Nov 16, 2017

Capsule networks advance AI image recognition

Photo illustration: Axios Visuals

Geoffrey Hinton, a Google researcher and professor at the University of Toronto, helped pioneer artificial neural networks, the technology behind most of the major advances in machine learning. And now he's come up with a new idea that he thinks is even more powerful.

Hinton calls his latest creation "capsule networks." Each capsule is a group of artificial neurons trained to track a specific feature of an image. Combining them allows an AI system to understand the spatial relations between different features of an image, so it can identify different views of the same image. Hinton has shown that this technique performs much better than existing systems in a challenge to recognize objects from different angles.

Why it matters: To existing neural networks, two images of the same object from different angles look like totally different objects. This means neural networks asked to recognize objects in images need to train on images from many different angles, which requires vast amounts of data. For example, the ImageNet data set, used in the image recognition competition that's been the benchmark for these systems for the last seven years, contains more than 13 million images. The hope is that capsule networks could achieve the same results working from much smaller data sets.

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World coronavirus updates: UN warns of recession with "no parallel" to recent past

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens and confirmed plus presumptive cases from the CDC

The novel coronavirus pandemic is the "greatest test" the world has faced together since the formation of the United Nations just after the Second World War ended in 1945, UN chief António Guterres said Tuesday.

The big picture: COVID-19 cases surged past 856,000 and the death toll exceeded 42,000 Tuesday, per Johns Hopkins data. Italy reported more than 12,000 deaths.

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White House projects 100,000 to 240,000 U.S. coronavirus deaths

President Trump said at a press briefing on Tuesday that the next two weeks in the U.S. will be "very painful" and that he wants "every American to be prepared for the days that lie ahead," before giving way to Deborah Birx to explain the models informing the White House's new guidance on the coronavirus.

Why it matters: It's a somber new tone from the president that comes after his medical advisers showed him data projecting that the virus could kill 100,000–240,000 Americans — even with strict social distancing guidelines in place.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health