Google will meet next week with America’s military brass to allay Washington’s concerns that it’s helping China’s artificial intelligence (AI) program while refusing to assist the Pentagon with tech initiatives.
Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joseph Dunford said on Thursday that the internet giant is “assisting the Chinese military in advancing technology,” and such an effort “is not in U.S. national interests.” He made the remarks at Atlantic Council event, an American think-tank.
At last week’s Senate testimony, he said Google “indirectly benefits the Chinese military.” At the same congressional hearing, acting secretary of defense Patrick Shanahan voiced concerns that American innovation is being used against itself. That is, U.S. tech is stolen by China only to weaken America’s businesses and military competitive edge.
Sec. Shanahan said.
$5 trillion of their [China’s] economy is state-owned enterprises. The technology that has developed in the civil world transfers to the military world. It’s a direct pipeline. Not only is there a transfer, there is systemic theft of U.S. technology that facilitates even faster development of emerging technology.
Gen. Dunford is the nation’s highest-ranking military officer. He’s the principal military adviser to President Donald Trump and the national security apparatus. He is “tentatively scheduled” to speak with Google reps in Washington D.C.
AI Lab in Beijing
U.S. leaders are concerned that Google opened an artificial intelligence lab in Beijing in 2017. The lab develops software such as TensorFlow, a popular AI tool that has been downloaded two million times by Chinese users. It also conducts research on natural-language understanding and market algorithms.
Among its many applications, TensorFlow (an open-source project) is used for machine-learning to classify,