Obama White House issues its last word on AI

Obama at White House
President Barack Obama sits for a 3-D portrait being produced by the Smithsonian Institution. (White House Photo / Pete Souza)

Dealing with the coming revolution in artificial intelligence is likely to require modernizing America’s social safety net, White House experts said today, in what may well be the Obama administration’s last official word on the subject.

The White House report, “Artificial Intelligence, Automation and the Economy,” follows up on a series of workshops that started out in Seattle and resulted in a roundup of policy recommendations issued in October.

Today’s report focuses on the potential economic impacts of AI, and draws upon analyses from the Council of Economic Advisers, the Domestic Policy Council, the National Economic Council, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Office of Science and Technology Policy.

The opportunities offered by AI are likely to be a key driver for future productivity and wage growth, said Jason Furman, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.

“As we look at AI, our biggest economic concern is that we won’t have enough of it,” he told reporters during a teleconference.

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By Alan Boyle

Mastermind of Cosmic Log, contributing editor at GeekWire, author of "The Case for Pluto: How a Little Planet Made a Big Difference," president of the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing. Check out "About Alan Boyle" for more fun facts.

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