Uber researches AI system to detect users in "unusual state"

Uber logo on a smartphone screen
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Uber is seeking to patent a machine-learning system that can predict when a user is acting "unusually." The patent was filed in December 2016, published last week, and first reported by CNN.

Why it matters: Such a system could help keep vulnerable or intoxicated passengers safe by pairing them with specially trained drivers. It could be useful for drivers, who could get a heads up before picking up a passenger who's behaving erratically.