Source: China Daily
Huawei Technologies Co Ltd is aiming to have one million developers and partners in its artificial intelligence system in three years, as part of its broader effort to bolster the application of the cutting-edge technology in a wide range of sectors.
The Chinese tech heavyweight announced on Wednesday that it is working with German auto maker Audi AG on high-level autonomous driving innovation.
Xu Wenwei, director of the board and chief strategy marketing officer of Huawei, said industry applications will be the key to AI's success over the next decade.
"Defining use scenarios is the starting point for AI application, but applying industry insight is crucial to finding the breakthrough point. A well-established ecosystem or platform must have both an industry alliance and a business alliance," Xu said.
Huawei forecast that the global AI industry will reach $380 billion by 2025, and 90 percent of the market will come from industry applications.
"We will partner with universities, industry associations and others to nurture talents and offer capital support," Xu said on the sidelines of the ongoing Huawei Connect conference in Shanghai.
According to him, technological superiority will be the key for Huawei to build such an open ecosystem. Also, growing the market together is more important than fighting for a market share.
Xu's comments resonate with the company's overall AI strategies including boosting research and development, and developing an open ecosystem as well as using the technology to drive operational efficiency.
As an example of deeply integrating AI with other sectors, Huawei announced on Thursday that it will cooperate with Audi in intelligent-connected vehicles, with its mobile data center being integrated into the Audi Q7 as a showcase prototype.
Saad Metz, executive vice-president of Audi China R&D, said: "We evaluate a joint development of highly automated driving functions and future oriented vehicle-to-infrastructure communications. We are looking forward to intensifying the partnership with Huawei in the future, because we are convinced that closer cooperation between our two companies will substantially benefit both sides."
Xiang Ligang, CEO of telecoms industry website Cctime, said though Huawei does not have the experience of Google Inc in building an open platform, it has the capability to make AI easy to use, which is the key to turning the hype surrounding AI into reality.
Source: China Daily
The success of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corp (CASC) in the global space arena during the past four decades is rich testimony to the success of China's reform and opening-up policy since late 1978.
The Beijing-headquartered, State-owned space and defense giant now has more than 170,000 employees, eight large academies and a dozen listed companies. It was ranked 343rd in the Fortune Global 500 list in 2018, making it the fourth largest aerospace enterprise in the world by revenue after Boeing, Airbus and Lockheed Martin.
The success of the company is also testament to China's decision in 1978 to embark on reform and opening-up. In the 11 years from the start of the reform and opening-up to the end of 1989, China conducted 16 space missions and all of them were satellite launches. During the 1990s, 39 carrier rockets were launched, and the last of them ferried the first prototype of the Shenzhou spacecraft into space, opening China's manned space age.
From 2000 to November 2012, a total of 111 rockets sent hundreds of satellites, four manned spacecraft with eight Chinese astronauts as well as one space laboratory into space.
Since then, 124 space launches have been carried out during the past six years, evidence of China's relentless efforts to become a space power.
Almost all of the nation's space missions were fulfilled by the China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology, China Academy of Space Technology and Shanghai Academy of Spaceflight Technology, all units of CASC.
The Chinese people had long wished to realize their dream of "flying above the skies". Chinese scientists drafted a plan in the 1970s to develop a manned space program. However, they were unable to make it happen because of the nation's weak capabilities in space technology and manufacturing sector back then.
In 1986, a group of top Chinese scientists suggested that the government should consider the possibility of manned space flights and submitted a roadmap, which was approved by the Party leadership in 1992.
Thanks to CASC and its predecessor, China Aerospace Corp, the country moved fast toward its goals in manned space programs.
In October 2003, China carried out its first manned space mission, sending Yang Liwei to a 21-hour journey around the Earth in the Shenzhou V spacecraft.
Till date, six manned space flights have been conducted, totaling 68 days and circling the Earth 1,089 times. Chinese astronauts traveled more than 46 million kilometers in the space and executed over 100 scientific experiments during these missions. They have fulfilled extravehicular activities, several multiple-day missions inside the Tiangong-1 and 2 space labs, as well as a 40-minute space lecture watched by more than 60 million Chinese students from around 80,000 schools.
