OTTAWA – The federal government is willing to accept the privacy and security risks of storing data in the internet cloud as an alternative to its own aging computers that are “at risk of breaking down,” says an internal policy paper.The federal paper on “data sovereignty,” obtained through the Access to Information Act, fleshes out the government’s plan to embrace the cloud as a solution to its file management woes.Privately run cloud companies provide customers, such as federal departments, with virtual computer services — from email systems to vast storage capacity — using software, servers and other hardware hosted on the company’s premises.The government sees the cloud as a way to meet the needs of Canadians in an era of increasing demand for online services.However, the paper says, “a number of concerns” related to data control, protection and privacy have been raised within the government, including:— Storage of sensitive information — designated “Protected B” or higher — outside the country, creating a risk that access might be restricted or denied due to a contractual dispute with a company or a disagreement with the host government;— Handoff of certain security responsibilities to the cloud service provider;— The possibility that courts could compel foreign-owned cloud service providers to turn over Canadian data to their governments.Many countries, including Canada, have laws allowing them to subpoena or obtain a warrant for information from private organizations to support legal investigations, the paper notes.The U.S. Patriot Act, passed following the 2001 terrorist attacks in New York and Washington, gave the Federal Bureau of Investigation broader access to records held by firms in the United States, including data on Canadians.In addition, there are long-standing information-sharing agreements and a legal assistance process between security and law-enforcement agencies in both countries — “the most likely vehicles for obtaining access to information held in Canada,” the policy paper says.Canada’s government has legal obligations to protect personal data and highly sensitive information related to national security, cabinet discussions, military affairs and legal matters.As a result, Treasury Board has drafted a policy declaring all Protected B, Protected C and classified electronic federal data must be stored in a government-approved computing facility located in Canada or within the premises of a department abroad, such as a diplomatic mission, the paper says.Canada also plans to limit the kinds of files that can be stored in the cloud and to use encryption to shield sensitive data from prying eyes.There are risks associated with both moving to the “alternative service delivery model” of the cloud and sticking with the government’s aging computer systems, says Alex Benay, the federal chief information officer, in an October memo to the Treasury Board secretary accompanying the paper.“Ultimately it becomes a risk trade-off discussion, exchanging existing risks for data sovereignty risks (that can be mitigated to some extent).”Among the current difficulties is the fact the government’s “aging and mission-critical (information technology) infrastructure are at risk of breaking down and must be renewed,” the paper says. Transforming these systems is “proceeding slower than anticipated,” in part due to the challenges and complexities of consolidating 43 departments.In the same vein, departments have experienced problems with fixing weaknesses promptly, leaving the government “exposed to cyberthreats,” the paper says. In contrast, cloud service providers have significant budgets to “maintain, patch and secure” their systems.Finally, the government wants to follow the global trend of providing better digital services for citizens, but demand for computing capabilities and storage space “exceeds the supply available,” the paper acknowledges.“Cloud first” policies have already been adopted by Australia, Britain, New Zealand and the United States, Canada’s Five Eyes allies.The U.S. has served notice it wants an end to measures that restrict cross-border data flows, or require the use or installation of local computing facilities. It is among the American goals for ongoing NAFTA renegotiation, posing a possible headache for Canada’s cloud-computing plans.— Follow @JimBronskill on Twitter
