Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2020

Dec 11, 2020

Current Affair 1:
How Neural Network works?

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First see what the few examples of Neural networks are: It will become easier to understand topics.

What are some examples of neural networks that are familiar to most people?

  1. There are many applications of neural networks. One common example is your smartphone camera’s ability to recognize faces.
  2. Driverless cars are equipped with multiple cameras which try to recognize other vehicles, traffic signs and pedestrians by using neural networks, and turn or adjust their speed accordingly.
  3. Neural networks are also behind the text suggestions you see while writing texts or emails, and even in the translation’s tools available online.

Does the network need to have prior knowledge of something to be able to classify or recognise it?

Yes, that’s why there is a need to use big data in training neural networks. They work because they are trained on vast amounts of data to then recognise, classify and predict things.


In the driverless cars example, it would need to look at millions of images and video of all the things on the street and be told what each of those things is. When you click on the images of crosswalks to prove that you’re not a robot while browsing the internet, it can also be used to help train a neural network. Only after seeing millions of crosswalks, from all different angles and lighting conditions, would a self-driving car be able to recognise them when it’s driving around in real life.

In the video linked click here, the network is given the task of going from point A to point B, and you can see it trying all sorts of things to try to get the model to the end of the course, until it finds one that does the best job.

How does a basic neural network work?

A neural network is a network of artificial neurons programmed in software. It tries to simulate the human brain, so it has many layers of “neurons” just like the neurons in our brain. The first layer of neurons will receive inputs like images, video, sound, text, etc. This input data goes through all the layers, as the output of one layer is fed into the next layer.

Let’s take an example of a neural network that is trained to recognise dogs and cats. The first layer of neurons will break up this image into areas of light and dark. This data will be fed into the next layer to recognise edges. The next layer would then try to recognise the shapes formed by the combination of edges. The data would go through several layers in a similar fashion to finally recognise whether the image you showed it is a dog or a cat according to the data it’s been trained on. These networks can be incredibly complex and consist of millions of parameters to classify and recognise the input it receives.

Current Affair 2:
Rise in AI Adoption in India Amidst Pandemics

Why in news?

As per a report by PwC (a global network of firms), India reported a 45% increase in the use of Artificial Intelligence, the highest among all countries, following the outbreak of the virus.

Key finding:

The rise of AI adoption (45%) recorded in the country is the highest, when compared to major economies like the USA, Japan and the UK.

The USA recorded a 35% rise, the UK 23% and Japan 28% following the outbreak of the virus.

The report attributes the growing AI adoption to the shift in buying behaviour and new business challenges (owing to Covid-19 pandemic). For instance, AI-enabled use cases like contactless sales and delivery have gained traction.

AI solutions are also being used to make the workplace safer and enforce best practices.

The sectors with highest Covid-19 led disruption adopted AI solutions in a more definitive manner. In the travel and hospitality sector, 89% firms have implemented AI in some form.



The increased adoption of AI can be attributed to the following factors:

Perceived risk of AI:

Now we have covered complete analysis of PWC report, which will help you in writing question related to AI in main exam, but before we processed ahead it is necessary to have basic idea of AI and initiative taken by Indian government.

Let, we understand what AI (artificial intelligence) is:

It describes the action of machines accomplishing tasks that have historically required human intelligence. It includes technologies like machine learning, pattern recognition, big data, neural networks, self-algorithms etc. AI involves complex things such as feeding a particular data into the machine and making it react as per the different situations. It is basically about creating self-learning patterns where the machine can give answers to the never answered questions like a human would ever do. AI technology helps in analyzing data and thus can improve the efficiency of the systems like power management in cars, mobile devices, weather predictions, video and image analysis.

Example (Use): Self driving cars

Initiative taken by Indian government:

India has launched National AI Strategy and National AI Portal and has also started leveraging AI across various sectors such as education, agriculture, healthcare, e-commerce, finance, telecommunications, etc.

