Asia


How artificial intelligence changed the face of banking in India

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Artificial intelligence (AI) will empower banking organisations to completely redefine how they operate, establish innovative products and services, and most importantly impact customer experience interventions. In this second machine age, banks will find themselves competing with upstart fintech firms leveraging advanced technologies that augment or even replace human workers with sophisticated algorithms. To maintain a sharp competitive edge, banking corporations will need to embrace AI and weave it into their business strategy. In this post, I will examine the dynamics of AI ecosystems in the banking industry and how it is fast becoming a major disrupter by looking at some of the critical unsolved problems in this area of business. AI's potential can be looked at through multiple lenses in this sector, particularly its implications and applications across the operating landscape of banking.


The U.S. military wants your opinion on AI ethics

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The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visited Silicon Valley Thursday to ask for ethical guidance on how the military should develop or acquire autonomous systems. The public comment meeting was held as part of a Defense Innovation Board effort to create AI ethics guidelines and recommendations for the DoD. A draft copy of the report is due out this summer. Microsoft director of ethics and society Mira Lane posed a series of questions at the event, which was held at Stanford University. She argued that AI doesn't need to be implemented the way Hollywood has envisioned it and said it is imperative to consider the impact of AI on soldiers' lives, responsible use of the technology, and the consequences of an international AI arms race.


Saudis say they don't want war with Iran but will defend themselves

The Japan Times

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - Saudi Arabia does not want war but will not hesitate to defend itself against Iran, a top Saudi diplomat said Sunday, after the kingdom's energy sector was targeted this past week amid heightened tensions in the Persian Gulf. On Sunday night, a rocket crashed in the Iraqi capital's heavily fortified Green Zone, landing less than a mile from the U.S. Embassy, further stoking tensions. No casualties were reported in the apparent attack. Adel al-Jubeir, the minister of state for foreign affairs, spoke a week after four oil tankers-- two of them Saudi-- were targeted in an alleged act of sabotage off the coast of the United Arab Emirates and days after Iran-allied Yemeni rebels claimed a drone attack on a Saudi oil pipeline. "The kingdom of Saudi Arabia does not want war in the region and does not strive for that … but at the same time, if the other side chooses war, the kingdom will fight this with all force and determination and it will defend itself, its citizens and its interests," al-Jubeir told reporters.


Humanoid Robots – What to Expect in the Coming Year

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Sharp jawline, doe-brown eyes and fluttery eye-lashes; Sophia, the world's first AI-powered humanoid is quite a stunner with impressive features. Besides looks, she boasts of an admirable sense of humour. Designed by Hong Kong-based company Hanson Robotics, Sophia has many human values like wisdom, compassion and kindness. She is also capable of expressing her emotions, holding eye contact, recognizing faces and understanding human speech. Well, Sophia is not the only humanoid robot the world is gushing over.


This Chinese facial recognition start-up can identify a person in seconds

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YITU is also expanding to help cities digitize data such as traffic patterns, energy supply information and infrastructure development. Now the company plans to move even further afield. In January YITU opened its first international office in Singapore, where it plans to hire more than 50 researchers, and the company recently formed a strategic cooperation with local governments and various organizations in Britain in the fields of public security, finance and health care. Although YITU's track record is outstanding thus far -- it won first place in the 2017 Face Recognition Prize Challenge organized by Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity for its highly acclaimed facial recognition devices, which boast a 95.5% accuracy rate -- the company still has work ahead to become the facial recognition leader in China. Chinese start-ups Megvii Technology and SenseTime are considered to have the most powerful facial recognition systems in the world.


Coming of Age in the Age of AI: The First Fully Digital Generation

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The first generation to grow up entirely in the 21st century will never remember a time before smartphones or smart assistants. They will likely be the first children to ride in self-driving cars, as well as the first whose healthcare and education could be increasingly turned over to artificially intelligent machines. Futurists, demographers, and marketers have yet to agree on the specifics of what defines the next wave of humanity to follow Generation Z. That hasn't stopped some, like Australian futurist Mark McCrindle, from coining the term Generation Alpha, denoting a sort of reboot of society in a fully-realized digital age. "In the past, the individual had no power, really," McCrindle told Business Insider.


Robot race: These three countries are winning

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The three countries are leading an artificial intelligence (AI) revolution, Malcolm Frank, head of strategy at leading outsourcing firm Cognizant, told CNNMoney in an interview. Frank is the co-author of a recent book entitled "What to Do When Machines Do Everything," on the impact artificial intelligence will have on the global economy in the coming years. "I think it's three horses in the race, and that's probably the wrong metaphor because they are all going to win," he said. "They are just going to win differently." While AI is progressing quickly elsewhere too, Frank said the other development hotspots are mainly city hubs such as London and Stockholm, or far smaller economies such as Estonia.


With Interest: The Week in Business: A Facial Recognition Ban, and Trade War Blues

NYT > Economy

Here's what you need to know in business news. The city's Board of Supervisors voted on Tuesday to prohibit the use of facial recognition technology within city limits. It's a somewhat symbolic move: The police there don't currently use the stuff, and the places where it is in use -- seaports and airports -- are under federal jurisdiction and therefore unaffected by the new regulation. The major television networks tried to sell their fall advertising slots in an annual pageant known as the upfronts. In a week of star-studded presentations, skits and boozy mingling, representatives of major advertisers flocked to New York to see what the networks have in store.


SoftBank Group looking to ride AI unicorns into the future ZDNet

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SoftBank Group saw its operating income increase by 81% over the year to March 31, 2019, driven by its SoftBank Vision and Delta Funds more than tripling their operating income. Here's how it's related to artificial intelligence, how it works and why it matters. Overall, the SoftBank conglomerate took in ¥9.6 trillion in sales, an increase of 5%, from which it made ¥2.35 trillion in earnings before interest and taxes, up 81%, and ¥1.4 trillion of net income. Broken down, both of its telcos in the form of Sprint and SoftBank Corporation contributed around ¥3.7 trillion in sales, with Yahoo Japan making ¥947 billion in sales, and others making up the remaining ¥1.2 trillion. For operating income, the SoftBank Vision Fund hit ¥1.26 trillion, SoftBank made ¥725 billion, Sprint contributed ¥280 billion, and Yahoo Japan made ¥135 billion.


Britain Has More Surveillance Cameras Per Person Than Any Country Except China. That's a Massive Risk to Our Free Society

TIME - Tech

How would you feel being watched, tracked and identified by facial recognition cameras everywhere you go? Facial recognition cameras are now creeping onto the streets of Britain and the U.S., yet most people aren't even aware. As we walk around, our faces could be scanned and subjected to a digital police line up we don't even know about. There are over 6 million surveillance cameras in the U.K. – more per citizen than any other country in the world, except China. In the U.K., biometric photos are taken and stored of people whose faces match with criminals – even if the match is incorrect. As director of the U.K. civil liberties group Big Brother Watch, I have been investigating the U.K. police's "trials" of live facial recognition surveillance for several years.