The Technion - Israel Institute of Technology and Intel Corporation inaugurated a new Center for Artificial Intelligence (AI) yesterday, Monday, October 8th. The Center is chartered with advancing research in AI fields and collaboration between Technion and Intel researchers.

Intel’s Dr. Michael Mayberry, chief technology officer, and Naveen Rao, corporate vice president, and general manager of the Artificial Intelligence Products Group, represented Intel at the inauguration of the new AI Center. Prof. Boaz Golany, vice president for External Relations and Resource Development, Prof. Wayne Kaplan, executive vice president for Research, Prof. Nahum Shimkin, dean of the Andrew and Erna Viterbi Faculty of Electrical Engineering, Prof. Dan Geiger, dean of the Computer Science Department and Prof. Carmel Domshlak, Dean of the William Davidson Faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management, represented the Technion.


Prof. Shie Mannor from the Technion Andrew and Erna Viterbi Faculty of Electrical Engineering will head the Center. “The Technion is the leading university in Israel in the field of artificial intelligence and is one of the top ten universities in the world in the field,” Mannor said. “In 2018 the Technion ranked 7th in the CS Rankings: Computer Science Rankings.  The Technion has about 20 faculty members whose main field of research is computational learning and another 40 [researchers] are working in related fields. The majority of the researchers come from the Faculty of Computer Science, the Faculty of Electrical Engineering, and the Faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management and some of them are from other faculties such as Medicine and Biology.”

Mannor added: “As part of this collaboration with Intel, the company will support research projects of Technion faculty members engaged in computational learning and artificial intelligence together with Intel researchers. The research will cover a variety of areas, including natural language processing, deep learning, and hardware optimization for different learning algorithms.”

Intel Israel CEO Yaniv Garty said, “We are proud of the cooperation with the Technion, which will promote Israeli technology and Intel's technological leadership in the field of artificial intelligence.”

“Intel is a leader in this field and the research center will help further advance AI innovation. I have no doubt that we will achieve breakthroughs that will lead to significant developments in the coming years. Intel has always maintained a close cooperation with Israeli academia, which has included many contributions, support of teaching programs, scholarships for outstanding students, joint research and more,” he said.

Prof. Boaz Golany, Vice President for External Relations and Resource Development
 added: “The Technion intends to expand its activities in the fields of machine learning and intelligent technology in the next few years and the joint activity with Intel is one of the first steps in this direction. We are working to raise unprecedented resources to support basic research in the field and in parallel, to work with leading companies such as Intel to promote applications in a wide range of fields including healthcare, autonomous vehicles, smart environments, home, and industrial robots and more.”

Intel and The Technion have maintained close ties for many years. In 2009, Intel awarded The Technion the "Intel Award" in recognition of the university, whose graduates were the founding nucleus of the company's branch which was established in Haifa in 1974. To date, Intel supports some Technion's labs and funds many scholarships for students at the Technion, including specifically supporting outstanding students in electrical engineering and computer science.


Intel and Technion teams

(L-R) Naveen G. Rao, Prof. Dan Geiger, Dean of Computer Science Department, Prof. Boaz Golany, Dr. Michael (Mike) C. Mayberry, Dean of the Faculty of Industrial Engineering and Management Prof. Carmel Domshlak and Dean of The Viterbi Faculty of Electrical Engineering Prof. Nahum Shimkin

Credit: Shitzu Photographers, Technion Spokesperson's Office



Israel Innovation Authority: 9 Leading Israeli Biotech Companies to Participate in 25th Annual BIO International Convention  

The 25th annual BIO International Convention will be held from June 4th-7th in Boston. The conference, considered the world’s largest and most prestigious biotechnology conference, will host 16,000 professionals from more than 74 countries, showcasing the best and most promising new companies and developments in medical technology and life sciences. Nine leading Israeli biotech companies will be participating.

“The conference is a dynamic and professional platform for the exchange of ideas, experiences, insights, and best practices pertaining to biotechnological innovation,” said Israeli Minister of Economy and Industry, Eli Cohen. “It is intended to provide solutions to some of the most pressing and important global challenges, such as: treatment of chronic illnesses, improving public health in the digital age, feeding growing populations and keeping up with global energy demand.”

