Outgoing White House AI Chief: ‘I hope my legacy will show how to lead in advancing nonpartisan science’

written by

Nihal Krishan

Lynn Parker, Outgoing Director Office of the National Initiative for Artificial Intelligence Within the White House, her tenure has focused on finding nonpartisan solutions to minimize the potential harms of artificial intelligence and creating principled protective barriers for new technology during her tenure in office.

In an exclusive interview with FedScoop, Parker said the federal government is well aware Potential pitfalls of artificial intelligence And actively worked on mitigate its damage while trying to use technology to solve major societal challenges. The world of robotics is one of the only tech officials He has served under both President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy for the past four years.

“There has been a significant increase in awareness and understanding of the potential harms using AI can cause to people in different contexts, whether it is decisions about accessing resources, such as housing or student loans, or whether it is something like court rulings,” Parker said, speaking with FedScoop. Earlier this month before leaving her position at the National Bureau of Artificial Intelligence, the inappropriate uses of these potentially harmful technologies are well known.

“So I think the question now is, how do we make sure that we anticipate the challenges or problems that may arise and have an appropriate implementation approach that takes into account the risks of AI and the appropriate steps to ensure that one or another harms are not mitigated,” Parker added.

Office of the National Initiative for Artificial Intelligence, Launched In January 2021 under President Donald Trump, he will be responsible for coordinating AI research and policymaking across government, industry, and academia. It focuses on implementing a national AI strategy as directed National Defense Authorization Act 2021To increase research investment, improve access to computing and data resources, set technical standards, build a workforce, and engage with allies.

“So I think the question now is, how do we make sure that we anticipate challenges or problems that may arise and have an appropriate implementation approach that takes into account the risks of AI.”

Lynn Parker, outgoing director of the National Artificial Intelligence Initiative Office

Parker, who holds a PhD in computer science from MIT and who previously spent more than 20 years teaching engineering at the University of Tennessee, said creating a framework for managing AI risks was a key part of her work on the AI ​​initiative. They expect this fear of technology will diminish.

Currently, the National Institute of Standards and Technology said Drafting such a framework It will develop a common voluntary approach that federal government agencies and private sector companies can use in order to find a structured way to think about AI risks and find ways to reduce potential harm.

Parker, who also helped lead the National Artificial Intelligence Research Resources (NARR) Task Force, Addressing concerns Associated with the team working with major technology companies such as Google and IBM to provide computing infrastructure and data.

The The purpose of the yoke It is the use of making computational resources from rich companies like Google and IBM available to a larger group of underrepresented and disadvantaged communities in academia and the small business world in order to allow them to innovate and create AI software and tools.

However, there have been concerns that large tech companies could use the NAIRR partnership to take advantage of it by capturing data and information on those who use their computational resources, thus creating Security and privacy riskswhich consumers have frequently encountered in the past decade.

Parker said this would not be a problem because of the safeguards put in place by the US government.

“No, Big Tech companies won’t have access to any of that, they are providing a purely computational service to the research community, but they won’t have the ability to tap, in a side channel of what researchers are providing,” Parker said.

Parker, who previously worked at the National Science Foundation as director of the Department of Information and Intelligent Systems, said she has always focused on bipartisan and bipartisan ways to use AI to improve government and society at large.

“I hope my legacy will demonstrate how to lead in the development of nonpartisan science and AI policies, initiatives and initiatives that have a long-term positive impact on the nation and around the world,” Parker said.

She added, “I have worked to create a future in which artificial intelligence is used responsibly, to improve the quality of life for all Americans and address global challenges, to increase our nation’s economic competitiveness and enhance our national security.”

When asked about her experience working under President Trump versus President Biden and their respective approaches to artificial intelligence, she said that while there are some differences, there are many common areas in their approach.

She highlighted that both administrations were very supportive of advances in artificial intelligence and that their actions to move the technology forward were more important than the political process of how decisions were made in each administration.

While Parker, 61, spends much of her career immersed in some of the most advanced examples of artificial intelligence, she continues to be fascinated by the practical ways in which technology has changed our everyday experience — including how we lead.

“As a robotics scientist, I am delighted to see all of the driver assistance capabilities that are now common in our cars. Capabilities such as lane-keep assistance systems are very similar to the early programs I had my students code for wall-following robots,” Parker said. Adaptive cruise control is a lot like making robots follow each other the right distance.

“It has been rewarding to me to see that these technologies have been improved enough to be features in most new cars you buy today. Now, in my case, I lean towards the economy side, so until recently I was driving a 14-year-old that didn’t have These features. I could only appreciate the driver assistance features when I got a rental car. But recently, I got a new car and the most important feature for me in choosing that vehicle was the driver assistance capabilities. I am now very much looking forward to enjoying it on a regular basis” .

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