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The Anti-Tech Dystopia of "Dune"

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Life during the Covid-19 pandemic would be even more difficult without the Internet and automation, making this year timely for the upcoming "Dune" film to portray a distant future where humanity is devastated by our dependence on machines. Director Dennis Villeneuve is set to release his adaptation of the science fiction epic on October 22, both on HBO Max and in movie theaters. The release was delayed from last December to make it safer for people to view and hear the space fantasy in theaters. WarnerMedia aims to distribute Villeneuve's vision of the first "Dune" novel in two films, but has not yet scheduled a release date for the second film after the first half is released. Frank Herbert's "Dune" novel begins in the far distant future, thousands of years after humans were enslaved by robots, fought a revolutionary crusade and banned artificial intelligence with a new anti-tech religion.


Making the case for artificial intelligence

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) has opened myriad possibilities to make life better--faster, more efficient, cheaper. At the same time, using data and machines to speed things up has also increased the chances of lost human connections, missed steps in deliberation, and over-simplification of life's messiness. The Utah Informatics Initiative (UI2) and Tanner Humanities Center are hosting a virtual symposium Sept. 21 and 22 to explore the facets of AI's role in society. The University of Utah is uniquely situated as the host for these discussions, said Mike Kirby, UI2 director. The U has a notable cohort of researchers studying informatics, data science and machine learning, while working alongside interdisciplinary partners in the humanities and arts.


Walmart to launch autonomous delivery service with Ford and Argo AI – TechCrunch

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Walmart has tapped Argo AI and Ford to launch an autonomous vehicle delivery service in Austin, Miami and Washington, D.C., the companies said Wednesday. The service will allow customers to place online orders for groceries and other items using Walmart's ordering platform. Argo's cloud-based infrastructure will be integrated with Walmart's online platform, routing the orders and scheduling package deliveries to customers' homes. Initially, the commercial service will be limited to specific geographic areas in each city and will expand over time. The companies will begin testing later this year.


Robot-prepped pizza at 800 Degrees

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A leading autonomous pizza machine developer is teaming up with an international pizza brand run by world-renowned chef Anthony Carron. The pandemic has been a boon for autonomous dining as takeout culture and convenience remain priorities. Restaurants have struggled to adapt to the labor demands and unpredictability of the new paradigm. Delivery options open up new opportunities to meet customers where they are, but maintaining quality is paramount. At 800 Degrees the team believed they needed to do more to future-proof the brand, and Chef Carron saw the promise of automation when a trusted industry colleague, Massimo Noja De Marco, reached out to discuss Piestro, his automated pizza venture.


AI Lab of the Future Seeks to Build a Digital Cell

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The Technische Universität (TUU) KIWI biolab, which has been designated as one of three international artificial intelligence (AI) future laboratories by the German government, uses AI to design experiments with the aim of understanding how cells behave. "We cultivate various clones in parallel, and computer-controlled robots perform the fed-batch experiments and analyses automatically," explains Peter Neubauer, PhD, who heads the department of bioprocess engineering at TU Berlin. Experimental data is used to create "digital twins" of the cells that can be used for computer-based process development, he says. Neubauer developed the automated laboratory to multiply the number of cell lines he could analyze in parallel. "Currently in our facility we can do this for a large number of cells–for 48 different clones," he adds.


Do We Have A Backup Plan If Artificial Intelligence Causes Unemployment?

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Major disruptive technologies such as artificial intelligence have penetrated into the global tech market to enhance productivity for better yield. Organizations and factories are instigated to implement multiple AI models for automating tasks and generating meaningful in-depth insights. But this increase in human-machine interaction has created a concern among human employees, especially those who are elders in the workplace. How will the human employees earn to live a standard life? These types of questions are coming into the minds of people after robots and AI models are automating processes and dealing with loads of data efficiently and effectively. Do we really have a backup plan if seriously artificial intelligence causes unemployment in the next few years?


France calls killing of Islamic State leader big victory

Boston Herald

PARIS (AP) -- The leader of the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara died of wounds from a drone strike that hit him on a motorcycle last month in southern Mali, in a French-led operation involving backup from U.S., EU, Malian and Nigerien military forces, French authorities said Thursday. The French government did not disclose how they identified him as Adnan Abu Walid al-Sahrawi, whose group has terrorized the region. The claim could not immediately be independently verified. France declared the killing a major victory against jihadists in Africa and justification for years of anti-extremist efforts in the Sahel. French government officials described al-Sahrawi as "enemy No. 1" in the region, and accused him of ordering or overseeing attacks on U.S. troops, French aid workers and some 2,000-3,000 African civilians – most of them Muslim.


Salesforce adds new RPA capabilities to Einstein Automate

ZDNet

Salesforce on Thursday announced new robotic process automation (RPA) tools for Einstein Automate, the portfolio of tools that help organizations automate processes, build workflows and connect data. The new tools include MuleSoft RPA, Einstein Document Reader and Digital Process Automation. Salesforce introduced Einstein Automate last year as part of its Customer 360 strategy to serve as more of a process engine for companies. Einstein Automate comprises low-code tools that customers can use regardless of their technical background. In addition to offering low-code tools to help users build their own workflows, it offers hundreds of pre-built, industry-specific workflows.


IGT coding and robotics camp give youth a tech boost - Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

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The first staging of the IGT Coding and Robotics Rock! Camp engaged youth participants from the International Game Technology (IGT) After School Advantage (ASA) Centers in Trinidad and Tobago, who are now better equipped with introductory tech skills. The IGT-sponsored camp was done in collaboration with Mona Geoinformatics Institute (MGI) located at The University of the West Indies, Mona, Jamaica, through its flagship philanthropic initiative, the IGT After School Advantage Programme. Introductory lessons in various aspects of coding and robotics were presented by the highly-skilled MGI team, assisted by Dr Nalini Ramsawak-Jodha who is an education specialist and STEM educator at UWI, St Augustine campus. Ramsawak-Jodha structured and aligned the curriculum to suit the needs of participants ranging from 11-18 years, said a media release. The virtual camp was simultaneously held in August in five of the territories where IGT operates –Barbados, Jamaica, St Kitts, St Maarten and TT.


Aquiline Drones Acquires ElluminAI Labs to Create Deep Learning Drones

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) has gained increasing popularity across industries. Worldwide revenues for the AI market, including software, hardware, and services, are forecast to grow 40.2% annually, topping $997.77 billion by the end of 2028, according to a latest report by Grand View Research, an international consulting firm that helps Fortune 500 companies understand the global and regional business environment. Earlier, Connecticut-based Aquiline Drones Corporation (AD) announced the acquisition of ElluminAI Labs, LLC to support further development of its AI framework called Spartacus. This is AD's second strategic acquisition in the company's pre-IPO plan. It was just last month that AD completed the purchase of 50% of Netherlands-based AerialTronics, a renowned drone manufacturer, for $9.0M USD from Paris-based Drone Volt (ALDRV).