Trump to sign artificial intelligence order to boost U.S. competitiveness

Alonzo Simpson
February 12, 2019

The plan, called the American AI Initiative, comes after China and other countries have pledged big investments to advance and apply AI technology in fields ranging from warfighting to health care.

This initiative, which will elevate federal funding for AI research and support US -led AI worldwide standards, doesn't contain new AI development funding or additional details on next steps, The Verge reported.

US President Donald Trump is preparing to sign an executive order that would have federal agencies dedicate more resources and investment into artificial intelligence (AI) research, training and promotion.

"I am eager to work with you on legislation to deliver new and important infrastructure investment, including investments in the cutting edge industries of the future", Trump said in a White House Office of Science and Technology (OSTP) press statement.

"Americans have profited tremendously from being the early developers and global leaders in AI", according to a statement from the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

The race for AI dominance is heating up and other countries will likely make similar investments into AI and other emerging technologies to remain competitive.

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Instead, the White House hopes to provide leadership for private industry to take the initiative in developing artificial intelligence. The administration says it's up to Congress to appropriate money.

"It is the policy of the United States Government to sustain and enhance the scientific, technological, and economic leadership position of the United States in AI R&D and deployment through a coordinated Federal Government strategy, the American AI Initiative".

The order notes that the USA "must train current and future generations of American workers with the skills to develop and apply AI technologies to prepare them for today's economy and jobs of the future", pointing to the "heads of implementing agencies" to prioritize grants "within existing Federal fellowship and service programs".

It also says federal agencies will establish guidance to ensure the new technologies are developed in a safe, trustworthy way.

America is widely considered the world leader in artificial intelligence - however, many believe the Chinese government's vast access to data might give it an advantage in the coming years.

The order will instruct federal agencies to focus on artificial intelligence in their research and development efforts, senior administration officials said, as reported by The Wall Street Journal.

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