Carnegie Mellon University Launches AI Research GroupBy Ariella Brown | Posted 2017-11-13 Print
You hear about these innovations in the news all the time: self-driving cars, smartphone assistants and computer image recognition. These capabilities that were merely imagined a few years ago are now a reality, thanks to recent advances in artificial intelligence. As the field's applications are exploding, it has earned a place for research in its own right.
Drawing on the expertise of over 100 faculty members across seven departments, Carnegie Mellon University's School of Computer Science (SCS) has launched one of the largest artificial intelligence (AI) research groups in the world: CMU AI, to serve as a resource for producing new AI capabilities and expanding the knowledge of the next generation of AI scientists.
"AI is no longer something that a lone genius invents in the garage," said SCS Dean Andrew Moore, a key leader of the group. "It requires a team of people, each of whom brings a special expertise or perspective. CMU researchers have always excelled at collaboration across disciplines, and CMU AI will enable all of us to work together in unprecedented ways."
It makes sense that this group is based out of Carnegie Mellon, as the institution has been a pioneer in the field since the first AI computer program, Logic Theorist, emerged from it in 1956. It is also credited with establishing the first Machine Learning Department at a university. CMU scientists have done groundbreaking research in machine and human interaction, including how machines can be taught to comprehend human language.
But the research is not just about faculty and staff endeavors. Nearly a thousand students at the school currently participate in AI research. The research group intends to reach out to even younger students, seeking ways to encourage interest in AI that will lead those in K-12 to develop the requisite knowledge and skills.
Another group leader, Manuela Veloso, the Herbert A. Simon University Professor of Computer Science and head of the Machine Learning Department, remarked, "Students who study AI at CMU have an opportunity to work on projects that unite multiple disciplines -- to study AI in its depth and multidisciplinary, integrative aspects." She predicts that "CMU students at all levels have a big impact on what AI is doing."
Consolidating the AI research into a single group is key to pulling together the insights that emerge from the different departments to maximize accessibility and expedite innovative advancement in the field.
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