Artificial Intelligence (AI) continues to dominate tech headlines. Now, rather than learning what the technology could mean for government, we're reading about where it's being implemented, and the results being achieved. A recent report found that AI is no longer considered optional, but rather a critical component to managing and using large amounts of data. IT leaders in government are looking to AI to automate routine, data-oriented tasks, ease access to diverse sets of data, prioritize tasks based on the benefit to the organization, and generally keep track of ever-growing streams of data.
The Intelligence Community (IC) has long been a top consumer and analyzer of data in government. Not surprisingly, they have embraced AI technology to supplement the work of analysts by reducing the amount of manual data sorting with machine-assisted, high-level cognitive analysis. AI is being used to help triage so the highly-trained analysts can spend their time making sense of the data collected by looking at the most valuable and seemingly connected pieces.
Health and Human Services (HHS) implemented an AI solution when they needed to quickly procure Hazmat suits to meet the response to an Ebola outbreak. Procurement officials were able to use AI to make like-to-like comparisons among products. After the initial tactical analysis, the acquisition teams were able to use the data gathered on department wide pricing and the terms and conditions to better define parameters for ten categories of purchases.
Despite the successful implementations in many agencies, AI is still in the pilot and introductory phase. The Air Force is making it easier to begin experimenting with AI. Because the DoD has strict rules about what can be put on their networks, it is difficult to introduce new technologies into the production environment. The Air Force has created a workaround with the Air Force Cognitive Engine (ACE) software platform, a software ecosystem that can connect core infrastructures that are required for successful AI development (people, algorithms, data, and computational resources).
HHS is looking to use AI to analyze dated regulations as part of their AI for deregulation project. The pilot has found that 85 percent of HHS regulations from before 1990 have not been edited and are most likely obsolete. Using AI to flag regulations with the term "telegram," for example, will begin the prioritization of data that needs to be looked at by humans.
Implementations like these and others are being highlighted at a wide variety of events. We pulled together a list of our top picks to get up-to-speed on how AI is being used and can be used in government.
- December Speaker Series: The Technology Backbone of Government's 2020 Workforce (December 11, 2019; Washington, DC) - Organized by the Association for Federal Information Resources Management (AFFIRM), this event will bring together government knowledge-leaders to explore how technology is shaping the workforce of 2020 and beyond. Robotic process automation, machine learning, and artificial intelligence will be discussed in terms of the role they will play in bringing on employees through clearance processes as well as how they will be used in day-to-day work.
- Institute for Data Science and Big Data (January 2-11, 2020; Washington DC) -- The American University Center for Data Science will run the Institute for Data Science and Big Data on campus, which is open to all under a university course credit or certificate option, both geared to working professionals. The institute will cover the basics of data science, including obtaining relevant data, cleaning and exploring data, creating models, stating inferences, making reliable predictions, and communicating findings. The course consists of a mixture of lectures, guest speakers, and group assignments.
- Smart 2020: Mission Possible (January 23, 2020; Washington, DC) - IT visionaries, providers, and program teams will discuss how to chart a smart path forward as they strive to meet modernization laws and guidance.
- 2020 Human Systems Conference (March 3-4, 2020; Arlington, VA) - This conference from NDIA is centered on Human Systems within Multi-Domain Operations. The conference will explore a variety of relevant and game-changing topics, including Human Systems Integration, Human Factors Engineering, Human Performance, Human-Agent Teaming, and Human Systems and Artificial Intelligence.
- E-Discovery, Records & Information Management Conference & Expo (March 26, 2020; Washington, DC) - This free event brings together government professionals to discuss current technology-based requirements and examples of successful electronic records management and e-discovery programs including the introduction of AI and machine learning technologies.
Let us know where you are hearing about AI implementations and plans. Share your event suggestions in the comments.