🏡 What’s new at prg․ai
We welcome Amazon, KPMG and M Computers among our partners! Amazon needs little introduction, among other things, together with AWS, they financially support the Czech version of the Elements of AI course. We look forward to deepening our relationship and further helping to build the AI ecosystem in the Czech Republic. KPMG has long specialized in data analytics and digitalisation, so it’s only logical that it now focuses on AI. That’s also why it created the Responsible AI service. Within the ICT Union, it is involved in setting the domestic environment for AI and helping to raise awareness at universities. M Computers is a Czech leader specialising in supercomputers for solving AI tasks. It focuses on supplying computing clusters, large-capacity storage and supercomputers for AI. The company is also an Nvidia Elite Partner for AI accelerators and AI systems (DGX) for the Central Europe region.
Czech Digital Week lookback
The need for broader support of digital education was highlighted by the 2nd edition of the annual “Czech Digital Week”, which we were partners of. The event was organised by the Cabinet of Deputy Prime Minister for Digitalisation Ivan Bartoš. Over 120 workshops, lectures, courses and webinars were held in the districts, both physically and online. Our director Lukáš Kačena spoke about the CDW on the Czech TV and was present at its opening. Lenka Kučerová then moderated a panel discussion on artificial intelligence in classrooms with Eva Nečasová from AI Dětem and Ivana Böhmová from NPI.
Wired is filling up
In the last Newsletter, we invited you to read Stanislav Fort’s commentary, published by Czech Wired as part of our cooperation. We are very pleased that we can recommend two more articles in the series now. Specifically, Daria Hvíždalová’s commentary on AI and education and Pavel Kordík’s piece on how recommender systems work.
Industry Talk with Jan Kulveit
Another Industry talk for students of the prg.ai Minor interfaculty program is over! This time the guest was the scientist Jan Kulveit, who introduced the students to the known and unknown issues of AI alignment. The industry talk focused on the risks arising from the advancement of AI and the technical challenges of implementing security measures.
TAH Centre opening
We are one of the signatories of the TAH center – Technology, Art, Humanities – Creative and Innovation Centre initiative. It’s a joint project of Czech universities and research organisations that emphasises the importance of linking the cultural and creative industries with technology and humanities. We would like to kindly invite you to the official opening of the Centre, which will take place on 14 December at the UMPRUM Technology Centre.
👏 Local AI scene news that makes us proud
CTU Participates in European Project
The ELIAS project, supported by €11 million from the European Commission, is opening a new era of AI development for sustainability. Teams from CIIRC CTU will be the only Czech scientists involved in the research and will focus on developing algorithms to solve social problems, including climate change analysis and cybersecurity.
Teach the Robot to Cook
Josef Šivic, an expert in machine perception, described how machine learning works for the Ekonom magazine. He and his colleagues would like to develop a new generation of large neural models that will have the physical form of a human.
Young Blood Laureate
Computer scientist Tomas Mikolov from CIIRC CTU was awarded the Euro magazine’s Young Blood Awards 2023 for his contribution in the field of neural networks and AI language models. At the same time, he was interviewed by the magazine about neural network language modelling.
Million Support from GAČR
Researcher Lukáš Neumann from the Visual Recognition Research Group /VRG/ under the Department of Cybernetics at the CTU FEL succeeded with his project “Optimal structures of deep networks for computer vision” in the GAČR JUNIOR STAR 2024 grant call. The support of 25 million CZK over 5 years will allow scientists to build a new team and focus on new areas of research.
The Innovators Win
Martin Spišák, a recent graduate of MFF UK, won the international IT SPY competition. He was given the main prize and 2 other awards for the development of an algorithm improving personalized recommendation of goods on the Internet. His work outperformed more than a thousand competition contributions.
Pavlína Koutecká from FEL CTU came in second place, specifically for designing an algorithm for better planning of surgical procedures. Her work, using a branch-and-price method accelerated by machine learning, promises significant savings of time and resources in hospitals.
