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Royals who rejected their titles for surprising reasons



When Prince Harry and Meghan Markle welcomed their first child, baby Archie Harrison, in May, there was a lot of speculation as to whether the newborn would be given a royal title.

Buckingham Palace later confirmed the couple were offered a courtesy title for their son, but rejected the offer for reasons not disclosed to the public.

However, the couple have done little to hide the fact that they want Archie to grow up as a regular citizen, with as much privacy as possibly.

Read more: Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s plan to keep Archie’s godparents secret is the latest decision to irk royal followers

The duke and duchess kept the details surrounding his birth private, and they do not disclose standard information — such as the identity of his godparents— to the public.

Nonetheless, Harry and Markle aren’t the first — and likely won’t be the last — royals to reject a title. When Princess Madeleine of Sweden married Christopher O’Neill in 2013, the businessman refused HRH status so that he could keep his British-American citizenship.

The reasons get even more bizarre — take Norway’s Princess Martha Louise, for example, who has rejected her title so she can go on a spiritual tour with her boyfriend. The royal said she will only use her HRH status when representing the royal family in future.

Below, INSIDER rounds up royals who have rejected titles, and the surprising reasons why.

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Miss USA Cheslie Kryst wears Statue of Liberty dress for Miss Universe



  • Miss USA Cheslie Kryst wore an ensemble inspired by the Statue of Liberty during the Miss Universe National Costume Show. 
  • Her outfit looked strikingly similar to the dress Sandra Bullock wore in the film “Miss Congeniality,” in which she plays an FBI agent who went undercover as a pageant queen. 
  • Kryst told the New York Post that her outfit paid homage to Lady Liberty, Lady Justice, Rosie the Riveter, and Maya Angelou. 
  • Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

From a soccer uniform to a cannabis leaf, there were plenty of showstopping national costumes during the Miss Universe preliminaries this weekend. 

But some eagle-eyed fans may have noticed that Miss USA Cheslie Kryst’s national costume looked very similar to another famous pageant moment. 

Kryst, 28, looked like a golden Statue of Liberty thanks to her torch and crown, which shot confetti. 

Miss Universe Cheslie Kryst

Miss USA Cheslie Kryst during the National Costume Contest.
Miss Universe

The look was strikingly similar to the ensemble Sandra Bullock wore in the 2000 hit film “Miss Congeniality,” in which she plays an FBI agent who goes undercover as a pageant queen. 

During the finals of the Miss United States pageant in the film, Bullock and her fellow pageant queens wear Lady Liberty outfits complete with crowns and torches. 

Sandra Bullock Miss Congeniality

Kryst’s outfit looked very similar to Sandra Bullock’s pageant dress in “Miss Congeniality.”
Castle Rock Entertainment

Sandra Bullock Miss Congeniality

Sandra Bullock in “Miss Congeniality.”
Castle Rock Entertainment

While Kryst’s national costume for the Miss Universe pageant wasn’t inspired by Gracie Hart (Bullock’s character), it did pay homage to quite a few powerful women. 

Miss USA told the New York Post that her costume, which was designed by Martin Izquierdo, has references to Rosie the Riveter, Maya Angelou, Lady Justice, and Lady Liberty (of course). 

“I wanted to think of a way to combine several iconic American women into one costume,” Kryst said. 

Miss USA Cheslie Kryst at Miss Universe

Miss USA Cheslie Kryst competes in the Miss Universe National Costume Contest.
Miss Universe

Rosie the Riveter, a cultural icon of World War II, inspired Kryst’s headband and gown, the latter of which was made from denim and painted gold. 

“She represents power and empowerment and how women contribute to society,” Kryst told the Post. 

Kryst said her massive wings were inspired by Angelou’s autobiography “I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings” and symbolized “creativity and authenticity.”

Miss USA Cheslie Kryst Miss Universe

Miss USA Cheslie Kryst competes in the 2019 Miss Universe pageant.
Miss Universe

Kryst told the Post that her costume made her “feel powerful.” 

“It’s pretty, but it means something,” she said. “I get to wear a dress, and all of a sudden we’re talking about the history of the Statue of Liberty and Lady Justice.”

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CVS Health’s chief digital officer on the company’s tech strategy



Firdaus Bhathena can think of a number of different projects that would keep him incredibly busy. 

Technology is coming for healthcare, and the centuries-old companies in the industry are facing a steep learning curve.

So they’ve brought on experts liked Bhathena to helm up the companies digital strategies. Bhathena is the chief digital officer of CVS Health, first came into his role in 2016 as a part of Aetna, the massive health insurer CVS acquired in 2018. 

Bhathena Firdaus   pic

CVS Health Chief Digital Officer Firdaus Bhathena
Courtesy CVS Health

CVS is a $98 billion company that provides insurance to 39 million people and operates nearly 10,000 pharmacies. The first CVS store opened in 1963.

Within the now combined company, Bhathena has to avoid being spread too thin. 

