Future of Work News

Google Looks to India for AI Development and Research


As AI slowly and steadily permeates every facet of technology and everyday life, it becomes important to examine its impact on applications in various vertical markets, as well as the future of work at large. India is, of course, a hotbed of technology growth, and AI has the massive potential to completely transform the country’s labor-intensive workforce.

Google has been at the forefront of AI development and the company is utilizing India as a testing ground for AI research and application development. Jay Yagnik, vice president and engineering fellow at the company, recently spoke to The Times of India about the company’s AI work and particularly how it stands to transform the Indian workforce. Yagnik leads many AI initiatives at Google, with a focus on machine learning and perception, computer vision, video understanding, quantum AI, applied sciences and privacy preserving machine learning.

“When it comes to the future of work, in the next 20-30 years, we see a huge potential of AI tools deeply augmenting people, everything from their search and information needs to unlocking their true potential,” said Yagnik. He added that AI’s deep empowerment capabilities will enable the technology to tackle major societal challenges in the areas of education and healthcare, for example.

Yagnik has been especially mindful of gender and racial bias while leading Google’s AI development efforts, and said that Google has written down AI and machine learning principles that govern fair use. The company has outlined seven principles designed to address bias and learning challenges, including privacy, scientific excellence, safety and security and interpretability. These principles have been governing factors in the design of the company’s AI projects and initiatives.

India has proven to be an ideal testing ground for Google’s AI development efforts, and the company recently announced Google Research India, an AI lab based in Bengalaru. As the first AI research lab in India, the facility will focus on fundamental research as well as examining AI applications in healthcare, education, agriculture and other vertical markets. The company recently tested an AI model in India to predict floods and send public alerts. The focus of that project was to work closely with governments and district officers, to enable better and more effective last-mile communications.

“With edge technology getting more powerful and cellphones and other accessories developing processing capabilities, we have been pushing the agenda of localizing ML and processing closer to the edge,” said Yagnik. “This won’t just improve connectivity but also help with latency and the kind of user experience you are able to build.”

To learn more about how AI and machine learning are transforming applications, vertical markets and the workplace at large, TMC is hosting a Future of Work Expo in Fort Lauderdale, FL. The event, which will take place from February 12-14, 2020, will explore how AI and machine learning may be used to improve business communications, collaboration, sales and marketing and contact centers and customer service.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

Future of Work Contributor

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