Smart beehive project joins Microsoft's AI for Good

Program to create global network of smart monitored beehives to get AI analytics support from Microsoft

we4bee aims to connect intelligent beehives to a cloud platform to harvest data on bee colonies.
we4bee aims to connect intelligent beehives to a cloud platform to harvest data on bee colonies.

we4bee, a project to connect beehives for research purposes, has become a part of Microsoft’s AI for Earth program.

we4bee aims to connect intelligent beehives equipped with sensors with the cloud in order to carry out long-term analysis of bee colonies and environmental data. The project also aims to investigate influences on bees using data science.

As a member of the worldwide AI for Earth network, we4bee will gain access to AI tools and training to help it enhance its data analysis.

Schools and educational institutions will take care of the bee hives and ensure that they send data continuously. Each bee colony is additionally looked after by a beekeeper. With the we4bee app, participants can track which data is transferred to the cloud. This includes information on temperature, humidity, air pressure, weight, noise and particulate-matter pollution. Every user can use the app to compare his or her hive with others in the cloud. Gamification tools encourage more interaction. For example, an AI-supported flower scanner allows participants to take photos of flowers and then displays which flower they are.

The AI for Good program, which includes AI for Earth, has been set up by Microsoft to supports organisations and projects that promote issues such as human rights, accessibility, and environmental protection, by providing AI software, services and expertise to help them use artificial intelligence in their work.

The we4bee project has launched in Germany, but aims to build a global network of hive monitoring.

Christine Haupt, General Manager Microsoft Services of Microsoft Germany, said: “For Microsoft, it is a duty and obligation to make technology usable by all and to apply it responsibly. Artificial intelligence can be an important building block for a better future. We are very pleased that with we4bee, we are supporting a project from Germany that uses technology to offer important research findings for the protection of bees.”

Rüdiger Recknagel, Head of the Audi Environmental Foundation, which funds the project added: “We are proud that we4bee is one of the 298 projects supported by ‘AI for Earth’ and are delighted to have Microsoft as a valuable supporter.”

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