Microsoft teamed up with a nonprofit using autonomous ‘interceptor’ boats to clean up the ocean and is helping it identify trash with machine learning

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The Ocean Cleanup is a nonprofit that designs technology to clean up plastic from the ocean. 
Microsoft hosted two hackathons to build a machine learning model to help identify waste.
The nonprofit is turning plastic ocean waste into new products. 
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Cleaning up the oceans is a huge undertaking, especially for a single nonprofit based out of the Netherlands, but having Microsoft on your side is a nice bonus.Boyan Slat launched The Ocean Cleanup nonprofit in 2013, with the goal of cleaning up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. Since then, the project has also embraced the goal of preventing new waste from entering the ocean by cleaning up rivers the carry many of the pollutants.In 2018, The Ocean Cleanup was a participant in Microsoft’s annual hackathon, where volunteers work together on moonshots to try to come up with innovative solutions. The resulting machine learning models have helped The Ocean Cleanup track plastic and other waste, and informed how and where the nonprofit deploys its giant autonomous plastic collectors. Take a look at how it works. 

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