Chinese scientists have also launched a cargo spaceship to conduct several docking and in-orbit refueling operations with Tiangong-2, verifying technologies and equipment designed for space station.
These accomplishments have become a source of national pride and people's confidence in the nation's capabilities.
To meet the needs from manned space programs, engineers at China Academy of Launch Vehicle Technology designed and built multiple new rocket models including the Long March 5 and Long March 7.
As the strongest and most technologically sophisticated rocket ever made by China, Long March 5 has a liftoff weight of 869 metric tons, a maximum payload of 25 tons to a low-Earth orbit, or 14 tons to a geosynchronous transfer orbit. The gigantic vehicle is tasked with transporting parts of China's future manned space station and fulfilling Mars explorations.
In addition to manned space flights, CASC has also helped the country realize another traditional dream - to explore the moon, a distant silver sphere deemed by Chinese myths as some goddesses' palace.
The company started sending robotic probes to the moon in 2007 and carried out several lunar missions since then. It landed the Chang'e 3 probe, which carried the first Chinese lunar rover, on the moon in December 2013. The Chang'e 3 mission marked the first soft-landing - opposite to hard impact - by a manmade spacecraft on the moon in nearly four decades.
The company launched a relay satellite into space in May as the first step in the Chang'e 4 lunar mission, which will explore the far side of the moon and is scheduled to be made before the end of this year.
Source: China Daily
The artificial intelligence sector is expected to play a crucial role in attracting more investment to Guangzhou and boosting the industrial upgrading underway in the southern metropolis, traditionally known as a hub for manufacturing and foreign trade.
Guangzhou, at the heart of the Pearl River Delta region, has vowed to lead China's AI industry development through its industrial upgrades.
The AI industry, along with the next generation of information technology and biological medicine, has been included in a citywide strategic plan for Guangzhou's near-term industrial development.
There were 339 AI companies registered in the city by the end of May, according to the Guangzhou Artificial Intelligence Industrial Development and Promotion Association.
The city's AI sales revenue reached 62.58 billion yuan ($9.05 billion) last year, with investment in AI research and development totaling 5.83 billion yuan, according to the association, which added that AI industrial output is expected to surpass 100 billion yuan in 2022.
Guangzhou, the capital of Guangdong province, is the core part of the drive to boost the province's AI industry.
According to the provincial Department of Science and Technology's AI Development Action Plan (2018-2020), the goal is to build more than 10 AI industrial clusters in top cities including Guangzhou and Shenzhen.
Guangzhou's AI industry development mostly relies on clusters including the Nansha International AI Innovation Park, Guangzhou Science City and the Sino-Singapore Guangzhou Knowledge City. Revenue from its core AI sector is expected to exceed 50 billion yuan by 2020, up from about 26 billion yuan－a third of China's total－last year.
"In the new technology era, AI and other emerging industries will help build a high-end and high-quality modern industry system as the city has been transforming its traditional industrial structure," said Yin Tao, deputy director of the Guangzhou Academy of Social Sciences.
Shen Jin, general manager of Qualcom's China investment department, said the company will invest more in the development of AI devices in Guangzhou.
"AI is not only about cloud computing but also the development of related devices," he said on Thursday.
A growing number of investors and startups are getting involved in the AI sector in Guangzhou, and the city has introduced a strategic plan to foster the industry as a new engine driving local economic and industrial growth.
"A new generation of AI is profoundly changing our production and lifestyles, injecting new momentum into the city's economic and social development," Shen said.
Source: China Daily
The design of China's hyperloop transportation system that can travel at a speed of 1,000 kilometers per hour has been fixed by the China Aerospace Science and Industry Corp (CASIC), one of the nation's major space contractors.
The carriage body is 29 meters long and three meters wide, using light and heat preventing material to reduce its weight.
The hyperloop will be a maglev line on which a pod will travel on partly elevated tubes or tunnels at superfast speed reaching 1,000 km per hour.
