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博主胡德良:邢台学院外语系英语教授,中国译协专家会员,河北省译协常务理事,邢台市译协副会长。爱好翻译,内容涉及宇宙探秘、医疗卫生、家庭保健、生命科学、能源科学、地球科学、环境科学、散文小说和纪实文学等领域。所译文章曾见于《光明日报》、《科技日报》、《健康时报》、《健康报》、《英语世界》、《英语知识》、《科技英语学习》、《科学之友》、《科学与文化》、《世界科学》、《生命世界》等全国各大报刊。博客特色:英汉对照、图文并茂,融趣味性、科学性、知识性为一体。

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中国人工智能发展迅速(图)   

2017-05-26 08:33:18|  分类: 尖端科技 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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中国人工智能发展迅速(图) - 月亮飞船 - 欢迎光临月亮飞船的博客
 在人工智能研究领域,中国科技公司——百度投入了大量资金。
The country’s universities and tech giants are starting to surpass American ones when it comes to researching and implementing AI.
在研究人工智能、实施人工智能计划方面,中国的大学和大型科技公司开始超越美国了。
胡德良   译

Each winter, hundreds of AI researchers from around the world convene at the annual meeting of the Association of the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence. Last year, a minor crisis erupted over the schedule, when AAAI announced that 2017’s meeting would take place in New Orleans in late January. The location was fine. The dates happened to conflict with Chinese New Year. 

 每年冬季,来自世界各地的人工智能研究人员都会聚集在人工智能协会(AAAI)举办的年会上。去年,在会议计划上出现一个小问题——当时AAAI宣布2017年的年会将于1月底在新奥尔良举行;地点很不错,可是举办日期正好跟中国的春节相冲突。

 The holiday might not have been a deal breaker in the past, but Chinese researchers have become so integral to the meeting, it could not go on without them. They had to reschedule. “Nobody would have put AAAI on Christmas day,” says current AAAI president Subbarao Kambhampati. “Our organization had to almost turn on a dime and change the conference venue to hold it a week later.”

 若是在过去,节日可能不是影响大局的情况。但是,中国的研究人员已经成为这个会议不可缺少的参与者,没有他们,会议是无法进行下去的。因此,AAAI不得不重新进行安排。AAAI主席萨伯饶·卡姆汉姆帕提说:“没有人会把AAAI年会安排到圣诞节,所以我们对会议安排不得不迅速做出改变,不得不在一周后变换地点举行。”

 The 2017 AAAI meeting—which ultimately relocated to San Francisco—wrapped up just last week. And as expected, Chinese researchers had a strong showing in the historically U.S.-dominated conference. A nearly equal number of accepted papers came from researchers based in China and the U.S. “This is pretty surprising and impressive given how different it was even three, four years back,” says Rao.

 最终,2017年年会变换到旧金山举行,于上周刚刚结束。正如预期的那样,中国研究人员展现出强大的阵容。然而,从历史上来讲,这种大会总是由美国占主导地位的。在已经被接受的论文中,中国和美国的研究人员撰写的论文在数量上几乎相同。萨伯饶称:“考虑到中国甚至在三、四年前的差距之大,目前的情况是非常令人惊讶、引人瞩目的。”

 China’s rapid rise up the ranks of AI research has people taking notice. In October, the Obama White House released a “strategic plan” for AI research, which noted that the U.S. no longer leads the world in journal articles on “deep learning,” a particularly hot subset of AI research right now. The country that had overtaken the U.S.? China, of course.

 中国在人工智能研究领域的排名迅速上升,引起人们的关注。10月份,奥巴马政府发布了人工智能研究的“战略计划”,其中指出:从有关“深度学习”方面所发表的杂志论文来说,美国在世界上不再处于领先地位;而“深度学习”是目前人工智能研究的一个特别热门的领域。哪个国家已经超过了美国呢?当然是中国!

 “I have a hard time thinking of an industry we cannot transform with AI.”

 “很难想象有哪个行业无法利用人工智能去进行变革。”

 It’s not just academic research. Chinese tech companies are betting on AI, too. Baidu (a Chinese search-engine company often likened to Google), Didi (often likened to Uber), and Tencent (maker of the mega-popular messaging app WeChat) have all set up their own AI research labs. With millions of customers, these companies have access to the huge amount of data that training AI to detect patterns requires.

