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“This strategy is consistent with our approach to make each part of the new mPhase both a source of ongoing innovation and revenue.” While there are many models for a COE in the technology space, mPhase has identified two key areas for initial focus – artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning.

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What’s in a face? Artificial intelligence deciphers the emotional mysteries of ancient Buddhist statues

For the Nara University project, a pre-trained AI system recognized eight types of human expressions: anger, contempt, disgust, fear, happiness, neutral, sadness, and surprise.

In other words, we wanted to figure out what the sculptors used as models – the kind of human expressions they used.” Traditionally, Buddhist statues are not supposed to portray age or emotion, and, except for guardian deities, they are not supposed to have genders.

“Their makers were sometimes explicitly told to avoid giving their works any human facial expression or emotional content… embodying the view of Buddha as definitely not being human,” Sekine explains.

“If people believe it is imprudent for human beings to judge Buddha, then maybe entrusting the process to AI is a way of objectifying such judgments, making them ‘inorganic.’” The aim of the project was “to provide people with a means for reaffirming the beauty of Buddhism.” And, Sekine believes that new digital technologies will be increasingly used in cultural research.

We think that new approaches to Buddhism through technology are important ways of making Buddhism attractive, particularly to younger generations.” As a bonus from their research, the team has created a Japanese language website where people can upload facial photos of themselves and have these matched to statues with similar expressions.

DoD rips wrapping paper off of new Joint AI Center

“As stated in the AI strategy, the United States together with its allied partners must adopt AI to maintain our strategic position, prevail on the future battlefields and safeguard free and open international borders,” Deasy said during a briefing with reporters on Feb. 12 at the Pentagon.

“One of our central aspects of our AI strategy is the need to increase the speed and agility with how we will deliver AI capabilities across every DoD mission.” The JAIC, for which DoD did a soft launch in June, will be the main artery delivering AI governance, tools, standards and more to all military services and DoD agencies.

“One of the JAIC’s most important contributions over the long term will be establishing this common foundation, enabled by enterprise cloud with particular focus on shared data repositories, reusable tools, frameworks and tools and cloud and edge services,”

And finally, to attract and cultivate a world class AI team.” DoD didn’t wait for the AI strategy or the official announcement to begin taking advantage of the JAIC’s capabilities to expand and coordinate AI activities across DoD.

“We are starting with that, full motion video, then getting into still imagery and then getting into wide area full motion.” He said the pilot also will test out how command and control and firemen on the front lines can access and use that information collected by the AI solution.

“We are just trying to get our arms around who is doing what and then how can we expand from this initial project.” Shanahan added he expects to see the initial results from both pilots sometime over the next six months or so. These pilots, at least for the initial launch of the center, are exactly the approach DoD wants to use when it comes to AI.

“This was a great example of how JAIC was used in the way we see it being used in the future.” Shanahan added the most important factor in any discussion about using AI, or any technology for that matter, is understanding and agreeing to the problem one wants to solve.

“We also are exploring other substantial initiatives in fiscal year 2020 that could, just as an example, accelerate operations intelligence fusion, command and control and decision advantage for operations in a peer and near-peer competitor environment.” Shanahan offered a little bit more detail on the work with Cyber Command.

“At the same time, we want to identify some smart automation initiatives that could provide near term dividends in terms of increased efficiencies and effectiveness for back-office functions.” Deasy said he expects the JAIC to really pick up steam in 2020 when full appropriations come through.

“It’s a real simple concept: Bring people in, give them a place to work and learn over the next two years and actually send them back out to their respective services with an enormous amount of talent and capability and know-how of what JAIC can do,” Deasy said.

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