The Lobkowicz Legacy Goes Digital
House of Lobkowicz and FIT CTU signed a memorandum of cooperation on digitising the Lobkowicz collections for the general public. This first collaboration with CTU will enable the expansion of digital education and make historical materials available globally.
Junior Nobel Prize
Dominika Buresova from FEL CTU is among the winners of The Global Undergraduate Awards 2023 for mathematics and physics. Her undergraduate thesis in quantum logic excelled among entries from 409 universities and was recognised for its significant contribution to the field.
Network Secrets Revealed
How is network traffic monitored? Listen to the new episode of the technological podcast “Jedničky a Nuly” from FIT CTU. Learn what a packet and DNS are, or how machine learning can be used to analyze network traffic. All this with Tomas Cejka, head of the Network Traffic Monitoring Laboratory (NETMON).
Intelligent Robotic Traffic Light
Scientists from CIIRC CTU are working with Škoda Auto to develop the IPA2X robot traffic light. The robot enters the middle of the crosswalk and displays a green bar for pedestrians and a stop signal for the driver. It is intended to help children, the elderly and people with disabilities.
Success in the Rektorys Competition
Kamila Houšková from FEL CTU placed 3rd in the Rektorys Competition with her thesis titled On Triangular Norms and Their Generators. The supervisor of her research was prof. Mirko Navara.
The World’s Most Cited Scientists
Clarivate Analytics has published the Highly Cited Researches 2023 list. Researchers are selected each year based on the number of papers that are among the top 1% most cited in their field of study in a given year. There are 7 Czechs on the list this year, including Ladislav Krištoufek, Charles University’s Vice-Chancellor for Research.
Education against fraud
Martin Rehák, founder and CEO of the startup Resistant AI, emphasises to FTAdviser the importance of educating clients about financial fraud. His company highlights the growing risk of scams caused by the automation of document processing in the financial industry.
A Year Later
It’s been a year since Avast merged with NortonLifeLock and together they created Gen Digital. What does CEO Ondřej Vlček think about the ethics of AI and how does he perceive the AI Act? Read on Lupa. He also gave an interview to Forbes and DeníkN.
The Only Award-Winning Czechs
Webscraping company Apify was the only Czech company to receive the CE Tech Rocketship! award in the Deloitte Technology Fast 50 program. On this occasion, the company’s founder Jan Čurn explained who their clients are or how they use artificial intelligence in their work.
Company DataSentics, in partnership with their parent company Eviden, has launched a new Generative AI Acceleration Program that can help businesses and organizations leverage, scale and harness the power of generative AI with increased trust.
Smart Cities Personality of the Year
Dominik Janík, founder of CITYA, is the winner of the “Personality for the Private Sector” award in the Smart City of the Year 2023 competition. The competition recognises those who are involved in sharing good practices in the long-term development of the Smart City concept.
Higher Productivity but More Work
Ondrej Vanek of Blindspot Solution broke down the specific impact of AI on jobs for Adastra’s Consulting Data podcast. You’ll learn, for example, why he thinks AI will increase productivity but not decrease work, or why a company may be better off hiring outside experts.
Adastra has undergone an important personnel change. Stepan Kopriva, co-founder and CTO of Blindspot Solutions, has become its CEO. The move is part of the company’s global expansion efforts, which are focused on digitalisation, including the use of artificial intelligence.
What are promising Czech startups working on? The server Lupa published a ranking of eight startups that are worth following in the future. Among the TOP 8, Lupa has included for example Rossum, Resistant AI or MAMA AI.
European Healthcare Hackathon
At the European Healthcare Hackathon, of which we were partners, the CloseAI team won 2nd place for its innovative solution to the untapped potential of surveillance cameras. This could for example notify staff when a patient has fallen out of bed. Members of the CloseAI team were Matyáš Skalický from Rossum and Roman Dušek from FS CTU, also an instructor of the Elements of AI course.
The second round of Technologická Inkubace by CzechInvest will support a total of 55 startups out of 196 applications, with more than CZK 135 million. Most of the proposed projects (20 in total!) are in the field of artificial intelligence.
