Baidu ends participation in AI alliance as US-China relations deteriorate

Baidu will no longer participate in the Partnership on AI (PAI) alliance amid deteriorating relations between the US and China.

PAI is a US-led alliance which aims to foster the ethical development and deployment of AI technologies. Baidu was the only Chinese member.

The loss of Baidu's expertise and any representation from China is devastating for PAI. Ethical AI development requires global cooperation to set acceptable standards which help to ensure safety while not...

M3: Alibaba’s AI detects COVID-19 pneumonia in under a minute

M3, a medical web portal backed by Sony, claims Alibaba’s AI technology has allowed it to develop a powerful COVID-19 diagnosis tool.

The AI-powered tool is able to analyse CT scans for signs of COVID-19 infection to help quickly diagnose the novel coronavirus which has caused havoc around the world.

With heroic medical staff under more pressure than ever caring for the huge influx of people suffering with COVID-19 – in addition to all the other ailments they have to...

Shanghai uses facial recognition to help catch drug offenders

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Facial recognition is being used in Shanghai to help catch individuals suspected of abusing pharmaceuticals.

South China Morning Post reports that Shanghai is testing facial recognition terminals in pharmacies that will verify a person’s identity prior to dispensing controlled substances.

Some legal medications can be turned into banned drugs. Cold and allergy medications, for example, often contain ephedrine which is a key component of crystal meth.

Any...

WIC: Baidu CEO remains bullish of company’s AI investments

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Baidu CEO Robin Li says he remains bullish on his company’s AI investments despite recent troubles.

This year, Baidu’s stock price has dropped 36 percent. Li used the Game of Thrones phrase that “winter is coming” following a first-quarter loss.

Baidu has since not only been asking employees to fly economy rather than business, and not to stay in five-star hotels, but even to reduce the number of paper towels and cups they’re using in the office.

AI...

US adds Chinese AI firms to ban list citing abuses against Muslims in Xinjiang

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A collection of Chinese AI and facial recognition firms have been added to a US blacklist citing rights abuses against Muslims in Xinjiang.

28 Chinese firms have been added (PDF) to the “entity list” of the US government which prohibits American companies from continuing any links with them.

The US government said the firms were blacklisted for playing a role in the "implementation of China's campaign of repression, mass arbitrary detention, and high-technology...

Police in China will use AI face recognition to identify ‘lost’ elderly

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Chinese police hope to use AI-powered facial recognition, in combination with the nation's mass surveillance network, to identify lost elderly people.

The country's surveillance network is often scrutinised for being invasive, but the ability to detect potentially vulnerable people helps to shift the perception that it primarily benefits the government.

Public data suggests around 500,000 elderly people get lost each year, the equivalent of around 1,370 per day. About 72...

Baidu and Geely announce collaboration in AI technologies

Baidu has announced plans to strategically collaborate with Geely on the application of AI technologies to various fields.

Announced during this year’s Baidu Create conference, the companies say they will focus on areas such as the smart home, intelligent connectivity, smart mobility, and e-commerce.

Geely is a privately held global automotive group headquartered in the city of Hangzhou and is most well-known for owning the Volvo and Lotus car brands.

The...

China plans to launch a constellation of AI-powered satellites

China is planning to launch a constellation of AI-powered satellites, according to a state broadcaster.

The constellation will be 192-strong and called ‘Xingshidai’ reports China Central Television.

China intends to use the satellites for environmental monitoring, disaster prevention, and traffic management. AI will help to process images to avoid sending poor quality pictures back to Earth.

Xingshidai satellites will likely use China’s Julang-1 booster...

Tencent is bullish on British AI startup Prowler.io

Chinese technology giant Tencent has led a $100m (£78.4m) funding round for promising British AI startup Prowler.io.

Dr Ling Ge, Chief European Representative at Tencent, said:

“The UK is a global leader in AI and is increasingly becoming a focus for companies looking to invest in the sector. PROWLER.io’s data-efficient approach and focus on human-machine teaming really set it apart.

We are looking forward to PROWLER.io applying its AI decision platform to...

Most-funded AI startup SenseTime wants another $2bn

Not content with being the world’s most-funded AI startup, Chinese facial recognition darling SenseTime is preparing a $2 billion financing round.

SenseTime raised more than $1.2 billion last year; including a round announced in May that valued it at more than $4.5 billion.

According to Bloomberg sources, the company is aiming for $2 billion more funding but the information is private. The sources claim investor Alibaba is working on the...