5-speed listening (Biotechnology - Level 2)

New device can smell bombs and diseases






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A Nigerian scientist has made a revolutionary new computer that has artificial intelligence. Dr Oshi Agabi spent years trying to make a computer that can smell. He called his project Koniku. He has raised over $1 million. Dr Agabi said his project has made profits of $10 million. Technology companies like Google and Microsoft are interested in it. Security companies are also interested. Koniku will be in drones and smell bombs and explosives. It will also be in airport security systems. An additional use will be in hospitals to smell diseases in humans.

Dr Agabi did not base Koniku on silicon chips. He said silicon chips are not powerful enough for the maths needed to recognize smells. Agabi based his device on brain neurons from mice. Neurons are brain cells that share information. They use electricity and chemicals to send information. Using neurons in computers is called biotechnology. Agabi said: "Biology is technology. Bio is tech. Our deep learning networks are all copying the brain." He added: "We want to build a…system that has intelligence. We do not want to build a human brain. It's not science fiction."

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