“Israel will be represented at the conference by an impressive national pavilion which will include nine leading companies carefully selected by the Israel Innovation Authority, with support from the Israel Advanced Technology Industries (IATI). These companies represent Israeli innovation in various fields of the life sciences,” Cohen added.

EIMindA, amongst the companies representing Israel, has won international recognition for revolutionizing the field of brain technology by leveraging machine learning and IoT for analyzing brain function patterns. Other Israeli companies attending include BiomX, a company developing microbe-based technologies and medicines for treating acute chronic illnesses such as cancer and obesity, and; Taliaz, a company that has developed an artificial-intelligence based smart platform helping physicians match anti-depressants to their patients according to specific genetic and health characteristics.

Aharon Aharon, CEO of the Israel Innovation Authority, which has participated in the conference for the past 20 years and facilitated the Israeli national pavilion for the past decade, said: “The Israel Innovation Authority’s goal is to increase support for a dynamic medical and pharmaceutical ecosystem, with the goal of positioning Israel as a global leader in these fields. The Authority aspires to bring significant multinational companies in the field to Israel and is pleased to offer several avenues of support for entrepreneurs, helping them maximize their potential. These include programs encouraging the establishment of R&D centers in biotechnology and medicine for multinational companies and startups, promoting technological infrastructure, providing financing and offering cooperation platforms supported by the Authority together with counterparts from 65 countries around the world.”

Israel Shamai, Head of the Americas Desk at the Israel Innovation Authority, noted: “The BIO International Convention is an important event and incredible opportunity for Israeli innovation in the health and biomedical industries. Companies that have taken part in this conference in the past have reported success in forging groundbreaking deals, funding, collaboration agreements, and ties with strategic partners that were the direct result of meetings held during the conference.”

The nine companies representing Israel in Boston this year are:


Cell Cure Neurosciences LTD


FutuRx LTD


Nucleix Ltd

Pluristem Therapeutics Inc


VBL Therapeutics









VDroom has launched a machine-learning based smart gallery that displays the hotel’s best images in an optimized order. Israeli start-up VDroom continues to surprise and reinvent the field of hospitality

In recent years, the field of hospitality has gone through a virtual revolution of the booking process, and this is precisely where VDroom is aiming - Led by Michal Hubschmann and her team, the company has recently begun working with several multinational chains and is increasing the number of clients joining at a rate of over 100% a month over the past year.


Following this success,  VDroom has launched a smart 360°/VR gallery that is displayed right by the hotel’s 2D gallery. Based on machine-learning, the gallery has the ability to identify and display the best performing images in order to increase chances of conversion. The algorithm knows how to calculate the most relevant parameters in order to display the images in the most efficient order.

"In recent years something has been happening in the virtual field," says Hubschmann. "There is also a push on Google and Facebook’s part, and we are taking advantage of this opportunity, using our intuitive user interface - we run hundreds of tests simultaneously in real time to achieve this level of search engine optimization. In fact, we approach the hotels and apartment owners and tell them - if you leverage your images you can also leverage your revenue.


"The hotels and rental apartments invest millions of dollars in commissions to keep their properties at maximum capacity. Property owners need to ask themselves how they can distinguish themselves from the competition in order to increase their revenues and the value they provide to their customers"


What is the secret that makes this technique work so well?

"The secret is in the simplicity and in the efficiency of the technique. Nowadays, hardly anyone makes a hotel room booking without looking through TripAdvisor and getting an opinion about the hotel. In fact, it's the most trusted advice available to anyone who orders a room. We managed to prove that 360°/VR images provide the optimal solution to this issue, by allowing your guests to feel as if they were actually present in the room and touring the hotel. All the other solutions on the market are technologically very heavy, have long loading times and have no machine-learning in the picture display. The simplicity is that in two clicks you get to feel like you are right in the room - in a room that suits you!


