StarCraft 2 (SC2), one of the world’s most popular real-time strategy video games, has been studied extensively in the field of AI. However, it is difficult to realize AI systems with good decision-making skills due to the many factors involved in in-game battles. Now, scientists have developed an AI model that can predict outcomes of SC2 battles by considering army compositions and battlefield terrain simultaneously, paving the way for AIs that can correctly assess complex situations.
As the need for more sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) grows, the challenges that they must face along the way have to evolve accordingly. Real-time strategy (RTS) video games, unlike turn-based board games such as chess, can serve as a vast playground for pushing the limits of AI. In particular, StarCraft II (SC2), one of the world’s most popular and skill-demanding RTS games, has already been the object of a few groundbreaking AI-related studies.
In SC2 matches, each player has to build up and command an army of varied units to defeat their opponent using wit and grit. While AI-based systems can excel at many aspects of the game, improving their decision-making regarding when their units should be sent to or relocated during a battle is remarkably difficult. This is because armies can be composed of virtually endless combinations of different units that synergize depending on various factors. In addition, the characteristics of the battlefield (‘terrain’) where the combat takes place can have a decisive impact on the outcome. So far, no study has focused on both of these aspects simultaneously for making AI-based combat outcome predictions—an essential skill for any SC2 player.
In a recent study, a team of scientists from the Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST) in Korea tackled this issue using a deep learning-based approach. By building and training a deep neural network (DNN) model, the researchers developed a system that could predict the outcome of an SC2 battle by simultaneously considering the detailed composition of the opposing armies and the type of terrain they would fight at. Their paper was made available online on July 24, 2021, and was published in Volume 185 of Expert Systems With Applications on December 15, 2021.
The proposed DNN model leveraged a technique called ‘parameter sharing,’ which allowed it to effectively and precisely analyze the circumstances of the battlefield in a very short time. “Our AI was capable of taking numerous complex factors into consideration to predict the overall combat result. When implemented, such a model would help an AI player make proper decisions with regards to its offensive and defensive strategies,” highlights Professor Chang Wook Ahn, who led the study.
Perfecting the way an AI makes decisions in a complex video game like SC2 will eventually lead to AI-based systems that can assess and correctly tackle difficult situations in the real world. As Prof. Ahn explains: “We believe that the AIs used in gaming and in the industry are not that different and that more AI applications will soon become tangible in our daily life. Thus, our continued study in this topic could become one of the cornerstones of the global endeavor to develop AIs that can perceive situations and behave logically.”
AI-Driven COMPUTEX 2021 Blazes New Paths for the Tech Community
COMPUTEX 2021 International Online Press Conference kicked off today, revealing the leading ICT tradeshow to return as a physical exhibition from June 1 to 4, 2021 (InnoVEX from June 2 to 4). More importantly, COMPUTEX 2021 will utilize artificial intelligence (AI) for the first time to create a smart Online-Merge-Offline (OMO) exhibition platform, connecting the tech community through an innovative model that breaks barriers and limitations.
Dr. Chien-Jen Chen, Former Vice President of Taiwan and Distinguished Professor of Academia Sinica, opened the conference by presenting Taiwan’s scientific pandemic prevention achievements by using big data analytics and new technology. “As one of the leading players in the global ICT industry, Taiwan empowers the ecosystem when the world faces disconnected ICT supply chains and utilizes technology to actively manage potential crisis,” said Dr. Chen. “From now on, we need to stay digital ready! Although we’re geographically far apart right now, I believe the COMPUTEX 2021 new online solution will make us bound together by shared values and visions.”
James C. F. Huang, Chairman of TAITRA, the co-organizer of the exhibition, presided over the press conference by announcing that COMPUTEX chooses Appier as the strategic technology partner to provide exhibitors and visitors an AI-Driven tradeshow. “COMPUTEX rides the digital transformation wave with tech pioneers,” said Huang. “By infusing the AI technology, COMPUTEX turns vision into reality, and transforms technology into opportunities.”
