The national artificial-intelligence ambitions of China have just evolved into a detailed three-year action plan, building on a sweeping scheme announced in July.
On Thursday, the country’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology published a document on how to foster the development of artificial intelligence from 2018 to 2020. But it’s far from simply a summary of technological goals: it’s essentially the top leadership’s vision for a new Chinese economy in the age of AI.
In this new economy, China will be able to mass-produce neural-network processing chips, robots will make accomplishing daily tasks easier for disabled people, and machine learning will help radiologists read x-ray scans. In addition, China hopes AI will make manufacturing more eco-friendly: the goal laid out in the document is to increase the energy efficiency of the manufacturing sector 10 percent by 2020.