RE•WORK’s fifth global Machine Intelligence Summit kicked off today in Hong Kong, hosted alongside the AI in Healthcare Summit, which saw a mix of researchers, industry experts and startups explore the latest machine learning, AI tools and techniques.

With two tracks, a full day of presentations, workshops, networking and a VC session, there was plenty to capture everyone’s attention. Leading minds from NASA, eBay, and HSBC lead the way on topics such as deep learning for eCommerce and using GANs in algorithmic trading.

The morning began with attendees grabbing breakfast and sitting down to listen to the Deputy Government CIO at The Government of the HKSAR speak on how they are using big data and AI to develop Hong Kong as a smart city. Their main goal is to use AI to make more informed decisions which will improve both the quality of public services and the quality of life of Hong Kong’s citizens. Examples of applications include; digital highway exchange sensors and IoT sensors.

Fellow speaker, Alan Lu, Director of Engineering & Applied Science at eBay, shared Victor’s enthusiasm saying;

“E-commerce is exciting but using AI to develop smart cities is important as it touches everyone in their daily lives”

In a similarly captivating fashion, Raymond Tong, Professor and Chairman of the Department of Biomedical Engineering at The Chinese University of Hong Kong, explained his latest work on Rehabilitation Robotics. His research group have used AI to develop novel, lightweight exoskeleton devices for the assistance of stroke patients which have already demonstrated their potential in rehabilitation.

Next up at the Machine Intelligence Summit was RE•WORK alumnus Brian Cheung, PhD Student, UC Berkeley who spoke at the inaugural Deep Learning Summit back in 2015 in San Francisco, who delivered a talk on his latest work, emphasising that back propagation is a key component in training neural network models.

Brian found that the summit “was a great way to find out how many and how fast companies outside the tech industry are adopting and learning about AI, I never expected this a couple of years ago, they do not only see it as something they should adopt but they know exactly how to”.

Brian expanded on this by saying: “I enjoyed Michael Natusch, Global Head of AI at Prudential's talk today. It is great to know that AI is extending to the Insurance industry and beyond!”

Attendees in the AI in Healthcare Summit were treated to an insight into how @HKUST are inferring the fitness landscape of HIV through unsupervised learning. The speaker, Raymond Louie, hopes that a new, effective vaccine design can be developed.

After a jam packed morning of talks, it was time for a networking break where conversations focused upon the innovative new ways AI and machine intelligence has developed, as well as the breadth of it’s diverse application. No AI was involved in the making of the food, but nonetheless the array of savoury and sweet snacks was welcomed with delight and served as fuel for the afternoon sessions!

Continuing the day, as well as an afternoon of presentation talks across both tracks, attendees had the opportunity to participate in a workshop, led by

Also, an exciting addition to the day was the Startup Mentoring Session hosted by world-leading VC’s including Radiant Tech Ventures, Horizon Ventures and Vectr Ventures, where cutting-edge startups had the opportunity to pitch and ask a variety of questions to help them on their journey.

Other presentation highlights include:

Hamed Valizadegan, Senior Machine Learning Scientist at @NASA Ames Research Center gave details on machine learning for space projects, discussing current examples of the Hubble space telescope and the Kepler space telescope.

Jeremy Lee of the National Tsing Hua University stated that cancer diagnosis can be replaced by an accurate AI based platform which is faster than physician interpretation and can resolve the issue with the lack of manpower.

During the AI in Healthcare panel discussion, Efstratios Tsougenis, Overseas Technical Engineer at Imsight Medical Technology, who works in computer vision and more specifically, image analysis for cancer detection, stressed the importance of successfully moving from innovation to implementation in Healthcare:

“Healthcare is the number one industry application of AI in terms of revenue. This is because you do not have to prove the value of the product to anyone. Increased automation to save time in the healthcare industry is of paramount importance”

We also held a panel session at the end of the Machine Intelligence Summit where the panelists were in agreement that everyone should regulate AI; “Even in systems where we understand how they work - it is hard to prove how they are working. So how do we test programs when we don’t understand how they work?”

Speakers and attendees shared their thoughts with us too;

Lawrence Wee, Chief Data Scientist at Allianz Asia Pacific mentioned that; “In an AI age, data is key. Partnerships are necessary to drive innovation and advancement in an environment where data is not readily available. With a look towards the future, I believe blockchain solutions will solve data sharing problems as it increases confidence in data governance. Blockchain, AI and healthcare should go hand in hand”.

Ken Lee of JOS said that “It was great to see highly technical talks, passionate people and so clearly in love with IT. I also really liked that the event aimed to nurture the next generation, especially the startup session mentoring corner”.

Bringing the day to a close, we tied up the evening with networking drinks and more interviews with speakers and exhibitors in advance of Day 2.

We are excited to be back tomorrow to hear from the likes of Bank of Thailand, HSBC and innovative startup causaLens - who will also be exhibiting - on the Machine Intelligence Summit track and Procter and Gamble, Insilico Medicine and other exhibitor, Prenetics, during the AI in Healthcare Summit track. I’m sure you agree, we are in for a treat.

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