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Google launch AI for Social Good

Google has launched the new programme AI for Social Good.

The tech giant aims to encourage the use of artificial intelligence in bringing about positive change and has backed the project with $25 million in funding.

The pool of money will help out non-profits, academics and social enterprises in using AI-related software to help have a healthy impact on society.

This will include forecasting potentially damaging weather and protecting wildlife.

Google's Jeff Dean, senior vice president of Google AI, and Jacquelline Fuller, president of Google.org, said in a joint statement: "For the past few years we've been applying core Google AI research and engineering to projects with positive societal impact, including forecasting floods, protecting whales, and predicting famine.

"Today we're unifying these efforts in a new program called AI for Social Good. We're applying AI to a wide range of problems, partnering with external organisations to work toward solutions."

Through the Google AI Impact Challenge, the company are asking academics and non-profits to send in their own proposals for how they could use AI to benefit others.

They continued: "But we're far from having all the answers - or even knowing all the questions. We want people from as many backgrounds as possible to surface problems that AI can help solve, and to be empowered to create solutions themselves.

"So as a part of AI for Social Good, we're also launching the Google AI Impact Challenge, a global call for non-profits, academics, and social enterprises from around the world to submit proposals on how they could use AI to help address some of the world's greatest social, humanitarian and environmental problems."

Google hope to be able to have chosen a number of the plans they receive to be investigated further in 2019, and they don't even need to be from people with knowledge in AI.

They concluded: "We're excited to see what new ideas nonprofits, developers and social entrepreneurs from across the world come up with and we're looking forward to supporting them as best we can."

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