Event highlights 4 sectors of frontier technology

TOKYO: Japan plans to build the world's fastest-known supercomputer in a bid to arm the country's manufacturers with a platform for research that could help them develop and improve driverless cars, robotics and medical diagnostics. The Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry will spend 19.5 billion yen (US$173 million) on the previously unreported project, a budget breakdown shows, as part of a government policy to get back Japan's edge in the world of technology. The country has fallen behind in many electronic fields amid intensifying competition from South Korea and China, home to the world's current best-performing machine. In a move that is expected to vault Japan to the top of the supercomputing heap, its engineers will be tasked with building a machine that can make 130 quadrillion calculations per second - or 130 petaflops in scientific parlance - as early as next year, sources involved in the project told Reuters. At that speed, Japan's computer would be ahead of China's Sunway Taihulight that is capable of 93 petaflops. "As far as we know, there is nothing out there that is as fast," said Satoshi Sekiguchi, a director general at Japan's ‎National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, where the computer will be built. The push to return to the vanguard comes at a time of growing nostalgia for the heyday of Japan's technological prowess, which has dwindled since China overtook it as the world's second-biggest economy. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has called for companies, bureaucrats and the political…... [read more]

Dr. Hsiao-Wuen Hon is corporate vice president at Microsoft Research Asia, Microsoft Asia-Pacific R&D Group. He drives Microsoft’s strategy for research and development activities in the Asia-Pacific region, as well as collaborations with academia. He has been with Microsoft since 1995, joining Microsoft Research Asia in 2004 overseeing research in Internet search, speech and natural language, systems, wireless and networking. In addition, he founded and managed the Search Technology Center (STC) from 2005 to 2007, and has overseen the development of Bing search engine in Asia Pacific. Below is the sharing of Hon about artificial Intelligence (AI) by Koh Buck Song with Microsoft APAC Starting by introduced Xiaoice (a nod to the Bing search engine) in 2015, a chat bot which mines the Chinese Internet for human conversations to develop its language processing capability, Xiaoice also has voice and visual recognition systems built in to help it figure out the context of a conversation. After this milestone in AI, Microsoft planned to leverage this technology to realise its mission to empower every person and organisation on the planet to achieve more. “AI receives so much attention today because it helps people to solve new problems, or old problems in better ways,” said Hon. Healthcare is an obvious field of application: drug prescription can be a hit-and-miss based on symptoms exhibited by patients. By gathering data that factors in genetic predisposition and lifestyle habits, Hon believes correlations can be drawn to arrive at personalised treatment and medication, enabling people to live…... [read more]

RANCHO PALOS VERDES, Calif., June 2 - Artificial intelligence and machine learning will create computers so sophisticated and godlike that humans will need to implant "neural laces" in their brains to keep up, Tesla Motors and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk told a crowd of tech leaders this week. RANCHO PALOS VERDES, Calif., June 2 - Artificial intelligence and machine learning will create computers so sophisticated and godlike that humans will need to implant "neural laces" in their brains to keep up, Tesla Motors and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk told a crowd of tech leaders this week. While Musk's description of an injectable human-computer link may sound like science fiction, top tech executives repeatedly said that artificial intelligence (AI) was on the verge of changing everyday life, during discussion at a conference by online publication Recode this week. It is no secret that tech companies are diving into AI analytics research, an industry that will grow to $70 billion by 2020 from just $8.2 billion in 2013, according to a Bank of America report citing IDC research. AI, which combs through large troves of raw data to predict outcomes and recognize patterns, is already used in web search systems, marketing recommendation functions and security and financial trading programs. The technology will spread to driverless cars and service robots in the future, the Bank of America report said. Sundar Pichai, chief executive of Alphabet Inc's Google , said he sees a "huge opportunity" in AI. Google first started applying the technology through…... [read more]

