IBM researchers predict 5 innovations will change our lives in 5 years

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IBM Research has a long history of inventing the future, so the big tech company’s researchers take their predictions seriously. Today they are revealing their annual “5 in 5” predictions, which detail five innovations that will change our lives in the next five years.

IBM will talk about the predictions at its Think 2019 event in San Francisco on Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. Pacific time.

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8 companies offering work-from-home jobs that don’t require a college degree

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In an effort to secure the best talent on the market, more and more companies are expanding their applicant pool to include professionals without a traditional college degree.

Job search site Glassdoor compiled a list of who some of these companies are, with top employers like Apple, Google and IBM making the cut. Recently, FlexJobs examined that list to see which companies are also in their database with open positions that allow employees to work from anywhere. (FlexJobs notes that while some of the available work-from-home positions at these companies do require a college degree, there are many open positions that don’t.)

Take a look at the list below to see which flexible companies you should consider working for if you don’t have a four-year college education:

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IBM unveils its first commercial quantum computer

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At CES, IBM today announced its first commercial quantum computer for use outside of the lab. The 20-qubit system combines into a single package the quantum and classical computing parts it takes to use a machine like this for research and business applications. That package, the IBM Q system, is still huge, of course, but it includes everything a company would need to get started with its quantum computing experiments, including all the machinery necessary to cool the quantum computing hardware. While IBM describes it as the first fully integrated universal quantum computing system designed for scientific and commercial use, it’s worth stressing that a 20-qubit machine is nowhere near powerful enough for most of the commercial applications that people envision for a quantum computer with more qubits — and qubits that are useful for more than 100 microseconds. It’s no surprise then, that IBM stresses that this is a first attempt and that the systems are “designed to one day tackle problems that are currently seen as too complex and exponential in nature for classical systems to handle.” Right now, we’re not quite there yet, but the company also notes that these systems are upgradable (and easy to maintain).

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IBM fingernail sensor tracks health through your grip

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Its AI could detect the development of a disease.

The strength of your grip can frequently be a good indicator of your health, and not just for clearly linked diseases like Parkinson’s — it can gauge your cognitive abilities and even your heart health. To that end, IBM has developed a fingernail sensor that can detect your grip strength and use AI to provide insights. The device uses an array of strain gauges to detect the deformation of your nail as you grab objects, with enough subtlety to detect tasks like opening a pill bottle, turning a key or even writing with your finger.

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IBM just proved quantum computers can do things impossible for classical ones

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A team of researchers from IBM, the University of Waterloo, and the Technical University of Munich (TUM) today published the results of an experiment proving a quantum computer can do things a classical one cannot. This may be a watershed moment in the history of computer science.

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Apple HR couldn’t care less if you have a college degree

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You can get hired at Apple even without a fancy piece of paper telling people you got a lot of book learning.

The traditional life plan includes four years of college then a good job. But not everyone takes this path, and sometimes the lack of a college degree keeps some people from getting a job they are otherwise qualified for. But not at Apple.

Following a non-traditional career path is no problem getting hired at Apple. And that goes for positions beyond working at its retail stores.

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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 AI revolution has spawned a new chips arms race

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There’s no x86 in the AI chip market yet—”People see a gold rush; there’s no doubt.”

A lot has changed since 1918. But whether it’s a literal (like the City of London School athletics’ U12 event) or figurative (AI chip development) race, participants still very much want to win.

For years, the semiconductor world seemed to have settled into a quiet balance: Intel vanquished virtually all of the RISC processors in the server world, save IBM’s POWER line. Elsewhere AMD had self-destructed, making it pretty much an x86 world. And Nvidia, a late starter in the GPU space, previously mowed down all of it many competitors in the 1990s. Suddenly only ATI, now a part of AMD, remained. It boasted just half of Nvidia’s prior market share.

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IBM unveils ‘world’s smallest computer’ with blockchain at Think 2018

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If there’s one downside to powerful computers, it’s that they’re too damn big.

Luckily, that’s about to change. At least, if IBM has anything to say about it.

March 19 is the first day of IBM Think 2018, the company’s flagship conference, where the company will unveil what it claims is the world’s smallest computer. They’re not kidding: It’s literally smaller than a grain of salt.

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IBM makes 20 qubit quantum computing machine available as a cloud service

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IBM has been offering quantum computing as a cloud service since last year when it came out with a 5 qubit version of the advanced computers. Today, the company announced that it’s releasing 20-qubit quantum computers, quite a leap in just 18 months. A qubit is a single unit of quantum information.

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