Source: Neurala

Source: Neurala

"...Neurala’s difference is in our DNA. Our first project for NASA was to design AI for autonomous planetary exploration. Supercomputers, GPS, active sensors, and Cloud were not an option. Essentially, we were asked to build AI that can run anywhere. To do that, we created The Neurala Brain, a highly efficient software which is based on the way brains work in nature. Today’s Neurala Brain builds upon that effort to enable industry-leading performance on devices with low-cost sensors and processors." Read more at

Microchipping at work: US employees get voluntarily implanted at staff 'chip party'

Updated yesterday at 10:54am

Employees of a Wisconsin technology company who received a microchip implant in their hand said they felt only a brief sting during the procedure.

Key points:

  • Employees of a Wisconsin company have been voluntarily microchiped
  • It is the first US appearance of technology that is already available in Europe
  • The microchips will allow employees to log onto the company system, open doors and buy snacks

Three Square Market, also known as 32M, said 41 of its 85 employees agreed to be voluntarily microchipped during a "chip party" at company headquarters in River Falls yesterday.

The technology will allow employees to open doors, log onto computers or buy breakroom snacks by simply waving their hand.

"We came across this and saw it being used in other societies, we said why not us?" 32M chief operating officer Patrick McMullan said.

"Why not us, bring it and provide a solution that we can use for so many different things."

PHOTO: A microchip is shown compared with a dime at Three Square Market in Wisconsin. (AP: Jeff Baenen)

Melissa Timmins, vice-president of sales at 32M, said after learning more about the technology she decided to try out the chip.

"I'm excited to see what this can do," Ms Timmins said.

"I was a little apprehensive about more of the health part of it and actually implanting something into my body.

"But from day one I was excited about what we could do with the technology itself and where it could go for our company."

Ms Timmins said she hoped to eventually use it to get into her car or go shopping.

Noelle Chesley, associate professor of sociology at the University of Wisconsin, said microchipping could give employers more power over their staff.

"Is it really voluntary when your employer is asking you if you would like to be microchipped?" Ms Chesley said.

"Will there come a day where people who prefer not to be microchipped won't get certain jobs?"

Ms Chesley said she thought implanting microchips into all people would be the wave of the future.

Company leaders said this was the first US appearance of technology already available in Europe.

Three Square Market paid for the $300 microchips.


"The Stack reports on Google's "new research into upscaling low-resolution images using machine learning to 'fill in' the missing details," arguing this is "a questionable stance...continuing to propagate the idea that images contain some kind of abstract 'DNA', and that there might be some reliable photographic equivalent of polymerase chain reaction which could find deeper truth in low-res images than either the money spent on the equipment or the age of the equipment will allow."

Rapid and Accurate Image Super Resolution (RAISR) uses low and high resolution versions of photos in a standard image set to establish templated paths for upward scaling... This effectively uses historical logic, instead of pixel interpolation, to infer what the image would look like if it had been taken at a higher resolution.

It’s notable that neither their initial paper nor the supplementary examples feature human faces. It could be argued that using AI-driven techniques to reconstruct images raises some questions about whether upscaled, machine-driven digital enhancements are a legal risk, compared to the far greater expense of upgrading low-res CCTV networks with the necessary resolution, bandwidth and storage to obtain good quality video evidence.

"The article points out that "faith in the fidelity of these 'enhanced' images routinely convicts defendants."


For all the anthropomorphising, the elements of this story are way less interesting than the way the story is being reported...

A robot escaped from a science lab and caused a traffic jam in one Russian city, it’s reported. Scientists at the Promobot laboratories in Perm had been teaching the machine how to move around independently, but it broke free after an engineer forgot to shut a gate, says the local edition of the Argumenty i Fakty newspaper. The robot found its way to a nearby street, covering a distance of about 50m (164ft), before its battery ran out, the daily says.
With every passing day, it feels like the robot uprising is getting a little closer. Robots are being beaten down by their human overlords, even as we teach them to get stronger. Now, they’re starting to break free.
AuthorJordan Brown
But the company behind the VeriChip, Applied Digital Solutions, says it is in the process of developing a chip that will contain GPS-tracking technology that would allow kidnap victims to be tracked with satellites. (The company says it is exploring a market in Latin American countries.)
Some experts are skeptical, saying the technology has substantial hurdles to overcome before such a device would be viable. Among them: making a gadget small enough to implant, and finding a way to charge the battery that doesn't involve plugging yourself into an electric socket.
While it will no doubt be a few years before chip implants rival cellphones as a must-have wireless accessory, there are a few options available. In November, for example, a company called Wherify Wireless began marketing every kid's worst nightmare: a "GPS Child locator" wristwatch that allows parents, via the Web or a phone call to a special hotline, to home in on their kids and pinpoint their exact current street address.
The watch, which sells for $400 plus a $25 to $50 monthly fee, operates on the Sprint PCS cellphone network and includes a 911 call button. (It comes in "Planetary Purple" and "Galactic Blue.")
Other options include the $400 "Digital Angel," which uses the AT&T wireless network and features a clunky, cigarette-pack-size unit that clips onto a belt. It also has a temperature sensor that can alert you if the wearer steps outside (or, say, into molten lava). It is sold by Applied Digital Solutions, the company that makes VeriChip.
In addition, there are car-tracking gadgets, like the $800 GlobalGuard, which can be installed in vehicles to keep tabs on anyone from adventurous teenagers to errant spouses to executives in danger of abduction. The device is available through Satellite Security Systems in San Diego.

More here

Per reports in Nine News, a survey by the credit card company indicated that 25% of Australians surveyed were "slightly interested" in the idea of an implant that would allow them to wave their hands to make a purchase.
The technology has existed for more than a decade, and consists of "a tiny antenna and an identification number, designed to be implanted between the thumb and index finger and detected by a radio frequency identification scanner."
The kicker?
Unfortunately, some past research has linked the chips to cancers in laboratory animals.

More here

"Dr. Katina Michael of the University of Wollongong, told OmniChannel Media that “Lloyds Bank revealed recently in a study they made last month in the UK, where they found that 28% of consumers there are willing to make payments using wearable devices, including watches and wristbands in the next ten years,”. Michael is an associate professor at the University of Wollongong’s School of Information Systems and Technology, and the editor in chief of IEEE Technology and Society Magazine.

“About 22% think they will regularly be using fingerprints to make those payments,” Michael said, “and even 7% of the population would consider things like implantable devices.”

She believes that the trend to apparel based contactless payment could well be taken up with enthusiasm in Australia.

“I think it’s an interesting question,” Michael said. “Australian studies are showing that locals are going contactless, using different kinds of form factors and are using touch and go systems,” Michaels adds: “How much would it stretch the consumer to consider an e-payment system with a similar embedded device either in the cuff or collar.”

Still, Michael explains, there are troublesome issues, like security, that impact the consumer’s confidence with this kind of innovation. Since the technology was never designed for security devices it can be hacked, killed, cloned, and identities stolen and all of this can be done so remotely and discreetly. “What we are doing by introducing yet another form factor is increasing the vector for fraud.”

Michael notes that the Apple watch take up in Australia has been significant and predicts that as much as one-third of the country’s consumers could move to contactless payment. “But I would say the vast majority [of shoppers] would use their common sense and would not invest or expose them to more security risk.”

More here