Drones – the New Critical Infrastructure


Be prepared in the near future when you gaze into the blue skies to perceive a whole series of strange-looking things – no, they will not be birds, nor planes, or even superman. They may be temporarily, and in some cases startlingly mistaken as UFOs, given their bizarre and ominous appearance. But, in due course, they will become recognized as valuable objects of a new era of human-made flying machines, intended to serve a broad range of missions and objectives. Many such applications are already incorporated and well entrenched in serving essential functions for extending capabilities in our vital infrastructures such as transportation, utilities, the electric grid, agriculture, emergency services, and many others. Rapidly advancing technologies have made possible the dramatic capabilities of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAV/drones) to uniquely perform various functions that were inconceivable a mere few years ago.

A 20-Year Community Roadmap for Artificial Intelligence Research in the US Artificial Intelligence

Decades of research in artificial intelligence (AI) have produced formidable technologies that are providing immense benefit to industry, government, and society. AI systems can now translate across multiple languages, identify objects in images and video, streamline manufacturing processes, and control cars. The deployment of AI systems has not only created a trillion-dollar industry that is projected to quadruple in three years, but has also exposed the need to make AI systems fair, explainable, trustworthy, and secure. Future AI systems will rightfully be expected to reason effectively about the world in which they (and people) operate, handling complex tasks and responsibilities effectively and ethically, engaging in meaningful communication, and improving their awareness through experience. Achieving the full potential of AI technologies poses research challenges that require a radical transformation of the AI research enterprise, facilitated by significant and sustained investment. These are the major recommendations of a recent community effort coordinated by the Computing Community Consortium and the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence to formulate a Roadmap for AI research and development over the next two decades.

Students to use artificial intelligence to program self-driving cars


Students at the Pearl Technology/ Richwoods Township STEM Academy had the opportunity to learn from, and operate cars of the future. The program focuses in on autonomous 1/18th- scale cars developed by Amazon Web Services. The cars- called AWS DeepRacers– learn through rewards and students' controls. It's a platform that only some engineers and developers have had an opportunity to experience. "In my day we didn't have these opportunities, but when you see kids that are fifth through eighth grade actually teaching cars how to drive themselves and that their thought process can get wrapped around artificial intelligence, it's an amazing thing to watch," said Dave Johnson, President of Pearl Technology.

UAlbany Opens New Indoor Drone Lab - Unmanned Aerial


The University of Albany in Upstate New York recently unveiled a two-story, 1,700-square-foot drone lab. The College of Emergency Preparedness, Homeland Security and Cybersecurity (CEHC) hosted an open house last month to launch the lab, located in the basement of Page Hall at the university's downtown campus. The space, enclosed with netting and rubber flooring, offers a controlled indoor environment for unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) flight training, along with land-based robotics research and educational opportunities. According to a press release from UAlbany, last summer, Brandon Behlendorf, an assistant professor at CEHC, was leaving his office in Richardson Hall when he stumbled upon an aging stairwell on the north corner of the second floor. Wondering where it led, he made his way down five stories to a locked door in the basement.

The Future of AI Depends on High-School Girls


During her freshman year, Stephanie Tena, a 16-year-old programmer, was searching the internet for coding programs and came across a website for an organization called AI4All, which runs an artificial-intelligence summer camp for high-schoolers. On the site, a group of girls her age were gathered around an autonomous car in front of the iconic arches of Stanford's campus. "AI will change the world," the text read. "Who will change AI?" How technology and globalization are changing what it means to work Read more Tena thought maybe she could. She lives in a trailer park in California's Central Valley; her mom, a Mexican immigrant from Michoacán, picks strawberries in the nearby fields.

AI2 lists top artificial intelligence systems in its Visual Understanding Challenge


Some of the world's top researchers in AI have proved their mettle by taking top honors in three challenges posed by the Seattle-based Allen Institute for Artificial Intelligence. The institute, also known as AI2, was created by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen in 2014 to blaze new trails in the field of artificial intelligence. One of AI2's previous challenges tested the ability of AI platforms to answer eighth-grade-level science questions. The three latest challenges focused on visual understanding – that is, the ability of a computer program to navigate real-world environments and situations using synthetic vision and machine learning. These aren't merely academic exercises: Visual understanding is a must-have for AI applications ranging from self-driving cars to automated security monitoring to sociable robots.

Drone pilot classes in demand as skilled operators needed for disaster response

The Japan Times

While simply flying a drone is not a complicated process, operating them for surveying or disaster sites employ certain techniques that require training. In March, a drone pilot school in the city of Kai, Yamanashi Prefecture, operated by the Japan Aviation Academy, lowered the age eligible for entrance from 20 to 16. In addition to practical coaching, students at the school can learn about civil aviation and radio laws, as well as understanding sudden weather changes from the movement of clouds and wind direction. "The lessons are practical and I am learning a lot. I hope to use the skills for disaster prevention and helping people," said Tsurugi Hatano, a 16-year-old high school student in the city of Tsuru, Yamanashi.

An open letter to students who want to change the world – AI4ALL


As you think about what you want to do with your life, at first, a career in artificial intelligence might not be at the top of your list. When you dream of changing the world, it might be hard to connect the dots between building computer models of human intelligence and eliminating hunger or giving individuals the ability to walk again. Maybe you think you'd have to become a coding pro before you can really start solving problems. Or maybe you can't envision a career in artificial intelligence because you have never met anyone like you working in AI. If you have heard anything about AI in the media, it's probably about autonomous vehicles, gaming, or robots taking over the world.

Stanford Hosts AI Camp for High School Girls -- THE Journal


A summer program at Stanford University introduced high school girls to artificial intelligence this summer. Among the activities they learned more about were flying drones, how autonomous cars work, diving robots and machine learning for healthcare. The two-week AI program was developed last year by Olga Russakovsky, a Stanford postdoctoral researcher, and Fei-Fei Li, associate professor of computer science and director of Stanford's AI Lab. They were motivated by a "desperate" need to bring more women into the field. As Li told the girls during their first day, as explained in a blog entry, AI could in the future become the "Terminator next door," or follow a more humane direction, based on the people behind the scenes doing the research and development work.

How to stay ahead of the robots


The world's first social robot went on show at the South by Southwest (SXSW) function in Austin on Saturday. JIBO has been specifically designed to serve in the home, offering various useful functions which accommodate to a domestic setting, including home security, storytelling and entertainment. Commenting on the robot's qualities, software developer Jonathan Ross said that "JIBO is a social robot for the home he can recognise you by your face by your voice" adding that "he can understand what you are saying and it can talk back to you." He went on to explain that humans "are hard wired to be responsive to social interactions. So by having a piece of hardware that actually acts like a person and can acknowledge you and can have a social presence, we can tap into that."