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IBM investing $240 million in MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab

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IBM is planning to make a 10-year, $240 million investment in artificial intelligence through the MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab it’s creating in partnership with MIT. The aim of this lab will be to unlock the potential of artificial intelligence for the industries, such as health care and cybersecurity, and explore the economic and ethical implications of AI on society.

MIT-IBM Watson AI Lab is one of the largest long-term university-industry AI collaborations, mobilizing the talent of more than 100 AI scientists, professors, and students to pursue joint research at this lab in Cambridge, Massachusetts. This collaboration will bring together leading computer, brain, and cognitive scientists to tackle some of AI’s greatest challenges.

The focus of the scientists and engineers of this lab will be on fundamental scientific breakthroughs, publishing their results, and guiding the development of AI.

It’s not the first time that the IBM is partnering with MIT, they had collaborated last year as well to advance the scientific field of machine vision, a core aspect of AI.

“The ability to co-develop both the materials and the algorithms- drawing on the expertise of researchers from IBM and MIT- is a key advantage of the new lab. It’s a strong symbiosis. IBM has deep base knowledge of materials in the analog space and their incorporation in commercial technology, which we will bring to the collaboration with MIT.” Wilfried Haensch, IBM Research.

The four pillars of this research will be-

1. AI Algorithms
Development of advanced algorithms that not only leverage big data when available, but also learn from limited data to augment human intelligence are also being explored and invented.

2. Physics of AI
Using the AI to improve quantum devices to optimize and speed up machine-learning algorithms.

3. Application of AI to industries
Development of new AI applications for professional use, such as health care (for privacy of medical data, personalization of image analysis, and optimum treatments for specific patients) and cybersecurity.

4. Advancing shared prosperity through AI
Exploring how AI can improve prosperity and help a broader range of people, nations, and enterprises achieve more in their lives.

“1.7 million people are diagnosed with cancer in the U.S. every year, but only about 3 percent enroll in clinical trials. Current research practice relies exclusively on data drawn from this tiny fraction of patients. We need treatment insights from the other 97 percent receiving cancer care.” – Regina Barzilay, MIT EECS.

Also read: IBM increases Datacenters to enable organizations build futuristic applications leveraging IoT & AI

IBM has been exploring the applications of AI across many areas and industries for last 20 years. IBM’s Watson is being used by developers, universities and a number of businesses for bettering their operations with the power of AI.

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