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India is contributing enormously to global AI development, says Google’s Fei-Fei Li

Indians are contributing enormously to the global AI (artificial intelligence) ecosystem, said Google’s Fei-Fei Li at the Cloud Next 2018 conference in San Francisco last week.

Speaking to the ET tech, the chief research scientist at Google Cloud AI and Machine Learning said that “Indian students globally are contributing a lot to AI and some of my close personal mentors are also of Indian origin.”

Noticing how AI technologies have been used before to fight gender inequality in Hollywood, Li stretched the need for extending the use of AI to fight fake news.

“There is ongoing research in the [AI] community on this [fake news] and it’s an important effort,” she said. “Just like AI has been used to call out gender inequality in Hollywood, that women are less represented, I think it’s a great use of the technology to deliver a positive message and I hope that NLP (neuro-linguistic programming) can contribute to that [fake news problem] as well.”

It comes after Google launched the Google News Initiative Training Network in India last June. Developed in partnership with BoomLive, DataLeads, and Internews, the Network aims to support journalists from across India in their fight against misinformation by providing them with in-depth verification training. The program has so far provided training to 8,000 journalists in English and six Indian languages.

Indian students globally are contributing a lot to AI and some of my close personal mentors are also of Indian origin.

Despite famous names like Tesla CEO Elon Musk and late physicist Stephen Hawking have warned about the proliferation of AI, Li said she was optimistic.

“Every time we invent and innovate with the goal of making lives better, we face new challenges throughout every wave of industrial revolution and AI is no exception… However, because of the computer, new jobs also emerged.”

Li also talked about the use of AI span across healthcare, sustainability, and insurance. She underlined how satellite images and AI can be used to assess poverty levels and agricultural status of different regions, and how these technologies could promptly address global problems that may take longer to tackle otherwise.

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