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10 Bits: The Data News Hotlist

by Morgan Stevens
Picture showing effects of climate change on globe

This week’s list of data news highlights covers October 9, 2021 to October 15, 2021 and includes articles on determining the impact of climate change on the global population and building a digital twin of Las Vegas.

1. Recreating Lost Art

Oxia Palus, a U.K.-based art technology company dedicated to recovering lost art, has recreated Pablo Picasso’s The Lonesome Crouching Nude. Picasso painted over the artwork when making a different painting. The team at Oxia Palus used x-ray imaging to identify the original artwork’s outline and trained an AI system to recreate brushstrokes and texture.

2. Monitoring Parks

City officials in Las Vegas have installed sensor technology in a neighborhood park to gather real-time data on park usage. The sensors will help officials monitor public safety, parking lot activity, and the condition of the park.

3. Mapping Predicted Accidents

Researchers at MIT and the Qatar Center for Artificial Intelligence have created a machine learning model that can predict which roadways are most likely to have traffic accidents. In tests, the model identified several high-risk locations that were previously thought to be safer than other roadways.

4. Surveying Sherwood Forest

The Nottinghamshire County Council in the United Kingdom has partnered with Birmingham City University to place a robot dog in the county’s forest to help park officials collect data from inaccessible areas and monitor the condition of the forest.

5. Measuring the Impact of the Climate Crisis

Researchers with Climate Analytics, a nonprofit climate research organization, and the Mercator Research Institute on Global Commons and Climate Change have created an AI system to measure the impact of climate change on the world’s population. The system analyzed 100,000 research studies published between 1951 and 2018 and found that 85 percent of the global population lives in an area affected by climate change.

6. Inventing Self-Navigating Walking Canes

Researchers at Stanford University have created a walking cane that uses sensors to help individuals with visual impairments navigate their environment. To understand the surrounding environment, the cane collects data using lidar technology, GPS, and sensors to measure vibrations, orientation, and magnetic fields. An AI system then uses the data to manipulate an actuator that directs the user where to go. 

7. Releasing Inference Platforms

IBM has open-sourced an inference platform that helps AI systems operate and appropriately respond to requests. Inference platforms enable AI systems like chatbots to receive queries, parse through its training data to find an answer, and relay the results in a timely manner. The release of IBM’s time-tested platform will help developers better operate AI systems designed for high-intensity usage. 

8. Building a Digital Twin

City officials in Las Vegas have partnered with Cityzenith and Terbine, two U.S.-based technology companies, to build a digital twin of Las Vegas. Officials will use the digital twin to monitor air and water quality, improve mobility, and develop plans to reduce carbon emissions.

9. Designing Sneakers

Stan van der Vossen, an AI engineer in the Netherlands, has launched a fashion service that uses an AI system to design sneakers. Van der Vossen trained the system on 50,000 images of unusual sneakers.

10. Exploring San Antonio’s Japanese Tea Garden

The San Antonio Parks Foundation has partnered with Geomedia, a U.S.-based video production company, to launch an app that uses augmented reality to educate visitors at San Antonio’s historic Japanese Tea Garden. The app features six augmented reality features ranging from a flying dragon to educational exhibits on the history of the land.

Image credit: Flickr user Jim Forest

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