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Tuesday, April 2, 2019

Government calls for AI research, deployments

An executive order, signed into law Feb. 11, 2019, aims to solidify U.S. leadership in artificial intelligence (AI). Describing AI leadership as critical to U.S. economic growth and national security, the multipronged initiative calls for government and private sectors to expand AI research and deployments to stay apace with global AI innovation.

The American AI initiative will stimulate investment in AI infrastructure while ensuring that government regulations are met, stated Sriram Chakravarthy, chief technology officer and co-founder of Avaamo, a deep learning company.

"The AI market is growing exponentially, not just in Silicon Valley but around the world, and plenty of people are hard at work dreaming up the next phase of AI technology," Chakravarthy said. "It will make a dent in implementation as some businesses reluctant to adopt AI will be more likely to dive in, now that it's being championed at the highest levels of government."

Five focus areas

The American AI initiative includes five core areas of focus:

  1. Invest in AI research and development: Federal investment in AI technologies will strengthen industry, academia and government sectors and benefit the American people.

  2. Unleash AI resources: Improved access to federal data, models and computing resources will foster public trust and maintain safety, security, civil liberties, privacy and confidentiality. These efforts are part of the Open, Public, Electronic and Necessary (OPEN) Government Data Act.

  3. Set AI governance standards: Federal agencies will establish guidance for AI development and use cases across technology and industrial sectors. This guidance, led by the National Institute of Standards and Technology, will set appropriate technical standards for reliable, robust, trustworthy, secure, portable and interoperable AI systems.

  4. Build an AI Workforce: Government agencies will expand training in computer science and other growing Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math fields. This will help American workers gain AI-relevant skills through apprenticeships, skills programs, fellowships and education.

  5. Engage internationally to protect U.S. AI leadership: Federal agencies will promote open international markets for American AI while protecting U.S. technology infrastructure from strategic competitors and foreign adversaries.

Protect critical infrastructure

While noting U.S. leadership in AI research, development, deployment and innovation, the executive order called for protecting America's critical infrastructures, economic interests and values, such as safety, security, privacy and confidentiality.

Chakravarthy pointed out that advanced technologies are deeply embedded in the infrastructures that they were designed to protect. "I think a better way to look at this is to recognize that advanced technologies are becoming the bulwark of critical infrastructure," he stated. "Huge companies like Google and IBM have embraced artificial intelligence. Your mother or daughter talks to Alexa to ask for weather reports or music. An enormous amount of personal information and classified business and government information is touched by AI every second."

It is crucial for organizations to embrace stringent security when implementing AI technology, Chakravarthy noted. This means best-in-class security and compliance, data encryption and following stringent PII protection policies and compliance with PCI, FINRA, and HIPAA regulations. end of article

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