank account balance with exorbitant overdraft fees? At a time when 40 percent of Americans wouldn't be able to cover a $400 emergency, the unfortunate reality is that millions of people face financial challenges like this every day.


AI wrote fake Trump speeches and 60% of people couldn't tell the difference

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In a test of how online technology could be used to interfere with the upcoming presidential election, 6 in 10 people could not tell the difference between a real speech from President Trump and a fake one generated through artificial intelligence. In a unique project shared with Secrets, a computer program dubbed "RoboTrump" successfully wrote passages of Trump-like speeches that tricked Americans, especially Trump supporters. Overall, the correct source -- Trump or RoboTrump -- was picked 40% of the time, according to the project's manager Lawsuit.org. The analysis said, "While Trump's rambling style probably makes differentiating between real and fake more difficult than it would be for a more eloquent and talented speaker, today's new natural language generation AI models have reached a tipping point in their ability to generate fake, real-sounding text." The project tested 20 different paragraphs on 10 topics.


Automation of Jobs: The Rise, the Risks, and the Unknowns Tech.co

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"I say this to everyone in the media world who I talk to," says Darren Atkins, wrapping up our phone interview: "Please, absolutely do not portray this as a hidden agenda to get rid of staff." Atkins is the Chief Technology Office for AI automation at East Suffolk and North Essex NHS Foundation Trust – group of hospitals employing more than 10,000 staff, who serve a quarter of a million people in the South East of England. "If this technology is applied in the wrong way, it can be very threatening," Atkins says. "Our main priority is to free up time for staff to do the work that they should be doing, rather than the work that has no value." Just over a year ago, Atkins led the deployment of virtual workers across his group of NHS hospitals – and according to him, it's been an unqualified success. Patients are missing fewer appointments and staff are happier.


How artificial intelligence can transform psychiatry

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Thanks to advances in artificial intelligence, computers can now assist doctors in diagnosing disease and help monitor patient vital signs from hundreds of miles away. Now, CU Boulder researchers are working to apply machine learning to psychiatry, with a speech-based mobile app that can categorize a patient's mental health status as well as or better than a human can. "We are not in any way trying to replace clinicians," says Peter Foltz, a research professor at the Institute of Cognitive Science and co-author of a new paper in Schizophrenia Bulletin that lays out the promise and potential pitfalls of AI in psychiatry. "But we do believe we can create tools that will allow them to better monitor their patients." Nearly one in five U.S. adults lives with a mental illness, many in remote areas where access to psychiatrists or psychologists is scarce.


India, Germany Ink Pacts For Using AI For Farming Industry In India IndianWeb2.com

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Some sort of a positive step taken in this way is the agreement that Germany and India signed on Artificial Intelligence, which chalks out the numerous ways it could be deployed in the farming industry. This agreement was signed in the light of India being the world's largest producer of food grains. But with the advent of negatively changing environment, the reality is somewhat different to what was imagined. India signed an agreement to reduce the carbon footprint that comes along with the agricultural sector. Farming is considered to be one of the biggest carbon footprinting jobs, hence the agreement.


4 AI Functions Already Up and Running in 2019 That'll Leave You Speechless

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Despite the fact that AI is already being utilised in a huge variety of ways by a myriad of industry, it's still perceived as being an emergent technology, something of great promise yet to materialise. This couldn't be further from reality. These four examples of AI and machine learning have already been saving you time and effort for years at this point, but it's only really in the last few years that they've become completely viable and effective. I mean, remember Siri when it first came out? AI, along with machine learning, has made a massive number of things possible across industries, proving critical to many different tech platforms.


6 Unexpected Uses for Artificial Intelligence

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There is no question that Artificial Intelligence is a transformative technology – so much so that we can't even begin to imagine the impact it will have in the next five, ten, or even twenty years. At the same time, AI is already being used in innovative and unexpected ways across a variety of industries. Bees perform an important ecological function, especially for farmers who rely on pollination to germinate crops. As the bee population continues to decline, scientists have looked for ways to mimic the important work that the insects do – and one solution they've found is to create robot bees (robot drones to replace real drones!) that are equipped with cameras, GPS, and Artificial Intelligence. This potent combination of hardware and software allows these robots to determine where crops are located, and pollinate them accordingly.


With FarmBeats, Microsoft makes a play for the agriculture market

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Between 2013 and 2016, U.S. farmers and ranchers weathered a 45% dip in net farm income -- the largest since the Great Depression -- while the number of mouths to feed grew sharply by the day. The global population is expected to increase by 2.2 billion by 2050, and the world's farmers will have to grow about 70% more food than is now produced. If you ask Microsoft, the solution lies in technology. The tech giant's FarmBeats program, which launched in preview today on Azure Marketplace ahead of Ignite 2019, is a multi-year effort to bring robust data analytics to the agriculture sector. With a backend built on Azure and compatibility with hardware from a range of top manufacturers, it aims to promote what Ranveer Chandra, FarmBeats project lead and chief scientist at Azure Global, calls "data-driven" farming techniques.