 中国不仅仅是在学术研究方面超越了美国,该国的科技公司在人工智能领域也投入了大量资金。中国搜索引擎公司百度通常被比作是谷歌,滴滴公司通常被比作是优步,腾讯公司开发了极受欢迎的信息交流应用软件——微信……这些公司都建立起自己的人工智能研究实验室,都拥有数以百万计的客户,能够获取所需要的海量数据,便于培训人工智能去发现各种模式。

 Like the Microsofts and Googles of the world, Chinese tech companies see enormous potential in AI. It could undergird a whole set of transformative technologies in the coming decades, from facial recognition to autonomous cars.“I have a hard time thinking of an industry we cannot transform with AI,” says Andrew Ng, chief scientist at Baidu. Ng previously cofounded Coursera and Google Brain, the company’s deep learning project. Now he directs Baidu’s AI research out of Sunnyvale, California, right in Silicon Valley.

 跟具有世界影响力的微软和谷歌之类的公司一样,中国的科技公司也看到人工智能领域具有巨大的潜力。在接下来的几十年中,人工智能可以支持从面部识别到自动驾驶汽车等一整套的变革性技术。百度公司的首席科学家吴恩达说:“很难想象有哪个行业无法利用人工智能去进行变革。”以前,吴恩达跟他人一起创建过在线公开课程项目Coursera和谷歌公司的深度学习项目“谷歌大脑”。现在,吴恩达在正好位于硅谷中的加州桑尼维尔市指导百度的人工智能研究。

 China’s success in AI has been partly fueled by the government’s overall investment in scientific research at its universities. Over the past decade, government spending on research has grown by double digits on average every year. Funding of science and technology research continues to be a major priority, as outlined by the the Five-Year Plan unveiled this past March.

 中国在人工智能领域取得了成功,部分原因是政府针对大学的科学研究进行了全面的投资。在过去的十年中,政府在研究上的资金投入平均每年都有不少于百分之十的增幅。正像去年3月份公布的五年计划中所描述的那样,资助科学技术研究仍然是主要的优先事项。

 When Rao first started seeing Chinese researchers at international AI meetings, he recalls they were usually from Tsinghua and Peking University, considered the MIT and Harvard of China. Now, he sees papers from researchers all over the country, not just the most elite schools. Machine learning—which includes deep learning—has been an especially popular topic lately. “The number of people who got interested in applied machine learning has tremendously increased across China,” says Rao. This is the same uptick that the White House noticed in its report on a strategic plan for AI research.

 萨伯饶最初在国际人工智能大会上见到中国研究人员的时候,他记得当时的研究人员通常是来自清华大学和北京大学,这两所大学分别被当作中国的麻省理工学院和哈佛大学。现在,他见到的论文出自全国各地的研究人员,并不是仅仅出自那些最精英的大学。最近,机器学习(包括深度学习)成为一个特别热门的话题。萨伯饶说:“在全中国,对应用机器学习感兴趣的人数有了大幅增加。”从有关人工智能研究的战略计划报告来看,白宫也注意到了同样的增加趋势。

 Chinese tech companies are part of the infusion of research dollars to universities, too. At Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, computer scientist Qiang Yang collaborates with Tencent, which sponsors scholarships for students in his lab.

 中国的科技公司也向大学投入了部分研究经费。在香港科技大学,计算机科学家杨强跟腾讯公司合作,由腾讯公司为其实验室的学生提供奖学金。

 The students get access to mountains of data from WeChat, the messaging app from Tencent that is akin to Facebook, iMessage, and Venmo all rolled into one. (“With AI, they can’t do it without a lot of data and a platform to test it on,” says Yang, which is why industry collaboration is so key.) In return, Tencent gets a direct line to some of the most innovative research coming out of academic labs. And of course, some of these students end up working at Tencent when they graduate.

 学生们通过腾讯公司的信息沟通应用程序——微信获得海量数据,该应用程序相当于把脸谱网、iMessage通讯软件和Venmo支付平台融合到了一起。杨强说:“对于人工智能来说,没有大量数据和测试平台是不行的。因此,行业间的合作是很关键的。”反过来,腾讯公司可以直接得到一些出自学术实验室的最具创新性的研究成果。当然,实验室的某些学生在毕业时也直接到了腾讯公司参加工作。

 The quantity of Chinese AI research has grown dramatically, but researchers in the U.S. are still responsible for a lot of the most fundamental groundbreaking work. “The very clever ideas on changing network architecture, I see those in the U.S.,” says Ng. What Chinese researchers have been very good at doing is seizing on an idea—like machine learning—and cranking out papers on its different applications.

