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SUTD wins best paper at 35th AAAI conference on Artificial Intelligence 2021

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Game theory is known to be a useful tool in the study of Machine Learning (ML) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) Multi-Agent interactions. One basic component of these ML and AI systems is the exploration-exploitation trade-off, a fundamental dilemma between taking a risk with new actions in the quest for more information about the environment (exploration) and repeatedly selecting actions that result in the current maximum reward or (exploitation). However, the outcome of the exploration-exploitation process is often unpredictable in practice and the reasons behind its volatile performance have been a long-standing open question in the ML and AI communities. Dr Stefanos Leonardos and Assistant Professor Georgios Piliouras, researchers from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), applied analytical tools from the theory of dynamical systems in the study of multi-agent systems and established a deep connection between exploration-exploitation and Catastrophe Theory (Figures 1 and 2). The latter is a branch of mathematics that formally explains phase transitions in all kinds of natural systems ranging from the transition from water to ice and disease outbreaks to collapses of financial markets.


Singapore unveils startup fund to fuel maritime digital transformation

ZDNet

Singapore is offering funds to help startups pilot projects for the maritime industry, which can also access sandboxes to test new technologies. A new zone also has been dedicated to testbed drone technologies for maritime applications, as the country navigates its ambition of becoming a global maritime startup hub. Technology had played an integral role in keeping the sector resilient during the COVID-19 outbreak and would continue to do so in a post-pandemic era, said Chee Hong Tat, Singapore's Senior Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and Transport. To help the industry navigate this, it needed an environment that supported risk-taking and experimentation as well as collaborations with internal and external partners, Chee said. Speaking Tuesday at the Singapore Maritime Technology Conference, the minister said market players needed a conducive environment to test out new ideas and "a safe place [for experiments] to fail".


Security crucial as 5G connects more industries, devices

ZDNet

More networks, industries, and machines will be interconnected as 5G become more widely available, making security an even bigger challenge for businesses in Asia-Pacific. Along with this, they also will have to deal with the increased complexity of managing 5G infrastructures, including the use of network slicing. Beyond just providing consumers with faster data speeds, the emergence of 5G networks would see more industries and devices connected as enterprises tapped the lower latency the technology could deliver, said John Harrington, Nokia's senior vice president and head of Asia-Pacific Japan. The COVID-19 pandemic also had accelerated the digitalisation of physical industries such as energy and transport and their reliance on high-speed, digital connectivity, he said in a call with ZDNet. Stressing the need to safeguard key systems, Singapore will set up a panel comprising global experts to offer advice on operational technology (OT) cybersecurity and launches the country's cybersecurity blueprint that focuses on securing digital infrastructure and cyber activities.


The Examples and Benefits of AI in Healthcare -- ITRex

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Back in 2017, the infamous WannaCry ransomware paralyzed parts of the UK's National Health Service for days. In 2019, a malicious agent leaked personal data of thousands of Singapore's HIV-positive patients. In the midst of the pandemic, cybersecurity has taken on extra importance. To avoid system downtimes and data breaches, healthcare organizations are tapping in AI-powered cybersecurity. AI-based security solutions analyze data flows within a technology system to get the grasp of what behavior is normal and abnormal for each user.


AI-powered breath test detects covid among Emiratis within seconds

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Even as a robust vaccination drive is underway in the Emirates, testing and tracing of covid positive patients remains a crucial tool for containing infections. The year of the pandemic saw deployment of data collection, online apps and devices to detect symptoms of covid in public spaces of the UAE, for successfully keeping an outbreak at bay. With negative test results becoming a key document for international travel, quicker and convenient procedures are being developed to scale up covid detection. Continuing its legacy of adopting latest innovations in tech, Dubai has started experimenting with a breath test, which can spot covid in less than a minute. The device developed by University of Singapore-backed firm Breathonix, uses machine learning to identify volatile organic compound created by biochemical reactions, to give results in seconds.


Singapore sends 'robot couriers' out for delivery

ZDNet

Autonomous robots are hitting the streets of Singapore in a one-year pilot to facilitate on-demand food and grocery deliveries. The Singapore government hopes the trial will lead to a wider deployment of the drones to provide consumers with more flexible delivery services. Currently underway in Punggol, the one-tests would enable residents in the area to choose when they would like their items delivered, rather than accommodating the online retailer's fixed delivery schedule. Shoppers at the supermarket, for instance, could drop off their purchases at a concierge counter and arrange for these to be delivered to their residential apartment at a time they desired, and continue with their shopping or dining. Perishables including food and flowers as well as some controlled items such as medicine could be delivered through the "robot couriers", according to a statement Thursday by Singapore's Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA), the government agency leading the initiative.


The Difficulty of Graph Anonymisation - KDnuggets

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This article is written in response to the recent TraceTogether privacy saga. For the non-Singaporeans out there, TraceTogether is Singapore's contact tracing initiative in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in Singapore. The objective of the program was to quickly identify people who might be in close contact with anyone who has tested positive for the virus. It comprises of an app or physical token which uses Bluetooth signals to store proximity records. As at the end December 2020, 70% of Singapore residents were supposedly on the programme.


First commercial autonomous bus services hit Singapore roads

ZDNet

Commercial autonomous bus services have been rolled out for the first time in Singapore, running two routes at Singapore Science Park 2 and Jurong Island. They will operate during a three-month trial during which data will be collected to assess the viability of the on-demand service as well as passenger safety and service reliability and efficiency. Development of the project involved multiple organisations and government agencies, with the aim to drive and accelerate sustainable deployment of robotics in the country. Led collectively under the Alliance for Action (AfA) on Robotics, the initiative also was facilitated by the Economic Development Board and Land Transport Authority. The AfA itself was brought together by the Emerging Stronger Taskforce, established by the government to review how Singapore could stay economically resilient and tap new areas of growth amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.


National data exchange platform lets Singaporeans consolidate financial data

ZDNet

A new data platform has been introduced in Singapore to enable residents to pull together and view their financial information from across various sources, including banks and government agencies. The aim here is to help these individuals better understand and plan their overall financial posture. The Singapore Financial Data Exchange (SGFinDex) was developed by the Singapore government, in collaboration with the Association of Banks in Singapore and seven participating banks, including DBS Bank, Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation, HSBC Bank, Maybank Singapore, and Standard Chartered bank Singapore. Caught by the sudden onslaught of COVID-19, most businesses lacked or had inadequate security systems in place to support remote work and now have to deal with a new reality that includes a much wider attack surface and less secured user devices. The initiative was led by several government agencies including the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and Government Technology Agency (GovTech).


ABB robots accelerate coronavirus testing in Singapore

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