Do you know what the Neural Networks API is? If you don't, it's fine, it's one of those surprisingly complex things that makes a lot of different parts of Android better without ever being very visible to the end user. Long story short: it allows developers to apply some of the extremely complicated parts of neural network processing to local Android hardware, getting a boost in performance in the background. And starting soon, it'll benefit from the same kind of regular driver updates that Qualcomm has been using for its GPU driver updates. Read More
Microsoft announced today that its Translator app now supports offline, artificial intelligence-powered translation in a handful of languages with what the company says is "the world's first Deep Neural Network-powered offline translation engine." The AI packs are considerably smaller than traditional language packs, and they should provide higher quality translations, too. Read More
Last year, Google introduced a new neural networks API in Android 8.1 Oreo that provided developers with hardware-backed tools for machine learning. Now, with Android P, Google is expanding the API to support nine new operations. Pixel 2 devices will also have support for Qualcomm's Hexagon HVX driver, giving developers further improvements in performance on those devices. Read More
When you navigate to a website on your expensive new Android device, or try to view an image that someone has sent you on your gorgeous Super AMOLED Quad HD display, the last thing you want is to find yourself standing there, waiting for a progress bar to crawl across the screen, or to squint angrily at the spinning loading icon as it sputters.
(Did you know that the loading icon is called a “throbber”? I just found out, and I’m now stuck on the idea of a “sputtering throbber.” That’s neither here nor there.) Read More
Everyone uses Google Maps, but not often do we consider where, exactly, all that data comes from. When a new road goes in, or a bypass, or the name of a street changes, it isn't as if your local city reaches out to Google to make sure everything is up to date. Some of that used to come from user submissions in the Map Maker forum. Now those tools are being rolled into Maps itself, but that's not the only source of information. Google's fleets of Street View cars collect an insane number of images, and nestled in with them are pictures of businesses, street signs, and addresses, and Google's latest research blog post goes into some interesting details about all that potential data. Read More
Much to my dismay at the time, my high school Spanish teacher could always tell when I used Google Translate. Automatic translation tools often produce results that mostly get the point across, but with strange sentence structures and other quirks. Google is now testing neural machine translations for Google Translate, with the hope of producing more accurate results. Read More
SwiftKey has been making some big changes lately, and running the beta version of the keyboard gets you a sneak peek at what's coming next. In the latest beta update, there are new languages integrated with SwiftKey's improved neural network prediction engine, as well as support for using as many as five languages at the same time. SwiftKey loves multi-lingual users, apparently. Read More
Every once in a while, we get a sneak peek into the new technology that companies are creating that will ultimately make something better, faster, or [adjective here]. Swiftkey recently launched the latest project from Swiftkey Greenhouse: Swiftkey Neural Alpha. This is the first keyboard on a smartphone that uses artificial neural networks to fix mistakes and predict words. Swiftkey currently utilizes n-gram technology to do this by looking for patterns and common phrases.
Neural Network Clusters
While n-gram technology does use context to create predictions, this new neural network-based engine goes one step further toward truly understanding what you mean. Swiftkey's blog post has a full rundown of how the technology works, and there are many videos explaining neural networks and machine learning. Read More