Source:https://www.helsinki.fi/en/news/health-news/artificial-intelligence-identifies-key-patterns-from-video-footage-of-infant-movements Reviewed by James Ives, M.Psych. (Editor)Mar 27 2019Subtle characteristics in the spontaneous movement of very young babies may reveal clinically important aspects of their neurodevelopment. Visual assessment of typical movement patterns (General movements, GM) by a clinical expert is known to be effective in early identification of e.g. cerebral palsy (CP).”A three month old infant shows frequently occurring stereotypical, dancing-like movements throughout the body and limbs. A noted absence of them is highly predictive of later emergence of CP,” says Sampsa Vanhatalo, professor of clinical neurophysiology, University of Helsinki.A very early identification and subsequent therapeutic intervention would be highly beneficial for alleviating the neurodevelopmental impact of CP. Currently, a child is diagnosed with CP at much later age, typically between 6 months and 2 years of age. GM analysis holds promise in early detection of CP, however, it needs special expertise that is currently obtained through international teaching courses, which effectively limits the number of doctors or therapists with the relevant skills. In addition, GM analysis in its present form is based on visual assessment, which is always subjective.”There is an urgent need for objective and automated methods. They would allow employing movement analyses at much wider scale, and make it accessible to basically most, if not all, children in the world,” says Vanhatalo.THE STICK MAN REVEALS THE ESSENTIALSResearchers at University of Helsinki and University of Pisa set out to explore the possibility that a conventional video recording of an infant lying in bed could be transformed to a quantified analysis of infant movements. They collaborated with people from an AI company based in Tampere, Neuro Event Labs, who were able to create a method for an accurate extraction of children’s movements (using a technique known as pose estimation), allowing for the construction of a simplified “stick man” (or skeleton) video.Next, the researchers gave the stick figure videos to doctors with GM expertise to see whether diagnostically crucial information was preserved in those videos.Using the stick figure videos alone, the doctors were able to assign diagnostic groups in 95% of cases, proving that the clinically essential information had been preserved.The study shows that an automated algorithm may extract clinically important movement patterns from normal video recordings. These stick figure extractions can be directly used for quantitative analyses.Related StoriesArtificial intelligence set to revolutionize the field of proteomicsAI coach feasible and useful for behavioral counseling of teens in weight-loss programMachine learning identifies bugs that spread Chagas diseaseTo demonstrate such potential, the researchers provided a proof of concept analysis where simple measures of stick figure movements showed clear differences between groups of infants with either normal or abnormal movements.Use of stick figure videos also enables world-wide sharing among research communities without privacy concerns. This has been a significant bottleneck in setting up multinational research activities within this domain.”This will finally enable a genuinely Big Data kind of development for better quantitative movement analyses in infants,” Vanhatalo states.”Since this study, we have collected larger datasets, including 3D video recordings, and we are currently developing an AI-based method for infantile motor maturity assessment. The rationale is straightforward: there is a developmental issue with the child, if the computational assessment of the motor maturity does not match with the child’s true age.”MOVEMENT ANALYSIS TELLS ABOUT NEURODEVELOPMENT AND EFFECTIVENESS OF THERAPEUTIC INTERVENTIONSIn addition to early CP detection, automated movement analyses have many potential applications in the assessment of infant neurological development.”We could create one kind of functional growth chart,” says Vanhatalo.Movement analyses could also be used in diverse ways to improve therapeutic decisions. Such methods could provide quantitative means to objectively measure efficacy of different therapeutic strategies; one of the global hot topics in restorative medicine.Automated movement analyses could also allow out-of-hospital screening of children to identify those that need further care, or to provide assurance of normality in cases with concern about child’s development.”Use of machine learning and artificial intelligence allows for the extraction of substantial amounts of clinically useful information from a simple home-grade video recording. The ultimate aim is to find methods that will make it possible to provide high and even quality infant healthcare everywhere in the world,” Vanhatalo summarizes.
