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Sulon Cortex gets us one step closer to the Holodeck
Article Hits: 832
February 5th, 2016 3:14 pm
Why US tech giants are buying British AI start-ups
Article Hits: 799
February 5th, 2016 1:32 pm
U.S. giants such as Apple and Microsoft are flocking to the U.K. to buy artificial intelligence (AI) start-ups as Britain establishes itself as the go-to place for the technology. Microsoft announced that it had acquired London-based Swiftkey, an AI start-up that makes a predictive keyboard for smartphones, on Wednesday for $250 million, sources close to the deal told CNBC. "We are looking for interesting tech. It is not new news that London is the most advanced start-up ecosystem in Europe," a Microsoft insider who wished to remain anonymous because they were not authorised to speak publicly about the deal, told CNBC on Thursday. "There is a lot of talent in London which is a combination of the education and active verticals in fintech, adtech and all of those that require expertise in machine learning. It explains the interest for us." 
Microsoft is not the only U.S. technology giant to scoop up British start-ups. In 2012, Amazon bought Evi Technologies, a company founded in Cambridge, England, which produces a Siri-like product which users can talk to and ask questions.In 2014, Google splashed £400 million ($582 million) to buy DeepMind, which has recently demonstrated its ability to master the ancient Chinese game of Go. DeepMind then went on to buy two companies – Dark Blue Labs and Vision Factory – both artificial intelligence companies sprung out of Oxford University. And earlier this year, Apple announced that it had acquired an start-up called Emotient which has developed technology that can detect emotions. more
To avoid Zika virus, CDC says pregnant women should use condoms or abstain from sex
Article Hits: 835
February 5th, 2016 1:23 pm

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Friday issued new interim guidance for the prevention of sexual transmission of the Zika virus, as well as new interim guidance for health care providers to use in taking care of pregnant women and women of reproductive age. The sexual guidelines apply to "all methods" of sexual contact between males who have traveled to areas where active Zika transmission is taking place and pregnant women. This means oral, anal and vaginal sex. 

It does not apply to male sexual contact with other males.

The sexual guidelines come in the wake of a case in Dallas in which the virus was spread via sexual contact between a traveler returning from a Zika-affected country and a non-traveler. The new guidelines say that pregnant women who have traveled to a country where active Zika virus transmission is taking place should be tested for the virus between two and 12 weeks after returning from such travel. 

It also says pregnant women should use condoms to prevent the spread of Zika, or consider abstaining from sex for the duration of their pregnancy. According to the CDC:

"Men with a pregnant sex partner who reside in or have traveled to an area of active Zika virus transmission and their pregnant sex partners should consistently and correctly use condoms during sex (vaginal, anal, or oral) or abstain from sexual activity for the duration of the pregnancy. Consistent and correct use of latex condoms reduces the risk of sexual transmission of many infections, including those caused by other viruses."

The CDC's guidance does not specifically call for abstinence as the preferred or only option in situations involving pregnant or non-pregnant sexual partners, although it does say it should be "considered" along with consistent use of latex condoms for concerned couples. more

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