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  • Cars that drive themselves, facial recognition, detecting cancer potentially better than a doctor,

  • these are just some of the technologies that artificial intelligence is fueling.

  • And with the potential to add trillions of dollars to a nation's GDP,

  • the race to become an AI superpower is on.

  • In the age of AI, data is the new oil, so China is the new Saudi Arabia.

  • That's Kai-Fu Lee, he's the author of the new book, AI Superpowers

  • which explores China's standing in the world of artificial intelligence.

  • If you measure by research, basic research papers published, excellence of research,

  • the U.S. is, and will be, ahead for the next decade, but if you measure by value created,

  • how much market capitalization, how many users, how much revenue, China probably is already ahead.

  • China's rise in AI is relatively recent.

  • In May 2017, China's AI evolution reached a symbolic moment, what some even called a wake up call.

  • Go is a game that's been played in China for thousands of years

  • and is said to be the world's most complex game.

  • 19-year-old Ke Jie is also said to be the world's best player.

  • He was challenged to compete against Alphabet, the parent company of Google in a three-game match.

  • He lost.

  • Less than two months after the defeat, the Chinese central government

  • announced its ambitious plans to build up artificial intelligence capabilities.

  • As part of its existing Made in China 2025 plan, it aims to create

  • A Next Generation Artificial Intelligence Development Plan.

  • The plan is broken up into three benchmarks.

  • To keep pace with AI technologies by 2020.

  • To achieve AI breakthroughs by 2025, and to actually be the world leader in AI by 2030.

  • That same year in 2017, during a keynote address to the ruling Communist Party,

  • Chinese President Xi Jinping said:

  • To get there, it's investing a lot.

  • In 2017, Chinese venture-capital investors poured record sums of money into AI,

  • making up 48 percent of all AI venture funding globally.

  • Chinese startups raised $4.9 billion, while their U.S. counterparts raised $4.4 billion.

  • But while the U.S.' $4.4 billion is made up of 155 investments,

  • just 19 investments made up China's $4.9 billion.

  • The innovation is still coming from the U.S. and that's thanks to obviously a huge network of universities

  • that are fed by the world's greatest talent, not just Chinese engineers coming to the U.S.

  • and computer scientists, but also from India and everywhere else.

  • So I think that advantage for the next few years at least stays with the U.S.

  • This is Ben Harburg, a Beijing-based VC who's invested in the likes of Uber and MoBike.

  • I met him at East Tech West, CNBC's tech event in China.

  • What China has the ability to do is scale and monetize, or commercialize, these types of technologies.

  • We have a much larger number of graduates in the STEM fields in China,

  • that will certainly be coming back in further influencing those in the development of those companies.

  • China will be where you monetize, and by nature of the beast,

  • eventually they will start to innovate far beyond the U.S., but a couple of years away.

  • China's mobile-first market means more people are doing everyday tasks on phones.

  • Naturally, that means more data is available.

  • But experts tell me China's rise in AI boils down to several main factors.

  • Number one: Its population.

  • At around 1.4 billion people, it's the world's largest country,

  • and thus there's a lot of possible data to be captured.

  • It's done a fantastic job of moving its economy to cashless.

  • And when you can pay with everything with your phone, you amass a huge amount of data.

  • Thomas Friedman is an economist, New York Times columnist and author of Thank You For Being Late.

  • The second factor is that China doesn't have the same restrictive privacy laws that the U.S. has,

  • making it easier for companies to collect data.

  • In fact, not only are privacy laws less of a barrier in China, but the government is buying technologies

  • to use data in an effort to capture unprecedented amounts of information on its citizens.

  • If you get to self-driving cars for instance,

  • there's a massive amount of data that those cars are going to spin off.

  • And if you've got those data sets, you're going to be able to do the improvements,

  • see the new jobs, products and services that can be designed out of those data sets,

  • You're going to see better and better, more deeper insight patterns than anybody else,

  • and I think it's going to be a great advantage for China.

  • PwC says that by 2030, global GDP could increase by 14 percent because of AI.

  • Its deployment will add $15.7 trillion to global GDP, with China predicted to take $7 trillion.

  • That's almost half of North America's projected gains of $3.7 trillion.

  • Yet, China's AI development isn't seeing optimism across the board either,

  • with critics saying the sector is over-invested and also skepticism around monetization for the industry.

  • Meanwhile, the vast amount of data being collected scares critics who question the ethics of it all.

  • Not to mention, privacy laws in other parts of the world, that flat out make it illegal.

  • But it's hard to deny, the potential for AI to transform industries.

  • And with that transformation could also come a change in the workforce.

  • In fact, Kai-Fu Lee says AI will be able to replace a whopping

  • 40 to 50 percent of jobs in the U.S. within 15 years.

  • Meanwhile, Friedman thinks the race in AI could potentially come down to politics.

  • More specifically, President Trump's stance on immigration.

  • What really drove our economy forward, what drives any economy, is that

  • we had a higher percentage than any other country of high IQ risk takers.

  • High IQ risk takers are the people who start new companies, new businesses, and

  • create new medical breakthroughs and new engineering breakthroughs.

  • But Trump basically has put out a sign in our front yard that says, "Get off my lawn."

  • I worry about that, I mean, I believe any foreigner, who gets an advanced degree in America

  • should get a green card with the advanced degree. We want those people.

  • And so, the idea that we're pushing these people away is sheer madness.

Cars that drive themselves, facial recognition, detecting cancer potentially better than a doctor,

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人工知能で台頭する中国|CNBCレポート (China's rise in artificial intelligence | CNBC Reports)

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    張廷嘉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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