In this week’s roundup, learn how artificial intelligence (AI) is being used to automatically make smoothies and adjust stratospheric balloon position without winds being known. Understand how machine learning (ML) is being used to advance camera technology and allow thousands of students to take tests securely and remotely. Finally, read about a study that is using ML to reverse engineer the ability to grow tiny livers in a lab.

A Robot is Now Making Jamba Smoothies in a California Walmart in Less Than 3 Minutes

By Brittany Chang, contributing writer for

Jamba has teamed up with Blendid—a robot smoothie maker–—to create a Jamba by Blended kiosk at Walmart. The kiosk uses an AI- and ML-powered system with a robotic arm, blenders, a refrigerator, and ingredient dispensers. In the midst of COVID-19, the kiosk provides a quick, contactless, and automated option for a meal.


Autonomous Balloons Take Flight With Artificial Intelligence

by Scott M. Osprey, contributing writer for

Fixed-volume balloons are used to carry out unmanned experiments in the upper atmosphere. Station-keeping is the act of maintaining the position of such a balloon within a certain horizontal distance of a ground location (the station). Stratospheric balloons, now guided by AI, can pursue a long-term strategy for positioning themselves about a location on the Equator, even when the knowledge of buffeting winds is not known.


AWS Announces Panorama, a Device That Adds Machine Learning Technology To Any Camera

By Johnathan Schieber, contributing writer for

AWS has launched a new hardware device called the AWS Panorama Appliance. This, along with AWS Panorama SDK will turn existing on-premises cameras into computer vision-enabled, super-powered surveillance devices. The technology is being pitched as a new way for customers to inspect parts on manufacturing lines, ensure that safety protocols are being followed, or analyze traffic in retail stores.


Pitt Scientists Use Machine Learning To Speedily Grow Tiny Livers With Vascular Systems, Study Says

By Ashley Murray, contributing writer for

Doctors reverse-engineered the genes necessary for a mature liver and then applied the techniques to grow a mass of immature liver cells, derived from human stem cells. This mass then grew into a maturing sheet of tissue that began to develop a vascular system and bile ducts. These tiny lab-grown livers have shown promising results when transplanted into mice with failing livers.


How Machine Learning is Allowing Thousands of Students To Sit Exams at Home

By Mary-Ann Russon, contributing writer for

Better Examinations is a company that allows tens of thousands of students to remotely take exams simultaneously. Each student needs a laptop, webcam, and an internet connection. Using ML, the technology checks the student’s identity, detects patterns in user behavior that indicate attempts to cheat, and restricts access to the internet and computer applications while the test is being taken. Learn more, and see other examples of companies tapping into ML.



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