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U.S. Launches Task Force for AI Research

White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced the formation of the National Artificial Intelligence (AI) Research Resource Task Force. The main purpose of this Task Force is to write the road map for expanding access to critical resources and educational tools that will spur AI innovation and economic prosperity nationwide.

As directed by Congress in the National AI Initiative Act of 2020, the Task Force will serve as a Federal advisory committee to help create and implement a blueprint for the National AI Research Resource (NAIRR) – a shared research infrastructure providing AI researchers and students across all scientific disciplines with access to computational resources, high-quality data, educational tools, and user support.

America’s economic prosperity hinges on foundational investments in technological leadership. NAIRR will expand access to the resources and tools that fuel AI research and development, opening opportunities for bright minds from across America to pursue the next breakthroughs in science and technology.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) is looking forward to collaborating with the Task Force which has the essential role of envisioning the research infrastructure that will drive future innovations in AI. By bringing together the nation’s foremost experts from academia, industry, and government, the country will be able to chart an exciting and compelling path forward, ensuring long-term U.S. competitiveness in all fields of science and technology and all sectors of the economy.

According to an article, the Task Force, is part of an effort across the government to ensure the U.S. remains at the vanguard of technological advancements. Developing AI depends on accessing vast stores of data to fuel machine learning. In order to investigate a plethora of great ideas in AI, researchers need access to powerful computing infrastructure and they need access to data.

Many researchers, particularly in academia simply do not have access to these computational resources and data, and this is hampering innovation. Therefore the Task Force will evaluate how to make more data available while protecting Americans’ privacy and addressing other ethical concerns.

In addition, in the coming weeks, an AI advisory committee – the National AI Advisory Committee – will be established. It will provide recommendations and advice on a wide array of AI topics, including on the implications of AI on the future of learning and workers; research and development; economic competitiveness; societal, ethical, legal, safety, and security matters; commercial application; and opportunities for international engagement.

A Federal Register notice will call for nominations of experts who will bring a broad range of perspectives in developing recommendations on these issues, including perspectives from labour, education, research, startup businesses and more.

As part of s strategy to keep the U.S. leading the world in science and technology, The U.S. Senate approved a bill that aims to reinvigorate the nation’s technological footprint in the face of growing international competition, as reported by OpenGov Asia.

The legislation will discover, build, and enhance tomorrow’s most vital technologies including AI, computer chips, semiconductor production, robotics lithium batteries used in smart devices and electric vehicles. By strengthening innovation infrastructure, more jobs in manufacturing and technology will be created.

In developing advanced technologies particularly AI, U.S. programmers also need to pay attention to the effects that the AI will create. As reported by OpenGov Asia, studies have shown that AI can be biased against minorities such as perpetuate segregation and discrimination in housing. Hence, the programmers of an AI-enabled housing solution tweaked the application to avoid promoting discrimination by not providing any identifying information so that tenants could search for apartments using their voucher number alone.

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