The development of artificial intelligence (AI) technology should be transparent and establish accountability, so as to better society instead of dividing it, Minister Without Portfolio Audrey Tang (唐鳳) said yesterday.
Tang, who is responsible for the government’s digital policy, told a news conference on the nation’s AI development at the Ministry of Science and Technology in Taipei that many people were pessimistic about AI three years ago, but that Taiwan has shown a positive trajectory for promoting “open innovation.”
For example, the ministry’s 2018 Grand Challenge, aimed to develop voice assistants in Mandarin, even shared all of the data with those unable to sign up for the event, she said.
Photo: Chien Hui-ju, Taipei Times
AI could also be referred to as “assistive intelligence,” meaning that its tools are supposed to solve problems in industry, society or the environment, Tang said.
Privacy protection and accountability are two essential issues for AI development, while transparency is key to fostering accountability with AI so that it makes a society better, not more divided, she said.
Asked to compare AI strategies in Taiwan and China, Taiwan AI Labs founder Ethan Tu (杜奕瑾) told the news conference that “it is crucial to make the world trust your tools.”
As users become more vigilant about Facebook, privacy and information security issues, Taiwan has its edge in diversity and transparency, he said.
When he left his Microsoft job in the US to return to Taiwan three years ago, many people told him that the domestic market was too small to support the development of AI technology and application, Tu said.
Nonetheless, even Microsoft ended up establishing a research center in Taiwan, showing the appeal of Taiwanese software talent, he said.
Minister of Science and Technology Chen Liang-gee (陳良基) said that without the support of Tang and Tu, he would not have been confident enough as a minister to promote AI.
After Tu founded Taiwan AI Labs in April 2017, the ministry established AI innovative research centers at National Taiwan University, National Cheng Kung University, National Tsing Hua University and National Chiao Tung University, he said.
Cheng Kung researchers have developed AI-assisted systems for shortening the diagnosis time needed for COVID-19 tests from two-and-a-half hours to 30 minutes, just one example of smart medicine applications, he said.
While AI is being used in several areas, Taiwan is lagging behind in the development of self-driving technology, Chen said.
GREATER NUMBER: The sorties might have been a response to the US and the EU expressing concern on Friday over China’s ‘provocations’ in the Taiwan Strait Twenty-five Chinese military aircraft and four naval ships were detected around Taiwan from 6am Saturday to 6am yesterday, including eight airplanes that had crossed the median line of the Taiwan Strait and another two that entered Taiwan’s air defense identification zone (ADIZ). The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) aircraft that entered Taiwan’s southwestern ADIZ were a Y-8 anti-submarine plane and a BZK-005 uncrewed aerial vehicle, the Ministry of National Defense said. The aircraft that flew across the median line include two Sukhoi Su-30 fighter jets, four J-16 multipurpose fighters and two J-10 jets, the ministry’s official Web site showed. Taiwan’s armed forces monitored the
The building of a Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co (TSMC) plant in Phoenix, Arizona, is expected to lead to the creation of a “Little Taipei” over the coming year, as TSMC employees and related companies move in, a Phoenix-based real-estate agent has said. TSMC is investing US$12 billion to build a wafer plant in northern Phoenix that is scheduled to begin mass production in 2024. The company on Tuesday held a “tool-in” ceremony to mark the installation of the first batch of equipment at the fab. Some TSMC employees have moved into newly constructed apartments in a community 10 minutes’ drive from the
The US Navy could use experimental “lightning carriers” in a possible conflict with China over Taiwan, Business Insider reported on Wednesday. The lightning carrier concept involves using converted amphibious assault ships (LHAs) carrying Lockheed Martin F-35B “Lightning II” stealth jets. It was tested last summer by the US Navy and US Marines Corps using the America-class warship USS Tripoli. US Vice Admiral Karl Thomas, the commander of the US Navy 7th Fleet, in October said that the concept is part of efforts to increase the firepower of the fleet’s ships, Business Insider reported. Thomas made the remarks during an event hosted by think
LUNAR NEW YEAR PEAK: Taiwanese who are in China should get vaccinated and consider returning early, as infection rates are expected to increase, the CECC said China faces five major problems once COVID-19 begins spreading there, with a peak in infections likely during the Lunar New Year holidays, Deputy Minister of Health and Welfare Victor Wang (王必勝), who heads the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), said yesterday. Wang wrote on Facebook that according to the center’s data, the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in China is worth noting, as the new Omicron subvariants BF.7 and BA.5.2 spreading in China are highly infectious and are more transmissible than the previously dominating Omicron subvariants. “The virus cannot be eliminated even under China’s strict control measures,” he wrote. “Its policy