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Editors' picks from ETO Scout: volume 9 (2/23/24-3/13/24)

A computer chip viewed through a circular lens.


Resurrecting the dead, racing after Sora and rapid-charging your car - plus, a CSET expert take on challenges for Chinese AI

Scout is ETO's discovery tool for Chinese-language news and commentary on technology issues. See the latest editors’ picks, browse the feed by topic, or sign up for customized e-mail alerts at 🔭

  • Academician Qian Feng warns that Chinese efforts to use AI in industry face many hurdles, including heavy dependence on imported software, insufficient data sharing, and shortages of computing power and talent. (S&T Daily, 03/08/24)
  • An overview of Beijing's key science and tech research facilities, enabling public policies, and anchor institutions, all working to make the city an international innovation hotspot. (S&T Daily, 03/05/24)
  • At SenseTime's annual meeting, recently deceased company founder Tang Xiaoou made a virtual "appearance" through an AI-based digital replica. (36kr, 03/05/24)
  • A summary of AI-related developments at this year's "Two Sessions," including the 2024 Government Work Report's proposals for increased AI application R&D and 20 congressional representatives' remarks on AI development and policy. (Zhidx, 03/05/24)
  • A Chinese-international research team's new fluoroacetonitrile-based electrolyte allows fast battery charging and discharging across a wide temperature range, addressing a key limitation of current lithium-ion batteries. (36kr, 03/04/24)
  • Zhang Zewei, a Chinese entrepreneur who creates AI-based digital clones of humans, discusses the ethics and potential of his work. (36kr, 03/04/24)
CSET Expert View

Each week, a CSET expert offers insight into recent news from Scout. Today's viewpoint is from Research Fellow Sam Bresnick.

“Given China’s Marxist-Leninist political system, as well as President Xi Jinping’s growing control over many aspects of Chinese citizens’ lives, there is a tendency to view the country’s technology and innovation ecosystems as highly centralized and well-organized. Recent comments by a Chinese Academy of Engineering academician (“Commissioner Qian Feng: Let artificial intelligence inject new impetus into new industrialization,” 3/8/2024) complicate this narrative, revealing several organizational issues plaguing China’s AI sector. The academician discusses China's challenges in sharing data among relevant industry players, dispersed (and limited) compute resources, and haphazard basic research projects. Comments like these suggest that some of China’s important technology resources are somewhat decentralized, which could be inhibiting the country’s AI progress.”

  • Tang Jie, director of the Tsinghua University Basic Large Model Research Center, argues that 2024 will be the beginning of the era of artificial general intelligence. (36kr, 03/01/24)
  • Former ByteDance employees have become notable players across China's AI startup scene, while the company's AI business strategy faces questions in the near term. (36kr, 02/29/24)
  • An in-depth report on China's cutthroat cloud services market reveals that AWS China is in trouble, facing customer loss, management issues, and competition from Microsoft. (Leiphone, 02/28/24)
  • Chinese semiconductor producers are struggling to raise capital, leading to a 90% rise in bankruptcies in the sector in 2023 - with startups especially hard hit. (36kr, 02/27/24)
  • The first China-made dilution refrigerator, ez-Q Fridge, a key component of superconducting quantum computers, has been delivered to customers and is performing well. (S&T Daily, 02/26/24)
  • Chinese AI executives discuss technical and business considerations behind replicating the capabilities of OpenAI's new Sora video generation model and express optimism that Chinese firms will soon offer comparable technology. (36kr, 02/26/24)
  • Microsoft and Chinese corporate IT provider Yidianyun jointly launched Yizhihui, a generative AI platform allowing Chinese small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to access Microsoft GPT technology. (36kr, 02/26/24)
  • China's Ministry of Education designated 184 primary and secondary schools as artificial intelligence education centers. (S&T Daily, 02/23/24)
  • Shanghai researchers developed new three-dimensional super-resolution optical storage technology, achieving petabyte-level information density in a single disc. (S&T Daily, 02/22/24)
  • Moonshot AI, a Chinese AI startup, raised over $1 billion in a new funding round that prominently featured larger tech companies, such as Alibaba and Meituan. (36kr, 02/19/24)
  • A CCP commission offers non-binding guidelines for ethical conduct in Chinese brain-computer interface research, urging "moderation" in the adoption of the technology. (CSET curation, 02/02/24)
  • The 2023 budget for the Chinese Academy of Sciences, a state-run complex of scientific research institutes and think tanks. (CSET curation, 03/23/23)
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