In the Brief:
“A New $15 Billion Project Is Set to Utterly Transform Our World”. Alibaba is doubling its funding in Artificial Intelligence, Internet of Things, and the quantum computers. The company has announced its current week’s plan of investing $15 billion in research and development on the automation and technologies that will benefit both the company and to the world on a very large scale.
The Biggest: A $15 BILLION PROJECT
To advance research and development on artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, and the quantum computers, Alibaba has decided to invest $15 billion in funding over the next few years, in accordance with creating the next generation of such technology.
So far, as it was reported by Bloomberg that, the company has shared its plans in an emailed statement; shortly after the Chief Technical Officer Jeff Zhang has made an announcement at one of the company’s Computing Conference 2017 in Hangzhou in China. The Chief Technical Officer Jeff Zhang has stated that this is the beginning of the global research program, that is now known as the Alibaba DAMO Academy. Here, the acronym for DAMO is Discovery, Adventure, Momentum, and Outlook.
Moreover, being a part of the program; Alibaba is intending to build seven new R & D labs across the U.S., Singapore, Russia, Israel, China, and many other leading countries. With this major development, more than 100 scientists worldwide, who are specialized in different forms of Artificial Intelligence, the Internet of Things, and the quantum computing, are expected to be hired.
In an interview with Bloomberg, Alibaba‘s Chief Technical Officer Jeff Zhang stated that the new labs would be going to go a long way to “help to solve the issues that Alibaba is currently facing across its business lines. It will also be at the forefront of developing next-generation technology.”
In the year 2016 Google parent company Alphabet spent $13.9 billion on R&D, where the big e-commerce players, Amazon has spent over $16 billion and Alibaba is just spending $2.6 billion in the fiscal year ending in March 2017. This ultimate program will be including the innovative new technologies like fintech, quantum computing, Internet of Things (IoT), data intelligence, and human-machine interaction.
One of the Chinese company looked to carry out a similar strategy on an approximate of 10 years ago, but Ma stated that Alibaba wasn’t in the same position as it is today and not ready to take on the challenges associated with it.
MORE THAN LABS AND SCIENTISTS
Along the side of new labs, Alibaba‘s multi-billion dollar investment will also go towards funding over the various collaborations with universities, and with the University of California already on board. Furthermore, the company has tapped a number of professors from the Princeton and Harvard who will be sitting on an advisory board.
Moreover, Alibaba‘s increased focus on Artificial Intelligence and quantum computing is a meaningful one, where both are expected to bring a change in the world dramatically.
Additionally, the company already has a smart warehouse that is run by a team of 60 robots, who have eyewitnessed a productivity of 300 percent. This percentage can only be increased if the company’s program results in a success, though it is already raising some concerns machine control and its employment.
Luckily, as per the CNBC TV, the company has made a “commitment to serve 2 billion customers and create 100 million jobs in 20 years.” However, we would have to wait and watch what Alibaba would be coming up with; in the near future. On the other hand, it is a clear sign that Alibaba is already prepared to see this through, and has the resources necessary to move the world forward.