The U.S. Just Took a Crucial Step Toward Democratizing AI Access

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This week, the National Science Foundation (NSF) announced it was launching a pilot program with 10 other federal agencies and 25 private sector and nonprofit organizations that could be a first step towards democratizing access to the expensive infrastructure required for cutting-edge AI research.

The National Artificial Intelligence Research Resource (NAIRR) pilot aims to provide expensive computational horsepower, datasets, AI models, and other tools to academic AI researchers who otherwise often struggle to access the resources they increasingly need.

Chipmaker Nvidia, one of the companies involved in the program, said that it would contribute $30 million worth of cloud computing resources and software to the pilot over two years, while Microsoft announced it would contribute $20 million of cloud computing credits in addition to other resources. OpenAI, Anthropic, and Meta, which are among the leading companies in the sector, are reportedly providing access to their AI models.