Google bars use of its AI technology in weapons – Reuters
Alphabet Inc., parent company of tech giant Google, announced that it will not allow the use of its artificial intelligence (AI) software) in weapons or unreasonable surveillance efforts under new standards for its business decisions in the nascent field.
Reuters reported that the restriction could help management defuse protests by employees against the company’s work with the US military. More than 4,600 employees have petitioned the company to cancel the deal with at least 13 employees resigning to express their concern.
With the military, Google was developing the use of AI to better identify objects in drone video.
Despite the ban, the company also announced that it will continue to work with the US military in areas such as cybersecurity, military recruitment, as well as search and rescue.
Ant Financial raises US$14B, world’s largest ever single fundraising – Reuters
Ant Financial announced today that it has raised around US$14 billion, Reuters reported.
According to market watchers, the funding round is the “biggest ever” single fundraising globally by a private company.
In a press statement, Ant Financial explained that the funding included both US dollar and Chinese yuan tranches, with the US dollar share reported to be made of over US$10 billion.
The company listed GIC, Temasek Holdings, and Warburg Pincus as participants in the dollar tranche.
Other global investors included SWF Khazanah Nasional Bhd, Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Silver Lake, and General Atlantic.
While the company did not share its valuation following the funding round, it was reported earlier to be valued at around US$150 billion.
The funding will be used to prepare for its IPO in Hong Kong and mainland China “as early as next year.”
Xiaomi gets Hong Kong Stock Exchange approval for IPO – Bloomberg
Beijing-based smartphone maker Xiaomi has received the approval of Hong Kong stock exchange for its upcoming IPO, Bloomberg reported.
Citing anonymous sources, the company is said to have passed its “so-called” listing hearing on Thursday and will start gauging investor demand in “the next few days.”
Reportedly aiming for US$10 billion from the IPO, the offering could become the world’s largest first-time share sale since Alibaba Group listed in the US in 2014.
A Xiaomi representative has declined to comment. The Hong Kong Economic Times reported the approval earlier.
Viola.AI, AI Singapore, SMU team up to help singles find dates – Press Release
Lunch Actually’s blockchain-powered dating and relationships artificial intelligence (AI) platform Viola.AI today announced a partnership with Singapore government’s AI Singapore and Singapore Management University (SMU) for a project aimed to help singles and couples in the country get quality matches, date arrangement, relationship advice, as well as goods and services recommendations.
As part of the collaboration, SMU will conduct a research project to feed data to the personality match engine model that incorporates thorough review on spouse selection and family formation. It will also lead various focus groups and surveys on the sociology and technical aspects on matching.
The SMU team will benefit from Lunch Actually Group’s experience and dating service esync.
Viola.AI will also receive support in resources through experts and the AI Apprenticeship Program by AI Singapore and SMU to create a “revolutionary, efficient” matching engine.
“Despite the many initiatives to encourage more couples to get married and start a family, it is still tough for singles, especially in Singapore, who have high pressure to do well in their career, to find the time to meet and choose the right partner. There is also shows more to be done to help couples nurture their relationship so that they can continue to strengthen marital bonds, to better prepare for marriage challenges,” explained Prof. Paulin Straughan, an SMU sociologist and Principal Investigator in the project.