AI, Captain: IBM’s edge AI-powered ship Mayflower sets sail

IBM’s fully-autonomous edge AI-powered ship Mayflower has set off on its crewless voyage from Plymouth, UK to Plymouth, USA.

The ship is named after the Mayflower vessel which transported pilgrim settlers from Plymouth, England to Plymouth, Massachusetts in 1620. On its 400th anniversary, it was decided that a Mayflower for the 21st century should be built.

Mayflower 2.0 is a truly modern vessel packed with the latest technological advancements. Onboard edge AI...

Reintroduction of facial recognition legislation receives mixed responses

The reintroduction of the Facial Recognition and Biometric Technology Moratorium Act in the 117th Congress has received mixed responses.

An initial version of the legislation was introduced in 2020 but was reintroduced June 15 2021 by Sen. Edward Markey (D-Mass.)

“We do not have to forgo privacy and justice for safety,” said Senator Markey. “This legislation is about rooting out systemic racism and stopping invasive technologies from becoming irreversibly embedded...

Enterprise AI platform Dataiku announces fully-managed online service

Dataiku has announced a fully-managed online version of its enterprise AI platform to help smaller companies get started.

The data science platform enables raw data to be converted into actionable insights through data visualisation or the creation of dashboards and also supports training machine learning models.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XTBms2LeGII

“Accessibility has always been of the utmost importance at Dataiku. We developed Dataiku Online to address...

McDonald’s drive-thru AI bot may have broken privacy law

McDonald’s announced earlier this month that it was deploying an AI chatbot to handle its drive-thru orders, but it turns out it might break privacy law.

The chatbot is the product of a voice recognition company McDonald’s snapped up in 2019 called Apprente which is now known as McD Tech Labs.

McDonald’s deployed the chatbots to ten of its restaurants in Chicago, Illinois. And there lies the issue.

The state of Illinois has some of the strictest data...

Fetch.ai announces partnership with IoT-focused distributed ledger IOTA

Cambridge-based AI startup Fetch.ai has announced a partnership with IOTA, an open-source distributed ledger focused on the Internet of Things.

Fetch.ai has caught the attention of investors for its potentially groundbreaking machine learning network of autonomous “agents” that can perform real-world tasks. It’s also caught our attention, making our list of innovative companies to watch in 2021.

IOTA was among the most hyped projects during the 2017...

Razer and ClearBot are using AI and robotics to clean the oceans

Razer has partnered with marine waste cleaning startup ClearBot to advance the use of AI and robotics to reduce ocean pollution.

The pair announced their partnership in celebration of World Oceans Day and is part of Razer’s 10-year #GoGreenWithRazer campaign that will see the company make green investments to support environment- and sustainability-focused startups.

Patricia Liu, Chief of Staff at Razer, said:

“We are extremely happy to have the opportunity...

Emotion AI creator Affectiva acquires Smart Eye for $73.5M

MIT spin-out Affectiva, one of our most innovative companies to watch in 2021, has acquired Smart Eye for $73.5 million.

Affectiva is the creator of Emotion AI, a category of artificial intelligence which can understand human emotions, cognitive states, activities, and the objects people use through analysing facial and vocal expressions. The AI was trained using more than 10 million face videos from 90 countries.

Smart Eye are pioneers in eye-tracking that understands,...

Amazon will continue to ban police from using its facial recognition AI

Amazon will extend a ban it enacted last year on the use of its facial recognition for law enforcement purposes.

The web giant’s Rekognition service is one of the most powerful facial recognition tools available. Last year, Amazon signed a one-year moratorium that banned its use by police departments following a string of cases where facial recognition services – from various providers – were found to be inaccurate and/or misused by law enforcement.

Amazon has now...

Hi Auto brings conversational AI to drive-thrus using Intel technology

Hi Auto is increasing the efficiency of drive-thrus with a conversational AI system powered by Intel technologies.

Drive-thru usage has rocketed over the past year with many indoor restaurants closed due to pandemic-induced restrictions. In fact, research suggests that drive-thru orders in the US alone increased by 22 percent in 2020.

Long queues at drive-thrus have therefore become part of the “new normal” and fast food is no longer the convenient alternative to...

Google launches fully managed cloud ML platform Vertex AI

Google Cloud has launched Vertex AI, a fully managed cloud platform that simplifies the deployment and maintenance of machine learning models.

Vertex was announced during this year’s virtual I/O developer conference and somewhat breaks from Google’s tradition of using its keynote to focus more on updates to its mobile and web development solutions. Google announcing the platform during the keynote shows how important the company believes it to be for a wide range of...