In Brief

Cambridge lab will teach computers to study emotions

South Korean tech giant Samsung plans new AI centre in Cambridge

Samsung is planning to open an artificial intelligence research lab in Cambridge, creating 150 highly-skilled jobs in a cutting-edge sector which the Government says will be key to Britain’s industrial future.

The new lab, which will teach computers to recognise human emotions and improve the way they interact with us, will increase the Korean electronics firm’s UK-based research team by almost half.

It will be led by Professor Andrew Blake, a “pioneering researcher in the development of systems that enable computers to interpret visual data, says Bloomberg. As research director of the Turing Institute, he helped develop the technology that allows computers to recognise human faces.

Blake said the new centre will “help us to better understand human behaviour, exploring areas like emotion recognition, and ... develop AI technologies that ultimately improve people’s lives”.

The news was welcomed by Theresa May, who said the centre will “create high-paying, high-skilled jobs” and represents a “vote of confidence in the UK as a world leader in artificial intelligence”.

The PM said her Government’s “modern industrial strategy” would encourage similar investment across the UK. In April, the Government announced investment of nearly £1bn in AI over several years, with £300m of that coming from private firms.

Companies involved “include Microsoft, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, IBM, McKinsey, and Pfizer” says Fortune magazine.

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