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Never Forget the Power of Government on AI

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Microsoft Awarded Five-Year $1.76 Billion IDIQ Contract by DoD
Microsoft was awarded a $1,760,000,000 indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity (IDIQ) contract under the DoD Enterprise Software Initiative (ESI) to provide the Department of Defense with Microsoft Enterprise Services in accordance with the Defense Federal Acquisition Regulation Supplement, Section 208.74.

Google, Amazon, And Microsoft Face New Pressure over Facial Recognition Contracts
On Tuesday, a group of 90 advocacy groups penned a letter to Amazon, Google, and Microsoft, requesting that the companies pledge not to sell facial recognition technology to the government.
(The Verge)

Shareholders Ask Amazon to Halt Sales of Facial Recognition Tech
A group of Amazon shareholders has filed a resolution requesting the company stop selling its facial recognition technology to government agencies until a review can determine whether it has the potential to violate civil rights. The resolution is supported by a total of five shareholder groups that hold $1.32 billion of Amazon shares.

US Army Considers Using AI to Speed Up Weapons Systems
The U.S. Army is considering the use of artificial intelligence for some weapons, its acquisitions assistant secretary revealed late last week. Officials are cautioning against policies that restrict its ability to use AI for these systems, arguing that such limitations will prevent it from developing weapons that can adequately compete against potential threats from advanced foreign powers.

EU Parliamentarians Kick Off Industrial Policy on AI And Robotics
Members of the Committee on Industry, Research and Energy adopted on January 14 a report on artificial intelligence and robotics that promotes the role of technologies and calls on the European Union’s members to develop new training programmes that boost the professional skills of workers.


What’s Coming in TensorFlow 2.0
TensorFlow 2.0 will focus on simplicity and ease of use, featuring updates like: 1. Easy model building with Keras and eager execution. 2. Robust model deployment in production on any platform. 3. Powerful experimentation for research. 4. Simplifying the API by cleaning up deprecated APIs and reducing duplication.

Ian Goodfellow: 4.5 Years of GAN Progress on Face Generation
Generative Adversarial Networks
– Unsupervised Representation Learning with Deep Convolutional Generative Adversarial Networks
– Coupled Generative Adversarial Networks
– Progressive Growing of GANs for Improved Quality, Stability, and Variation
– A Style-Based Generator Architecture for Generative Adversarial Networks

AutoML: Automating the Design of Machine Learning Models for Autonomous Driving
“Take perception: our system employs a combination of neural nets that enables our vehicles to interpret sensor data to identify objects and track them over time so it can have a deep understanding of the world around it.”

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The Weird and the Wacky at CES 2019
CES covers almost 40 football fields of exhibit space, and exhibitors know that they have to serve up something different if they hope to grab attendees’ attention.Synced surveyed some of the more offbeat products and promotions at last week’s CES 2019.

CES 2019: Smart Toilets, Treadmills, Fitness Trackers, and DNA Tests…for Your Pets?
At last week’s CES 2019 in Las Vegas, Synced visited pet tech booths to explore the current state and future directions of AI powered tech and smart offerings aimed at our furry companions. We found smart pet technologies can generally be divided into six categories: Tracking, Monitoring, Playing, Feeding, Toilets, and Bathing.

Global AI Events

January 24–25, 2019 The AI Assistant Summit. San Francisco, United States

Jan 27 – Feb 1, 2019 AAAI 2019: Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence. Hawaii, United State

Global AI Opportunities

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