Baidu, a Chinese tech giant making rapid advances in the field of artificial intelligence (AI), has received funding from the Chinese government for a new research project, Quartz reports.
AI has the potential to be of the most influential technologies that humanity has ever invented. Governments around the world are giving it increasing amounts of attention and Silicon Valley tech giants like Google and Facebook are putting hundreds of millions of dollars into AI research.
Now China’s National Development and Reform Commission, a government organisation tasked with growing and restructuring China’s economy, is pumping money into a deep learning lab that will be led by Baidu, according to the Quartz report, which is based on a post on Baidu’s Chinese WeChat account.
The lab won’t have a single physical presence but instead it will be a “digital network of researchers” working on problems in their respective fields from wherever they happen to be based in China, according to The South China Morning Post.
The lab’s research areas reportedly include:
- computer vision
- biometric identification
- intellectual property rights
- and human-computer interaction
Baidu will reportedly work with Tsinghua University and Beihang University, along with other Chinese research organisations.
Lin Yuanqing, head of the Baidu Deep Learning Institute, and Xu Wei, a computer scientist at Baidu, will reportedly work on developing the lab, as will two representatives from The Chinese Academy of Scientists.
Baidu also has an AI research lab in Silicon Valley, which is home to the company’s chief scientist, Andrew Ng.
The amount of funding allocated by China’s Development and Reform Commission has not been disclosed.
Baidu did not immediately respond to Business Insider’s request for comment.