Winnie Lee, COO and Co-founder of Appier, shared the expertise in AI-driven technologies to empower exhibitors to achieve business goals, particularly in terms of precision marketing and customer engagement. “Exhibitors can deliver hyper-personalized experiences to event participants by leveraging Appier’s automation and personalization features,” Ms. Lee explained. “Through the integration of data about participants’ onsite and external viewing behaviors and interests, exhibitors can reach people with the most relevant content and achieve optimal engagement and business collaboration opportunity with their target audiences.”
According to IDC’s forecast, 30 percent of the world’s top 2,000 companies (G2000) will adopt AI technology by 2024. AI is no longer just a “nice to have” option, but a necessity for enterprises to enhance their core technology in the new normal world.
“The traditional business model has changed,” David Reinsel, Senior Vice President of IDC, shared the 2021 technology trends at the press conference. “Today, companies must accelerate the pace of digitalization and integrated marketing. AI can help companies understand customer on-site and off-site behaviors, predict customer needs, and recommend suitable products and services, enhancing customer interaction and improving the potential for business cooperation.”
As the demand for innovation and better technology rises, COMPUTEX 2021 will continue to blaze new paths in technology. Seven themes will pivot throughout the exhibition and surrounding activities, including 5G, AI & IoT, Edge Computing, High-Performance Computing (HPC), Cyber Security, Gaming, and Innovations & Startups.
COMPUTEX 2021 will be held from June 1 to 4 at the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center, Hall 1 & 2 (TaiNEX 1 & 2) and at Taipei International Convention Center (TICC). InnoVEX will also be exhibited from June 2 to 4 on the 4th floor of the Taipei Nangang Exhibition Center, Hall 2 (TaiNEX 2).
Continental Ramps Up AI Research for Automated Driving
Continental is continuing its research into the potential of automated driving in urban areas. Labeled PRORETA 5, the project is dedicated to recognizing complex traffic situations in inner cities and how algorithms from sensor data can deduce the correct driving decisions in these situations, technology that is set to prove of interest to governments across the Middle East.
Using a demonstration car built and equipped by Continental, the project aims to examine algorithms associated with cognition, behaviour prediction and decision making. and will be assessed by experts, using the widest possible range of inner-city scenarios to determine the potential for future deployment. The learning-capable algorithms of the PRORETA 5 project will be applied to achieve a driving performance comparable to that of humans, with the artificial intelligence (AI) capable of correctly recognizing and interpreting complex traffic scenarios, resulting in correct driving decisions being made.
The Middle East is already taking positive steps forward to promote autonomous transport. In the UAE the Dubai Future Foundation, in collaboration with Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), has launched the Dubai Autonomous Transportation Strategy with the aim of transforming 25 percent of the total transportation in Dubai to autonomous mode by 2030. And in the past year self-driving shuttles have been introduced on the campus of the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology in Saudi Arabia.
“PRORETA is already a very successful program in the development of technology for urban autonomous driving. Now, with support from our partners, we are at a point in history where we are taking on the biggest challenge yet – inner-city driving,” said Karel Kucera, Managing Director, Continental Middle East. “The Middle East is already one of the most urbanized parts of the world, with around 85 percent for the GCC population living in urban surrounds, so this research is of particular relevance here.”
The PRORETA 5 project (2019–2022), was devised in collaboration between Continental, Technical University (TU) Darmstadt, Germany, and two other European universities. It has dedicated itself to individual sub-tasks of driver assistance and automation, and is forming the basis for the integration of further universities.
Huawei Brings Smart Devices Together With its Seamless AI Life Strategy
Huawei last year announced its Seamless AI Life Strategy which aims to provide users with an all-scenario experience across multiple smart devices in today’s “all-connected” age. In line with its global vision, Huawei Consumer Business Group aims to deliver in the Middle East and Africa an intelligent experience to consumers across all scenarios, including smart home, as well as health and fitness. Huawei’s plan with its seamless AI life strategy is to bring people together, especially in unprecedented times, and to create a world where everything works together intelligently, safely and seamlessly.
The strategy consists of primary (smartphones) and secondary portals (tablets, PCs, wearables, speakers, infotainment systems, etc.) and IoT devices (including lighting, security, audio and video, etc.) It is built on the idea of bringing people closer, making the brand move beyond smartphones to focus more on its 1+8+N ecosystem.