Imagine waking up tomorrow in a world that doesn’t depend on oil. Explore further Provided by University of Alberta That might seem far-fetched, but as engineers and scientists come up with new ways to harness renewable energy, those new sources of energy may soon shape the way our societies function and how we live our daily lives.”We’re going to stop depending on oil long before we run out of it, so we really need to exercise our imaginations about what other futures are possible,” explains University of Alberta associate professor Sheena Wilson, who heads the Future Energy Systems energy humanities theme.”Right now we live in sprawling urban communities with long commutes—we drive everywhere. If we don’t have access to such powerful energy sources, and our lives aren’t organized around auto-mobility, the shape of our cities looks very different. We need to think about communities we’re shaping through the energy systems we’re designing.”Decentralization of energy through the development of wind, solar, biofuels and geothermal could mean that communities no longer need to be centralized. Societal power structures defined by those who presently control energy and wealth could also fundamentally change.If someone living in a remote location unconnected from the grid could have the same reliable energy as someone living in an urban centre, would people need to live together in cities at all? Possibly, but maybe for entirely different reasons.”Our communities might need to be organized in entirely new ways—around social and environmental sustainability, instead of around the easy flow of traffic and consumer goods,” said Wilson.”We can ask ourselves all sorts of questions about why we live the way we live—and if changing the way we access energy will change everything,” she added.Fuel for thoughtThe U of A cultural studies and media expert based in Campus Saint-Jean has been exploring the social aspect of the energy future for years. In 2011 she co-founded the Petrocultures Research Group to explore humanity’s next step after the oil-dominated economy. The group has generated a number of interdisciplinary projects and expanded its membership internationally. One of its research initiatives, After Oil: Explorations and Experiments in the Future of Energy, Culture and Society, explores “the social and cultural implications of oil and energy.” Sheena Wilson, principal investigator with the energy humanities theme of the U of A’s Future Energy Systems initiative, interviews engineering professor Marc Secanell, director of the Energy Systems Design Laboratory. “We’re not just hearing about the next big thing in energy third-hand—we get the chance to talk directly to Canada’s leading energy researchers,” Wilson says. Credit: Kenneth Tam Alaskan microgrids offer energy resilience and independence When the Future Energy Systems research initiative launched at the end of 2016, Wilson was asked to develop the energy humanities theme, which has brought a group of interdisciplinary humanities scholars into the program to work closely with scientists, engineers and social scientists.This approach is unique, and when the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) conference came to Edmonton earlier this month, Wilson and her group were invited to make a mainstage presentation about the energy humanities’ program and how it is now imagining possible futures based on the latest energy research.”We’re not just hearing about the next big thing in energy third-hand—we get the chance to talk directly to Canada’s leading energy researchers, see what’s too new to have hit the headlines and provide input to IPCC reports and recommendations that will influence policy at all levels of government,” said Wilson.Envisioning alternative energy futuresEnergy humanities researchers across the arts faculty—including art and design, English and film studies, sociology, political science and history—are working with scientists, government, artists, activists and Indigenous communities to foster inclusive dialogue.”We’re trying to bring together people from diverse backgrounds and disciplines to inform the thinking we’re all doing as we work toward other possible futures,” said Wilson.The fine arts will also play a role in imagining those futures. A seven-year Future Energy Systems project called Speculative Energy Futures—collaboratively led with art and design historian Natalie Loveless under a larger research initiative called Just Powers, for which Wilson is the research lead—will produce a large-scale, evidence-based exhibition and a series of publications to provide visual perspectives on the social and cultural impacts of energy transition.Another Just Powers visual project called iDoc has been capturing the work of Future Energy Systems on video. In addition to filming interviews and lab footage with U of A researchers, the project will include policy-makers and other players engaged with energy transition in Alberta more widely.This research will be archived for posterity by University of Alberta Libraries, and made available through open access in a range of formats on the web and in public screenings so it can inform public discussions about the possibilities and limits of energy transition and its politics.”Fifty years from now, people might be explaining to their grandkids what it was like to have their houses connected to a central power grid—or to ‘fill up’ their cars,” Wilson said. “We want them to understand why we made the decisions we did, and what we were thinking.” Citation: Understanding how society will change as we move to renewable energy sources (2018, March 30) retrieved 18 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-03-society-renewable-energy-sources.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
