Plus, Uber hits a milestone, and the potential effects of climate change on high-speed Internet.
Researchers at Warsaw University in Poland have developed AI with a sixth sense: the ability to tell the difference between iris scans from living and dead people with 99 percent accuracy. As iris scans become a more common method of biometric identification — much like the fingerprint used to unlock an iPhone — the potential for identity theft via the eyes of the dead is not merely the stuff of fiction. That means that this new machine learning algorithm could potentially become a futuristic crime-fighting tool, stopping bad actors from stealing personal information from the dead.
Despite criticism that has plagued Uber over how it pays drivers and the practices of former CEO Travis Kalanick, the ride-sharing company hit a milestone of 10 billion trips and deliveries on June 10. That includes 173 rides in 21 countries that all started at 10:12 p.m. GMT that day to push Uber’s total rides over that impressive number. The company’s main U.S. competitor, Lyft, announced it had hit 500 million trips in October 2017.
As cities and counties across the country install fiber-optic cable to increase Internet speeds and improve access for residents, it’s likely the impacts of climate change aren’t on government’s mind — but maybe they should be. According to a recent study presented at the Applied Networking Research Workshop in Montreal, rising sea levels mean more than 4,000 miles of fiber could be underwater in just 15 years, affecting connectivity for millions of residents living along the coasts. The study’s authors hope their findings will serve as a wake-up call that steps must be taken now to ensure our ability to communicate online doesn’t deteriorate by 2033.