Sports


How AI Will Make You a Better Writer.

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What does it mean to read a poem, story, or novel about the human condition written entirely by a computer? This is not a crazy question. Legendary author Roald Dahl had already conjured up this nightmarish scenario for authors in one of his unnerving short stories in Someone Like You (1953). It tells the tale of the Great Automatic Grammatizator, a mammoth machine able to write prizewinning novels based on the works of living authors in 15 minutes flat. Dahl died before such a machine was within the realm of possibility.


Toyota has plenty for robots to do during the 2020 Tokyo Olympics

The Japan Times

When athletes and organizers descend on Tokyo for the 2020 Olympic Games, they'll be ferried around in autonomous cars, while torch relay runners will be accompanied by AI-equipped cars. Robots will ferry javelins and hammers. All told, Toyota Motor Corp. will provide 3,700 vehicles, including dozens of self-driving cars, about 500 fuel-cell vehicles and 850 battery-electric cars to the international sports competition. As a top sponsor of the Tokyo Olympics and an automaker facing a murky future when gasoline-powered engines will fade away, Toyota is doing everything it can to market its transition into an eventual provider of on-demand transportation for consumers and businesses, instead of being merely an industrial manufacturer. "We want to use the Olympics and Paralympics that happen every two years as a milestone," Masaaki Ito, general manager of Toyota's Olympic and Paralympic Division, said in an interview.


As MLB's 'robo-ump' experiment unfolds, Atlantic League feeling the benefit – and downside – of an automated strike zone

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

USA TODAY Sports' Gabe Lacques breaks down how MLB is trying computer generated strike zones in the Atlantic League. An automated strike zone that converts the home-plate umpire from arbiter to mere messenger is right far more often than it is wrong. A ban on mound visits and relief specialists undeniably speeds the game's pace. And rules changes aimed to encourage balls in play and runners in motion – Thou shalt not shift defensively, but you may "steal" first base – gives hitters options beyond launching balls over a vexing alignment of fielders. Yet as its experiment with a "robotic" strike zone and other nuances enters its second month, the formal partnership between MLB and the Atlantic League illustrates the upsides and consequences of optimization.


Manchester City warned against using facial recognition on fans

The Guardian

Manchester City have been cautioned against the introduction of facial recognition technology, which a civil rights group says would risk "normalising a mass surveillance tool". The reigning Premier League champions are considering introducing technology allowing fans to get into the Etihad Stadium more quickly by showing their faces instead of tickets, according to the Sunday Times. If someone is recognised as having bought a ticket, they would be ushered in by a green light, and if not they would be halted with a yellow one. Hannah Couchman, the policy and campaigns officer at Liberty, said: "This is a disturbing move by Manchester City, subjecting football fans to an intrusive scan, much like taking a fingerprint, just so they can go to the Saturday game. "It's alarming that fans will be sharing deeply sensitive personal information with a private company that boasts about collecting and sharing data on each person that walks through the gate, and using this to deny people entry.


Keeping Up with Robotics Trends Through RoboCup

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In March 2017, I joined the MathWorks Student Competitions team to focus on supporting university-level robotics competitions. The competition I spend most time with is RoboCup, which is great because RoboCup contains a variety of leagues and skill levels that keeps me sharp with almost everything going on in the field. Today I will talk about my experience in this role, and what it's been like returning to robotics and academia after more than 5 years away from the field. Let me start with a personal history lesson about my experience in robotics. I am a mechanical engineer with a background in controls, dynamics, and systems.


Buster Posey explains why robot umps could call more balls than strike

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But it's something being implemented and tested in the baseball world. The independent Atlantic League was the first victim to test the newest technology that includes a real-life umpire still manning his or her duties behind the plate while they wear an earpiece connected to an iPhone. That person would then relay the call from the TrackMan computer system that uses Doppler radar. That's at least how plate umpire Brian deBrauwere executed it back in July as he described it to ESPN. And Giants catcher Buster Posey isn't too sure about this new technology, specifically if these robot umps would call more balls or strikes.


Armed With Analytics: Manufacturing as a Martial Art

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A few years ago, when I was in the early stages of learning the Russian martial art called Systema, my trainer pinned me to the floor. I felt immobilized and gradually gave up. The will to fight seeped out of me. He then told me that my focus had been on what I could not do. He suggested I should instead consider what I could do.


Toyota turns to AI startup to accelerate goal of robots for the home

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TOKYO (Reuters) - Toyota Motor Corp has designs on making robot helpers for your home, and has enlisted a Japanese startup that specializes in artificial intelligence to jump-start its plan. Japan's biggest automaker and Tokyo-based Preferred Networks Inc will carry out joint research to develop so-called service robots that are "capable of learning in typical living environments", the companies said in statements on Wednesday. The two firms have already been collaborating on driverless vehicles since 2014. Eighty-year-old manufacturing giant Toyota is trying to transform itself and adapt to technology, such as ride-hailing and automated driving, that is disrupting the auto industry. Toyota sees robots as part of that effort, particularly in Japan, where it aims to have them in homes and hospitals to support one of the world's fastest ageing populations.


Why TIME's 2019 Tech Optimists Are Upbeat About Silicon Valley's Future

TIME - Tech

As data breaches, misuse of personal information and the spread of disinformation erode the public's trust in Silicon Valley, it can be all too easy to become cynical about technology's impact on the world. But there are still plenty of reasons to be optimistic about tech's role in society moving forward. Below, TIME speaks to 10 innovators, founders, investors and even athletes who remain upbeat about technology's influence despite the many challenges facing the industry today. Moustapha Cisse left Senegal a decade ago to study artificial intelligence, and now he believes the technology can change Africa for the better. Cisse, 34, is leading Google's AI research center in Accra, Ghana, the company's first such venture in Africa. "I built my team here around people who are really committed to make a difference in people's lives," Cisse tells TIME. "[They] bring a fresh perspective in the field by looking at the problems that we have in Africa." Growing up, no one would have expected Cisse to be heading up a multi-billion dollar corporation's research initiative.


Toyota partners with AI startup Preferred Networks on building helper robots for humans – TechCrunch

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Toyota is enlisting the help of startup Preferred Networks, a Japanese company founded in 2014 with a focus on artificial intelligence and deep learning, to help move forward its goal of developing useful service robots that can assist people in everyday life. The two companies announced a partnership today to collaborate on research and development that will use Toyota's Human Support Robot (HSR) robotics platform. The platform, which Toyota originally created in 2012 and has been developing since, is a basic robot designed to be able to work alongside people in everyday settings. Its primary uses involve offering basic car and support assistance in nursing and long-term care applications. Equipped with one arm, a display, cameras and a wheeled base, it can collect and retrieve items, and provide remote control and communication capabilities.