All Automation and AI stories

Sep 25, 2020 - Technology

Exclusive: U.S. and U.K. announce AI partnership

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The Trump administration is set to announce that the United States and the United Kingdom have signed a new agreement to cooperate on research and development of artificial intelligence, in news shared first with Axios.

Why it matters: The U.S. and its allies fear China is going to surpass them in AI. The partnership shows the U.S. and U.K. think they have a better chance at beating China by linking up.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Sep 23, 2020 - Health

America's halfway coronavirus response

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Some of the same technological advances that have enabled us to partially weather the economic and health tolls of the pandemic may be paradoxically discouraging us from taking fuller measures.

Why it matters: Thanks to tech like video chat and automation, a large portion of the population has been able to mostly escape the effects of the pandemic — and even thrive in some cases. But far too many of us risk being left further behind as the virus spreads.

CIA launches new high-tech lab

CIA Director Gina Haspel. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

In a bid to attract and retain top tech talent, the CIA has announced the formation of CIA Labs, a new venture designed to encourage innovation in "artificial intelligence, data analytics, biotechnology, advanced materials, and high-performance quantum computing,” among other areas, per MIT Technology Review.

How it works: Formed in part because of concerns over a talent drain to the private sector in Silicon Valley, CIA Labs will allow employees to patent their own inventions and keep 15% of the proceeds derived from them, with a maximum salary bump of $150,000 per annum.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Sep 23, 2020 - Technology

Microsoft nabs exclusive license to key AI program

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Microsoft announced a deal Tuesday that will give it the exclusive license to OpenAI's GPT-3 language model, a tool that uses machine learning to generate remarkably human sounding text.

Why it matters: The deal provides a way for many companies to have access to the technology while seemingly allowing Microsoft to establish guardrails and parameters for how the technology can be used.

Sep 23, 2020 - Technology

Exclusive: New push for autonomous vehicles bill

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

In a renewed push to get an autonomous vehicles bill through Congress, Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio) is reintroducing the SELF Drive Act Wednesday, Latta told Axios.

The big picture: New policy legislation is a long shot in the short Congressional calendar leading up to Election Day. But Latta's effort shows the importance many lawmakers put on promoting a U.S. lead in the development of self-driving vehicles.

Sep 10, 2020 - Technology

Inside TikTok's killer algorithm

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

TikTok Wednesday revealed some of the elusive workings of the prized algorithm that keeps hundreds of millions of users worldwide hooked on the viral video app.

Why it matters: The code TikTok uses to pick your next video is a large part of what has led the two-year-old company to achieve broad popularity along with a remarkable $20-$30 billion valuation. The key asset is in play as TikTok's Chinese parent prepares to sell its U.S. operation amid fears about its relationship with China's government.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Sep 9, 2020 - Technology

Better ways to use — and measure — AI in medicine

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

A group of newly published studies outlines how artificial intelligence can be used to improve care in hospitals and enhance clinical trials.

Why it matters: Patients stand to benefit hugely from the use of AI in medicine, but only if there is solid evidence the interventions work — and it can be done without introducing errors or compromising privacy.

Artificial journalism gets a trial run

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

The Guardian on Tuesday published its first-ever op-ed written entirely by artificial intelligence.

Why it matters: It's the latest in a series of developments in the past few years that showcase ways artificial intelligence is being experimented with to replace functions of journalism, but not the industry itself.

Aug 26, 2020 - Economy & Business

An invisible valet can park the cars in this high-tech garage

Ford and Bosch's automated valet parking demonstration. (Photo courtesy of Ford)

In the not-too-distant future, motorists won't have to worry about finding a parking space. They'll leave their car at a drop-off location and the vehicle will park itself in a parking garage.

What's happening: Ford is working with a tech supplier, Bosch, and Bedrock, a Detroit real estate developer, to perfect the system as part of a pilot at a retrofitted garage in Detroit. The companies said it is the first infrastructure-based solution for automated valet parking in the U.S.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Aug 26, 2020 - Technology

Why quantum computing matters

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A new government initiative will direct hundreds of millions of dollars to support new centers for quantum computing research.

Why it matters: Quantum information science represents the next leap forward for computing, opening the door to powerful machines that can help provide answers to some of our most pressing questions. The nation that takes the lead in quantum will stake a pole position for the future.