The 1+8+N ecosystem keeps the smartphone at its center as an entry point for consumers. This connects with eight categories of smart devices for different scenarios – PCs, tablets, smart TVs, audio devices, smart glasses, smartwatches, cars (telematics) and headphones. The N stands for the layer where everything comes together and denotes the thousands of IoT enabled devices that can be seamlessly connected. The “+” sign in between represents Huawei Share and HiLink, the very technology that makes this connection effortless.
In UAE, Huawei was seen enlarging its product offering in terms of devices and launched recently a myriad of new products including HUAWEI Sound X, HUAWEI WATCH GT2 e, HUAWEI MatePad Pro and many more. Each device aimed to provide users with smart solutions for all their requirements, be it entertainment, fitness or productivity. The HUAWEI Sound X, the world’s only Devialet dual-woofer interactive speaker provides users with a stunning audio experience, while the HUAWEI WATCH GT 2e provides fitness tracking features with a two week long battery life including a blood oxygen saturation (SpO2) monitoring feature.
Meanwhile the recently launched HUAWEI MatePad Pro, changes the way how users interact with tablets, being the world’s first multi-screen collaboration and App multiplier tablet which can be enjoyed on its massive display with the world’s highest 90% screen-to-body ratio. These devices have seen massive success as well.
According to the International Data Corporation’s (IDC) recently released Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker report for Q1 2020, Huawei reached 2nd place globally in smartwatch shipments with 2.6 million units shipped, reaching up to 118.5% YoY growth and an increase in shipment by 62.2%.
A key technology of the Seamless AI Life strategy is Huawei Share, which lets users share files between devices with a simple tap. This uses distributed technology, which shares resources and capabilities to create a seamless experience as users switch between devices. Huawei Share mainly brings innovative experiences such as Huawei Share OneHop file transfers, audio transfers, and Internet access, as well as multi-screen collaboration.
This system also gives users instant access to files and data saved across different devices in the ecosystem, allowing to easily share photos, videos or other files. Users can also seamlessly transition between devices, for example, by beginning to write some notes on their smartphone or tablet before tapping to transfer the workstream onto their Matebook. With the HUAWEI OneHop feature, users need to simply tap their compatible Huawei smartphone on a HUAWEI MateBook or MatePad to instantly share files, images or videos.
Users can also use the Multi-Screen Collaboration feature to wirelessly stream the smartphone’s display on the PC or tablets display. This is enabled by a single tap of the smartphone on the compatible laptop or tablet and allows users to transfer files with a simple drag and drop or even control their smartphones with the PC or laptop peripherals.
On the other hand, users can also use Huawei Share while listening to music. While music is playing on their Huawei smartphone, simply tap it on the HUAWEI Sound X speaker and instantly start playing music exactly from where it left off. Users don’t need to fret about taking their smartphone out to pause the song, just covering the top of the speaker with their palm will do the trick.
Huawei Share also extends to compatible Huawei routers, where users can simply tap their smartphone on the router to instantly connect to the WiFi network without having to input a password or login. Following this system comes with its share of advantages. With Huawei having access to both its own software and hardware systems, the brand has unrivalled control over all of its features bringing unique benefits for users. Huawei users can rest easy with privacy and security benefits in this distributed technology. This also enables the smartphone to become a type of super controller, allowing users to control everything with a single tap on their smartphones.
Huawei’s plan with its seamless AI life strategy is to bring people together, especially in unprecedented times, and to create a world where everything works together intelligently, safely and seamlessly.
Review: HONOR X9
HONOR launched its HONOR X Series a while ago and we had reviewed the X8, as well. This time around...
Review: Amazon Echo Show 10
The Amazon Echo Show 10 (3rd Gen) is the company’s new smart display and speaker, powered by the Alexa voice...
Video Review of the POCO F4 GT in the UAE
POCO’s new F4 GT is a gaming smartphone that packs in top-notch specs at a pocket-friendly price. The F4 GT...
Review: Samsung Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra
Samsung’s new Galaxy Tab S8 Ultra tablet is possibly one of the biggest out there on the market with a...
Review: Bose QuietComfort 45 Noise Cancelling Smart Headphones
Bose’s new QuietComfort 45 headphones replace the successful QuietComfort 35 II. The new pair of headphones come with noise cancellation...