Apple has published its first research paper, which focuses on artificial intelligence. Specifically, the paper discusses methods for the improvement of the recognition of computer vision systems.
The publication of the paper marks a new direction for Apple, as it has been traditionally secretive with its research.
Apple's Artificial Intelligence Research Paper Explained
The first research paper of Apple, published on Dec. 22 and titled "Learning from Simulated and Unsupervised Images through Adversarial Training," was submitted on Nov. 15.
The paper describes a technique that improves the training that can be given to an algorithm for its ability to recognize images through computer-generated pictures as opposed to real-world pictures.
In machine learning, using computer-generated images in training neural networks is seen as more efficient, due to the fact that such pictures are already likely labeled with the proper information. Pictures taken of real-world situations likely do not have such information, which would require work to label them one-by-one.
However, the downside of using computer-generated images is that sometimes, details in them do not carry over to real-world scenes. Neural networks will then be confused with the difference, making them fail to recognize what should be two similar pictures.
The solution to the problem, according to Apple researchers is what is known as Simulated+Unsupervised learning. Through the method, the realism of computer-generated images is boosted to put them in line with real-world images.
Apple Now Opening Up?
For some players and reporters in the tech industry, the important part of the publication of Apple's first research paper is that it even exists, as Apple has previously locked up all its research, especially in the field of artificial intelligence.
Artificial intelligence is at the heart of Siri, which is Apple's digital personal assistant, with the technology expected to find its way into even more Apple services and products in the future. So why would Apple choose to publish a paper on its research for a method that competitors such as Google and Microsoft can use?
With the sharing of their findings to the academic community, Apple will help in advancing the field for the entire industry, which would benefit all companies and consumers as development in artificial intelligence will lead to smarter products and services.
In addition, if Apple continues to open up and publish its advancements in artificial intelligence research, it might be able to lure top researchers in the field to work with the company for the technology's continued growth.