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10 Bits: The Data News Hotlist

by Morgan Stevens
A golf ball

This week’s list of top data news highlights covers March 25, 2023 to March 31, 2023 and includes articles on opening access to a quantum computer and using an AI system to generate golf commentary.

1. Promoting Cybersecurity
Microsoft has launched an AI-powered chatbot focused on cybersecurity. The chatbot can respond to user-submitted queries about security incidents, active risk exposures, or exploited accounts.

2. Collecting Economic Data
The U.S. Department of Commerce has launched the Regional Economic Research Initiative to improve data collection and analysis on regional economies. Through the initiative, federal, state, and local policymakers can access data tools, visualizations, and services to better understand regional economies and allocate investments.

3. Raising Hands
Google is adding an AI system that can detect raised hands during Meet video calls to its Workspace for Education suite. The system can detect if a user raises their hand on screen and automatically turn on the Raised Hand icon in Meet.

4. Deploying Quantum Computers
Japan’s Riken research institute has started granting access to its 64-qubit quantum computer to external researchers. The computer is Japan’s first domestically built quantum computer.

5. Optimizing Meetings
Zoom has partnered with OpenAI to update its AI-powered assistant known as Zoom IQ. Zoom IQ can now summarize meetings and chat threads, design whiteboards, and draft responses to chats.

6. Monitoring Wounds
Researchers at the California Institute of Technology have created a smart bandage that can monitor and medicate patients’ wounds. The bandage contains biosensors that can collect data on the wound’s uric acid levels, pH, and temperature, and transmit it to a smartphone, tablet, or computer. It’s also designed to hold and apply medication when necessary and deliver low-voltage electrical currents to speed the healing process.

7. Assessing Psoriasis
A team of researchers led by Central South University in China has created an AI system that can assess the severity of psoriasis and predict its progression. The team trained the system with over 14,000 images of psoriasis from over 2,300 patients. In testing, the system determined the severity of psoriasis better than human dermatologists and predicted the trend of its progression with over 80 percent accuracy.

8. Providing Identification
The U.S. Transportation Security Administration has announced plans to expand a digital ID pilot program to Luis Muñoz Marín International Airport in Puerto Rico and Nashville International Airport in Tennessee. Travelers at participating airports can use a digital version of their state ID card or driver’s license on a smartphone to provide identification.

9. Watching Golf
The Masters Tournament, a U.S. professional golf tournament, has partnered with IBM to add two AI-powered features to its app. The first feature uses an AI system to generate commentary for more than 20,000 video clips of golf during the tournament. The second feature uses an AI system to predict players’ scores for each hole.

10. Processing Warehouse Orders
Agility Robotics, a U.S.-based robotics company, has created a humanoid robot that can lift containers from warehouse walls, move them to their next station, and return to its charging station. According to the company, Digit is the first humanoid robot created for warehouse work to be made commercially available.

Image credit: Flickr user Tord Sollie

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