Kinestry partners with Oomvelt, Helping AI and Rats Work Together to Detect Landmines

Andrew Ian Rats

Andrew McGregor attended our 5-Day AI Bootcamp in September and the whole team was stunned by his contagious and extraordinary energy and his passion for using technology to do good in the world. Andrew is the definition of a multi-hyphenate talent: comedian, Grammy-nominated bagpiper, performance art roboticist, and magician. He is also the co-founder of Oomvelt, a non-profit devising a new way to combine robotics technology and wearable computing to assist in training rats and helping them to detect landmines. Andrew, with the technology still in the prototype phase, asked us to join the project and help with the machine learning aspect of the technology. As we are strongly committed to embracing Artificial Intelligence and using it for good, we jumped aboard the project. We are currently working together to move from the prototype into the field testing phase and are very excited to be contributing to effective landmine detection technologies. An estimated 15,000 to 20,000 people are killed or maimed by landmines every year according to the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, and Landmine Monitor reports that between 75% and 85% of landmine victims are civilians. Furthermore, it is estimated that 50% of landmine victims die within hours of the blast and children are the least likely to survive. Also, the vast majority of countries where casualties are reported are currently at peace. Oomvelt works in partnership with the not-for-profit APOPO that trains the rats and will conduct the demining operations when the technology is operational.

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