Chinese ‘Gait Recognition’ tech ID’s people by how they walk

CHINESE ‘GAIT RECOGNITION’ TECH IDS PEOPLE BY HOW THEY WALK

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In this Oct. 31, 2018, photo, Huang Yongzhen, CEO of Watrix, demonstrates the use of his firm’s gait recognition software at his company’s offices in Beijing. A Chinese technology startup hopes to begin selling software that recognizes people by their body shape and how they walk, enabling identification when faces are hidden from cameras. Already used by police on the streets of Beijing and Shanghai, “gait recognition” is part of a major push to develop artificial-intelligence and data-driven surveillance across China, raising concern about how far the technology will go. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein)

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Engineers discover a glaringly simple way to detect bombs and hidden weapons

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How did we not know this already?

You probably use Wi-Fi on the regular to connect your smartphone, computer, or other electronic device to the glory of the world wide web.

But soon, that same technology could also keep you safe in real-life public areas.

According to a peer-reviewed study led by researchers from Rutgers University-New Brunswick, ordinary Wi-Fi can effectively and cheaply detect weapons, bombs, or explosive chemicals contained within bags.

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Assassin drones are here. Now what?

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It was perhaps inevitable that would-be political assassins would turn to off-the-shelf drones.

Security forces check a nearby building after an explosion was heard while Maduro attended a ceremony in Caracas on August 4, 2018. Photo: JUAN BARRETO/AFP/Getty Images

A failed attack by explosives-laden drones on Venezuelan president Nicolas Maduro could be a harbinger of a new era. Cheap, easy-to-use, remotely-piloted aerial vehicles aren’t just toys, anymore. They’re potential tools of assassination.

But don’t panic. This is not the first time assassins have adapted a new technology for nefarious ends. Politicians and their protectors have ways of coping.

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IBM patenting watermark technology to protect ownership of AI models

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Digital properties such as photos and videos get stolen frequently, which is why many creators of such forms of content employ watermarking methodologies so that ownership is easier to claim in case of theft. Another less-known digital property that can get stolen are artificial intelligence (AI) models, that have been developed by researchers after months, and sometimes years of effort.

IBM is now developing a technique to allow AI researchers to “watermark” these models. The technology is currently “patent-pending”.

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The future of surveillance: Watch this A.I. security camera spot a shoplifter

Whether it is facial recognition tech that is (allegedly) able to pick a wanted criminal out of a crowd of thousands or aerial drones which use image recognition smarts to predict fights before they take place, there is no doubt that we are living through a major paradigm shift for automated surveillance technology. But this kind of tech can have more grounded, everyday applications, too — like helping prevent shoplifters stealing goods from their local mom-and-pop corner store.

That is something seemingly demonstrated by a new artificial intelligence security camera called the “A.I. Guardman,” built by Japanese telecommunication company NTT East and startup Earth Eyes Corp. The camera uses a special pose detection system to identify behavior it deems to be suspicious. In the event that this kind of behavior is spotted, it sends an alert to the store owner’s smartphone, allowing them to take action.

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A single police drone has seriously impacted crime in a Mexican city

Drones are finding a place in so many industries lately that it’s not much of a surprise that police departments have also been testing the technology for crime-fighting operations.

The city of Ensenada in Mexico, for example, has recently achieved positive results using just a single quadcopter, Wired reported this week. The flying machine has helped to cut overall crime in the city by as much as 10 percent, including a 30-percent drop in burglaries.

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Chinese cities wanting peace and quiet are using acoustic cameras to catch honking drivers

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The cameras, which have been rolled out in 40 cities, work by capturing a two-second film of a honking car.

The police analyze the footage to determine whether drivers who honked had a fair reason to do so — if not, they could receive a $16 fine.

This may be the first step to link car honking with further penalties for drivers.

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Chinese police foil drone-flying phone smugglers at Hong Kong border

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Dozens of high-tech phone smugglers have been apprehended by Chinese police, who twigged to the scheme to send refurbished iPhones into the country from Hong Kong via drone — but not the way you might think.

China’s Legal Daily reported the news (and Reuters noted shortly after) following a police press conference; it’s apparently the first cross-border drone-based smuggling case, so likely of considerable interest.

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Tech giants like Google and Alibaba are working to save endangered species

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Black markets have been using popular social apps and platforms to ply their illicit trade.

Google, eBay and other technology leaders are aiming to protect the world’s animals. Why? In a widely unregulated social-media world, many tech platforms have become a haven for the wildlife black market, a $20 billion industry.

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