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10 Bits: The Data News Hotlist

by Aswin Prabhakar

This week’s list of top data news highlights covers March 16, 2024 to March 22, 2024 and includes articles on using AI to predict floods and setting up dynamic speed limits to increase road safety.

1. Identifying Landmarks

Meta’s Ray-Ban smart glasses now feature a landmark recognition tool that allows users to identify and learn about landmarks simply by looking at them. The AI-powered feature provides historical and interesting information about each landmark, acting as a virtual tour guide for travelers.

2. Improving Road Safety

The Colorado Department of Transportation is introducing variable speed limit signs along a 10-mile stretch of a major highway. The signs will display speed limits based on weather, traffic congestion, and traffic speed data, aiming to improve road safety and reduce accidents.

3. Bringing Still Photos to Life

Google researchers have unveiled VLOGGER, an AI system that can generate lifelike videos of people speaking, gesturing, and moving from a single still photo. By inputting a photo and an audio clip, VLOGGER outputs a video that matches the audio, showing the person speaking the words with corresponding facial expressions, head movements, and hand gestures.

4. Increasing Productivity of Doctors

The Permanente Medical Group, a US medical services provider, has rolled out a tool that uses a secure smartphone microphone to transcribe patient encounters, then employs machine learning and natural language processing to summarize the clinical content and generate a visit note. Physicians using the tool have reported saving an average of one hour per day on documentation, while maintaining the quality and accuracy of their notes.

5. Predicting Floods

Google researchers have developed an AI model that can predict river-based flooding up to five days in advance, even in areas with little historical or real-time data. The model could provide more accurate forecasting for underserved developing areas in countries across the world.

6. Enhancing Gaming Experience

Ubisoft has unveiled an AI-powered non-player character (NPC) that can engage in lifelike conversations with players. Created in collaboration with Nvidia and Inworld.ai, this generative AI tool brings a new level of realism and engagement to gaming, enhancing storytelling and player experience.

7. Improving Soccer Tactics

DeepMindhas unveiled TacticAI, an AI model that can predict the outcomes of corner kicks and suggest tweaks to increase or decrease the likelihood of a goal. By analyzing player positions, movements, and attributes, TacticAI helps coaches identify critical attackers, spot defensive weaknesses, and find similar corner patterns, saving hours of manual analysis.

9. Monitoring Vitals Wirelessly

Researchers at Peking University in Beijing, China have developed a miniaturized sensor that can monitor vital signs like blood pressure, abdominal pressure, and blood viscosity.Users use a wearable device to initiate a vibration to the implanted sensor and it captures the signals the sensor sends back without the need for any wires or heavy equipment. 

9. Reducing Public Space Congestion

Beonic, an Australian company, is using Internet of Things (IoT) technology to enhance the functionality of public spaces. The company has installed Wi-Fi access points, which serve a dual purpose as sensors, in various public spaces like shopping malls and airports across Australia. These sensors collect data on foot traffic patterns and space utilization, providing valuable insights for managers of these public spaces. With this data, they are able to efficiently optimize layouts, adjust staffing levels, and enhance safety measures based on real-time insights.

10. Running Trillion Parameter AI Models

Nvidia has unveiled its Blackwell graphics processing units (GPUs), which has 25 times better energy efficiency and lower costs for AI processing tasks compared to the previous generation GPUs. The new processing chips enable organizations to develop and deploy real-time generative AI applications using trillion-parameter models.

Image credits: Andrew Teoh


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