The research team is expected to tackle the key technology by 2020, said Wang Yan, staff at the CASIC.
It will launch speed test of 1,000 kilometers per hour by 2023 and be capable in full-system manned design by 2025.
CASIC is the first Chinese enterprise and the world's third, following the United States' Hyperloop Transportation Technologies and Hyperloop One, that has started developing hyperloop transportation system.
Source: China Daily
Alex Chen Ye stands out, as usual, in a sea of sober-suited professionals and entrepreneurs at an artificial intelligence (AI) forum in his unpretentious T-shirt and sweatpants combination.
It’s his personal style whenever he appears in public, explains a colleague of his.
Likewise, Chen also keeps a low profile but being strong-minded in the workplace. The former senior vice-president of advertisement at Beijing-based Meituan-Dianping last year left the on-demand online service giant, which just listed in Hong Kong, and jumped onto the financial technology bandwagon. In mid-2017, just months after he quit, Chen founded Tigerobo, an AI-based financial information search engine headquartered in Shanghai.
AI technology has made big strides like never before and boomed last year, with Chinese mainland internet giants like Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent launching their respective strategies in the field.
Chen and his partner John Canny — a computer science professor at the University of California, Berkeley — were excited to see the advance of AI in China, partly driven by the development of deep learning — a set of techniques that are able to predict accurately after being married with large amounts of data.
“Deep learning enables many AI tasks to reach their inflection point and be usable,” says Chen.
Having been committed to the AI field for years, Chen and Canny pictured quite a few AI applications and finally decided to move forward in the financial information sector.
The marriage of AI and finance usually leads to three directions — robo-adviser, smart customer service, and intelligent search. Among them, robo-adviser has gained most favor, known as the AlphaGo in the investment world. And smart customer service is developed vigorously by major corporations such as Ping An Insurance Group.
However, Chen’s eyes were on intelligent search, seeing it as an underlying technology.
Intelligent search is commonly based on one element — text language. With AI, it has already been demonstrated that images can help on security, while language can be applied to user interaction. Afterwards, Chen deemed it’s the right time for text language boost, such as text processing and natural language processing (NLP).
NLP is a field that AI teaches computers to understand human written language. It’s being widely developed and used by search engine companies like Google and Microsoft to comprehend their users.
“The market for text processing and NLP will be many times bigger once they find a business model because the majority of human knowledge exists in terms of text,” Chen reckons.
Tigerobo aims to be the “Google” in the financial information search field. Compared to traditional financial information provider Bloomberg and Reuters, Tigerobo strives to offer simpler and more direct experience.
With the company’s products, users only need to ask with a single complete sentence instead of inputting commands or key words.
Chen cites one of the functions — stock selection, which is part of robo-advisor’s job. If you ask: “Which stock performed well in the past three years with a low P/E ratio and robust earnings?,” the search engine will help you pick some eligible stocks in one second.
“We chose to start with something related to text processing and language comprehension, as they are so fundamental that can be applied to other areas easily,” says Chen. “If we would like to try something else in future, it’ll make the transformation smoother.”
Tigerobo has so far released four products for its clients, covering banks, funds and securities traders, to meet customers’ different needs.
The services provided include corporate information, industrial research, market analysis, public opinion monitoring and some predictions. Internal enterprise search is also accessible for those data-based companies by organizing and structuring huge amounts of data that the clients bought, but found no way to integrate.
Meanwhile, the only product currently available for retail clients is a WeChat application named “prospectus”, which monitors Chinese companies that are about to go public in all markets.
“The system can detect a company’s prospectus just one minute after it’s submitted online, fetch figures and key points from hundreds of pages, and then generate a piece of short news automatically,” Chen explains.
He says they’re also working on a product translating long-form financial stories by foreign media into short pieces in Chinese. Sources and original links will be provided.
The startup completed its Pre-A round financing of more than 100 million yuan ($16 million), led by NWS Holdings and Gaorong Capital, in June this year. Sun Hun Kai & Company also took part in the fundraising.
Chen says the new funds will be used in three fronts — manpower, database purchase, as well as marketing and promotion.