KFC Woes in UK & AI (BAW7)

KFC, the famous chicken institution, is suffering a lot at the moment.  People hoping to feast on fried chicken in the UK have been hit by a nationwide KFC famine.  The famine has occurred throughout the UK as KFC UK switched their logistics provider from Bidvest to DHL last week.  All did not go smoothly through the transition resulting in delivery delays which meant that hundreds of KFC restaurants throughout the UK were left without any chicken available to sell.

It’s unsure exactly why this has happened, with some reports saying that this has occurred due to software issues with KFC just blaming it on ‘teething problems’.

AI and machine learning are now being attacked, as a group of Princeton University boffins have devised a ‘DARTS’ system (Deceiving Autonomous Cars with Toxic Signs).  Basically they have written a paper that outlines some tricks to confuse AI systems in vehicles.  KFC could benefit from this work, as apparently they can adjust the KFC sign just enough that the AI in a vehicle believed that the KFC sign was a Stop sign.  Although in this scenario, the trick could be seen as harmless, the dangers are ever so real as other signs can also be doctored… image a smudged speed limit sign appearing to AI as a faster speed and suddenly speeding up the car dangerously within a housing estate.

A copy of some of the modified signs are shown below, but you have to look pretty closely to see the tweaks.

The boffins claim a success rate better than 90 percent.

There may be significant improvements to make to AI and machine learning to overcome these but I’m sure that people will keep competing to fool them.

The full story can be found here:  https://www.theregister.co.uk/2018/02/20/do_you_stop_for_kfc_vehicle_ais_might/

Blog-a-Week 2018 Posting (BAW):

In previous years, I have had periods throughout the year where I have been unable to post an entry to myblog.  During 2018, my aim is to post a blog entry each week of the year.  I’m hoping that the blog entries will all be useful bits of information or items that I’ve been working on recently but if the standard of the entries drops, I apologise now, as this could have been a busy week and I wasn’t able to put in as much time as I would have liked into the post

About the Author


I have been in IT for the past 15 years and using virtualisation technologies for around the past 8 years. I started, as quite a lot of people do, working with PCs after playing with such iconic systems like the ZX81, ZX Spectrum and then progressing through 386s, 486s, Pentiums etc. After being headhunted at sixth form to work for a small company based around Hertfordshire, UK. I began working with small businesses and gaining a lot of hardware experience. Three years later, after helping to increase the size of the business, I needed to gain exposure to a larger environment to progress my own career. I joined a large manufacturing company around Electronic Test and Measurement which progressed my skills onto more PC work, hardware work and then onto Server Operating Systems. I progressed again onto a consultancy company based in Reading, UK. Initially working as an engineer performing hardware / software installations for larger companies contracted out to the consultancy company, I moved up into a Consultant position continuing my travel across the UK assisting and providing solutions to companies. I finally moved on again to my current position, working back in Hertfordshire, UK. Again working for a large manufacturing company, this time with over 50,000 users worldwide. I am responsible for the datacenter hardware, the storage environment, the vmware environment and also implementing their new Citrix XenApp farm. My days are busy but also productive, its a friendly environment and in my four years of being with the company, I have seen many changes in technology and infrastructure in use within the company. About the site I started this site as I had been thinking of having more of a presence on the web for a while. On a daily basis, I perform tasks and use tools that others may not use or may not think to do and therefore I thought that I would share some of these experiences and tips with others to help with their day to day work. Currently, my main focus of work is around VMware and Veeam Backup & Replication but hopefully as my tasks progress, I’ll be able to share useful bits of information about other areas of IT as well.

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