AI in Strategic Communication
Co-founder of Aignos Martin Richter is part of the newly formed Creative and Responsible AI Communication (CRAIC) research and education group at Charles University. Its aim is to explore the ethical use of AI in strategic communication and to educate the public.
Google Supports Czech AI
Google will provide a grant of nearly CZK 50 million to five Czech non-profits for digital inclusion and education. One of them is AI Dětem. Their founder, Eva Nečasová, stresses the importance of incorporating AI into education from a young age.
🎭 Events we’re excited about
11 Dec – Informatics evenings at FIT CTU
As part of the lecture series, FIT graduate Martin Kučera will talk about type-safe SQL queries in Scale, which he is working on himself.
11 Dec – AI Dětem Conference for Libraries
A day-long conference at the Petřiny Library, focused on the question “What is artificial intelligence and how is it transforming the world of education?” The programme will start with a theoretical lecture followed by two blocks of workshops and a discussion on the role of AI in disinformation.
11 Dec – How is AI entering our lives
For companies, high school or college students, UTIA experts have prepared a lecture series on artificial intelligence, large language models, generative AI and how they penetrate into everyday life, with a focus on education. The block is prepared under the auspices of the Academy of Sciences Strategy 21 programme.
12 Dec – Vaclav Moravec’s Focus
Václav Moravec’s show Focus will be broadcast live from the Testbed for Industry 4.0 at the CIIRC CTU. The topic of the episode? AI of course.
14 Dec – AI in context
A lecture focusing on the possibilities of AI use by libraries or publishers, hosted by Miloslav Linc from Municipal Library, will be the next in a series of lectures on AI in context.
18 Dec – CLAIRE Centre webinar
Explore AI strategies used by European Digital Innovation Centres to address green deal issues.
You can find all the events we find interesting in our Google Calendar.
🧩 Stuff that interests us
We recommend subscribing to the Miton Newsletter. Designed (mainly) for entrepreneurs and investors, it summarizes the most important things happening around AI in a concise and clear way.
This year’s ninth issue of the Industry 4.0 Bulletin is on machine learning and artificial intelligence.
An hour-long introduction to the world of large language models by Andrey Karpathy will answer all your questions; What are they? And where are they headed?
Suitable for (AI) beginners! Microsoft offers a three-month program that includes 24 lessons on artificial intelligence.
Watch the latest video from ELLIS, the European Network of Artificial Intelligence Laboratories. ELLIS has more than 1,000 members, 41 units, 16 international research programmes and a European-wide PhD programme.
Check out Brendan Bycroft’s very nicely done visualisation and walkthrough of how the LLM algorithms work, which is also the basis for ChatGPT. See the whole process yourself!
Read our m<AI>m
The Czech media scene is bursting with AI-related news. Are you getting lost? Follow our media<AI>monitor. Bi-weekly, we’ll send a rundown of AI news straight to your inbox to help you drown out the buzz and stay informed. Czech only for now.
📢 Community calls
- The Municipal Library in Prague and the Institute of Formal and Applied Linguistics of the Charles University’s Faculty of Mathematics and Physics announce the literary competition “Přicházejí z-AI-mavé časy“. The competition accepts only short stories created using AI.
Well-being of Young Adults
- Do you have teenagers or young adults in your area with an innovative soul? The Elin.ai project is perfect for them. Elin.ai cares for the mental well-being of young people and protects children from negative influences on the internet with the help of artificial intelligence.
Join a survey!
- Curious about how organisations perceive AI and its potential? Join Filip Dřímalka’s AI Impact 2023 survey and get an overview of how Czech companies think about AI, what tools they are implementing and what they’re using to simplify their work.
💼 Open job positions
- Project Manager for data & AI solutions
- Senior Data & AI consultant
- Senior Data scientist
- Senior Office Manager
- Python Developer
- Support & Project Engineer
- Sales Representative
- Business & Workplace Experience Coordinator
- R&D Big Data Engineer
- Data Analyst/ Machine Learning Engineer
- IT/IS Big Data Infrastructure Architect
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We are hiring: Program Manager!
We are strengthening our team and looking for someone to take charge of our educational activities.