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Wild Care

There is a lot of caution around AI lately, much of it focused on surveillance and privacy, but it’s important to remember how the technology continues to make the world better. Case in point:  This week Intel, the National Geographic Society, and the Leonardo DiCaprio Foundation announced their collaboration to implement a new computer vision-powered camera system to spot poachers in 100 reserves all over Africa in 2019. The TrailGuard AI cameras that will be installed throughout the reserves are easy to camouflage, since they’re about the size of pencils, thanks to the super small yet powerful Intel Movidius Myriad 2 VPU, which is optimized to run the computer vision algorithms that spot poachers and vehicles. Existing poacher detection systems tend to produce a lot of false positives, since they simply detect motion, but the addition of computer vision helps filter out shifts in cloud cover or birds and other moving animals. Every 15 minutes, an elephant is killed by poachers, but the new TrailGuard AI camera system could save 25,000 animals a year, according to RESOLVE.
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