Summit Highlights Bright Future for AI in NYC

The Artificial Intelligence Summit Featured Top Industry Experts on AI Technology and Advancements

Corinna Cortes, Google NY’s head of research, at the AI Summit

Following its first-ever and highly successful AI (artificial intelligence) Summit in April, NYU Tandon’s Future Labs celebrated the rapid growth of AI technology and companies in New York City with its second summit on October 30-31. Bringing together entrepreneurs, venture capitalists, startups, students, and AI enthusiasts from across the region, the Future Labs AI Summit featured leading experts and academics who spoke on the latest research and future of AI.

Featured speakers included Corinna Cortes, Google NY’s head of research, and Davide Venturelli, research scientist at USRA, Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science at NASA Ames Quantum AI Laboratory. Cortes detailed Google’s development of Smart Reply, the automated email response suggestions that are part of the Gmail application, and Venturelli discussed quantum computing and its potential impact on chemistry, material science, optimization, and machine learning.

Davide Venturelli, research scientist at USRA, Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science at NASA Ames Quantum AI Laboratory

Davide Venturelli, research scientist at USRA, Research Institute for Advanced Computer Science at NASA Ames Quantum AI Laboratory

In his welcome remarks, NYU Tandon dean Katepalli Sreenivasan shared with the hundreds of attendees his insight into recent advancements in AI, highlighting NYU Tandon’s and New York City’s commitment to supporting AI-centered startups and companies. “With the large number of job openings and opportunities in AI here in New York City, we at NYU are currently educating and building the talent pipeline needed to support the industry,” Sreenivasan said. “Our university has the largest number of faculty and staff working with AI. At NYU Tandon, we care deeply about this technology, and we believe that our school can become a technology hub for the city.”


“Our university has the largest number of faculty and staff working with AI. At NYU Tandon, we care deeply about this technology, and we believe that our school can become a technology hub for the city.”
— Dean Sreenivasan
 

The Future Labs’ renowned programs include some of the most successful startups in the city, such as CB Insights, Clarifai, and Geometric Intelligence (acquired by Uber AI last year). With NYU Tandon and the Future Labs already at the forefront of AI, its latest business accelerator — AI NexusLab — is fostering innovative AI startups locally, providing them with venture development, investment opportunities, technical support, industry mentors, and more. Developed in partnership with ff Venture Capital (ffVC), an early-stage venture capital firm in NYC, the AI NexusLab celebrated its second cohort of startups, who took the stage at the Summit to demo their companies.

Bite.ai, one of four AI NexusLab start-ups represented at the summit

Bite.ai, one of four AI NexusLab start-ups represented at the summit

Leveraging AI NexusLab’s small-scale and
tailored approach to supporting early-stage tech companies, the four startups — Bite.ai, Bowtie, Mt. Cleverest, and SecondMind — demonstrated the potential of AI to transform sectors such as healthcare, marketing, data visualization, education, and business communications. From Bowtie’s intelligent client communication platform for small businesses to Bitesnap’s mobile app that allows individuals to take charge of their nutritional health by fusing deep learning and image recognition, Future Labs’ managing director Steve Kuyan noted New York’s “ideal ecosystem” for AI technology and applications across industries and companies.

“We have a combination of everything from innovative researchers and research labs, to university talent, SMBs [small-to-medium businesses], and Fortune 500 companies,” he explained. “New York City has the largest opportunities in AI and machine learning. As Dean Sreenivasan mentioned, the faculty working in this field and students emerging out of NYU Tandon, Columbia, and Cornell Tech who are interested in AI can fill this industry’s workforce gap.”

With New York already surpassing San Francisco in venture capital funding, according to a third quarter report from PwC and CB Insights, the city’s innovators and its universities are ready to take on the next generation of AI. “The future is in our collective hands,” Sreenivasan emphasized to the crowd. “I hope all of us have the wisdom to head in the right direction and apply this technology towards the betterment of society.” 


Camila Ryder
Graduate School of Arts and Science
Master of Arts in English Literature, Class of 2018