If you can recognize structures around you while walking down a city street, you have your eyes to thank. Humans can automatically perceive 3-D structure in the world by identifying lines, shapes, symmetries and the patterns and relationships between them in things like buildings, sidewalks and everyday objects. But can a computer be taught to do the same? Credit: CC0 Public Domain Zihan Zhou, assistant professor of information sciences and technology at Penn State, is setting out to explore that question thanks to a recent grant from the National Science Foundation.”We want a computer to see 3-D space as humans do,” said Zhou. “This particular award and project is about structure perception, which has been largely ignored in 3-D vision. This is something that has not been done before.”Structure perception is the ability of a human’s eyes to organize data or patterns and group them in certain ways. For example, a human can look at a line drawing of a building and visualize doors, windows and walls.”There are many types of these relationships in the real world, and humans make use of those relationships to sense the 3-D space,” he said. “Human eyes can easily perceive these kinds of things. The question now is: Can the computer have the ability to sense these things as a human does?”To answer that question, Zhou plans to develop a new data-driven framework for structure discovery, leveraging the availability of massive visual data and recent advances in machine learning techniques.These techniques could then be applied to a wide spectrum of real-world computer vision problems, including 3-D modeling of urban environments, virtual and augmented reality, and autonomous driving. The research could also impact cognitive sciences, by suggesting new computational mechanisms for image understanding; and human-robot interaction, by enabling robots to reason in terms of geometric shape, physics and dynamics.”If a robot recognizes something as a specific type of structure, then it knows how to interact with it,” said Zhou. “For example, if a robot is able to recognize a structure with a flat top, it would know that it could put an object like a cup on it.”Additionally, the framework may impact the work of architects, designers and engineers.”If you think of those architects, they are working with 3-D models every day,” said Zhou. “If they build something, they first create line drawings. So if a computer can understand doors and windows in the drawings, it would be very useful for architectural design and engineering.”Zhou developed an interest in this topic while a graduate intern at Adobe. In his internship, he studied the relationship between camera motion and the environment, which could help the movie industry to analyze scenes.”I tried to extract some kinds of structures from the videos and the sequence of the camera,” he said. “At that point it was to analyze camera trajectory for the movie industry, but later we realized it was more systematic.”Now, at Penn State, Zhou hopes to leverage the interdisciplinary network to advance his work.”IST has people working in diverse areas, and many of them can be impacted by this kind of work,” he said. “This has generated a lot of interest in different areas. We are looking to extend this beyond and to find applications to make this more collaborative.””About 70 percent of information we obtain is from visual cues from our eyes,” he concluded. “Obviously we have areas like natural language processing to help understand speaking and sounds, but human vision is the dominating factor in how we understand this world. To make the computer see the world as we do is one of the most exciting areas in artificial intelligence and computer science.” Explore further Provided by Pennsylvania State University Researchers use AI to add 4-D effects to movies Citation: Helping computers to see 3-D structures (2018, November 30) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-11-d.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.
Provided by DARPA Citation: DARPA prototype reflectarray antenna offers high performance in small package (2019, January 23) retrieved 17 July 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-01-darpa-prototype-reflectarray-antenna-high.html Rocket Lab successfully sends rocket into orbit Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. DARPA’s Radio Frequency Risk Reduction Deployment Demonstration (R3D2) is set for launch in late February to space-qualify a new type of membrane reflectarray antenna. The antenna, made of a tissue-thin Kapton membrane, packs tightly for stowage during launch and then will deploy to its full size of 2.25 meters in diameter once it reaches low Earth orbit. R3D2 will monitor antenna deployment dynamics, survivability and radio frequency (RF) characteristics of a membrane antenna in low-Earth orbit. The antenna could enable multiple missions that currently require large satellites, to include high data rate communications to disadvantaged users on the ground. A successful demonstration also will help prove out a smaller, faster-to-launch and lower cost capability, allowing the Department of Defense, as well as other users, to make the most of the new commercial market for small, inexpensive launch vehicles. Satellite design, development, and launch took approximately 18 months.”The Department of Defense has prioritized rapid acquisition of small satellite and launch capabilities. By relying on commercial acquisition practices, DARPA streamlined the R3D2 mission from conception through launch services acquisition,” said Fred Kennedy, director of DARPA’s Tactical Technology Office. “This mission could help validate emerging concepts for a resilient sensor and data transport layer in low Earth orbit – a capability that does not exist today, but one which could revolutionize global communications by laying the groundwork for a space-based internet.”The launch will take place on a Rocket Lab USA Electron rocket from the company’s launch complex on the Mahia Peninsula of New Zealand. Northrop Grumman is the prime contractor and integrated the 150 kg satellite; MMA Design designed and built the antenna. Trident Systems designed and built R3D2’s software-defined radio, while Blue Canyon Technologies provided the spacecraft bus. MMA Design successfully completes deployment testing of its innovative high-compaction ratio reflectarray antenna in its Louisville, Colorado facilities. Credit: DARPA
