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Ben Reid

AI Forum 2017 Summer Holiday Reading

This year, artificial intelligence (AI) has been sitting near the top of the hype cycle. During 2017, we have been bombarded by thousands of articles on what’s happening around the world in AI.

We have compiled a reading list to keep you company on the beach or at the bach this summer. Please note, we are not associated with, or endorsing any of the linked content. Happy summer reading!

Getting Started With AI

Artificial Intelligence 101

This is just one of thousands of accessible articles on Medium.

AI, Deep Learning, and Machine Learning: A Primer

This video provides a great history lesson and subject overview from Andreessen Horowitz and Frank Chen.

Artificial Intelligence: The Promise and the Playbook

Andreessen Horowitz provides a playbook that delves into the potential of what can be done with AI and the organisations that make it happen.

Udacity – Intro to Artificial Intelligence

Learn the fundamentals of AI via this free online course.

Andrew Ng’s Machine Learning Courses

Baidu VP and Chief Scientist, Coursera Co-Chairman and Co-Founder and Adjunct Professor at Stanford University, Andrew Ng, led the development of Stanford’s MOOC (Massive Open Online Courses) platform. He also taught an online Machine Learning class that was offered to over 100,000 students, leading to the founding of free Coursera online course.

AI Technology Developments

Check out highlights from 2017, including;

Deepmind’s AlphaGo Zero learns all on its own

The new artificial neural network taught itself to master the ancient game Go within weeks, without any experience from humans.

The Robots Are Coming (doing backflips)

The latest video from Boston Dynamics (sold by Alphabet to Softbank in June) demonstrates just how fast the field of robotics is continually advancing.

The race to build an AI chip for everything just got real

The advent of Google’s new TPU chip earlier this year is just the beginning.

Talent and Skills

Mind the Data Science Skills Gap

Earlier this year, the Financial Times reported “the business community is still struggling to recruit enough sufficiently qualified staff to meet demand. While academia races to prepare a large enough number of courses of adequate quality, the potential of the big data revolution is yet to be realised, as increasingly sophisticated artificial intelligence (AI) systems process the data in their stead.”

NZTech Digital Skills Report (published 18 December)

AI tops the list of future tech trends that will have biggest impact on skills needs. Also, machine learning already has high demand and also has the highest demand growth for any digital skill in New Zealand. This trend is similar globally, yet at the same time, supply is small. This research indicates a looming global skills shortage in which New Zealand may struggle to import skills unless we act rapidly.

Microsoft sets up internal “AI University”

Microsoft has set up an internal “AI University” in a bid to help it overcome the skills shortage in the booming AI field.

National AI Policy and Strategy

Guide to working in AI Policy and Strategy

Miles Brundage from Oxford University’s Future of Humanity Institute provides this extensive 80,000 hours guide.

Artificial Intelligence, Automation and the Economy

Prior to leaving office, President Obama’s office published this action inducing paper outlining how the US should address and invest in AI. No sooner had it been published, it was taken down by the new administration. However, it is still accessible on this website archive.

Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence Strategy Overview

Meanwhile, just across the border, in March this year the Canadian Government announced CA$125 million in funding for a Pan-Canadian Artificial Intelligence (AI) Strategy to be led by the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR).

China’s AI Awakening

The Chinese Government recently announced a plan to pour hundreds of billions of yuan (tens of billions of dollars) into AI technology in coming years.

Growing the artificial intelligence industry in the United Kingdom

The United Kingdom (UK) Government recently released this independent review, which reports on how the AI industry can be grown in the UK.

AI Singapore

AI Singapore is a national programme in artificial intelligence (AI) set up to enhance Singapore’s AI capabilities to power the future digital economy. This government-wide partnership will invest up to S$150 million over five years in AI Singapore.

Determining our future: Artificial Intelligence – Opportunities and challenges for New Zealand

In case you missed it, this call-to-action paper from late 2016, authored jointly by IoD and Chapman Tripp was instrumental in the genesis of the AI Forum.

AI, Society, Ethics and the Law

Stanford AI100 Study

The One Hundred Year Study on Artificial Intelligence, or AI100, is a 100-year effort to study and anticipate how the effects of artificial intelligence will ripple through every aspect of how people work, live and play.

Three Rules for Regulating AI

AI researcher Oron Etzioni proposes three rules for regulating AI, inspired by Isaac Asimov’s three laws of robotics.

Artificial Intelligence and the Law

Technologist and lawyer Jeremy Elman examines the future of AI law.

Otago University/Law Foundation AI Law Project

The possible implications of AI innovations for law and public policy in New Zealand are being explored in this ground-breaking University of Otago study. The three year multi-disciplinary project, Artificial Intelligence and Law in New Zealand is supported by a $400,000 Law Foundation grant.

AI, Labour and the Economy

This searchable website uses data from “The Future of Employment: How susceptible are jobs to computerisation?” (2013) to check automation risk levels.

The automation advantage

Automation is, at its core, an opportunity to harness the power of machines to improve human lives. Australian report by Alphabeta provides a fresh perspective on how automation will affect New Zealand’s closest trading partner, Australia. It offers insight on issues common to both nations.

The workforce – Staying ahead of artificial intelligence

Recent research from Genpact “debunks myths about how workers see the impact of AI on their roles, what retraining they need, and how human-machine collaboration can work.”

Books on AI:

Life 3.0 by Max Tegmark

MIT professor Mark Tegmark examines how AI will affect crime, war, justice, jobs, society and our very sense of being human.

The Inevitable by Kevin Kelly

Kevin Kelly outlines the 12 technological imperatives that will shape the next thirty years and transform our lives.

Rise Of The Robots by Martin Ford

This award winning book from 2015 provides a challenging picture of how technology (robotics, machine learning, AI) could reshape labour markets, economic growth, and wealth distribution, providing a robust starting point for the debate about the future of work.

Superintelligence: Paths, Dangers and Strategies by Nick Bostrom

Nick Bostrom considers what happens when machines surpass humans in general intelligence? He lays the foundation for understanding the future of humanity and intelligent life.

Have you read any interesting AI related articles or books? Please email us so we can share it.


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Ben Reid I head up the AI Forum of New Zealand - working to harness the power of AI to help bring about a prosperous and inclusive future for New Zealand and the world. The AI Forum NZ brings together technology firms, businesses, universities and the government to connect, promote and advance the national AI ecosystem.