What does Artificial Intelligence revolution mean for India

AI is the future of mankind. Machine learning has two aspects; analysis and decision making.

Neighbourhood Technology Desk/Avi Arya: In this year’s budget the government doubled the allocation for the Digital India initiative in part to support the cyber physical systems mission. Ashutosh Sharma, secretary, department of science and technology, spoke to Malavika Vyawahare to give his take on what an AI revolution means for India.

What is AI?

AI is the future of mankind. Machine learning has two aspects; analysis and decision making. The machine has to have access to all kinds of data, it has to choose what is most relevant and arrive at decisions.

What is driving the AI revolution?

If you look at countries that are economically advanced they have the inverse problem. They do not have too many young energetic people- so the problem for them is how do you grow? Only way is using AI.

What kinds of industries will be impacted first?

It is already being done in the financial sector.The IT industry is undergoing a transformation in that direction. It has been shown that machines can predict as well as the top radiologists.

But wouldn’t that close the door for people getting jobs as teachers?

We will have to reinvent the role of teachers. So we have teachers that focus on different aspects, things that require a human touch.

So we are poised to become big consumers of AI technology. What about producing it?

Even assuming that you are not producing as much of AI in machines here it does not mean it would not contribute to our economic growth. We should develop more AI, manufacture machines that use AI, but also deploy it.

What are we doing in India to embrace AI?

The mission on cyber physical systems will be launched next financial year. We have made a modest beginning. We have devoted about 100 crore this year.

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