This post originally appeared on MIT Technology Review
The news: The White House is pumping hundreds of millions more dollars into artificial intelligence research. In budget plans announced on Monday, the administration bumped funding for AI research at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) from $50 million to $249 million and at the National Science Foundation from $500 million to $850 million. Other departments, including the Department of Energy and the Department of Agriculture are also getting a boost to their funding for AI.
Why it matters: Many believe that AI is crucial for national security. Worried that the US risks falling behind China in the race to build next-gen technologies, security experts have pushed the Trump administration to increase its funding.
Public spending: For now the money will mostly flow to DARPA and the NSF. But $50 million of the NSF’s budget has been allocated to education and job training, especially in community colleges, historically black colleges and universities, and minority-serving institutions. The White House says it also plans to double funding for AI research for purposes other than defense by 2022.