Tuesday March 26, 2019

AI Technology Could Help Protect Water Supplies

Moving forward, the goal is an AI system to continuously monitor water flowing through a microscope for a wide range of contaminants and microorganisms

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It's critical to have running water, even if we have to boil it, for basic hygiene. Pixabay

Researchers have developed a novel artificial intelligence (AI)-based software that could make monitoring at water treatment plants cheaper and easier and help safeguard public health.

The new technology is capable of identifying and quantifying different kinds of cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, as a threat to shut down water systems when it suddenly proliferates.

“We need to protect our water supplies. This tool will arm us with a sentinel system, a more rapid indication when they are threatened,” said Monica Emelko, Professor at the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada.

The operational AI system uses software in combination with a microscope to inexpensively and automatically analyse water samples for algae cells in about one to two hours, including confirmation of results by a human analyst.

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The new technology is capable of identifying and quantifying different kinds of cyanobacteria, or blue-green algae, as a threat to shut down water systems when it suddenly proliferates. Pixabay

The AI system would provide an early warning of problems since testing could be done much more quickly and frequently than current existing methods, said Alexander Wong, Professor at the varsity.

Moving forward, the goal is an AI system to continuously monitor water flowing through a microscope for a wide range of contaminants and microorganisms.

Also Read: Car Tyres May Purify Wastewater in Future

The researchers estimate it may take two to three years to refine a fully commercial sample testing system for use in labs or in-house at treatment plants. The technology to provide continuous monitoring could be three to four years away.

“It’s critical to have running water, even if we have to boil it, for basic hygiene,” Emelko said. (IANS)

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Threat of AI Displacing Jobs is Real, Says Telecom Secretary

On aggregate, the employability for new-age jobs is on average 1.7 per cent, showed the findings based on more than 170,000 Indian engineering students

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The enterprise solutions major has integrated SAP CoPilot with the
"A tectonic shift is happening in AI. Nearly 85 per cent of enterprises globally will use AI in some form or the other by 2020.

While digitisation has delivered great benefits to the country, the threat of automation and Artificial Intelligence (AI) displacing jobs is real, Telecom Secretary Aruna Sundararajan said on Monday.

“Adoption of digital technology has proved to be a great democratiser and leveller in India, especially in doing away with many hierarchies in the Indian economy. But digital is also throwing up as many challenges. There are no easy answers to them,” Sundararajan said, while delivering the keynote address at a conference on “future of the digital economy” here.

“There are various estimates about the rate at which jobs are becoming irreverent – from 10 per cent to a high of 70 per cent. So this threat is real,” she said while referring the rise of AI.

With dangers of job losses looming large, can providing universal basic income be the answer?

“The idea of providing universal basic income is gaining ground because a lot of Silicon Valley leaders are pushing for it,” she said.

Participating at a separate panel discussion, Sanjeev Bikchandani, Co-Founder of Info Edge which runs the job portal Naukri.com, said that there will be no large scale job losses due to AI.

AI has the potential to increase India's annual growth.
AI has the potential to increase India’s annual ggrowth.Pixabay“Some jobs will definitely go. But this happens all the time with new technology arriving. Similar questions were raised when computers were introduced in India. AI will create new industries,” he said at the conference co-organised by Indian Council for Research on International Economic Relations (ICRIER) and Data Catalyst, a non-profit organisation.

 

But do Indians have the skill set for the new jobs that may be created by the new industries?

According to a new report released last week by job skills assessments company Aspiring Minds, over 80 per cent Indian engineers are unemployable for any job in the knowledge economy.

Also Read- Motorola Launches Moto G7, Motorola One in India

A mere three per cent engineers have new-age technological skills in areas like AI, Machine Learning, Data Science and mobile development, the report said.

On aggregate, the employability for new-age jobs is on average 1.7 per cent, showed the findings based on more than 170,000 Indian engineering students. (IANS)