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Smartphone stroke detection breakthrough announced by Australian team

SYDNEY — A new technology that allows smartphones to identify strokes far quicker than existing methods has been developed by researchers in Australia. The new technology uses artificial intelligence as it scans a patient’s face for symmetry and certain muscle movements, which are called action units. People who have suffered a stroke often have one side of their face looking different from the other.   The biomedical engineers at Melbourne’s RMIT University say the smartphone technology can detect facial asymmetry, potentially identifying strokes within seconds – much sooner and more precisely than …


India and US to Strengthen High Technology Cooperation 

New Delhi — Days after Prime Minister Narendra Modi began his third term in office, India and the United States agreed to strengthen cooperation in high technology areas during a visit by U.S. National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan to New Delhi. Sullivan met Modi, the Indian foreign minister and his Indian counterpart during the visit that reaffirmed both countries will pursue closer ties. “India is committed to further strengthen the India-US comprehensive global strategic partnership for global good,” Modi wrote on X after meeting Sullivan on Monday. The main focus of …


A year after the Titan’s tragic dive, deep-sea explorers vow to pursue ocean’s mysteries

PORTLAND, Maine — The deadly implosion of an experimental submersible en route to the deep-sea grave of the Titanic last June has not dulled the desire for further ocean exploration, despite lingering questions about the disaster. Tuesday marks one year since the Titan vanished on its way to the historic wreckage site in the North Atlantic Ocean. After a five-day search that captured attention around the world, authorities said the vessel had been destroyed and all five people on board had died. Concerns have been raised about whether the Titan was …


Myanmar cracks down on flow of information by blocking VPNs

BANGKOK — Myanmar’s military government has launched a major effort to block free communication on the internet, shutting off access to virtual private networks — known as VPNs — which can be used to circumvent blockages of banned websites and services.  The attempt to restrict access to information began at the end of May, according to mobile phone operators, internet service providers, a major opposition group, and media reports.  The military government that took power in February 2021 after ousting the elected government of Aung San Suu Kyi has made several …


World leaders discuss AI as China’s digital influence in Latin America grows  

washington — Pope Francis, originally from Argentina, spoke Friday about the ethics of artificial intelligence at the G7 summit at a time when China has been rolling out its own AI standards and building technological infrastructure in developing nations, including Latin America. The annual meeting of the Group of Seven industrialized nations held in the Puglia region of Italy this week focused on topics that included economic security and artificial intelligence. On Friday, Francis became the first pope to speak at a G7 summit. He spoke about AI and its ethical …


Google AI Gemini parrots China’s propaganda

Washington — VOA’s Mandarin Service recently took Google’s artificial intelligence assistant Gemini for a test drive by asking it dozens of questions in Mandarin, but when it was asked about topics including China’s human rights abuses in Xinjiang or street protests against the country’s controversial COVID policies, the chatbot went silent. Gemini’s responses to questions about problems in the United States and Taiwan, on the other hand, parroted Beijing’s official positions. Gemini, Google’s large-language model launched late last year, is blocked in China. The California-based tech firm had quit the Chinese …


Netflix’s recipe for success includes ‘secret sauce’ spiced with tech savvy

LOS GATOS, California — Although its video streaming service sparkles with a Hollywood sheen, Netflix still taps its roots in Silicon Valley to stay a step ahead of traditional TV and movie studios. The Los Gatos, California, company, based more than 300 miles away from Hollywood, frequently reaches into its technological toolbox without viewers even realizing it. It often just uses a few subtle twists on the knobs of viewer recommendations to help keep its 270 million worldwide subscribers satisfied at a time when most of its streaming rivals are seeing …


US lawmakers call for scrutiny of NewsBreak app over Chinese origins

WASHINGTON AND LONDON — Three U.S. lawmakers have called for more scrutiny of NewsBreak, a popular news aggregation app in the United States, after Reuters reported it has Chinese origins and has used artificial intelligence tools to produce erroneous stories. The Reuters story drew upon previously unreported court documents related to copyright infringement, cease-and-desist emails and a 2022 company memo registering concerns about “AI-generated stories” to identify at least 40 instances in which NewsBreak’s use of AI tools affected the communities it strives to serve. “The only thing more terrifying than …


22 Chinese nationals sentenced to prison in Zambia for cybercrimes

LUSAKA, Zambia — A Zambian court on Friday sentenced 22 Chinese nationals to long prison terms for cybercrimes that included internet fraud and online scams targeting Zambians and other people from Singapore, Peru and the United Arab Emirates. The Magistrates Court in the capital, Lusaka, sentenced them for terms ranging from seven to 11 years. The court also fined them between $1,500 and $3,000 after they pleaded guilty to charges of computer-related misrepresentation, identity fraud and illegally operating a network or service on Wednesday. A man from Cameroon also was sentenced …


LogOn: Swarms of drones can be managed by one person

The U.S. military says large groups of drones and ground robots can be managed by a single person without added stress to the operator. In this week’s episode of LogOn, VOA’s Julie Taboh reports the technologies may be beneficial for civilian uses, too. Videographer and video editor: Adam Greenbaum …


Many Americans still shying away from EVs despite Biden’s push, poll finds

Washington — Many Americans still aren’t sold on going electric for their next car purchase. High prices and a lack of easy-to-find charging stations are major sticking points, a new poll shows.   About 4 in 10 U.S. adults say they would be at least somewhat likely to buy an EV the next time they buy a car, according to the poll by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research and the Energy Policy Institute at the University of Chicago, while 46% say they are not too likely or not …


Next Boeing CEO should understand past mistakes, airlines boss says 

DUBAI — The next CEO of Boeing BA.N should have an understanding of what led to its current crisis and be prepared to look outside for examples of best industrial practices, the head of the International Air Transport Association said on Sunday. U.S. planemaker Boeing is engulfed in a sprawling safety crisis, exacerbated by a January mid-air panel blowout on a near new 737 MAX plane. CEO Dave Calhoun is due to leave the company by the end of the year as part of a broader management shake-up, but Boeing has …


‘Open source’ investigators use satellites to identify burned Darfur villages

Investigators using satellite imagery to document the war in western Sudan’s Darfur region say 72 villages were burned down in April, the most they have seen since the conflict began. Henry Wilkins talks with the people who do this research about how so-called open-source investigations could be crucial in holding those responsible for the violence to account. …


New cars in California could alert drivers for breaking the speed limit

SACRAMENTO, California — California could eventually join the European Union in requiring all new cars to alert drivers when they break the speed limit, a proposal aimed at reducing traffic deaths that would likely impact motorists across the country should it become law. The federal government sets safety standards for vehicles nationwide, which is why most cars now beep at drivers if their seat belt isn’t fastened. A bill in the California Legislature — which passed its first vote in the state Senate on Tuesday — would go further by requiring …


China’s Digital Silk Road exports internet technology, controls

washington — China promotes its help to Southeast Asian countries in modernizing their digital landscapes through investments in infrastructure as part of its “Digital Silk Road.” But rights groups say Beijing is also exporting its model of authoritarian governance of the internet through censorship, surveillance and controls. China’s state media this week announced Chinese electrical appliance manufacturer Midea Group jointly built its first overseas 5G factory in Thailand with Thai mobile operator AIS, Chinese telecom service provider China Unicom and tech giant Huawei. The 208,000-square-meter smart factory will have its own …