Google’s first AI Gift for Africa; An AI Lab.

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Ghana being the growing center for technology advancements in Africa, received the first gift from the internet god “Google” as an Artificial Intelligence Research Lab. While artificial intelligence has mostly misconceptions related to only science fiction and robotics, the most used part of AI is to solve various limitations in agriculture, medical diagnosis, and education.

Google being first to start an AI lab in Africa will help the locals and students to understand and use the various applications of artificial intelligence. As per an article in CNN “A rural farmer in Tanzania hovers over a wilting cassava plant with her phone. In seconds she gets a diagnosis of the disease affecting her plant and how best to manage it to boost her production.”

Agriculture in Africa has a massive social and economic footprint. There are multiple plant diseases unsolved at diagnosis level while the complicated cases of human diagnosis are also unsolved. Artificial intelligence using machine learning and deep learning can be instrumental in finding solutions to these obstructions in research.

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Moustapha Cisse, Google scientist, heading the AI Project in Africa tells CNN “Most of what we do in our research centers at Google and not just in Accra, we publish it and open-source code, so that everybody can use it to build all sorts of things,” he said. “A team of Pennsylvania University and the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture using TensorFlow to build new artificial intelligence models that are deployed on phones to diagnose crop disease.”

Google has also planned to start various courses on machine learning in the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences in South Africa. There is a substantial targeted market for Google in Africa which has 1.2 billion population, and 60 percent of them are under the age of 24. From internet adaptation by Africans to Chinese investments in Africa, there is a possible high growth curve for tech companies to jump in. This is just starting there are possibilities for tech giants like Facebook, IBM to join the race.



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