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President of Microsoft Brad Smith  (Reuters)
President of Microsoft Brad Smith (Reuters)

India will be among global AI superpowers: Brad Smith

Application of AI in facial recognition is one of the reasons India is of fundamental importance globally, Smith said

Bengaluru: India will inevitably be one of the world’s artificial intelligence (AI) superpowers, Brad Smith, president and chief legal officer, Microsoft Corp. said at the ongoing Responsible AI for Social Empowerment (RAISE 2020) event.

Smith indicated that India’s national strategy on AI is the right foundation, not just to advance AI but also topromote responsible AI built on firm ethical principles.

The government of India is in the process of finalizing a national strategy on AI which was released in June 2018. The strategy outlines the proposed efforts in research, development, adoption and skilling in AI.

“AI can revolutionize virtually every part of the economy, and I think in so many ways the countries that move the fastest to deploy AI more quickly than others, will find that they will be accelerating economic growth," Smith said.

If applied in the right way, AI will not be a competitor to the thinking or work of human beings but a tool that can augment and add to what humans can accomplish. “But to do that well, we need the kinds of principles that will ensure that AI serves people better rather than the other way around," he said.

Smith said Microsoft is focusing on six strategies to ensure responsible AI – to ensure AI is fair and unbiased; secure and safe; protects people’s privacy; inclusive; transparent; and accountable.

Application of AI in facial recognition is one of the reasons India is of fundamental importance globally, Smith said.

“These issues around facial recognition go to the heart of democratic freedoms, and it will be the world’s great democracies that need to lead the way…There should be safeguards put in place including in the law to ensure that government cannot use facial recognition in a way that would impinge on our most cherished democratic freedoms," he added.

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