What does the hotel need to do in order to connect with this service?

"In fact, the hotel doesn’t need to make any developments or change anything on the site - You receive a finished product that links to the existing hotel or rental apartment site and can begin leveraging direct bookings and revenues”.


Where did you acquire your experience in this field?

"I lived in the Netherlands for about 16 years and that was where we first established a company in the field of online hotel reservations - and with about 80 employees and a turnover of 100 million euros a year it is already a proven success. Together with the team that worked with us for years, we reunited to establish VDroom. All of our employees are from the hospitality industry and are well acquainted with this field. We can provide a solution that’s simple to operate and proven to work, increases hotel room bookings by 35 percent and exposure on Google SERP while remaining very affordable and cost-effective."


Photo VDroom






We will continue to take strong and determined action against Iran's attempts to station forces and advanced weapons systems in Syria. Whoever threatens us with destruction puts himself in similar danger, and in any case will not achieve his goal.


Following is an excerpt from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's remarks today (Wednesday, 29 August 2018), at the renaming ceremony for the Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center:
"Shimon aspired toward peace but he knew that true peace can be achieved only if our hands strongly grasp defensive weaponry. In the Middle East, and in many parts of the world, there is a simple truth: There is no place for the weak. The weak crumble, are slaughtered and are erased from history while the strong, for good or for ill, survive. The strong are respected, and alliances are made with the strong, and in the end peace is made with the strong.
This process, of normalization by leading countries in the Arab world with the strong State of Israel, is happening before our eyes on a scale that would have been impossible to imagine a few years ago. This process bears hope within it that, in the end, the cycle of peace will be completed. But it is impossible to deny the fact that there are yet many enemies in this region and beyond.
But our enemies know very well what Israel is capable of doing. They are familiar with our policy. Whoever tries to hurt us – we hurt them.
I am not spouting slogans. I am describing a persistent, clear and determined policy. This is our policy. It is backed by appropriate deployment, equipment, preparedness and – in the hour of need – appropriate orders.
We are working to prevent Iran from establishing a military presence in Syria. We will not relent in pursuit of this goal just as we did not relent in bringing about the cancellation of the bad nuclear agreement with Iran, a goal which was seen as impossible when I put it on the international agenda for the first time several years ago.
In the diplomatic sphere, we will continue to apply pressure on the dangerous, extremist regime in Iran. Just yesterday we saw the fruit of this pressure in remarks by the Iranian President who said that many among the Iranian people have lost hope in the future and strength of Iran due to the resumption of economic sanctions. In the military sphere, the IDF will continue to take strong and determined action against Iran's attempts to station forces and advanced weapons systems in Syria. No agreement between Syria and Iran will deter us; neither will any threat deter us.
Whoever threatens us with destruction puts himself in similar danger, and in any case will not achieve his goal."
PM Netanyahu at the renaming ceremony for the Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center

 PM Netanyahu at the renaming ceremony for the Shimon Peres Negev Nuclear Research Center .  


Photo: GPO/Kobi Gideon








The Nature Index of Innovation 2017 points industry to institutions providing ideas behind inventions


The Nature Index, 2017, of the Innovation supplement published today, placed the Weizmann Institute of Science in sixth place in an international ranking of the world’s top 200 research institutions. The Index ranked the institutions according to the impact academic research is having on innovation by examining how research articles are cited in third-party patents.

Their rationale: By looking at patents owned by third parties – informed by and citing academic work – rather than those held by institutions themselves, the influence of research on the development of products and services are exposed.

According to Nature, the academic players featured in the index are those “whose ideas may shape tomorrow’s inventions. The top of these tables is occupied by both institutions with global reputations for high-quality research and others whose published work is having a disproportionately high impact relative to their size.”

The Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel is the only non-US institution in the top ten. It follows such heavyweights as The Scripps Research Institute in San Diego, Rockefeller University in New York and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Boston.

David Swinbanks, founder of the Nature Index, said: “This analysis comes at a time when following the transfer of scientific knowledge into industry and the economy is a growing priority for governments and research funding agencies – for them, the need to demonstrate that publicly funded science is being used for society’s benefit is paramount.”

