Artificial intelligence (AI) is making huge strides in problems that have traditionally plagued the field by harnessing the power of machine learning, a statistical method that relies on a lot of data. Machine learning superficially mimics the interconnected structure of the human brain, but beyond that, it looks nothing like how humans think or reason.
Iran has unveiled a new model of oil contracts aimed at attracting foreign investment once sanctions are lifted under a landmark nuclear deal reached earlier this year. The new Iran Petroleum Contract (IPC) unveiled Saturday replaces the previous buy-back model. Iran has sweetened the terms, hoping to bring in $30 billion in new investment.
The smartest insight and analysis, from all perspectives, rounded up from around the web:
A rising stock price used to mean a company was doing something right, said Alain Sherter at CBS News: releasing great products, conducting trailblazing research, even benefiting from visionary leadership. Today, though, the company might just be "buying a boatload of its own shares." Stock buybacks, which help juice a company's short-term stock price by reducing the number of outstanding shares, are nearing historic levels.
Tech blogger Holly Brockwell received so much abuse after writing a column describing why she wants to be sterilised because she doesn't want to have children that the BBC made sure a security guard met her at the door when she went there for a Q&A. Brockwell, the editor of Gadgette, also temporarily deactivated her Twitter account after the BBC published her column over the weekend, due to the number of creepy, abusive threats she got, mainly from men, she told Business Insider today. Brockwell's article described how she chooses not to have kids, and that other methods of contraception are too invasive, or have too many side effects.
The battle for British votes used to be pretty simple: The Conservatives would propose right-wing policies that generally favoured business and often hurt the poor. Labour would oppose those policies, putting forward a gentler vision that shaved the rough edges off capitalism. The public chose between them, swinging back and forth through the middle ground, depending on how well the parties performed.
Financial technology — or fintech — is a boom area for investment at the moment, particularly in the UK. The rise of cheap tech combined with smart people being laid off during the recession has led to a wave of startups trying to re-imagine everything from lending to wealth management, using technology to do things faster, better, and cheaper.