 中国人工智能研究在数量上急剧增长,而美国的研究人员仍然负责许多最基础的开创性研究工作。吴恩达说:“在美国,我可以接触到改变网络构架的极为聪明的想法。”中国研究人员特别擅长做的是:抓住某个想法(如机器学习),然后将其不同的应用撰写成论文。

 Yet as the research matures in China, Ng says, it is also becoming its own distinct community. After a recent international meeting in Barcelona, he recalls seeing Chinese language write-ups of the talks circulate right way. He never found any in English. The language issue creates a kind of asymmetry: Chinese researchers usually speak English so they have the benefit of access to all the work disseminated in English. The English-speaking community, on the other hand, is much less likely to have access to work within the Chinese AI community.

 然而,吴恩达说:随着中国的研究趋于成熟,人工智能研究界本身也正在成为一个独特的团体。吴恩达回忆说:最近,在巴塞罗那举办的一次国际性会议之后,他注意到报告的中文文本流传开来,他从未发现流传的英语报告。语言问题形成了一种不对称:中国的研究人员通常会讲英语,所以他们具有优势,能够获取所有用英语传播的研究成果。另一方面,在中国的人工智能研究团体之内,讲英语的团体获取中国研究成果的可能性要小得多。

 “China has a fairly deep awareness of what’s happening in the English-speaking world, but the opposite is not true,” says Ng. He points out that Baidu has rolled out neural network-based machine translation and achieved speech recognition accuracy that surpassed humans—but when Google and Microsoft, respectively, did so, the American companies got a lot more publicity.

 吴恩达说:“对于英语国家里正在发生的情况,中国有相当深刻的了解,但是英语国家并不了解中国正在发生的情况。”他指出:百度推出了基于神经网络的机器翻译,语音识别的准确性超过了人类。但是,当美国的谷歌和微软分别推出此类产品的时候,对这些公司进行的宣传要多得多。

 “The velocity of work is much faster in China than in most of Silicon Valley.”

 “在中国,开展工作的速度比硅谷的大多数公司都要快得多。”

 And when it comes to actually shipping new features, China companies can move more quickly. “The velocity of work is much faster in China than in most of Silicon Valley,” says Ng. “When you spot a business opportunity in China, the window of time you have to respond usually very short—shorter in China than the United States.”

 在实际推出新功能方面,中国的公司能够更加快速地开展工作。吴恩达说:“在中国,开展工作的速度比硅谷的大多数公司都要快得多。你在中国发现商机时,通常为你留出的反应时间很短,在中国比在美国更短。”

 Yang chalks it up to China’s highly competitive ecosystem. WeChat, for example, has built a set of features around QR codes (yes, really), chat, payments, and friend discovery that make it indispensable to daily life in China. American social media companies only wish they had that kind of loyalty. “Product managers at Tencent have good sense of what customers want, and they can can quickly turn technology into reality,” says Yang. “This cycle is very short.” And to stay competitive, they’re primed to integrate AI to improve their products. Whether Chinese tech companies use the AI wave to break into the international market remains to be seen—but they’re already using AI to compete for customers in China.

 杨强将其平台打造成中国具有巨大竞争力的生态系统。例如:围绕QR码、聊天、付款和发现朋友,微信创建了一套功能,使其成为中国人日常生活中不可缺少的一部分。美国的社会媒体公司也特别希望拥有这样忠诚的客户群。杨强说:“腾讯公司的产品经理很清楚地了解到客户的需求,他们很快将技术变成现实,这个周期非常短。”并且,为了保持市场竞争力,他们随时准备利用人工智能来提高产品性能。中国的科技公司是否能够利用人工智能潮流冲入国际市场,仍然有待于观察,但是在中国这些公司已经在利用人工智能来争夺客户了。

 In the academic world, AAAI has now taken steps to make sure Chinese researchers have input on the meetings. The exact date of Chinese New Year changes every year, but it’s always in January or February, when the AAAI meeting usually takes place. Can’t have them conflicting again.

 在学术界,AAAI目前已经采取了措施,确保中国的研究人员参与到会议中来。中国春节的具体日期每年都有变化,但总是在1月份或2月份,也正是AAAI年会通常举办的时段……但是,再也不能让两者发生冲突了!

   
译自:美国《大西洋月刊》(https://www.theatlantic.com/

原著:SARAH ZHANG(莎拉·张)

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