SEOUL, March 15 - Google's artificial intelligence (AI) programme beat South Korean professional Lee Sedol in the ancient board game Go on Tuesday, recovering from Sunday's loss to win its fourth match in a five-game series. AlphaGo, developed by Google subsidiary DeepMind, had already clinched a series victory with its third win on Saturday in a result that shocked the world. The programme made history last year by becoming the first machine to beat a human pro player, but 33-year-old Lee was seen a much more formidable opponent. "One of the most incredible games ever," DeepMind founder Demis Hassabis tweeted following the match. "To come back from the initial big mistake against Lee Sedol was mind-blowing!" Go, most popular in countries such as China, South Korea and Japan, involves two contestants moving black and white stones on a square grid, with the aim of seizing the most territory. The game is perfect for AI researchers because there are simply too many moves for a machine to win by brute-force calculations, which is how IBM's Deep Blue famously beat former world chess champion Garry Kasparov in 1997.... [read more]

Google's AlphaGo computer program on Wednesday won the first of a series of five matches against one of the world's best players of the complex board game, Go, marking a new milestone in the development of artificial intelligence (AI). South Korean professional Go player Lee Sedol, an 18-time international title winner, conceded defeat in a match broadcast live, with one Youtube stream watched by tens of thousands of people worldwide, and domestic cable gave frequent updates. AlphaGo, built by Google subsidiary DeepMind, made history in October, by becoming the first computer program ever to beat a human professional player at the ancient Asian board game. But Lee was considered a much bigger hurdle for a machine to overcome in what many experts consider to be the most complex board game in existence. Go, most popular in countries such as China, South Korea and Japan, involves two players moving black and white stones on a square grid with the aim of seizing the most territory. Experts did not expect an AI program to beat a human professional for at least a decade, until AlphaGo's victory over Fan Hui last year. AlphaGo's ability to learn on its own in a human-like manner, key to its success, also underscores the advance of AI. In recent years, scientists have made strides in getting computers to think and learn in ways more similar to people, with the eventual goal that AI will one day assist humans in advanced fields, such as healthcare and scientific research.…... [read more]

Artificial intelligence (AI) is the science of the 21 st century, which has obtained outstanding achievements, such as ASIMO robot, surgical robot, speech identifying machine, etc. To know more about the development of Vietnams artificial intelligence, Vietnam Pictorial correspondents talked with Professor Ho Tu Bao, a leading expert of Vietnam in this field who is now living in Japan. Artificial intelligence (AI) is the science of the 21st century, which has obtained outstanding achievements, such as ASIMO robot, surgical robot, speech identifying machine, etc. To know more about the development of Vietnam's artificial intelligence, Vietnam Pictorial correspondents talked with Professor Ho Tu Bao, a leading expert of Vietnam in this field who is now living in Japan. Vietnam Pictorial (VNP): You returned to Vietnam in 2008 and successfully organized the 10th Pacific Rim International Conference on Artificial Intelligence (PRICAI - 2008). Would you please briefly describe your current work at Japan Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (JAIST)? Prof. Ho Tu Bao: JAIST has been granted special investment from the Japanese Government. It provides training only at master and doctoral levels in three fields: Information Science, Materials Science and Knowledge Science. My work is to give lectures and do research. Currently at JAIST I have six students doing doctoral theses and five others doing master theses. Besides, there are two students doing doctoral theses in Vietnam. When I first came to JAIST, Professor Setsuo Ohsuga from Tokyo University and President of Japanese Artificial Intelligence Association, who recommended me to the…... [read more]

VietNamNet Bridge – A Vietnamese boy who could barely walk or speak because of cerebral palsy gets two degrees at a US university and looks forward to new challenges, Phan Duong and Luong Huong report. Red letter day: Quan and his mother at his graduation ceremony at the Georgia Gwinnet College in the US in May. Photo kenh14.vn Graduation Day is special for all students, but the applause was particularly prolonged and resounding as Tran Manh Chanh Quan’s name was announced at the ceremony held at Georgia Gwinnett College in May this year. The special applause for Quan was not just that he was getting two degrees, one in IT and another in mathematics, but that the wheel-chair bound student was also suffered from cerebral palsy, a condition caused by brain damage that affects body movement, muscle control and co-ordination, reflex, posture and balance. Twenty-five years ago, when riding through a bumpy road in Ngai Giao Commune, Ba Ria-Vung Tau Province, Quan’s mother, Le Manh Nu Vinh Son, fell off her bike. She was seven months pregnant with him. Quan was thus born with cerebral palsy. He could not sit by himself at the age of three. With monumental patience, Son and her husband trained their son with physiotherapy. It took a long time for Quan’s left hand to loosen a bit and for him to feel objects with it. He could only mouth a few words with great difficulty and the speech impediment is a lifelong condition, along with…... [read more]

