IBM Are Funding GenAI Startups

PLUS: Machine Learning gives users a 'superhuman' skill in virtual reality through HotGestures.

Welcome back. Today is Thursday, November 9th, and we're looking at IBM's $500M boost for B2B generative AI, global agreements on military AI guardrails, and Meta-Microsoft's defense against election interference. New to The Intelligence Age? Sign up here.
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News & Insights

IBM Has A $500m Fund For B2B Generative AI Start-Ups

IBM earmarks half a billion dollars for the advancement of AI, specifically targeting B2B generative AI start-ups. This move, echoing a broader trend of tech giants such as Workday and Amazon, signifies a significant thrust towards AI innovation. Start-ups, irrespective of their growth stage, stand to gain not just financially, but also through meaningful partnerships that provide operational expertise and go-to-market strategies.

Rob Thomas, SVP of software and chief commercial officer at IBM, anticipates AI unlocking trillions in productivity. "We're opening another channel to harness the enormous potential of the AI revolution into tangible, positive outcomes for IBM and the companies we invest in," says Thomas. This fund reaffirms IBM's commitment to responsible AI innovation, further solidifying its position as a major backer of AI start-ups. siliconrepublic

The US And 30 Other Nations Agree To Set Guardrails For Military AI

The US, along with 30 other nations, has pledged to establish 'guardrails' for military AI - a move that could pave the way for more transparency, predictability, and regulation in autonomous weaponry. The agreement, while not legally binding, is a noteworthy step toward governing the use of AI in warfare and is seen as a significant milestone in establishing international norms around this issue.

Under this agreement, signatories have committed to ensuring military AI operates within international laws, to develop the technology judiciously and with transparency, and to mitigate biases in AI systems. As a major breakthrough, it also necessitates safeguards for military AI systems, allowing for disengagement or deactivation when unexpected behaviors occur. wired

Why does this matter?

While the agreement is a pivotal move, it's important to note that it does not include China or Russia - countries seen as leaders in autonomous weapons development. This could potentially limit the effectiveness of the agreement and begs the question - how will the global community address the discrepancies in participation?

Meta And Microsoft Move To Protect Elections From AI

In a timely move, Meta and Microsoft are fortifying the barricades of democracy, targeting deepfakes in elections. Microsoft is manifesting this through a watermarking service, set to launch in Spring 2024. This tool will authenticate media, flagging any AI-generated or tampered content, thus empowering organizations against deceptive alterations. On the other hand, Meta mandates advertisers to disclose any digital alterations in their political or social issue ads, penalizing non-compliance. siliconrepublic

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Research Review

Machine Learning Gives Users 'Superhuman' Ability To Open And Control Tools In Virtual Reality

HotGestures, a breakthrough by University of Cambridge researchers, utilizes machine learning to provide a 'superhuman' tool control in virtual reality (VR) environments. This solution diverges from conventional VR interactions: it's not about clicking or scrolling, but about performing intuitive hand gestures. Need scissors? Mimic a cutting motion and voilà!

With this new approach, users can build 3D models sans distractions from menu browsing or button pressing. The beauty here lies in the simplicity - the system recognises ten different gestures associated with 3D modelling tasks. And no worries about false activations; the system differentiates between gestures and normal hand movements. sciencedaily

Written by Isaac R. Ward, Casey Clifton, and Alex Brogan.

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