Author: BetaKit

A|I: The AI Times – The AI fight against fake news

The AI Times is a weekly newsletter covering the biggest AI, machine learning, big data, and automation news from around the globe. If you want to read A|I before anyone else, make sure to subscribe using the form at the bottom of this page.

Leaders Prize offers $1 million for an AI solution to fake news at #truenorth19
“This competition will inspire the creation of breakthrough solutions that inform our citizens if the online content they consume is accurate, before and as they read it.”

Walmart is using AI-powered cameras to prevent theft at checkout lanes
If an unusual activity occurs, such as an item moving into a bag without being scanned, a checkout attendant will be notified to take action.

Two months after rebrand, Looka opens new corporate headquarters in Toronto
The company said its new office will house its team of data scientists and developers while growing Looka’s market share in Canada and the US.

AI startup Wysa bags $2 million for its conversation bot that helps im..

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Microsoft, VCGA launch tech education lab in Vancouver’s Chinatown

Microsoft has teamed up with the Vancouver Computer Graphic Society (VCGA) to host tech programming, workshops, and mentor-led labs this summer in the Vancouver-based Chinatown House.

“We are excited to cultivate this digital community through a diverse team of professional mentors.

The programming, for what is being called the Community Digital Lab, will run through July and August and is available for free to participants of all ages. The organizers said the lab will offer a tactical approach for participants to work on various exploratory projects that span across STEM. The goal of the lab is to provide attendees with a foundational grasp of technology.

“Technology is such a huge part of our society today, and it is up to organizations such as ourselves to offer programming to those who are interested but may not otherwise have the means to access it,” Minna Van, executive director of Chinatown House, said in a statement. “I hope the courses, workshops, and lab time really invi..

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The three e-commerce game changers announced at Shopify Unite 2019

Ryan Petrimoulx is BetaKit’s e-commerce expert. We sent him to Shopify Unite to report back with his thoughts on the biggest announcements from Canada’s retail juggernaut.

Unite is Shopify’s annual conference for partners and developers of the platform to announce new updates from the company, some of which will be rolled out and available immediately, with others being estimated for later in the year.

The three-day conference recently celebrated its first year at the Beanfield Centre, growing in size from previous years, attracting over 1,300 global attendees from places such as the United Kingdom and New Zealand. The event included workshops and product demos, but the keynote on all the new product announcements was the focal point.

Shopify Fulfillment Network: the 3PL for all
The most impactful rollout of the keynote was Craig Miller, Shopify’s chief product officer, announcing the launch of the Shopify Fulfillment Network, a US-based solution for qualifying US merchants that wi..

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Vancouver cleantech Inventys closes Series C at $34 million CAD

Vancouver-based cleantech Inventys has officially closed its Series C round with an investment of $13 million CAD, bringing its total funds raised for this round to $34 million CAD.

“Carbon capture and storage will play an essential role in meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement.”
– Pratima Rangarajan

The round was raised from existing investors OGCI Climate Investments and the Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) Cleantech Practice, as well as follow-on investment from existing shareholders Husky Energy, The Roda Group, and Chevron Technology Ventures. The company said the funds will be used to complete its CO₂ capture plant demonstration project with Husky Energy in Saskatchewan, and will also allow it to scale manufacturing at a larger commercial scale.

This close comes four months after the company raised an initial $21 million USD ($27 million CAD). Inventys stated at the time that it hoped to raise an additional $6.5 million USD.

The company’s CO₂ capture plant proje..

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UWaterloo, Microsoft partner to use AI for socially-driven projects

Microsoft has partnered with the University of Waterloo’s Artificial Intelligence Institute,, to provide funding, expertise, and Microsoft’s Azure technology to help the institute use AI for social good.

“The greatest challenges facing society today cannot be solved without strong partnerships across industry and academia.”

The research grants, backed by Microsoft, will go toward using extensive computational power and machine learning capabilities for new socially-driven projects. Some of these projects include improving emotion discovery for autistic individuals, climate change projections, fall detection for the elderly, and wildfire management and disaster response.
“The University of Waterloo has an outstanding reputation for ground-breaking innovation, and Microsoft is excited to partner with them, not only to provide leading Microsoft Azure technology but to provide funding and expertise for the important work of leveraging AI for social good,” said Kev..

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