Google has partnered with the US Department of Defense to develop an algorithm that analyzes data from drones. Artificial intelligence of the company will help the military to recognize objects from drones. The employees of the company told Gizmodo about this anonymously .
The pilot project of Google in conjunction with the Ministry of Defense was the initiative Maven. The company needed the technology of the Pentagon because of the amount of material that the military drones withdraw every day. There have been so many data that the analysts of the department are not physically able to look at him. As noted co-author of the report on the use of artificial intelligence in the army Greg Allen (Greg Allen), the military learned how to gather information, but did not care about the data mining technologies.
Google employees learned about the project from the internal Internet mailing list. The sources of the publication specified that some of them were indignant at the use of the company’s technologies for military purposes. Gizmodo’s interlocutors noted that the distribution raised an important issue about the ethics of developing and using machine learning.
Maven’s task is to recognize 38 categories of objects captured by military drones. The algorithm should also track the movement of people when they come in or out of different rooms.
In a conversation with Gizmodo, the company representative confirmed cooperation with the US Department of Defense and noted that the company is aware of the ethical issues of using artificial intelligence for military purposes and are already developing relevant policies.
We have been working with government agencies for a long time, providing them with technical solutions. This [Maven] was a pilot project with the Ministry of Defense, within which we provided the department with access to the API of the open project TensorFlow. Technology marks images for human review and is intended for peaceful use only.
A representative of the US Department of Defense refused to disclose information about whether the military had other partners in the program.
The Maven project was launched in April 2017 in order to accelerate the integration of the Defense Ministry in the technology of large data and machine learning. The Office set deadlines for launching the initiative: the program was developed in six months and began to be used since December 2017. In total, over the previous year, the Pentagon has spent more than $ 7.4 billion on developments in the field of artificial intelligence.
American agencies are not the first to be interested in the use of artificial intelligence in their work. In late February, the US Justice Department announced that it will spend $ 2 million to develop an algorithm that will help in combating crime. In addition, the agency uses a program to predict the recidivism of criminals, but as experts have found , it demonstrates racial bias.