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Artificial Intelligence Creating New Possibilities for Personalisation This Year

Tech companies today are also attempting to bridge the gap between academia and the career market

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Artificial Intelligence (AI) and cross-industry collaborations are creating new avenues for data collection and offering personalised services to users this year, according to a report.

Among other technology trends that are picking up this year are the convergence of the smart home and healthcare, autonomous vehicles coming for last-mile delivery and data becoming a hot-button geopolitical issue, according to the report titled “14 Trends Shaping Tech” from CB Insights.

“As a more tech-savvy generation ages up, we’ll see the smart home begin acting as a kind of in-home health aide, monitoring senior citizens’ health and well being. We’ll see logistics players experiment with finally moving beyond a human driver,” said the report.

“And we’ll see cross-industry collaborations, whether via ancestry-informed Spotify playlists or limited edition Fortnite game skins,” it added.

In September 2018, Spotify partnered with Ancestry.com to utilise DNA data to create unique playlists for individuals.

Playlists reflect music linked to different ethnicities and regions. A person with ancestral roots in Bengaluru, for example, might see Carnatic violinists and Kannada film songs on their playlists.

DNA data is also informing how we eat. GenoPalate, for example, collects DNA info through saliva samples and analyses physiological components like an individual’s ability to absorb certain vitamins or how fast they can metabolize nutrients.

From there, it matches this information to nutrition analyses that it has conducted on a wide range of food and suggests a personalised diet. It also sells its own meal kits that use this information to map out menus.

artificial intelligence, nobel prize
“Artificial intelligence is now one of the fastest-growing areas in all of science and one of the most talked-about topics in society.” VOA

“We’ll also see technology brands expand beyond their core products and turn themselves into a lifestyle,” said the report.

For example, as electric vehicle users need to wait for their batteries to charge for anywhere from 30 minutes to two hours, the makers of these vehicles are trying to turn this idle time into an asset.

China’s NioHouse couples charging stations with a host of activities. At the NioHouse, a user can visit the library, drop children off at daycare, co-work, and even visit a nap pod to rest while charging.

Nio has also partnered with fashion designer Hussein Chalayan to launch and sell a fashion line, Nio Extreme.

Also Read- YouTube Working to Overhaul its Verification Programme

Tech companies today are also attempting to bridge the gap between academia and the career market.

Companies like the Lambda School and Flatiron School offer courses to train students on exactly the skills they will need to get a job, said the report.

These apprenticeships mostly focus on tech skills like computer science and coding. Training comes with the explicit goal of employment and students only need to pay their tuition once they have landed a job that pays them above a certain range.

Investors are also betting on the rise of digital goods. While these goods cannot be owned in the physical world, they come with clout, and offer personalisation and in-game experiences to otherwise one-size-fits-all characters, the research showed. (IANS)

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Researchers Develop Artificial Skin for Robots

Scientists Develop a system combining Artificial skin with control algorithms to Create first Autonomous Humanoid Robot

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Scientists have developed a system combining artificial skin with control algorithms and used it to create the first autonomous humanoid robot. (Representational Image). Pixabay

 Researchers have developed a system combining artificial skin with control algorithms and used it to create the first autonomous humanoid robots with full-body artificial skin.

The artificial skin developed by Professor Gordon Cheng and his team from Technical University of Munich in Germany, consists of hexagonal cells about the size of a two-euro coin (i.e. about one inch in diameter).

According to the study published in the journal Proceedings of the IEEE, each is equipped with a microprocessor and sensors to detect contact, acceleration, proximity and temperature.

Such artificial skin enables robots to perceive their surroundings in much greater detail and with more sensitivity.

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Research has now succeeded in applying artificial skin to a human-size autonomous robot. Pixabay

This not only helps them to move safely. It also makes them safer when operating near people and gives them the ability to anticipate and actively avoid accidents.

According to the study, the biggest obstacle in developing robot skin has always been computing capacity.

Human skin has around five million receptors. Efforts to implement continuous processing of data from sensors in artificial skin soon run up against limits.

Previous systems were quickly overloaded with data from just a few hundred sensors.

To overcome this problem using a neuroengineering approach, researchers do not monitor the skin cells continuously, but rather with an event-based system.

This reduces the processing effort by up to 90 per cent.

With an Event-based approach, research has now succeeded in applying skin to a human-size autonomous robot not dependent on any external computation.

The H-1 robot is equipped with 1,260 cells (with more than 13,000 sensors) on its upper body, arms, legs and even the soles of its feet. This gives it a new “bodily sensation”.

For example, with its sensitive feet, H-1 is able to respond to uneven floor surfaces and even balance on one leg.

Robots
Artificial skin enables Robots to perceive their surroundings in much greater detail and with more sensitivity. Pixabay

With its special skin, the H-1 can even give a person a hug safely. That is less trivial than it sounds – robots can exert forces that would seriously injure a human being. During a hug, two bodies are touching in many different places.

“This might not be as important in industrial applications, but in areas such as nursing care, robots must be designed for very close contact with people,” Cheng explained.

“Our system is designed to work trouble-free and quickly with all kinds of robots,” he said.

ALSO READ: Dog Ownership Leads to Longer Life and Healthy Heart

“Now we’re working to create smaller skin cells with the potential to be produced in larger numbers,” he added. (IANS)