‘Baidu Brain’

Ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gen­cence break­through un­veiled­veiled

China Daily (USA) - - FRONT PAGE - By FANFEIFEI fanfeifei@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Chi­nese in­ter­net gi­ant Baidu Inc of­fi­cially un­veiled its lat­est plans in the bur­geon­ing field of ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence, in­clud­ing “Baidu Brain”, which sim­u­lates the hu­man brain with com­puter tech­nol­ogy, and a part­ner­ship with Nvidia Corp to de­velop driver­less ve­hi­cles.

“Ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence is the next big de­vel­op­ment in the in­ter­net in­dus­try, which is the core of Baidu. We spend great ef­forts de­vel­op­ing this tech­nol­ogy in the past five to six years,” said Robin Li, chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of the Bei­jing-based com­pany, at the com­pany’s an­nual tech­nol­ogy event— Baidu World.

Li said “Baidu Brain” con­sists of three parts, in­clud­ing ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence al­go­rithms, com­put­ing power and big data. “It has the ca­pac­i­ties of nat­u­ral lan­guage pro­cess­ing, voice recog­ni­tion, im­age iden­ti­fi­ca­tion and pro­cess­ing and user por­traits.”

“Any­one just records 50 sentences as re­quired in 30 min­utes, and our speech syn­the­sis tech­nol­ogy could sim­u­late the per­son’s voice. We could let ev­ery­one have their own voice model,” said Li.

More­over, the ac­cu­racy rate of voice recog­ni­tion has reached 97 per­cent, while face recog­ni­tion ac­cu­racy has reached 99.7 per­cent, Li said. With re­gard to im­age recog­ni­tion tech­nol­ogy, it is mainly ap­plied in aug­mented re­al­ity.

This in turn can be used to de­velop prod­ucts and mar­ket ser­vices. AI tech­nol­ogy is ex­pected to be ap­plied into dif­fer­ent in­dus­tries in the fu­ture, in­volv­ing health­care, traf­fic and fi­nance.

“I’d like to in­vite ev­ery­one to re­think the sec­tor we’re in — to re­think the Chi­nese econ­omy,” said Li.

Driver­less ve­hi­cles are another area the com­pany is mak­ing a big bet on. Baidu will co­op­er­ate with US-based chip­maker Nvidia Corp to build op­er­at­ing soft­ware for self­driv­ing that en­com­passes map­ping and adapts to chang­ing en­vi­ron­ments.

AI has be­come a strate­gic area of in­vest­ment for tech­nol­ogy com­pa­nies in­clud­ing Ap­ple and Google.

Tan Tie­niu, a lead­ing ex­pert in China’s ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence sec­tor said that the global AI mar­ket had a to­tal value of $127 bil­lion in 2015, adding that the fig­ure is ex­pected to reach $165 bil­lion this year and ex­ceed $200 bil­lion in 2018.

Zhao Zim­ing, an an­a­lyst at Analysys International in Bei­jing, said: “The de­vel­op­ment of ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence and the in­ter­net of things is an ir­re­sistible trend, and Baidu Brain is a core prod­uct in these two fields.


Robin Li (right), chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer of Baidu Inc, at the launch of “Baidu Brain” on Thurs­day in Bei­jing.

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