News Archives

The periodic technical report for the HumaneAI Network successfully submitted to EU reviewers

After the HumaneAI project setup phase, initiating the internal and external collaboration mechanisms the first 18 months were focused on engaging with the research questions posed in the proposal within WPs 1-5 and conducting a series of concrete high-impact activities to connect to the community. Nearly 70 micro projects spanning the large majority of the project partners have been initiated resulting in 82 project publications, incl. Nature, PNAS, Phys.Rev, Artificial Intelligence etc papers.

A major result of this work has been the updated research agenda which includes a novel conceptual framework for human-AI collaboration, a notion of shared representations centered around of narratives and the expansion of the definition of AI trustworthiness and explainability in terms of human-computer interaction (systems that humans (both individually and as a society) feel they understand and are comfortable trusting rather than systems that “only” fulfill certain hard technical specification).

Attending the annual meeting of the African AI community in Tunis

After not taking place these past two years, K4A personnel is excited to return to the Deep Learning Indaba 2022 as attendees and sponsors in Tunis, Tunisia, from the 21st to the 26th of August.

The Deep Learning Indaba is the annual meeting of the African machine learning community with the mission to Strengthen African Machine Learning.

In 2022, the Indaba managed to see 350 members of Africa’s artificial intelligence community for a week-long event of teaching, research, exchange, and debate around the state of the art in machine learning and artificial intelligence.

Lacuna Fund 2022 grantees convening in Tunis

As of August 2021, Lacuna Fund has selected 29 projects for funding in the Agriculture, Natural Language Processing, and Equity & Health domains. Project teams from the first rounds of funding in Agriculture and Natural Language Processing have either completed or are nearly finished with their datasets. Those project teams were invited to attend the 2022 Lacuna Fund Grantee Convening.

K4A was granted two projects funded by the first rounds of Lacuna funding, Jade Abbott leading the “Masakhane MT: Decolonizing Scientific Writing for Africa” and Peter Nabende’s project “Named Entity Recognition and Parts of Speech datasets for African languages“. Both project results are available now, with links to the datasets listed on the Lacuna Fund website.

We were extremely happy to meet representatives from many of the project teams in person!

Organizing the Dagstuhl Workshop on Human-Centered AI Perspectives

Dagstuhl Report

Frank van Harmelen, Wendy Mackay and K4A director John Shawe-Taylor with the help of Virginia Dignum co-organized and ran the Human-Centred AI Perspectives Workshop at Dagstuhl from 26 June to 1 July, 2022, with 22 participants.

Society is undergoing a revolution in artificial intelligence (AI), with huge potential benefits, but also major risks for individuals and society. Increasingly, trust in the development, deployment, and the use of AI and autonomous systems concerns not only the technology’s inherent properties, but also the socio-technical systems of which they are part of, that is, the people, organisations, and societal environments in which systems are developed, implemented, and used. Currently, major challenges include the lack of fundamental theory and models to analyse and ensure that systems are aligned with human values and ethical principles, accountable, open to inspection, and understandable to diverse stakeholders. Furthermore, there is no doubt that this technological shift will have revolutionary effects on human life and society.

The goal of this Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshops was to contribute to shape that revolution, to provide the scientific and technological foundations for designing and deploying AI systems that work in partnership with human beings, to enhance human capabilities rather than replace human intelligence. Fundamentally new solutions are needed for core research problems in AI and human-computer interaction (HCI), especially to help people understand actions recommended or performed by AI systems and to facilitate meaningful interaction between humans and AI systems.

June 26 – July 1 , 2022, Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshop 22262

Successful ENCORE+ meeting and great attendance at OEG Global 2022

The ENCORE+ project consortium met at the end of the 2022 edition of Open Education Global Conference in Nantes on 26th May. Project personnel was involved in the organisation of the conference in the role of programme chairs, with a great turnout of almost 300 opened practitioners. The project is related to innovation and entrepreneurship with OER, and aims to bring academia and business together, by creating a network of European OER repositories and formulate value propositions for both sectors into a Knowledge Alliance.

African languages are richer for 20 more language datasets

We are very happy to announce that one of our Lacuna funded projects titled Named Entity Recognition and parts of Speech Datasets for African Languages has been successfully finished. At the start of our work, none of the languages associated with this project had a manually prepared NER dataset. Also, only a very small subset of languages in South Africa, and Yoruba, Naija, Wolof, and Bambara had Part-of-speech (POS) datasets. This project has therefore provided the first carefully prepared NER and POS datasets for 20 African languages. The project initially achieved new parallel texts (up to 8000 parallel sentences) for at least 8 low-resourced languages. The parallel texts are a very valuable resource for bilingual NLP applications. The results will be uploaded to the Masakhane Github repository.

David Adelani presenting the project results

Making artificial intelligence human-centric at the first post-pandemic HumaneAI-Net consortium meeting in person

This was the EU-funded HumanE-AI-Net project meeting which brought together leading European research centres, universities and industrial enterprises into a network of centres of excellence. Leading global artificial intelligence (AI) laboratories collaborate with key players in areas, such as human-computer interaction, cognitive, social and complexity sciences. The project is looking forward to drive researchers out of their narrowly focused field and connect them with people exploring AI on a much wider scale. The challenge is to develop robust, trustworthy AI systems that can ‘understand’ humans, adapt to complex real-world environments and interact appropriately in complex social settings. HumanE-AI-Net will lay the foundations for designing the principles for a new science that will make AI based on European values and closer to Europeans.

European OER ecosystem launched

We are excited to be launching our collaborative approach to enhancing the European OER ecosystem with a series of events this Autumn! The events are great opportunities to network with relevant stakeholder groups and lead the discourse around the future of education and training in Europe. Read more here:

Survey on Open Educational Resources

Based on recommendations by the European Commission and UNESCO, we are developing the new European OER ecosystem. Help us shape the network by participating in this short survey.

This study contributes to the European Network for Catalysing Open Resources in Education (ENCORE+), a pan-European Knowledge Alliance funded under the Erasmus+ programme. The project is an initiative of the International Council for Distance Education (ICDE) as well as several higher education instutions and businesses across Europe and will run from 2021 to 2023 to support the modernisation of education in the European area through OER.

#education #surveying #research #highereducation

AI for education project ending in the Horizon 2020 programme, but work still continues

The project has developed a commoditized set of tools and systems that enable the ingestion of OER material into the X5GON registry including semantic cross-lingual indexing of materials, automatic transcription and translation of recordings, assessment of how engaging the material is, and potentially how it might sequence with other OERs.

Further, methods for automatically estimating the knowledge of users based on their track record of viewing different OERs enables the system to recommend content that is likely to engage and prove useful for learners and teachers.

X5GON ending in the Horizon 2020 programme, but work still continues
X5GON ending in the Horizon 2020 programme, but work still continues

For example, a moodle plug-in can provide such recommendations at the level of a particular course, while the X5learn system can make recommendations to individual learners based on their earlier viewing experience.

The project has actively engaged with OER sites and developed systems to assist with the incorporation of OERs into the X5GON registry significantly growing the number of sites and materials that are indexed by the X5gon tools.