Prof. Daniel Zajfman, president of the Weizmann Institute of Science said: “Our high place in this index reflects our guiding philosophy, which says that we recruit scientists who are among the best in the world and let them follow their curiosity. That is what leads, in the end to innovative and surprising new applications that shape the future.” The Nature index also revealed that the Weizmann Institute of Science not only contributes to third-party patent applications but ranks fifth in applications for patents of its own. This ranking is normalized to the breadth of the scientific activity of the institute.

The supplement is published by Nature together with The Lens and Clarivate Analytics. These provided analytic tools to, in the words of Richard Jefferson, founder of The Lens, create “‘innovation cartography’ – rendering the complex process of science- and technology-enabled problem solving (STEPS) transparent. It will enable scientists, investors, businesses and policymakers to make better, evidence-based choices of partnerships and pathways to deliver new products, services and practices for society.”

This is the first time that the Nature Index data has been normalized against the total research output of an institution in the natural sciences, as indicated by the number of research articles an institution has published in Clarivate Analytics’ Web of Science. This provides a measure for comparing institutions’ output in the Index relative to their research capacity, which can then be compared to the normalized.



About the Nature Index

First launched in November 2014, the Nature Index database tracks the author affiliations of research articles published in a group of 68 high-quality natural science journals, which have been selected by independent panels of active scientists.

About Nature Research

Nature Research is a portfolio of high-quality products and services across the life, physical, chemical and applied sciences – including journals, databases and researcher services – dedicated to serving the scientific community.

Nature (founded in 1869) is one of the leading, international weekly journal of science. Nature Research also publishes a range of Nature-branded subscription journals, the leading open access multidisciplinary journal Nature Communications, other open access journals including Scientific Reports, and a range of Nature Partner Journals published in partnership with institutions and societies. Together, these journals publish some of the world's most significant scientific discoveries.

About The Lens

The Lens is a free, open and secure global facility to make the innovation system more transparent, efficient, fair and inclusive. The Lens is run by a US-registered benefit corporation owned by founders Cambia (a global non-profit social enterprise) and QUT (Queensland University of Technology). The Lens is dedicated to ‘Solving the Problem of Problem SolvingTM. In collaboration with global non-profit and public institutions, The Lens serves nearly all of the world’s patents as free and open digital public goods integrated and linked with scholarly and technical literature along with regulatory, legal and business data. The Lens creates applications to map the networks of the influence of scholarship on enterprise (In4M and PatCite) and to understand biological sequence patenting (PatSeq). The Lens allows documents, collections, and analyses to be shared, annotated, and embedded to enable Innovation Cartography: the open mapping of the science and technology innovation ecosystem to broaden participation in equitable problem-solving.

About Clarivate Analytics

Clarivate™ Analytics accelerates the pace of innovation by providing trusted insights and analytics to customers around the world, enabling them to discover, protect and commercialize new ideas faster. Formerly the Intellectual Property and Science business of Thomson Reuters, Clarivate Analytics owns and operate a collection of leading subscription-based businesses focused on scientific and academic research, patent analytics and regulatory standards, pharmaceutical and biotech intelligence, trademark protection, domain brand protection and intellectual property management. Clarivate™ Analytics is now an independent company with over 4,000 employees, operating in more than 100 countries and owns well-known brands that include Web of Science™, Cortellis™, Derwent, CompuMark™, MarkMonitor® and Techstreet™, among others. For more information, please visit


The Weizmann Institute of Science in Rehovot, Israel, is one of the world's top-ranking multidisciplinary research institutions. Noted for its wide-ranging exploration of the natural and exact sciences, the Institute is home to scientists, students, technicians and supporting staff. Institute research efforts include the search for new ways of fighting disease and hunger, examining leading questions in mathematics and computer science, probing the physics of matter and the universe, creating novel materials and developing new strategies for protecting the environment.

Weizmann Institute news releases are posted on the World Wide Web at

 Photo Credit Weizmann Institute of Science