State budget revenues falling short of the half-way mark in the first six months of the year is a normal feature of the domestic economy and does not preclude meeting the annual target, Finance Minister Dinh Tien Dung tells Vietnam News. Finance Minister Dinh Tien Dung Q: In the first half this year, the total State budget collection met just 46.5 percent of the annual target.  How do you assess this result? Does this make the target set by the National Assembly (NA) for 2017 difficult to reach? A: This has to be put in perspective. Budget revenues for the first six  months present an increase of nearly 13 percent over the same period in 2016, even though it fulfills only 46.5 percent of the annual target. Domestic collection rose 12.4 percent year-on-year, or 45.5 percent of the annual plan. If we take out land use taxes, income from lottery sales, revenues from selling the State’s stake in enterprises, dividend revenues and profits after tax, domestic revenues rose by more than 10.5 percent, which is basically in line with the economic growth rate of 5.73 percent as well as the inflation rate of 4.15 percent in the first six months. A majority of the localities, 54 of 63, have done well in budget collection, including Hanoi, HCM City, Quang Ninh, Hai Phong and Quang Ngai. We should also keep in mind that budget revenues in the first six months of the year usually falls short of 50 percent of the…... [read more]

Check out news you should not miss today: Check out news you should not miss today: Society -- Authorities in the southern province of Binh Phuoc on Wednesday seized and destroyed more than 400kg of stale pork and viscera detected at the local Doing Xoai market. -- Many among 79 families who had their houses burned down in the south central Vietnamese beach town of Nha Trang on Tuesday night have been allocated to temporarily stay in the dormitory of Khanh Hoa Medical College. -- Many local express companies have stopped receiving orders a few days ago as transport and delivery was stuck due to high demand during the Tet holiday. -- Ho Chi Minh City Department of Transportation on Wednesday unveiled an online map which can alert users of traffic congestion citywide, in an effort to ease the city’s traffic pressure. -- A bus rapid transit project worth US$70 million is being implemented in the central city of Da Nang, the municipal administration announced on Wednesday. -- Project Vietnam Foundation on Wednesday said it will send a delegation to offer charity operations in Ho Chi Minh City in February and March for children with congenital cleft lip and palate, as well as those with ear, nose and throat diseases. Business -- Vietnam has suspended imports of numerous agricultural products from Indonesia due to the high risk of the Caryedon serratus (Olivier) beetle, according to a decision signed by Deputy Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development Le Quoc Doanh. --…... [read more]

A Hong Kong newspaper recently ran an article on Vietnam’s renewal process over the past 20 years, describing Vietnam as a new emerging economy with the second highest economic growth rate in Asia, after China. Following achievements in economic reforms, the conclusion of the 10th National Party Congress showed that Vietnam was entering a new period of political reform in Vietnam. The re-election of Party General Secretary Nong Duc Manh proved that Vietnam would continue to boost the renovation process. The newly-elected political bureau without the presence of State President Tran Duc Luong, Prime Minister Phan Van Khai and NA Chairman Nguyen Van An also proved that Vietnam has successfully achieved the goal of rejuvenating the party leadership. It also marked the start of reforming political institutions in Vietnam. One of the important goals of the five-year plan, which was approved at the 10th National Party Congress, is that Vietnam would shed its under-developed country status by 2010. At the 6th Party Congress in 1986, Vietnam also aimed to become an industrialised country before 2020. Since 2000, Vietnam’s economic growth has been maintained at 6-7 percent annually. Especially, the rate reached 8.4 percent in 2005, making Vietnam the second fastest growing economy in Asia, after China. Turnover of foreign direct investment per capita in Vietnam has surpassed India and China. Recently, after Intel, the world’s largest chipmaker, announced its decision in February 2006 to spend nearly US$600 million building workshops in HCM City, Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates visited Vietnam. He…... [read more]