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3 things to watch out for in AI in 2021

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New developments in artificial intelligence may seem trivial compared to recent events like the Capitol riots in which pro-Trump rioters attempted to subvert the election.

But 2021 is likely to be a big year for AI, and with a new White House administration soon in place, there could be a clearer set of national AI policies that spill over into business.

Here are three key themes to watch out for:

Federal AI funding boosted

On New Years Day, the US Senate voted to overturn President Trump’s veto on the National Defense Authorization Act andto allow$ 741 billion for defense spending, including the creation of a number of policies related to AI. One of the reasons Trump opposed the defense bill was the lack of provision to repealChapter 230, which offers legal protections to internet companies that host user-generated content.

Although the defense bill was primarily focused on military spending, it contained a number of non-defense AI initiatives, such as the University’s human-centered artificial intelligence group. from Stanford.sketch. For example, the bill would create a “national AI initiative” that coordinates AI research and development between “civilian agencies”, the Department of Defense, and intelligence agencies. It would also create a national office of the AI ​​Initiative that would serve as a hub for federal AI projects and for public and private companies.

This is a major step for those who believe the Trump administration has not done enough to ensure the United States remains an AI powerhouse as challengers like China pursue their own initiatives. IA.

It also sets the stage for the new Biden administrationproactive role in creating federal AI policies and perhaps increasing funding for AI research, as the Biden campaign said, that would be crucial.

Booming facial recognition software

The Biden administration, especially Vice President-elect Kamala Harris, has highlighted the problem of facial recognition software working better on white men than women and people of color, and the consequences for society as the use of the software is growing.

Expect more state and local governments to create their own facial recognition laws as lawmakers work on more comprehensive facial recognition rules. There is no indication that the use of the controversial software is slowing down, asreports Law enforcement has appeared to be using the technology to identify suspects in the recent DC riots, even though the software has previously misidentified criminal suspects of color.

And as employees return to work after COVID-19, companies could spend more on facial recognition software as a safety tool to identify workers, touting the software as a safe way to track and monitor the staff.

Businesses get help from AI writers

AI firm OpenAI has captured the attention of business and research communities with its top-notch GPT-3 language software that surpasses previous technologies to generate readable text. The software is just one of many natural language processing systems improving for writing consistent sentences and analyzing documents.

There is no sign that advancements in AI language systems are slowing down, and while these software systems may stumble upon the many nuances of human language, they are more successful at summarizing complex research and spotting patterns of speech that otherwise would not be detected.

Expect companies to make more use of artificial intelligence to analyze financial documents, business calls, call center transcripts and anything related to written language.

Jonathan vanian


Society’s Addressing Systemic Racism Continues to Emphasize the Importance Companies Should Place on Responsible AI All Executives grapple with thorny questions about responsibility and bias, explore best practices for their business and learn how to set effective industry guidelines on how to use technology. . Join us for our second interactive conversation with the Fortune Brainstorm AI community, presented by Accenture, sure Tuesday, January 26, 2021 at 1:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. ET.


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