“It’s very tempting to — what we say in the tech world — to sort of peanut-butter spread your resources across a whole bunch of different things,” Bhathena said. 

Read more: We spoke with the execs tasked with bringing technology to some of the world’s oldest healthcare companies. Here’s how they’re picking their spots.

Using technology for a simpler consumer experience

What’s driving Bhathena’s group, he said, is a focus on improving the consumer experience within the whole organization, rather than focusing on a particular part of the business. 

That can be as basic as making sure the website is up and running or powering the technology that allows users to check if there’s a MinuteClinic appointment available.

Read more: We asked the CEO of CVS to share how he plans to use his 10,000 pharmacies to upend healthcare. This is the story he told us.

Ideally, Bhathena said, it’d be a world in which CVS could have a comprehensive picture of a person so that when they come in for a visit, the organization understands that you’re an Aetna member who uses CVS Caremark to manage prescription benefits, and that you’ve been in for three clinic visits in the past month.

Right now, that information isn’t connected, often meaning patients have to start from scratch every time they go into a retail clinic or have a virtual visit.

It could also mean getting more precise with messaging, such a prompting an Aetna member who hasn’t been to the doctor in years to go, rather than reaching out to all Aetna members, including those who have been in to see their doctors recently. 

In particular, there are three areas of technology Bhathena is paying close attention to: AI for healthcare, connected devices, and virtual care. Ideally, those technologies combined could make getting care more connected and easy to use for consumers. 

“I hope that in the next three years, when you join a health plan, you won’t just get a glossy brochure in the mail,”  Bhathena said.

Instead, you’ll also get a box with connected devices that might be able to help you better triage health incidents with the help of AI, figuring out if you might need to have a virtual visit or come in for an urgent-care or emergency-room visit, and connecting all the way to a pharmacy if a prescription is needed that could be delivered to your door.  

Read more: Walgreens and CVS have dueling visions for the future of pharmacies. Here are the biggest obstacles each one faces.

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Why Facebook created an AI bot that can beat humans at Hanabi



  • The impact of artificial intelligence on the workforce is a hotly debated subject. In the world of gaming, however, AI is already replacing humans.
  • Facebook AI researchers say they built a bot that can exceed human performance in Hanabi, a cooperative game that requires players to interpret the actions and intentions of other players. 
  • The achievement signals a jump in the capability of the technology to replicate the cognitive skills of humans, as opposed to the method of training the models through rewards and punishments that was used for other models. 
  • Click here for more BI Prime stories.

Opinions are split on the magnitude of the impact that artificial intelligence will have on the workforce. In the gaming world, however, it’s already displacing top human players.

Last month, Lee Se-dol — one of the top South Korean players in Go, a complex Chinese board game that dates back 2,500 years — announced he would retire because it became impossible to beat AI-powered bots. This comes after Se-dol lost a series of matches in 2016 to a bot developed by Google-owned AlphaGo.

Now, Hanabi may be next. Facebook researchers have built a bot they say can outperform the most skilled players at the cooperative card game that requires individuals to play off the hands of other participants because they are unable to view their own cards.  

While other models have exceeded at games like Go, chess, and poker, researchers were able to scale those projects through a technique known as “reinforcement learning,” a process that uses a series of rewards and punishments to train behavior — similar to how one might approach raising a puppy.

Project leads at the social media giant’s research lab say their latest bot signals a significant improvement because it can replicate cognitive skills to put itself in the perspective of other players in the game, a trait known as “theory of mind.”

“These techniques that we are developing that can cope with things like theory of mind will play an important part as we extend to other domains like natural language processing,” AI researcher Noam Brown told Business Insider.

Employing AI to cooperate, instead of compete, against humans

Facebook AI Research is a group of about 300 employees that is wholly focused on academic studies into the technology. While some of the projects might dovetail off of Facebook’s AI goals, Brown and fellow researcher Adam Lerer say they independently choose what problems to tackle.

The group aims to answer “long-term research questions that we think of as barriers to the advancement of artificial intelligence,” said Lerer.

“You can’t always predict what is going to be the next big thing, so you have to give the freedom to the researchers … even if there’s not a five-year plan for turning this into a product” that can be monetized, Brown added.

Hanabi posed a unique challenge because unlike chess, for example, the bot is not going strictly head-to-head against a human. The nature of the game requires players to cooperate with other participants and interpret their intentions based on gameplay to win.

A player is unable to view their hand — just the hands of the other participants — and only narrow hints are provided throughout gameplay. So one player may seek to gain an advantage by suggesting one hidden card is a certain color because he or she wants that color played next. 

Hanabi was proposed as a key challenge for AI by researchers at Google’s DeepMind for that reason. 

The model had to reason “about the intent and the beliefs that other people have that lead them to take the actions that they do.” Lerer said. The team had to build a “conversational agent that can reason about what a person is saying without having to explicitly tell them everything.”

The project is so promising because it signals that AI could eventually be able to cooperate alongside humans to tackle complex challenge, as opposed to just replacing them in tasks like monitoring shelves in Walmart for restocking.

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