SHARE courts and legal Delhi is getting buried under mounds of garbage and Mumbai is sinking under water, but the government is doing nothing, an anguished Supreme Court said today It slapped fines on 10 states and two union territories for not filing their affidavits on their policies for solid waste management strategy. Expressing its helplessness over the situation, the top court lamented that when the courts intervene, the judges are attacked for judicial activism, and said what can be done when government of the day does not do anything or acts in an irresponsible manner. A bench of Justices M B Lokur and Deepak Gupta referred to the recent apex court order on the powers of the Delhi government and Lieutenant Governor and asked them to inform it by tomorrow who was responsible for clearing of the three “mountains of garbage” (landfill sites) at Okhla, Bhalswa and Ghazipur in the national capital. “You see, Delhi is getting buried under mountain loads of garbage and Mumbai is sinking. But yet, the government does not do anything. When the courts intervene, we are attacked for judicial activism. We are given lectures on separation of powers and encroachment of jurisdiction,” it said. The bench was annoyed after it was informed that around 13 states and several Union Territories have not yet formulated their policy for solid waste management strategy. The top court slapped a fine of Rs one lakh each on Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Goa, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal, Kerala, Karnataka, Meghalaya, Punjab, Lakshadweep and Puducherry for not filing the affidavit despite earlier directions. The bench also slapped a fine of Rs two lakh each on “remaining defaulting states/UTs” whose lawyers were also not present in the court room during the hearing, without naming these states. “One final opportunity is given to these States/UTs to comply with the laws governing India, failing which we may have to call the Chief Secretary of the concerned States/UTs to inform us why the laws governing India are not applicable to these States/UTs,” it said and posted the matter for further hearing on August 7. It said that the costs should be deposited within two weeks from today with the Supreme Court Legal Services Committee for being used on juvenile justice issues. “The tragedy is that more than two-thirds of the States/UTs in the country have neither bothered to comply with the orders passed by the Court, nor bothered to comply with the directions given by the Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change (MoEF). This is not only a tragic state of affairs but a shocking state of affairs, particularly since solid waste management is a huge problem in this country,” the bench said. “Every second day, we are attacked for judicial activism. Every now and then there is a statement that courts are resorting to judicial activism or encroaching upon the powers of the executive or the legislature. What should be do when nobody is working,” it said. The court observed that when the state governments do not obey the laws framed by Parliament, how will they care about the rules. “What if the government does not do any work or acts in a very irresponsible manner? What should happen and who shall be held accountable? They don’t even follow our orders,” the bench asked Additional Solicitor General A N S Nadkarni. The ASG replied that as per the Constitution, the states will have to comply with the orders of the top court and their officers can be held accountable for non-compliance. “The Solid Waste Management Rules came into force on or about April 8, 2016. We are two years down the line, but we are shocked to know that more than two-third of the States/UTs in the country have not yet complied with the basic requirement of the Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016,” the bench said. It observed that due to the loads of garbage in Delhi, people were getting infected by dengue, malaria and chikungunya, while Mumbai was sinking under heavy rainfall. The court noted that Haryana, Jharkhand, Odisha, Nagaland, Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Andaman and Nicobar Island have filed their affidavits with regard to the policy on solid waste management. The counsel for Sikkim, Assam, Uttar Pradesh, Manipur, Telangana and Daman and Diu submitted that they would file their affidavits with complete details of the policy and the solid waste management strategy during the course of the day. Nadkarni submitted that the MoEF have given repeated reminders to all states and UTs to comply with the provisions of the Solid Waste Management Rules as well as the directions given by the apex court. The apex court had on March 27, taken strong objections to non-implementation of solid waste management rules in the country and observed that “India will one day go down under the garbage“. It had earlier said that days are not far when garbage mounds at the Ghazipur landfill site in Delhi will match the height of iconic 73-metre high Qutub Minar and red beacon lights will have to be used to ward off aircraft flying over it. In 2015, the apex court had on its own taken cognisance of death of a seven-year-old boy due to dengue. He had been allegedly denied treatment by five private hospitals and his distraught parents subsequently committed suicide. Published on Delhi Mumbai July 10, 2018 COMMENT environmental pollution SHARE SHARE EMAIL COMMENTS