Artificial intelligence research continues to grow as China overtakes US in AI journal citations

The bogus intelligence increase isn’t slowing but, with new figures displaying a 34.5 p.c enhance in the publication of AI research from 2019 to 2020. That’s a better proportion development than 2018 to 2019 when the amount of publications elevated by 19.6 p.c.

China continues to be a rising power in AI R&D, overtaking the US for general journal citations in synthetic intelligence research final 12 months. The nation already publishes extra AI papers than some other nation, however the USA nonetheless has extra cited papers at AI conferences — one indicator of the novelty and significance of the underlying research.

These figures come from the fourth annual AI Index, a set of statistics, benchmarks, and milestones meant to gauge world progress in synthetic intelligence. The report is collated with the assistance of Stanford College, and you may learn all 222 pages here.

In some ways, the report confirms tendencies recognized in previous years: the sheer quantity of AI research is rising throughout numerous metrics, China continues to be more and more influential, and buyers are pumping but extra money into AI companies.


Extra money is being invested in fewer AI firms

Nonetheless, particulars reveal subtleties concerning the AI scene. For instance, whereas personal funding in AI elevated 9.3 p.c in 2020 (a better enhance than 2018 to 2019 of 5.7 p.c), the variety of newly funded firms receiving funds decreased for the third 12 months in a row. There are a number of methods to interpret this, but it surely means that buyers anticipate that the winner-takes-all dynamic that has outlined the tech trade — in which digital economies of scale have a tendency to reward a couple of dominant gamers — will probably be replicated in the AI world.

The report’s part on technical advances additionally confirms the foremost tendencies in AI capabilities, the largest of which is the industrialization of pc imaginative and prescient. This discipline has seen unbelievable progress in the course of the AI increase, with providers like object and facial recognition now commonplace. Equally, generative applied sciences, which might create video, pictures, and audio, proceed to enhance in high quality and availability. Because the report notes, this development “guarantees to generate an amazing vary of downstream functions of AI for each socially helpful and fewer helpful functions.” Helpful functions embody cheaper computer-generated media, whereas malicious outcomes embody misinformation and AI revenge porn.

One space of AI research that looks as if it’s simply starting to come into its personal is biotech. The drug discovery and design sector obtained probably the most personal funding of any sector in 2020 ($13.8 billion, 4.5 occasions greater than in 2019), and consultants canvassed for AI Index’s report cited DeepMind’s AlphaFold program, which makes use of machine studying to fold proteins, as some of the vital breakthroughs in AI in 2020. (The opposite steadily cited breakthrough final 12 months was OpenAI’s text-generation program GPT-3.)

One space the place the Index AI report struggles to gauge progress, although, is in ethics. It is a wide-ranging space, spanning the whole lot from the politics of facial recognition to algorithmic bias, and dialogue of those subjects is more and more outstanding. In 2020, tales like Google’s firing of researcher Timnit Gebru and IBM’s exit from the facial recognition enterprise drove discussions of how AI know-how needs to be utilized. However whereas firms are pleased paying lip service to moral ideas, the report notes that the majority of those “commitments” are non-binding and lack institutional frameworks. As has been famous in the previous: AI ethics for a lot of firms is solely a manner to sluggish roll criticism.

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