Recently, India joined the ‘Global Partnership on Artificial Intelligence (GPAI)’ as a founding member to support the responsible and human-centric development and use of AI.

GPAI is an international and multi-stakeholder initiative to guide the responsible development and use of AI, grounded in human rights, inclusion, diversity, innovation, and economic growth. This is also a first initiative of its type for evolving better understanding of the challenges and opportunities around AI using the experience and diversity of participating countries. In order to achieve this goal, the initiative will look to bridge the gap between theory and practice on AI by supporting cutting-edge research and applied activities on AI-related priorities.


Current Affair 3:
Quantum Key Distribution (QKD)

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The Defence Research and Development Organisation (DRDO) successfully demonstrated communication between its two labs using Quantum Key Distribution (QKD) technology, which is a “robust” way to share encryption keys.

What is Quantum key distribution (QKD)?

Quantum key distribution (QKD) is a secure communication method for exchanging encryption keys only known between shared parties. The communication method uses properties found in quantum physics to exchange cryptographic keys in such a way that is provable and guarantees security.

What you need to know about this technology?

Typical encryption relies on traditional mathematics and while for now it is more or less adequate and safe from hacking, the development of quantum computing threatens that.

  1. Quantum computing refers to a new era of faster and more powerful computers, and the theory goes that they would be able to break current levels of encryption.
  2. QKD works by using photons — the particles which transmit light — to transfer data.
  3. QKD allows two distant users, who do not share a long secret key initially, to produce a common, random string of secret bits, called a secret key.
  4. Using the one-time pad encryption this key is proven to be secure to encrypt and decrypt a message, which can then be transmitted over a standard communication channel.

Significance of this technology:

The encryption is “unbreakable” and that’s mainly because of the way data is carried via the photon. A photon cannot be perfectly copied and any attempt to measure it will disturb it. This means that a person trying to intercept the data will leave a trace.

The implications could be huge for cybersecurity, making businesses safer, but also making it more difficult for governments to hack into communication.

Challenges of QKD

Primarily, there are three prevailing challenges to QKD: the integration of QKD systems into current infrastructure, the distance in which photons can travel and the use of QKD in the first place. For now, it is currently difficult to implement an ideal infrastructure for QKD. QKD is perfectly secure in theory, but in practice, imperfections in tools like single photon detectors create many security vulnerabilities. It is important to keep security analysis in mind.

Current Affair 4:
Israel set to open up parts of Herod’s palace

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Israeli authorities are set to unveil previously off-limits structures within King Herod’s palace-fortress, Herodium, which the tyrannical Roman-era leader interred as his enormous burial plot.

Herodium, a popular tourism destination, is near Bethlehem in the occupied West Bank but falls in an area where Israel exercises military and civilian control. Archaeologists say Herod decided towards the end of his life to bury his palace, using ground from below the hill it was perched upon, until the outline of the structure was no longer visible.

Current Affair 5:
ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting Plus

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The 14th ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting (ADMM) Plus was held virtually recently.

ADMM was established in 2006. ADMM Plus was established in 2010.

The ASEAN Defence Ministers’ Meeting (ADMM) is the highest defence consultative and cooperative mechanism in ASEAN. The ADMM aims to promote mutual trust and confidence through greater understanding of defence and security challenges as well as enhancement of transparency and openness.

The ADMM-Plus is a platform for ASEAN and its eight Dialogue Partners, namely Australia, China, India, Japan, New Zealand, ROK, Russian Federation and the United States, to strengthen security and defence cooperation for peace, stability, and development in the region. The Inaugural ADMM-Plus was convened in Hanoi, Viet Nam, on 12 October 2010.

The ADMM-Plus currently focuses on seven areas of practical cooperation, namely maritime security, counterterrorism, humanitarian assistance and disaster management, peacekeeping operations, military medicine, humanitarian mine action and cyber security. Experts Working Groups (EWGs) have been established to facilitate cooperation in these areas.

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