If you are looking for an answer to the question What is Artificial Intelligence? and you only have a minute, then here's the definition the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence offers on its home page: "the scientific understanding of the mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines."
However, if you are fortunate enough to have more than a minute, then please get ready to embark upon an exciting journey exploring AI (but beware, it could last a lifetime) …
A new report suggests many people's stockings were stuffed with an Amazon Echo this holiday. Apple's App Store revealed that following Christmas Day, Amazon's Alexa took the top spot followed by YoutTube and Snapchat. Although Fitbit came in seventh, it was the second most popular hardware related app, suggesting many people may have also received it was gift this year. Apple released its weekly roundup of the most popular apps in its App Store and last week Disney reigned supreme, but just a day after Christmas, it was demoted to third by Amazon's Alexa app and YouTube. The report suggests that consumers had received an Amazon Echo for Christmas and needed the app to setup the device.
Germany reportedly intends to acquire the Northrop Grumman MQ-4C Triton high-altitude surveillance drone, according to a story in Sueddeutsche Zeitung. In 2013, Germany cancelled a similar program to acquire Northrop Grumman's RQ-4 Global Hawk, a surveillance drone on which the newer Triton is based, due to cost overruns. The Triton is a large, long-endurance system that was originally developed for maritime surveillance by the U.S. Navy. The U.S. Army released a report outlining its strategy for obtaining and using unmanned ground vehicles. The Robotics and Autonomous Systems strategy outlines short, medium, and long-term goals for the service's ground robot programs.
We spoke to The Daily Beast to help make sense of ISIL's growing use of armed consumer drones in the conflict in Syria and Iraq. Meanwhile, we assisted The Verge in confirming that the jail sentence given to a Seattle man for crashing his drone during a parade was in fact unprecedented in the history of U.S. domestic drone use. A suspected U.S. drone strike in Pakistan killed two individuals near the border of Afghanistan. If confirmed, it would be the first U.S. drone strike in Pakistan under the Trump administration. The U.S. launched over 20 airstrikes in Yemen, targeting al-Qaeda in the Arab Peninsula.
Dronescapes is a collection of vibrant, mystical paintings of drones by Australian artist Kathryn Brimblecombe-Fox. In a conversation with the Center for the Study of the Drone, the artist shares the meaning of her work, explains her use of traditional Australian motifs, and shares her views on the rise of autonomous technology. The Federal Aviation Administration released a new set of reports of airspace incidents involving drones, including close encounters with manned aircraft and drone use over airports. The dataset includes 1,274 reported incidents that occurred between February and September 2016, around 400 more than occurred during the same period in 2015. At the National Interest, Elsa Kania argues that China could soon overtake the U.S. in the development of autonomous drones.
Telecommunications firm Verizon has acquired Skyward, a drone operations management company. Skyward develops software for drone operators to manage flight tracking and logging, maintenance scheduling, and contract management. The drone startup will join Verizon's Internet of Things portfolio. Kenya's government has implemented regulations for commercial drone use. The Kenya Civil Aviation Authority will begin allowing businesses to import and use drones for a range of operations.